CSotD: Dark Humor

Caulfield asks a relevant question in today’s Frazz (AMS), and he’s got the excuse of being just a little feller who hasn’t been through this often enough to recognize that the pattern pretty much works the same both ways.

Once he’s done a little jet travel, pulled some all-nighters in college or simply lived through more moves in and out of Daylight Saving Time he’ll know that the reaction doesn’t kick in until the second day.

In Arlo and Janis (AMS), by contrast, Janis is old enough to get it, and Arlo is old enough to know when his wife is starting an actual conversation and when she’s simply looking for a bit of sympathy.

Better that the days, rather than the marriage, get shorter.

Shorter days aren’t bad for everyone, as Maria Scrivan points out, justifying her feature’s name, Half Full (AMS), at least for Drac. Frankie obviously sees the seasonal change as Half Empty.

Dark Side of the Horse (AMS) seems to live alone, giving him the freedom to take his time in adjusting, though we see him riding elevators often enough to suspect he has some sort of job.

The shifts in and out of DST take place at 2 AM on a Sunday, so that the impact hits on Monday. Seems like we’d do better if it changed in the wee hours of Saturday so that at least some people would have been through the worst of the lag by the time they had to head for work.

I realize this is not the only possible solution to the whole thing.

Though if I were going to choose an improbable solution, I’d go along with the one from F-Minus (AMS).

Assuming, of course, that he is actually awake and not simply dreaming the strangest dream he ever dreamed before.

More likely, he’ll actually wake up and find himself in Christopher Weyant‘s world, though if he calls for an appointment today they’ll tell him they have an opening the second week of February, but he won’t actually get to see his doctor and will have to tell his problem to one of the PAs.

Wit all doo respeck to PA’s, mind you, and none at all to medical corporations that impose time limits and patient-load quotas on MD’s.

It’s not an issue of expertise but one of continuity of care, and I wouldn’t mind seeing a PA if it were the same PA every time.

I used to go to a GP, but then I found myself going to a family doctor and now I see a PCP, which I thought was something that unethical dealers sprinkled on skunkweed. But I digress.

I can, however, make a smooth segue from angel dust to layoffs, since both are bummers. Alex made me laugh and shudder, because AI is indeed well-positioned to simulate corporate sympathy in a “headcount reduction program,” which I think is a better euphemism than “culling the herd.”

News of the changes at the Washington Post — which include a headcount reduction program through buyouts — reminded me of one of my former papers.

They offered x-number of buyouts in each department, awarded on the basis of seniority, which is how you get rid of your most expensive employees and leave yourself with a staff of rookies who don’t know the ropes but work cheap.

Marketing had one, which I was dumb enough to put in for. Turned out our department head had seniority and also wanted off the creeping meatball.

Buyouts include costly severance packages — I’d have gotten six months pay — but by keeping applications and awards secret, they found out who else, with enough harassment, might be induced to quit for free.

So they put the ol’ grinders right to me, but then they gave me a little sheet cake and punch party in the breakroom, with the sincere farewells that Cyrus plans to assign to AI in the future.

So it goes.

Juxtaposition of the Say What?

Non Sequitur (AMS) — Last Tuesday

Non Sequitur (AMS) — This morning

Wiley’s always been a little suspicious of friendly people who throw one arm around your shoulder while their other hand is slipping into your pocket, and I suspect it’s not so much that he doesn’t understand either the stock market or cryptocurrency as it is that he does.

Both depend heavily not on tangible, material value but on purported value, which is largely a matter of having confidence in their systems.

Which explains why the people who persuade investors to have faith are known as confidence men.

Over on the political side, Michael Ramirez (Creators) adds to the flood of cartoons about college kids saying ill-considered things, but doubles down by not only criticizing college administrators for not imposing cancel culture on students but accuses them of actually featuring such things in the curriculum.

Yesterday, someone else was going off on a student at the University of Pennsylvania for absurd, intemperate remarks, so I looked it up and it turns out she is one of 24,806 students there. Granted, it’s not hard to find a needle in a haystack if the needle has a bullhorn and won’t shut up.

Still, don’t blame UPenn: One of their students went on to become president, and I’m sure they’re proud to claim him.

Most of the commentators who criticize college students have, themselves, been to college, but they seem to be promoting a raccoon-coat-boola-boola image that was likely bogus even back when it was nominally fashionable.

It reminds me of “Okie from Muskogee,” in which non-collegiate people were assured that good college students “still respect the college dean.”

I met my dean once, for about five minutes, senior year, to get a waiver when it turned out that I had overcut phys ed my freshman year and would have to take it over to graduate.

I ran into Father Hesburgh several times, however, and we respected him mostly because he respected us.

I guess you had to be there.

And to be honest about it.

Finally — perhaps tragically so — the Argyle Sweater (AMS) shows a sign of autumn that hadn’t occurred to me.

I guess I kind of thought of the JGG as the Hulk’s more laid back, mellow brother. I never pictured him as J. Alfred Rootrot.

In the store the women come and go,
Seeking juicy tangelos.

13 thoughts on “CSotD: Dark Humor

  1. The day is not shorter.

    We do not have the power to make the day shorter.

    You are going to work an hour later, and pretending it’s the same time.

    1. Assuming that discussions of DST intend periods of light as opposed to periods of darkness, if you rise, eat and go to work at a certain time on the clock, your “day” is governed by the clock and artificially constructed, which we can change. By Christmas break, for instance, kids here will be going to school in the dark and coming home in the dark. We could change bus schedules by changing the length of the school day, though we choose not to.

      But you knew that. 😉


    2. But “day”, defined as “not night”, does indeed get shorter. I have no quibble with Arlo.

      1. Yes, but it has nothing to do with the time shift. I suspect that many DST complainers are really complaining about the coming of winter.

  2. I also get to sleep an hour later, which feels great this morning. Everything has been shifted, so that “hour later” that I work also means my shift started an hour later. The amount of daylight is getting shorter, but we are halfway to the winter solstice.

  3. We had a group president who was adamant that the term used be “people count” to humanize us. He also struck the term “act of God” from all boilerplate agreements.

  4. When I was young there was no horsing around; if I got up on the wrong side of bed, I couldn’t start over – my bed was against the wall!
    Most of our organization lives in Aridzona, we don’t need no stinkin’ DST! It is actually refreshing not to have one more no longer useful ‘human contrived’ hassle to contend with. Look around, we are now living in an increasing ‘period of darkness’.
    Thanks again Mike for the great perspective on issues that ‘furrow the brow’ of many ‘geniuses’.

  5. Once again, Mike, as you pointed out yesterday, language is so often ambiguous. ‘The day is shorter’ is silly in its implication of 24 hours. if it was more thoughtfully written ‘The daylight is shorter’ that would make much more sense. and is it ‘root rot’ or the australian version roo-trot? (a gait of most australian marsupials)
    Hey, who you calling a pedant?

  6. I don’t see why people are in such a huff about AI.
    The concept of “work” is outdated unless it directly involves manual labor.

  7. I usually work from dark until dark anyway. No appreciable difference for me working from a home studio with one small window.

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