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So many uncomfortable potential meanings of “pluggers” now impossible to ignore

Pluggers, 10/30/12

You know, before I read the caption, I thought I had this one figured out — “pluggers are friendly and helpful, and also spend so much time at their local home improvement big box store that they know where everything is,” or something along those lines. So you can imagine that I was surprised and delighted to discover that it was actually about how pluggers are just stone cold constantly doing their business in public restrooms to the extent that they have elaborate mental maps of where they can go do it. Do pluggers have lower GI or urinary continence problems that cause them to routinely be on the prowl for a publicly accessible toilet? Are their home bathrooms so gross that they actually prefer to go in a facility that they can be reasonably sure is mopped once a day? Or do they get a sick transgressive thrill out of it? Whatever the case, this is sadly one of the most interesting plugger quirks showcased to date.

Rex Morgan, M.D., 10/30/12

Oh, hey, Rex Morgan sex worker update: the fun gals at Junior’s apartment building are strippers, not prostitutes. Strippers with hearts of gold, though, tending to and raising money for one of their number who (we learned yesterday) is suffering from breast cancer. Actually presenting a breast cancer storyline seems like a much more natural and organic way for the comics to acknowledge Breast Cancer Awareness Month than, say, just putting pink on everything, though it says a lot about the pacing of soap opera strips that this only became clear on October 29th. Will Rex do an emergency breast-cancer-ectomy, being a scowling dick about the whole thing all the while?

Mark Trail, 10/30/12

Speaking of strippers, check out Mark easing out of shirt in panel three as he prepares to cleanse himself in this pirate island’s beautiful lagoon, all under Pop’s watchful eye! This would definitely be the sexiest Mark Trail yet, were it not for the known scientific fact that Mark Trail is where erotic feelings go to die.

219 responses to “So many uncomfortable potential meanings of “pluggers” now impossible to ignore”

  1. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:25 am [Reply]

    corgin’ with portals.

    I am reminded of several Tu’i bathtimes.

    that would explain a lot about Oz.

    SuicideGirlbomb. (mildly nsfw)

    a jug o’ truth for bb,u.

    meanwhile, in Windsor, where Detroit and Canada intersect. . . .

    meanwhile, in Nancy.

    an otterly wonderful ‘o no she didn’t!’ look.

    sleepin’ hard, corgi-style.

  2. Cannibal Crustacean
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:34 am [Reply]

    A3G: The transformation of Apartment 3G into a surreal, Serling-esque meditation on alienation and modern society was so gradual nobody noticed it.

    MW: Oh no! Not “OFF”! That’s the worst thing anyone in Santa Royale could be!

    Pluggers: Pluggers walk around with such looks of apathetic, soul-grinding despair that everyone things they work retail.

    Ziggy: The transformation of society to such a state that Ziggy suddenly seemed relevant was so gradual nobody except the Marxists noticed it.

  3. pastordan, lazy professor
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    I can’t believe I called the stripper angle yesterday. Here I thought I was making an off-color joke, and it turns out to be accurate!

  4. Chareth Cutestory
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:41 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: Noooo! Tiny Hand Island fever has begun to affect Mark as well! Look at how miniature his hands are starting to look… Quick! Jump in the mystical lagoon!

  5. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:41 am [Reply]

    Pluggers-And yet they still use the fire hyrdants.

    RMMD-”You’re beautiful, June. Would you like to dance for us?”

  6. XenaFan
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:48 am [Reply]

    Given my location in the U.S., where nobody has ever used the word “plugger”, I was ignorant as to its definition for the longest time. Now, after having read the comic strip PLUGGERS for a while… well, no. I am still clueless as to what exactly the hell it means.

  7. pugfuggly
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:55 am [Reply]

    Pluggers Not to get too meta here, but when I saw the title of this post, and then the panel of pluggers in a hardware store, I was almost certain there was going to be a dildo joke in there.

    RMMD What? ‘Honey and Ginger’ and then ‘Valerie and Wendy’? Weren’t there any more punny food/stripper names that could go in there? Rosemary? Brandy? Uh…Anise? Ok, Annie Lennox, I’ll admit it’s harder that it looks.

