CSotD: Bits and Pieces

Daniel Boris offers a Juxtaposition of Himself: Two versions of a single cartoon.

I prefer the first iteration, specifically because the convictions don’t necessarily lead back to Trump. That is, Rhodes and Meggs would have been convicted of seditious conspiracy (and the others of interference) without any need to prove they were incited by Trump and, so far, there’s not enough explicit evidence to similarly charge TFG.

(He’s in plenty of other trouble anyway.)

I also like the simplicity of the first piece, which deals only with the GOP’s refusal to acknowledge the seriousness of the event. Tying it into Trump is not wrong, but it’s a separate argument that, IMHO, deflects the blame.

Trump may be a persuasive salesman, but he hasn’t persuaded an entire political party of anything they didn’t want to believe in the first place.

Please feel free to disagree. I might have featured the second alone if Boris hadn’t posted them both.

And, on another level entirely, he’d probably do better selling the Grinch version to editors, since the bulk of them won’t understand either cartoon but do recognize, and adore, pop-culture seasonal references.


To which, BTW, I will add that I’m already sick of Advent Calendar cartoons, in the same way in which the woman in this Moderately Confused (AMS) panel is already sick of Christmas music.

I apologize to everyone who didn’t recognize the iconic slogan of Levy’s Jewish Rye Bread, but with the proviso that I remain entitled to object to people who think Advent begins on December 1.  Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn’t, and this year it began on November 27.

And, for that matter, I remember when Advent calendars revealed little Nativity-themed pictures. We didn’t need chocolate to get us hopped up over the approaching festival, and the Advent calendar was one of the ways our parents tried to keep us somewhat focused on the religious aspect of the feast day.

There was a kind of duality, in which we had the Christmas of Midnight Mass and creches and Advent calendars, but also the one with Santa and Rudolf and even Frosty, who has f-all to do with either form of Christmas but disappears promptly on December 26, along with Jingle Bells, which also isn’t about Christmas.

And, of course, this song, which longtime readers know never, ever to click on.


And here Jeremy Banx responds to the horror with which Britain discovered that it hasn’t got nearly as many Christians as it used to.

I like the term “lapsed” because it’s so transparently hopeful. Those still in the Church refer to people like me as “lapsed Catholics” with an unstated expectation that, at some point, we’ll come to our senses and get back in the groove.


Though perhaps that’s the wrong phrase, since, as Pat Byrnes points out, much of God’s mission on Earth appears to have centered on keeping us out of the groove, or, at least, out of the groove with which Pat and I were obsessed as undergraduates at a certain university.

He came along later, after the era of the irascible old professor I’ve mentioned in the past, who insisted you could no more be “ex-Catholic” than you could be “ex-Italian” or “ex-Irish,” and I have no idea how Byrnes styles himself.

But I agree with Dr. Cronin, and call myself a “recovering Catholic,” an on-going status under which, if I find myself facing the urge to go back to church, I can call my sponsor to talk me out of it.

However, the UK is facing a much greater scandal, as seen in this


Juxtaposition of the Day

(Clay Jones)


(Jeremy Banx again)

The horror this time is a kerfuffle in which a member of the royal staff asked a woman at a reception where she was from, which was clearly racist since the woman was black.

Though she had a Nigerian first name — Ngozi — and was dressed in African regalia.

Jones has a scathing takedown of the event, but what I see as the main fault is that Lady Hussey didn’t back off as soon as it was clear that Ngozi Fulani didn’t want to discuss her background.

I’d agree that age is no excuse for asking minorities where they’re from, but I’d contend that being 83 can be an excuse for failing to note social cues. Lady Hussey was an attendant of the late Queen and apparently had been carried along in a minor role, which shouldn’t have put her in a position to screw up, but there you have it and now she’s formally retired.

My observation being that I had never looked to Buckingham Palace as a model of modern hipness in the first place, although you should note that this is in no way an argument in favor of assimilation.

Still, if a man named Angus shows up in a kilt and sporran, somebody is bound to mention Scotland.


And another thing …

I don’t often freak out over commas, and only employ an Oxford comma when it is needed, and I would be deeply offended if someone saw an extraneous comma and asked me, “Oh, did you go to Oxford?”

Point being that — as Bill Whitehead replicates in today Free Range (Creators) — there is no comma in the skywriting that the Wicked Witch of the West put above the Emerald City, and, while it was indeed a case of direct address, it was not directed at Dorothy, or it would have read “Surrender, Dorothy.”

Rather, it was directed at the inhabitants of the City, warning them to hand over the child. No comma required.


And as long as we’re interpreting classics, Red and Rover (AMS) offers an accurate bit of trivia along with some pointed social commentary.

The good thing about collies being that they have just enough fur on their undercarriage to hide their gender. I think I knew at the time that Lassie was a boy, but I also knew it was based on a movie not to be confused with the book, “Lad: A Dog” by Albert Payson Terhune.

Machs nix. My sister was the Lassie fan. I preferred Rinty.

I also preferred the DC5, but only people who were really there remember them.


8 thoughts on “CSotD: Bits and Pieces

  1. I’m gonna push back a little, Mike.

    If I show up in a kilt and sporran, sure someone will mention Scotland…along with my white legs, but they’ll know I’m not from Scotland as soon as they hear me talk. I’m sure Ngozi doesn’t have a Nigerian accent since she was born and raised in England and I don’t think there would have been a kerfuffle if Lady Hussey had inquired about her outfit while delivering a compliment.

  2. Dear Mike,

    Thanks for clearing up that barnstorming plot point. I’ve been under the assumption for more than sixty years that the Wicked Witch was calling Miss Gale out. Making demands upon the whole of Emerald City is somehow more chilling.

    To be fair to seven-year-old me (I can’t remember exactly, as they ran it every year) the orchestra swelled to support the scene and there were those flying monkeys all over. They looked like kids in monkey suits, which lodged within my craw and pulled me out of the movie for a bit.

    My dad was ten when the movie first ran. He told me that the whole theater went “oooh!” When Dorothy opened her door into technicolor.

    Many years later I took him to see Avatar. The early onset of dementia prompted this comment after the movie, “where did they get all those tall people?” Bless him.

  3. After years of collecting xmas music, i’ve only found one cool adaptation of the LDB (may the original suffer from CD rot!) and that is from Asleep at the Wheel’s ‘Swingin’ drummer boy’.
    And xmas music started on T-day at the store with a song that is actually worse than LDB; ‘Susie Snowflake’ that a 5 year old would revolt from (not linking that, hate to hear people suffer)


  4. The question “where are you from” has led me into many interesting conversations with total strangers. As a way to initiate some human interaction, it usually works successfully and I think it’s too bad that the powers that be disapprove.

    I admit that at times I feel that a more roundabout approach is needed, as you suggested. Still, not everyone speaking a foreign language also has a cute dog in town. I find that almost everyone wants ith an American who is interested in their home country. wh

  5. Next time I go to a party, I’ll wear wooden shoes and one of those weird head coverings that women in Dutch villages wear; just curious if anyone will mention my outfit or ask whence I’m from. (Not to worry; I don’t go to parties.) Oh yeah, I’m originally from Holland, so I guess the question would be legit. But then, I’m white.

  6. Re: Lapsed Catholic. I like to say “I practiced so long, I don’t have to practice anymore”

  7. Clearly Ms. Hussey was at fault but surely the other person could have said something like, “I was born in Battersea but my ancestry is Carribean, I think! Where do you come from?” Her actual reaction suggests a big chip on her shoulder.

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