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Does … everything … a … spider … can

Spider-Man, 3/31/07

You may have missed Friday’s thrilling Spider-Man, in which the fake Mrs. Spider-Man attempted to escape from the back seat of her captor’s car! So, thrill to this installment in which … she … is … put back into the car by her captor. This, combined with my rage earlier this week at similar non-developments, has brought about an epiphany: just about everything that happens in Spider-Man happens only to slow down the action of the strip. It’s all an endless delaying action, making the big payoff we’re going to get that much more exciting. I’ve been reading this feature daily for something like three years now, so I can tell you that said payoff had better be really good.

Panel three: Spidey, you got clocked by a brick and you’re just now wondering if this whole “spider-sense” thing isn’t a load of bunk?

Pluggers, 3/31/07

Just when you think that the whole “anthropomorphic and non-anthropomorphic animals uneasily sharing narrative space” scenario can’t get any more unsettling, you get today’s paean to involuntary sterilization. For obvious reasons, I try not to pay too close attention to the various family relationships among the horrifying bipedal beasts of Pluggers, so I can’t say for sure if the dog and the Chicken-Lady are kin or just acquaintances, but I think what really makes this panel disturbing is the look of mortal terror on the face of the li’l pup contrasted with heavy-lidded indifference of his feathered captor.

Would it make me an evil chardonnay-swilling elitist if I suggested that actual plugger litter control is a crude, hand-scrawled sign that reads “FREE PUPPIES,” which you put on a pole in the middle of your dog-feces-laden yard? What, it would? Oh, OK then, I won’t … what, I already said it? Damn it.

Beetle Bailey, 3/31/07

Wow, who knew that painting your own porch furniture was something that somehow lowered one’s prestige, and that, more generally, the elite of our military’s officer corps lives in a fishbowl in which every action that they and their spouses take is judged by neighbors and passersby? Who should be painting a general’s chairs? A crew of enemy combatants, on loan from Gitmo?

Family Circus, 3/31/07

“I’m helping her too, Jeffy! I’m masturbating to Internet pornography because I know that cleaning leaves her too tired to perform her marital duties. Oh, and let me borrow one of those shirts, while you’re handing them out.”

76 responses to “Does … everything … a … spider … can”

  1. Blarg
    April 1st, 2007 at 7:52 pm [Reply]

    I’m confused by the way the caption works with the speech bubble in the Family Circus. Why put one sentence in the bubble and the other in the caption? Why do I even ask these questions about such an awful comic?

    Also, first. Or close to it.

  2. Weasel Boy
    April 1st, 2007 at 7:53 pm [Reply]

    The annoying thing about Pluggers (as if there’s only one annoying thing) is that most of the jokes are just stupid plays on words and don’t really relate to what a “plugger” actually is. Case in point: pluggers don’t care about people tossing trash on the ground, they just like to cut the balls off animals.

  3. Tabby Lavalamp
    April 1st, 2007 at 7:54 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers just raises the whole Goofy/Pluto conundrum to a horrifying degree, doesn’t it? This whole nightmare would put me right of anthropomorphic animals if the danged things didn’t bring us furries, nature’s cuddliest fetishists.

  4. Trotzenbonnie
    April 1st, 2007 at 7:54 pm [Reply]

    Re: Plugger litter control-
    Josh, it wouldn’t even make you a White Zinfandel chuggin’ Plugger to suggest that.

  5. Tabby Lavalamp
    April 1st, 2007 at 7:59 pm [Reply]

    Damn it! The heartbreak of non-editable blog comments! I meant say “right off”, not “right of”. The typo makes it seem like I’m Ann Coulter to Mickey Mouse’s Al Franken.

  6. Aging Hipster
    April 1st, 2007 at 7:59 pm [Reply]

  7. CaptainColonel
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:00 pm [Reply]

    I first starting wondering this while watching the show Arthur on PBS, but do anthropomorphic animals of one species ever marry or get involved with anthropomorphic animals of another species? Is it some sort of taboo in anthropomorphic animal society to marry outside of your species? Like incest or someone marrying their dog? Is the pure, but forbidden love between an aardvark and a rabbit to be soiled by such unjust societal prejudices?