    MT This place will seem like paradise to Mark, until he meets senor mustache’s adopted son, Oxidado, who will pester him about going fishing until he escapes.

  8. Arabella
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:59 am [Reply]

    FC: I’m giving it a rare compliment today. Not for the joke, but for the expression on Kitty Kat’s face. She (he?) is about to claw Jeffy to shreds!

  9. Cloudbuster
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    Luann: Dear Mr. Evans, Thanks! I’m really enjoying your new spin-off strip “She’s Ann Eiffel,” about a plucky, ambitious, business woman who must daily contend with the wacky, bone-headed schemes of her evil, lazy, dim-witted employees and their friends!

    Pibgorn: I’m sure this will eventually make sense, but last time we saw sword girl, wasn’t she impaled to a tree by her own sword in a frequently fatal “impaled-to-a-tree-by-your-own-sword” type manner? And then the computer crashed? And out of the blue the geek decides to return (was he there before?) to worm holes? And then the genie’s there (through a worm hole!), and she’s back on the screen looking seriously unimpaled? And then she’s … brought to the geek’s world (still very unimpaled)?

    ASM: “Are you nuts?” Yes, JJJ, that’s a plausible explanation for the nonsensical workings of Peter Parker’s mind! Especially considering that his investigative technique boiled down to. “Kraven must be planning a robbery because he’s a Bad Guy(TM). He must be planning to steal the diamond tiara, because that’s the first shiny thing that caught my eye!” Proportional ability to investigate of a spider!

    A3G: From Event Planner to Gallery Owner to Publicist, Margo’s mania and delusions of competence finally led her to the career she was born for, “Crazy-talking homeless bag lady!”

    FW: OK, I have a son in Afghanistan at this very moment and I’m not a whiny sack of pessimism. Wally’s going to be spending the foreseeable future in training in any case. Then again, if I lived in the Funkyverse I guess I probably would be a whiny sack of pessimism if I wasn’t already dead of cancer.

    RMMD: They don’t usually call the thing guys have for beautiful girls* “a soft spot.” Poor Junior.

    * More accurately “hot strippers with daddy issues.” How do I know they have daddy issues? They all have daddy issues.

  10. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:03 am [Reply]

    MW: “Near the pier? But why, dear?”
    “Didn’t you hear? He fears the pier!”
    “That’s queer! But if you stayed near….”
    “But not near the pier.”

  11. Rarely Posts
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:05 am [Reply]

    Pluggers haven’t discovered Craigslist m4m and instead rely on traditional tearooms.

  12. pastordan, lazy professor
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:07 am [Reply]

    The Amazing Spider-Man Am I crazy? No, I read it in the paper. You remember, Jonah, the kind of thing we work for?

    Apt. 3-G: Silly Margo, people in New York are used to people talking to themselves on the street. They’re staring at your pastel green pants, which so obviously clash with your pastel purple top.

    Hi and Lois: You can tell this is recycled. Nobody outside of the Dick Tracy-verse smokes anymore.

    Judge Parker: Not to be a killjoy or anything, but didn’t the JP people ever watch Lost? Walkie-talkies don’t work underground. Also, scotch on an empty stomach is a truly bad idea and real people aren’t purple, at least not the kind of people who walk around and heft chainsaws to menace nebbish movie producers. But who’s counting?

    Mark Trail: By the time I get these clothes off, everybody will know who I am, old man. (Bow chicka-wow…)

    Mary Worth Piers, Dawn. He doesn’t want you going near Piers Morgan. That guy’s a total pervert.

    Rex Morgan, M.D.: Once again, June looks…intrigued.

    Zippy the Pinhead: Silly Ludwig. That’s not Gilligan’s Island at all. It’s merely one of many small islands in the area, one of which holds a goofy naturalist and his over-sized mutt for ransom.

  13. Crankenstank
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:09 am [Reply]

    A real plugger would have already found a place to take care of his business in the “Plumbing” aisle.