  8. Tabby Lavalamp
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:00 pm [Reply]

    Damn it! “I meant say”? Next week I’ll be going on tour with Tarzan, Tonto, and Frankenstein, it seems.

  9. Aging Hipster
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:00 pm [Reply]

  10. t.a.m.s.y.
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:03 pm [Reply]

    I’m just glad Jeffy didn’t say “I’m helpin’ Mommy clean the garage.”

  11. Kurdt
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:05 pm [Reply]

    Heh, I’m in the Air Force and the answer to the question of who would paint the generals chairs would be: Any low ranking enlisted troop. And believe me I’ve had to do worse.
    And what the Hell is that guy in the red shirt doing? I guess he just decided to take a shortcut through the lawn of an officer.
    And why is the General wearing his uniform? Was he going somewhere important? I guess he’s going to get white paint all over it, at least he took his hat off. Hey! Where’d it go?
    So many questions….

  12. AhClem
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:05 pm [Reply]

    MW – judging from Mary’s expression in the second panel, I think she’s starting to regret putting out the tuna casserole six hours before the party started.

    MT – By “sunspots”, scientists are referring to the cooler eddies on the sun’s surface, not a bunch of Uncle Duke’s ™ dazed bubbles floating in space, surrounding the Borg ship and some monoliths from “2001″.

  13. Mooncattie
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:06 pm [Reply]

    Would that be “cleaning”, not “clearing”? I can’t blame him – every time he breathes on her, he’s got another mouth to feed.

  14. Spanky The Dolphin
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:06 pm [Reply]

    I would have figured Plugger “litter control” would be waiting until they could just stick the puppies or kittens in a sack and throw it into the lake, just like Pa did back when they were in grade school…

  15. Yitzchok
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:08 pm [Reply]

    If you look carefully at Family Circus, you’ll notice that Dad isn’t looking at jeffy. He’s actually READING HIS WORD BALLOON!

    What a twist!

  16. TurtleBoy
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:11 pm [Reply]

    #1 Blarg: I too am always a bit unsettled by the “double-whammy” captions Keane throws in every now and then. The caption always seems so disembodied and vacant.

  17. Derelict
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:14 pm [Reply]

    The central question raised by that Spiderman is why Dara’s dress wasn’t ripped clean off her body on contact with the pavement. In THIS universe, we should be seeing her clad in nothing but underwear (if that). Yet another way that Spiderman strives–and succeeds–in disappointing the reader at every turn.

  18. Hysterical Woman
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:14 pm [Reply]

    The April’s Fools Joke is that there is no April’s Fools Joke.

  19. Tim Hunter
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:14 pm [Reply]

    Having grown up among Pluggers I’ve witnessed “Plugger litter control” firsthand. You take the litter, put it in a sack, and beat the sack against the tree until the noise stops.

  20. Hobbes
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:15 pm [Reply]

    I’m not sure I’m comfortable with this back-alley building that is a spay and neuter clinic for 4 hours a week. What do they do the rest of the time, amateur heart surgery?

  21. Blade Runner
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:15 pm [Reply]

    A3G: Yeah, She’s still a ditz. But her hair looks really nice.

    Baldo: But enough about my kumquats, Carmen. Tell me about you and your melons.

    Spiderman: Life has been rough on Dara Dorset, the poor girl who lied about being Spiderman’s wife. First she got kidnapped, then she fell out of a moving car while tied up. Now she is being taken to meet Krime Lord Kordok.
    It was nice of the henchman to let her change from a red dress to a blue dress. That dress probably got ripped when she fell out of a moving car at freeway speeds. Good thing that the only mark on her is an abrasion on her shoulder.

    Mark Trail: More about space can be found in cyberspace.

    Dingo – I tried a guitar solo of the damned, but I had trouble getting my damned guitar out of the damned case, and the damn cord wouldn’t reach to the damned amp, and I couldn’t find a damn pick, so I just said damn it.