  14. Lurker Bob
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    A3G: I would humbly request that somebody with greater photoshop skills that myself replace Margo with Munch’s “The Scream” in today’s strip. I, for one, would like to truly capture and witness Margo’s terrifying descent into madness as she stares blindly into her and mankind’s insignificance in a cold and uncaring universe. You know…more like Funky Winkerbean on any other day, but with less smirking.

  15. terrapin
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:13 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#9):Give your son my thanks.

  16. Matt
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:14 am [Reply]

    I want to add “…as in exotic?” every time somebody tells me what they do for a living now.

  17. Marc
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:19 am [Reply]

    A3G- Margo may have turned into one of those crazies who wander the streets talking to themselves out loud, but she should look on the bright side. At least she’s not Tommie. Not being Tommie is the bright side to any situation you can possibly think of.

    Mark Trail- Yeah Pop, better go with Mark so people know who he is. By virtue of everyone in the strip looking alike, there is a good chance he could be mistaken for one of the other pasty white island dwellers.

    Mary Worth- Sentence structure never was Dawn’s strong suit. But she does seem to make a mean bowl of ranch dressing.

    Funky- Goddam it Batiuk, he’s not shipping off to fucking ‘Nam. He’s going to basic training. This isn’t the last time his fat failure parents are ever going to see him. There are so many things wrong with this little arc that my head is going to explode. Lazy hack.

    Luann- Evil Evil Ann is wise to TJ’s heroic plan to topple her reign of terror over Weenie World. That makes her even more evil. Now couple that with horrible Tiffany botching good guy TJ’s flawless plan, the awfulness of the designated bad guys is clearly on display here or something…. I don’t know, this is stupid.

    Archie- Ahh yes, the postal patrons. You mean every single person in town with a mailbox?

    Cranky- Oh Jeff cut the guy a break, he’s just been down on his luck lately. Why just today the good Doctor had his wallet, passport, and cell phone stolen from him on his way back to the hotel. Now they won’t let him leave without paying his bills and the embassy and local law enforcement have been most uncooperative.

  18. Andrusi
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:22 am [Reply]

    Pluggers know where every public restroom is because they’ve picketed every one of them, protesting the installation of automatic faucets that are poorly designed and refuse to turn on when your hands are actually underneath.

  19. Gabacho
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:23 am [Reply]

    Apt 3G – It takes a descent into madness for Margo to realize that other people are real and can notice things.

    Mary Worth – What are Mary and Dawn making? My vote is one armed gingerbread men to really drive it home to Jim.

  20. Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:35 am [Reply]

    RMMD: I just KNEW they were all strippers!!!

    Luann: Another one of TJ’s schemes going sour? Somehow, B-wad will get stuck holding the bag as usual.

  21. Doctor Handsome
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:36 am [Reply]

    Plugger public restrooms have safe biohazard receptacles for used insulin needles. Sometimes Pluggers unwittingly direct desperate street junkies to where they can be found and repurposed to share opiates intravenously with transsexual prostitutes. Why the heck is the plumbing aisle so far from the tile aisle anyway, is what Puggers want to know?

  22. Esther Blodgett
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:37 am [Reply]

    Luann: Is there any point to this story? Evans is about two roommates and an old biddy away from making this a soap strip.

    FC: That is one most excellent pissed-off kitty there!

    S4th: This is exquisitely embarrassing. I’ve been squirming all week while reading it. Nice job boring into my psyche, Ces.

  23. Illustrator Steve
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:41 am [Reply]

    MT and MW – When using words such as EXOTIC and EROTIC a comic strip the writer should be aware of their meaning. Exotic means using a feather. Erotic means using the whole chicken.

  24. Illustrator Steve
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:44 am [Reply]

    MT & RM – (Correction) When using words such as EXOTIC and EROTIC in a comic strip the writer should be made aware of their meanings. EXOTIC means using a feather. EROTIC means using the whole chicken!

  25. Mark B.
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:44 am [Reply]

    Dick Tracy sure has changed. Both bad guys and good guys always wear seat belts, but at least there are still flies hovering around in Gravel Gertie’s house. I think those are flies, anyway.

  26. Downpuppy
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:44 am [Reply]

    RxMigraine Who wants to guess when we find out that the cancer is a scam? Dibs on December 4!