  22. Mibbitmaker
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:17 pm [Reply]

    The Pluggerdog, afterwards: “OhmyfreakinGOD, what they did to me! And to think, I always assumed I’d have a friend in someone named Bob Barker! Yeesh!! I hope my owner gets a visit from Colonel freakin’ Sanders!

  23. Joshua
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:18 pm [Reply]

    #7 Captain Colonel: The best answer I can give you about interspecies romance among anthropomorphic animals is that it’s the focus of the central relationship in the “Kevin and Kell” comic strip by Bill Holbrook. Actually, the great divide there is between herbivorous and carnivorous animals, yet the main couple’s marriage crosses that divide.

  24. Joe
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:20 pm [Reply]

    Maybe Spider-Man will gradually lose all of his spider-powers, reducing him to a guy who just runs around looking ridiculous. You know, to make it a little more super-heroey

  25. Doug Puthoff
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:20 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers: Since Holy Week begins tomorrow. I think this question needs to be asked again: What species is Jesus in the Pluggerverse.

  26. captainswift
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:22 pm [Reply]

    Sunday’s BC managed to offend me both on a secular and Christian level. Johnny Hart is reaching new heights. Or lows. Or whatever

  27. jules
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:24 pm [Reply]

    MW: Vera came to the party! Let the meddlin’ begin!

    RMMD: Wait, wait, waitwaitwaitwait. I go to sleep Saturday night fairly sure about what’s going on (the Gulf Stream is missing, Heather is crying, June is sneering, we’re looking up Rex’s nose again); I wake up Sunday morning and discover approximately eight new characters taking part in this storyline?! One of them appears to be a chauffeur, and all of them appear to dislike Milton Avery’s offspring. But who the hell are they? Do I know these people but didn’t recognize them in color? What’s going on? Anyone? Anyone?

  28. Skullturf Q. Beavispants
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:27 pm [Reply]

    Regarding Pluggers, usually when the joke is “A Plugger X is a Y”, they’re trying to be a bit dismissive of X. For example, if they refer to “Plugger Pilates” or a “Plugger iPod”, the insinuation is that Pluggers have no need of fancy-schmancy things like Pilates or the iPod.

    So is this strip suggesting nobody would volunteer to remove garbage lying on the ground of their community unless they’re some kind of fancy-pants liberal coastal elitist?

    Like Weasel Boy said at #2, this makes the strip more annoying than usual. The joke totally falls apart if you try to explore it any more deeper than “hey, the word ‘litter’ has two different meanings!”

  29. Kurdt
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:28 pm [Reply]

    What if God was human-dog?
    du du du du
    Or a chicken or a two-leg frog?
    du du du du
    Just a Plugger on his own
    Doesn’t own a cellular phone
    Just the kind you use at home

    Feel free to add more verses

  30. MrP
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:29 pm [Reply]

    Spidey, Spidey, Spidey… Your spider-sense isn’t helping you find Dara Dorset because your damn spider-sense is supposed to warn you about impending danger, not help you find people. Dumbass.

    Or maybe he’s contracted brain damage from the brick to his head. Or a brain tumor is killing his spider-sense and ability to think rationally. Next thing you know, he’s going to chase down his arch-nemesis… A truck! FAPPO!

  31. fishmorgjp
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:30 pm [Reply]

    “Kordok”? Didn’t he appear on an episode of Star Trek TOS, where he turned the whole Enterprise crew into styrofoam octohedrons or something?

  32. jules
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:30 pm [Reply]

    Oh, and about BC: I loathe it, and always have. (I also read it; it’s like a train wreck, I cannot look away.) But there’s one tiny detail about BC that has always amused me for reasons I can’t begin to explain: it’s the way a character will, in a totally grammatically-incorrect manner, shout some newly-discovered fact: “Ants got separation of church and state!” That one was painfully stilted, but it got a wan smile out of me anyway.

    “Clams got legs!” “Archaeopteryx got hair!” These things do not make BC funny by any stretch of the imagination…but dammit, I can’t seem to help being amused by them.