  27. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:47 am [Reply]

    RMMD – If Dolores is so sick that it takes a team of four strippers to tend to her, then I’m afraid the prognosis is not good. She must have a tumor the size of a baketball – and, yet, it is almost unnoticed given the watermelon-sized implants she had installed!

    Seriously – wouldn’t it be better if the team of strippers kept working, and donated some of that money to her medical bills, rather than all quitting to nurse her back to health? Even if they already have the Sexy Nurse uniforms, I doubt they have any other qualifications as medical practitioners. And dancers, as in exotic, are not exactly known for having enough money put aside to be able to quit work indefinitely in order to tend to a sick co-worker.

    Luann- So, Ann knows that TJ is spying on her to try to get her fired? And she continues to employ him – why? Because he is so good at scamming the customers himself? Then why isn’t he at the register tricking Ox into ordering the Peter North Weenie Special with extra mayo?

  28. TheDiva
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:51 am [Reply]

    MT: “But whatever you do, don’t swim in the ocean. We don’t know what’s out there, but it’s turning the dolphins black.”


  29. Greg
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:55 am [Reply]

    Pluggers: I like how the dog-guy asking has his hands in his jacket and hat pulled down as if he’s doing a drug deal. Then again, pooping in a public place can sort of get you high, after all. Moral: Pluggers are SICK FREAKS

  30. Doctor Handsome
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:56 am [Reply]

    All the creatures of the land, sea and sky are clearly subservient to Rich American Mark Trail. But to be on the safe side, he’d better get Pops McOldengeezer to vouch for him in Honkey Town.

  31. The Ghost of Jarrod
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:58 am [Reply]

    Luann – To quote Jeff Winger, “The best part of the plan is that a certain point, it’s going to look like the plan is failing. But that’s when it’s going to turn out that the failing plan was all a part of the plan.”

    MT – What is going on with Mark Trail’s mouth? Is he turning into the Joker?

    PBS – And now I’m going to be referring to Ohio, Florida, and Virginia as “Swinger States” for the next week.

  32. bunivasal
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:00 am [Reply]

    “Down past the exterior doors.”
    I’m choosing to read this as “outside, possibly on a tree in the parking lot.” This dog-man is actually familiar with all the “public restrooms” in town because they are all trees where he jealously marks his territory, having nothing better to do in his dog-man twilight years.

  33. Austria
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:00 am [Reply]

    Curtis: Huh, maybe Papa Curtis is informed after all.

    MT: This strip is like the polar opposite of Yaoi Hand Syndrome. Anti-Hand Syndrome. Hypohandria.

    S4th: Judging by the background people, I’m thinking the party has a “historical” theme and the Forths don’t match, hence the staring.

  34. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:06 am [Reply]

    Pluggers – Clearly, the term ‘Plugger’ refers to a GI condition that leads to the victim taking enormous dumps, so copious and solid that they plug up the bowl, forcing the Plugger to seek relief in public restrooms. Balding dog-plugger there is going to have a fun afternoon un-plugging the facilities.

    Hint: Pour a pot full of boiling water into the bowl just before using the plunger!

  35. Mibbitmaker
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:08 am [Reply]

    Thankfully, the power stayed on here. Semi-post-storm oversnarpologies…

    Pluggers go to the bathroom… intimately.

    RMMD, meta: Yes. Yes he will.[/Phineas & Ferb]

    MT: “You’re better off being our prisoner than a stranger in these parts. Also, you’re not as free to wander the island as Otto said you were. Sorry.”

  36. Maggie the Cat
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:10 am [Reply]

    Maybe June will perform as a special guest dancer since it’s a cancer fundraiser. Rex’s head will explode.

  37. Amanda Kate
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:11 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail is so unsexy that, between panels, Mark somehow managed to put on an undershirt without taking off his buttoned shirt.

  38. Mibbitmaker
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    Pops to Mark Trail: “Sorry, Mr. Trail, but I’m now officially your Scientology ‘handler’….”

  39. TheDiva
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    9CL: Brooke McEldowney criticizes politicians for saying things in a convoluted, verbose manner. Next up: a dissertation on the shade of kettles.

    C’shaft: I really hope this guy’s legit, so Rose can rub it in her disapproving son’s scowl. Since the elderly in this strip only exist to be burdensome to their saintly Boomer offspring, however, I doubt that will happen.

    FW: So is Cory going to actually go through basic training, or are they just going to ship him straight to the POW camp in Afghanistan?

    Luann: Evans must have had a hell of a time deciding which designated villain he unreasonably hated more. Apparently, the attractive adolescent girl barely edged out the assertive businesswoman. I’ll let you decide what that says about him.

    MW: “Hey, that rhymes!”

    SM: Why is Leona/Fiona walking around in that outfit, anyway? Showgirls don’t dress like that 24-7. Hell, even the guy in the scuzzy Elvis costume posing for tips on Fremont Street has a change of clothes.

  40. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    Pluggers: NO, outside the exterior doors is just where they make pluggers go to the potty. You, sir, look like a paying customer that wants to get your items and check out. Pluggers, in contrast, occupy an inordinate amount of our floor stocking personnel trying to find the exact size of bolt for the odd sized nut that they left at home. If it is sold in a bag of five, they haggle on getting an eighty percent discount because they only need one. I’m sure, sir, like us, you prefer to do your business without pluggers.

  41. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:17 am [Reply]

    MW: Good thing Jim’s sister didn’t slip and fall in the bathtub, or he wouldn’t shower. Ever.

  42. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:19 am [Reply]

    Adam@Home and Betty are both doing “50 Shades of Grey” jokes today. Woo-hoo. It’s official: Jokes about texting are passe!

  43. lorne
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    Seriously, Josh. Did you ever think “Pluggers” was in reference to anything else?

  44. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#23): I’ve always heard that one as the difference between “kinky” and “perverted.”

    either way, it works.

  45. bbofun
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:24 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#27): “So, Ann knows that TJ is spying on her to try to get her fired? And she continues to employ him – why?”

    “Because it AMUSES me, dear, boy. BWAH-HAH-HAH!”

    A3G- Look at the woman on the right in panel 2- even though margo’s stopped talking to herself, she’s still doing a double-take. Is margo’s dress caught in her pantyhose? We’ll never know- that would require drawing her below her waist.

  46. lorne
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:24 am [Reply]

    “Yep! Junior has a soft spot for beautiful girls!”
    … which is a shame, really.

  47. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:27 am [Reply]

    FW – This scene is setting up the equivalent of the ‘training montage’ sequence where the character’s development arc is dumbed down to fit into three minutes with Eye of the Tiger as a soundtrack. If we ever see Corey again, he will basically be a completely different character, with his one personality attribute of “disobedient” replaced, most likely with “dutiful”. Funky may even remark on this change for most of a panel, while serving a pizza.

  48. User McUser
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:27 am [Reply]

    Pluggers know where all the best “Tea Rooms” are…

  49. exapno
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:28 am [Reply]

    Nancy – Fritzi Ritz. In a Wonder Woman costume. Thank you Gilchrists.

  50. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:29 am [Reply]


    Bengala Guy: The land is our ENEMY! We will begin deforestation, strip mining and condo development immediately! That will teach the land a lesson it shall not soon forget!

    Phantom: You can’t do that! You’re the Noble Savage Stereotype of this strip! Next you’re going to start using contractions in your language!

  51. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:29 am [Reply]

    3G – I have to wonder about Margo sometimes. She’s surrounded by lurching, shambling blue zombies, and her first concern is what they must think of her.

    Archie – Ah, remember the stamp window? And right next to it was the window where some college kid would lick your stamps for you (and envelopes, if you asked). You just don’t get service like that, at least during my lifetime.

  52. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:30 am [Reply]

    Brewster – Space zombies seem like maybe undiagnosed Bizarros.

    9 – Thought balloons. Solange leaves the ranks of animals and becomes just another human with a tail.

    Gasoline – On the way home, Slim picks up a maniac with a hook for a hand, and Walt picks up a girl with spider eggs in her beehive hairdo.