    Please don’t throw me off the website! I love it here.

  33. Kenny
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:37 pm [Reply]

    #1 – Weasel – I never could wrap my head around the terrible execution of dialog in Family Circus. I mean – not to give it credit by ANY means – at least Pluggers separates thoughts from Dialog to Joke… FC this time is just… just awful.

  34. Skullturf Q. Beavispants
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:37 pm [Reply]

    #29 Kurdt: Here’s my first verse:

    If God had a snout
    And floppy ears and if his gut was really big
    What would he say now to his kangarooish wife
    Would you believe he doesn’t own a computer…

  35. Junior Tracy
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:43 pm [Reply]

    Curiously, the plugger dog apparently can read.

    Best to just ignore “Pluggers”, especially in light of your chardonnay-swilling tendencies. It’ll just frost your shorts.

    The Chicago Tribune has much to answer for.

  36. Harry Paratestes
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:46 pm [Reply]

    You’re a true plugger if any female in your family tree whelped, farrowed, or otherwise ‘slung’ dodecatuplets.

  37. Reepicheep-chan
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:47 pm [Reply]

    I realize B.C. is hecka anachronistic, but when they talk about Jesus it totally throws me. When Jesus was born it stopped being B.C, duh.

  38. doug rogers
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:54 pm [Reply]

    You know that Family Circus just might have been funny without the caption. Just the comment in the word balloon. Leave well enough alone. Don’t bludgeon me with an explanation. Save the caption for another panel. Like I should stop now.

  39. Anonymous
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:54 pm [Reply]

    I officially have no idea what the hell is going on in today’s B.C.. The teacher asks the student to explain a purely religious holiday (though if anyone would like to start a tradition of having palm readings or putting up inflatable palm trees on this day, much like I feel that boxing movies should be shown all day on December 26, please feel free) and then becomes incensed, angry, and aggressive as the student uses religious references to explain the holiday. And then the two-legged clam announces?…accuses?…discovers?…what the hell? And what are the shock lines coming from the SKOOL meant to represent?

    Please, Johnny Hart, more ants and donuts. That was funny.
    http://www.joshreads.com/?p=601

  40. Chert the Chort
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:55 pm [Reply]

    #37 – It is widely theorized that B.C. is not set in the “before Christ” era, but is actually a post-apocalyptic setting, after a nuclear war or some such. This makes a lot of sense – there are earlier strips (do a Google search on this) where they find (modern-day) newspapers and laught about what people thought “back then” and such.

    I read B.C. this way now, doens’t make it any funnier, but it makes a LOT more sense.

  41. Harold
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:57 pm [Reply]

    Ugh. Anonymous 39 was me.

  42. Trotzenbonnie
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:58 pm [Reply]

    I think this is how Pluggers snip the blangs off their Dodge Rams:
    http://spaylouisiana.org/bigfixrig.html

  43. Moon Mullins
    April 1st, 2007 at 8:59 pm [Reply]

    #40: Plus, one of the characters’ name is B.C.

    His initials might stand for “Bad-ass Caveman” or something like that.

  44. Gadge Cubic, Mole Preener
    April 1st, 2007 at 9:09 pm [Reply]

    Pet peeve time: I don’t care how often the press uses it, or if people actually in the military use it, the word “troop” simply does not refer to a single soldier. Look it up.

    I’ve had to give up on “grow” taking an object (as in “grow the economy”), but I’m not giving up on this one. Grrrr.

  45. Harold
    April 1st, 2007 at 9:09 pm [Reply]

    If God had a blog it’d be on paper
    And God’s radio would get just oldies
    And he wouldn’t worry about
    which way the roll went on
    ‘Cause he’d be a big dog
    or chicken or some other animal
    maybe a rhino.

    Yeah, yeah, God’s a dog,
    Yeah, yeah, God’s a bird,
    Yeah, yeah,
    Yeah, yeah, yeah
    What if God were a Plugger putz?
    Overalls on his Plugger butt?
    Sitting sadly on his stump outside his Plugger home?

  46. andreavis
    April 1st, 2007 at 9:10 pm [Reply]

    I mentioned this in the previous thread: Plugger ChickenLady is married to a dog-man, isn’t she? I think it was cheapskate soda pop grandpa.

    http://www.chron.com/apps/comics/showComic.mpl?date=2007/3/26&name=Pluggers

    (sorry, I’ve never figured out how to do the fancy clickable linky thing.) Since Chickenlady can’t chop hubby’s nuts off, Fido will have to stand in. Dayum, ChickenBroad, that’s stone cold!

  47. Joe Bftsplk
    April 1st, 2007 at 9:24 pm [Reply]

    #1, #16, #33, #38 – Mind what you complain about. Either he puts that second Jeffyism into a caption, or he draws a second panel for it. And nobody wants that, do we now?

  48. SixFootJen
    April 1st, 2007 at 9:29 pm [Reply]

    44 Gadge: I only object to “grow” taking an object when it’s used figuratively. Farmers grow corn, my neighbor grows dahlias, the goat grew horns. Fine. But people don’t grow their wealth, and companies don’t grow the brand. Bleagh.

    You’ll probably never even see this, as the site has grown a new thread.

  49. Alan Vanneman
    April 1st, 2007 at 9:39 pm [Reply]

    It’s a pity that Spiderman has not yet copped to the fact that his “spider sense” does not enable him to track women with alliterative first and last names. Long-time fans may remember the months the webhead spent, during a 1983-1984 sequence, trying to locate “Lois Lane,” thus losing a $5,000 bet to a vastly amused Superman.

  50. King Folderol
    April 1st, 2007 at 10:00 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers – Ew. Ick. Gross.

    Beetle Bailey – Not only should Gitmo detainees be painting General Halftrack’s fence, it’s actually part of HR-1276, implemented last May. So Halftrack is the detainee and his wife is the cruel jailer.

    Too Kafkaesque for my tastes if you ask me.

    FC – Give credit where credit is due…at least the Keanes didn’t cop out with a lame joke about how little Jeffy can use the computer and Dad can’t.

  51. Bunnë
    April 1st, 2007 at 10:03 pm [Reply]

    #39, Harold, I’m with you on this one. Also, the joke’s not funny. To me, faulty logic tends to kill a joke anyway, but better logic would not have helped, because this is a rant and not a joke.

    Or the teacher is sadistic.

    I’m trying to imagine this from another perspective… let’s say instead of separation of church and state, we have state-mandated biblical interpretation of everything. The teacher asks, “what is evolution?”, and blah blah blah, you know where I’m going with this. Point being, that wouldn’t be funny either.

  52. reader-who-posts
    April 1st, 2007 at 11:17 pm [Reply]

    FW: My God a whole busload of kids and teachers are loading onto a bus at the same time? KILL!! KILL!! KILL!! KILL!!

    Pluggers: If this is Plugger litter control, that means Pluggers are also those assholes throwing their Big Mac boxes out on the freeway.

    BB: Pentagon Briefing, 3/31/07 – Gen Halftrack, CO of Camp Swampy, was observed painting furniture on his porch by civilians. Recommended action: Assassination.

    Spider-man: Hey Pete, your spider-sense warns you of impending danger to mimic having eyes in the back of your head, although it in ineffective against falling bricks. It is NOT a tracking device, I repeat NOT a tracking device.

  53. reader-who-posts
    April 1st, 2007 at 11:30 pm [Reply]

    You even post something and then think of a better joke? Well, let me rewind…

    FW: Funky Winkerbean has a whole busload of students and teachers getting on a bus for an all-night road trip…oh yes, there will be blood.

  54. Trilobite
    April 1st, 2007 at 11:31 pm [Reply]

    I hope this Spider-Man arc fizzles to its disappointing conclusion soon, because Kordok’s henchman is weirding me right the hell out. Seriously, look at that guy. If Alfred J. Neuman were crossed with a duck, the end result would be prettier. I’ve seen thugs in Dick Tracy with more realistic features, and better fashion sense, too. With a sportcoat and shirt combo like that, he’d be the KING of a Charterstone pool party.