  53. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:30 am [Reply]

    @bbofun (#45): “Because it AMUSES me, dear, boy. BWAH-HAH-HAH!”

    Sheesh, that is just Evil Overlord Fail 101. Next, she will reveal her whole plan for world domination to TJ, before leaving him tied up underneath the weenie dispenser, presumably to die. Of course, this will be her undoing, as his hard-earned lack of a gag reflex will allow him to survive the onslaught long enough for Ox to save the day.

  54. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:32 am [Reply]

    @Affimisnics (#y216): Thank you. I was starting to think that spammers just weren’t trying any more. You are trying as all get-out.

    Josh – Nothing so complex. Pluggers are simple creatures. They’re just tightwads, and they don’t like to buy their own toilet paper if they can help it.

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#1): Ahh, Fritzi Ritz. The attractive version.

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#10): It’s a pronunciation problem that doesn’t come across well in print. Jim doesn’t fear the wooden pier at waterside. Jim fears being hit by a pie, and doesn’t want to go near the pie-er.

    @lorne (#46): Well executed!

  55. cheech wizard
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:32 am [Reply]

    RMMD – I forget the name of the book, but some years back a female journalist spent a year working a short while in a variety of jobs and then wrote about her experiences in each. One of them was stripping. She said the other girls were constantly approaching her about opportunities to earn additional cash outside of regular business hours. As far as she could tell, she was the only one who turned it down. So yeah, Holly and Ginger and Valerie and Wendy are whores after all, which gives them yet another identity to keep track of. No wonder they’re so confused!

  56. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:35 am [Reply]

    Spiderman-”Whatever. I’m telling Parker that you are going to powder your nose instead of telling him that you are going to the bathroom to snort cocaine.”

    Spiderman 2-”Are you nuts?” This coming from a guy who goes out in public looking like Hitler.

    Slylock Fox-The first panel is an actual ghost. The second panel is a member of the Ku Klux Klan.

  57. Nehemiah Scudder
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:36 am [Reply]

    @The Ridger (#Y218): You are, I believe, an expert on Slavic languages. What was he selling?

    // Just curious.

  58. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:39 am [Reply]

    FW-After the next time jump we learn that what’s his face died in Vietnam. Why Vietnam because Batiuk has finally gotten around to protesting the Vietnam War.

  59. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:42 am [Reply]

    Sally Forth-Has Ted forgotten to wear pants again?

  60. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:47 am [Reply]

    @Matt (#16):

    I’m a librarian.

  61. gleeb
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:48 am [Reply]

    Barney Google: Remember, Loweezy, with colder weather coming, chickens are going to be inside more. You’re going to have to make that candy last if you don’t want to starve this winter.

    Bizarro: Yes, from Homer down to Dan Pirarro, cyclopes are stupid as rocks.

    Curtis: Ray Billingsley is a good friend to J. G. Flaherty.

    ‘bean: For once, the egged windows, bullied children, and mutilated cats won’t be able to be foisted off on Cory as an excuse. Fat failure Funky is going to have to control himself for a change.

    Archie: A stock “hurr hurr, the Post Office is bad” gag. Yesterday, as a hurricane was descending on the city, I got mail. So hurrah for the USPS and nuts to Archie Publications, Inc.

    Dick: Hey, Vitamin Smith has to make back his development costs.

  62. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#27): A team of four strippers, you say? *Cough* *Cough*! I think I’m coming down with a case of breast cancer. *Cough* *Cough*!

  63. Calico
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    Um, what’s with Dawn’s dialogue box in panel 2? Have Moy and Giella been doing Jager shots at the office again?

  64. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:53 am [Reply]

    Pluggers-”Might I recommend the third stall from the left. It has some rather interesting reading.”

  65. NoahSnark
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:55 am [Reply]

    Pluggers are also known for their wide stances and elaborate foot-tapping codes.

  66. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:56 am [Reply]

    June Morgan realizes that with this breast cancer case, there is an obvious need to be filled in this area.

    Some strip joint is in desperate need of dancers. June hurries for an audition. If docs and nurses get free meals, she can’t imagine how much free stuff strippers must get.