    Also, I wish you all a happy true millennipost! Yay!

  55. reader-who-posts
    April 1st, 2007 at 11:33 pm [Reply]

    I mean “you ever”…

  56. Artist formerly known as Ben
    April 1st, 2007 at 11:46 pm [Reply]

    Josh, if Thel were still doing her marital duties, they’d have twenty crumb-snatchers. That’s just the kind of luck this couple has. Damn, but that was funny.

  57. Joe
    April 2nd, 2007 at 1:06 am [Reply]

    Now I can imagine an elderly gentleman writing in about the rising price of sodas or the changing roles of grandparents in society but today’s pluggers is different.

    It is easy to picture an artist chuckling to himself about the multiple kooky definitions of the term “litter”, ultimately resulting in a low quality comic but this is not the case. Instead, the idea for this comic comes from a Mr. Hoover. I can’t even begin to imagine how creepy the letter describing such processes must be (at least below the standards of recent foob adventures). I guess I am a bit overly empathetic to dogs when it comes to being spayed and neutered but I feel that Mr. Hoover needs to clean up his act.

  58. MOrt
    April 2nd, 2007 at 1:52 am [Reply]

    #7 – Well, it was a running joke for years on the muppets that if Kermit and Miss Piggy ever actually tied the knot, they could raise a whole litter of figs.

  59. Mike
    April 2nd, 2007 at 2:57 am [Reply]

    Actually, Kurdt, its a bit more confusing than that. I’m in the Army and last time I heard you can’t order a subordinate to do personal chores. Sure, the general could get a few privates to do it, but it would only take one phone call to the Inspector General or the Equal Opportunity office to open up a can of whoopass. I’m pretty certain that the base housing office hires contractors to cut a general’s grass. I’ve certainly never been ordered to do it or seen any other soldier have to do it.

    Besides, who is gonna see his wife anyway? If he’s the Base commander his house isn’t NEAR any other houses except maybe the Deputy Commander’s house. Beetle Bailey seems to exist in some wierd 1950′s style Army that is so far removed from the military today it makes no sense. Especially to people that are currently serving.

  60. Mike
    April 2nd, 2007 at 3:07 am [Reply]

    #44: You’re right about the definition of the word troop. But it is used to describe single soldiers in a slang way. (at least in the army). Since language is fluid I think the definition will be upgraded someday. After all, its better than being called a “grunt” or a “dogface”.

    Besides, B.C. has a totally different meaning in the funny pages too….

  61. Frank Parsnip
    April 2nd, 2007 at 5:19 am [Reply]

    Spiderman’s pacing has actually fallen behind that of Mark Trail’s. There’s a deep mine of material in any situation where a superhero has a day job serving as photographer to a crew-cut hitler wannabee, but they just don’t go there.

    And what’s with the joint credit for Jeffy on Family Circus? I guess if the drawing is done by Jeffy or Billy we get a crappy crayola picture … but if the writing is done then we get both a speech balloon and a caption.

  62. WarOfTheBees
    April 2nd, 2007 at 7:26 am [Reply]

    I was prone to thinking that Plugger litter control was more along the lines of taking ole Rex out to the quiet part of the yard.

    Also, I know this has been pointed out, but really, isn’t it a little odd that they are neutering a full dog, while the Pluggers themselves are half-animal? That’s like me neutering a chimp.

  63. Jerseygull
    April 2nd, 2007 at 7:26 am [Reply]

    Re Beetle Bailey: If it’s not right for the general’s wife to be seen painting the chairs, how is it appropriate for the general, in uniform, to paint them? And is she sitting in one of the newly painted chairs?

  64. JLu
    April 2nd, 2007 at 7:28 am [Reply]

    Plugger litter control: don’t you mean, “FREE PUPPYS”?

  65. Hogen Mogen
    April 2nd, 2007 at 8:32 am [Reply]

    I never thought about this when I was a kid, but my two year old keeps asking why Pluto looks like Goofy but is naked.