  67. Mibbitmaker
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:00 am [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#39): re: Luann: Assertive woman in a strong position who is meant to be portrayed as a horrible bitch is favored by the author? What this says about Evans is that he’s trying to be Brooke McEldowney.

    PBS: Virginia is a “swinger state”?!

    FC: Time for another pet to be buried in the back yard!

    BC: Trick-or-treaters, upon seeing the sign: “Cool!”

    9CL: Nobody understands Brooke’s unrealistically contrived “gobbledy-gook”, everyone knows that.

    DT: It’s all the rage! (followed by the Don Rickles “oh, brother!” expression)

    H&L: Jeez, this is even duller than last week’s Thorax!

    MW: Wow, even Dawn’s dialogue proofreader fell asleep reading this strip!

  68. bats :[
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:01 am [Reply]

    What pisses me off is that da Keanes are the kind that would likely dump a pet because one of their 6 billion fellow humans, however salvageable, has a freakin’ runny nose. Come on, Bil, get the little jerk some kids’ Benedryl, or learn the facts that having a “dirty” environment (like some animal dander) will build up a child’s immunity. At least get one good slash in, Kittycat, before you’re literally kicked to the curb!

    And in 180-degree developments, was it Arlo or Janis who thought yet another cover was a good idea? :) Smoochies to that one!

  69. Cannibal Crustacean
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:04 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#10): I am so glad that Mary Worth is quickly wrapping up the Dawn-Jim story and moving on to Mary and Dawn’s Vaudeville act.

  70. Calico
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:06 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#68):
    Haha, then I must be a walking Toxoplasmosis antibody, if there is such a thing.
    I agree with you, and so do my Mom and my gf – we all think kids should go to a farm when they are around 2 years old and let them get dirty. Natural immunization, and fun for the whole family (perhaps)!

  71. Nehemiah Scudder
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:07 am [Reply]

    @pastordan, lazy professor (#3): Here I thought I was making an off-color joke, and it turns out to be accurate!

    Pastordan’s Law: All off-color jokes turn out to be accurate.

    // That’s just how the multiverse works.

  72. Calico
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:08 am [Reply]

    @Cannibal Crustacean (#69):
    With word balloons like “He’s overprotective to the point of being…off”, how can we lose now?

  73. Mibbitmaker
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:09 am [Reply]

    RMMD: For some strange reason, the strippers’ “real” names make me think of reading an old Harvey comic book while listening to a Monkees song….

  74. Nehemiah Scudder
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:13 am [Reply]

    @XenaFan (#6): …after having read the comic strip PLUGGERS for a while… well, no. I am still clueless as to what exactly the hell it means.

    You see, Grasshopper, “Plugger” means everything, and it means nothing.

    // And at that very moment the monk was enlightened!

  75. Cannibal Crustacean
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:21 am [Reply]

    @Calico (#72): Well, if it turns into some kind of Aldo situation, except with a stone-sober safety-obsessed stalker, I might be into it. “No more than two inches of water in the tub, Dawn! TWO INCHES!” [gropes between her legs for the plug]

  76. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:21 am [Reply]

    Margo stopped speaking out loud, and everyone is still staring. It could be that they can read her thoughts. It could be that the emotions in her face signal noticeable terror. Or, her panty lines could be clearly visible. Head bobble!

  77. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:23 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#68): I think your anger is misplaced. In fact, I believe that the Keanes will still have Kittycat as a beloved pet even when the time comes that the only readers of the strip are cockroaches.

  78. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:25 am [Reply]

    @Cannibal Crustacean (#75):

    Sigh! Dave used to put two inches between my legs….

  79. Calico
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:25 am [Reply]

    @Cannibal Crustacean (#75):
    “NO BATHS, Dawn! Remember what happened to Whitney Houston? You’ll just have to use this spray bottle and a washcloth.”

  80. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:29 am [Reply]

    @exapno (#49): saaaaaaaaaaa-LUTE!!!