  66. Buck Ripsnort
    April 2nd, 2007 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    Spider-Man can trace people w/ his spider-sense, providing he puts his pat pending spider-tracers on them. Of course, in today’s strip, Schmuck-Man (Spidey’s “special” clone) hasn’t bothered to plant a tracer, so he’s Spidey-Screwed.

  67. Calvin
    April 2nd, 2007 at 9:30 am [Reply]

    #59 – One of my mother’s favorite stories from when she was living on base housing and five months pregnant with me involved a Sgt. knocking on the door one day to inform her that her lawn was not mowed to regulation height. As she tells it (I was there, but am still in no position to confirm her account), she called the IG and told him that Cpt. Hodges was currently stationed in Thailand (this was 1966), and that neither she nor her pending firstborn was in any condition to operate a mower.

    The next day, the Sgt. reported for duty with a push mower and took care of the problem.

  68. Primate
    April 2nd, 2007 at 10:25 am [Reply]

    I bet Mrs. Halftrack has paint all over her ass, from sitting in that chair.

  69. Anonymous
    April 2nd, 2007 at 1:00 pm [Reply]

    64: Missed the apostrophe.
    “FREE PUPPY’S”

    You’re welcome.

  70. TSN
    April 2nd, 2007 at 5:23 pm [Reply]

    I have to disagree with the general complaint against anthropomorphic animals owning other animals. After all, humans are animals. There’s only a problem when you have two members of the same species in two different roles. Like Pluto/Goofy. If Goofy establishes that dogs are sentient, then Pluto is being kept as some sort of slave, I guess.

    Therefore, I don’t have a problem with the Shoe comic from the other day, at least in the “bird owns dog” sense. If, in the Shoe universe, birds are sentient and dogs aren’t, fine. However, since someone pointed out that the Pluggers chicken is married to a dog, one has to wonder : is she possibly neutering her own child here?

  71. Edgy DC
    April 3rd, 2007 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    This won’t win comment of the week, but Jeffy’s got the shirts to spare, because he’s suddenly put on about 30 pounds.

  72. AndreaD
    April 3rd, 2007 at 2:27 pm [Reply]

    The “troop” discussion is really interesting. I hadn’t heard it used in a singular fashion, but then, I’m so far removed from military life that I could possibly star in Beetle Bailey.

    John McWhorter had an interesting rant about this the other day on NPR. He felt that the term “troops” dehumanized soldiers, because it made them into a mass of people, rather than real, individual persons, although frankly, I think that’s kind of the military’s goal, no?

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=9163122

    More interestingly (at least, to me), McWhorter is a linguist who likes to promote the idea that langauge change and slag are just fine and dandy, and we shouldn’t fight new words and new meanings because it’s a losing battle. So it’s interesting that “troop” is actually being used in casual speech, because McWhorter claimed that it wasn’t.

  73. Decker
    April 3rd, 2007 at 4:50 pm [Reply]

    …actual plugger litter control is a crude, hand-scrawled sign that reads “FREE PUPPIES,” which you put on a pole in the middle of your dog-feces-laden yard…

    And the enterprising pluggers put up a sign that says “PIT BULL PUPS – $200″

  74. BlueNight
    April 17th, 2007 at 1:10 am [Reply]

    I remember figuring out that the ONLY developments in Spider-Man occurred on Sunday’s larger, color comic. I could skip the whole week without missing a single plot point. That was the beginning of the death of my childhood.

  75. Doodee
    February 1st, 2008 at 12:14 pm [Reply]

    Thanks for sharing

  76. Mr. Lemon
    March 19th, 2008 at 5:13 pm [Reply]

    Hold on one minute! What does being “The General’s Wife” have to do with anything? Is he the only General around? Since when do people recognize a general walking down the street unless he’s THE GENERAL! I get it now! The truth is that Beetle Bailey is really the story of resistance to a harsh military dictatorship! Think about it, Sarge’s constant fear of Beetle undermining the basic control of the military, references to clothing choice! Veiled references to closet homosexuality! I’m getting a bit of a V for Vendetta

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