  81. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:30 am [Reply]

    “Are you nuts?”
    “I spent 3 straight days on a bus to see Kraven’s tiger show and didn’t take any time to figure out where the show was. I work for an abusive boss for virtually no pay but then I constantly mope about how much money my wife makes. Don’t even ask about my spandex fetish. Honestly, Mr. Jameson, suspecting a known thief of coveting a crown full of diamonds happened during one of my more lucid moments.”

  82. Santa Royale With Cheese
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:32 am [Reply]

    PBS: Clearly fiction. Terry Gross doesn’t do “current” interviews*. If Rat had died, she would have re-run her 1977 interview.

    JP: “They will be arriving directly. Their approach is imminent. Their presence in the mine is at hand.” – Said nobody ever.

    * Okay yes she does, but usually that falls to her back-up host.

  83. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:34 am [Reply]

    British humor at it’s ‘dryest’.

  84. Cannibal Crustacean
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:35 am [Reply]

    @Calico (#79): “No poly-cotton blends, Dawn! TOO FLAMMABLE! Plus, Deuteronomy 22:11!”

  85. AndyL
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    I suppose if my DNA had mysteriously been blended with that of a dog, I would also feel an obsessive urge to use every restroom in town.

  86. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:48 am [Reply]

    @AndyL (#85): this post proves that Andy is indeed the smartest thing in Mark Trail.

  87. Artist formerly known as Ben
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:50 am [Reply]

    Pluggers: Josh, I sense from the header that you’ve thought of the furtive gay hookup angle, but you seem shy about mentioning it.

    RMMD: “Junior has a soft spot for beautiful girls. It would be nice if he had a hard spot for them, but that has to wait until the next fundraiser.”

    MT: Join us today as a silverhaired mature man offers Mark a bath and Mark begins to strip. Truly Rule 34 never sleeps.

    Ziggy: Not to be overly blasé, but wasn’t that the point of giving thanks to begin with?

    WofI: Maybe not, but dressing like a pantsless wizard still makes you look like a perv.

    9CL: All you need to understand is this. Brooke hit another dry spell, looked at the calendar, and decided to just vamp through election day.

    JP: Can I just say how much I love the fact that one of the most straitlaced “heroes” in syndicated comics is about to be rescued by hirsute pot growers?

    H&L: Thirsty’s got a bent cigarette dangling from his lips. He must have realized at the last minute that non-Dick Tracy comics characters can’t smoke anymore. He didn’t throw it out because he’s hoping to light up when no one’s looking.

    DT: Um, priorities, Dick?

    6C: Mom’s a British lit professor and sent her daughter out as Bottom from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”

    PBS: Man would I like to see the pamphlets that Pig put together.

    FC: Don’t sweat it Jeffy. The something you’re allergic to obviously doesn’t like you anyway.

    Luann: Haha. Anne is my hero.

    Lockhorns: Leroy gets down and shakes it as the title character from “I Dream of Jeannie.”

    A3G: Whereas you used to be one of the crazies who just screamed claptrap at employees and acquaintances. Now even Tommie is smirking at you, and you don’t even recognize her.

  88. The Ridger
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:52 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#57): I don’t speak Polish, so the details escape me, but it looks like a credit/financing service.

  89. Nehemiah Scudder
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:02 pm [Reply]

    @The Ridger (#88): Thanks! I figured you’d at least get the gist of it.

  90. bats :[
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:02 pm [Reply]

    Whew! After thinking black thoughts about Jeffy, this definitely makes me feel better…and for a GOOD CAUSE, too!

  91. liz
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:07 pm [Reply]

    @Matt (#16):


  92. Nehemiah Scudder
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:13 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#10): Lovely. You should expand on that.

    // WWLCD?

  93. Kwazzymodo
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:14 pm [Reply]

    George Costanza is a Plugger?!

  94. wossname
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:15 pm [Reply]

    A3G – I’ve got bad news, Margo. Even though you switched over to thought-ballooning, they’re still staring at you. It’s gotta be the tail and cloven hooves that they’re noticing.

    Gravel Gertie took an axe
    And gave Measles 40 whacks.

    We can hope so, anyway.

  95. yaoi huntress earth
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:15 pm [Reply]

    Dustin: How can anyone be this dumb? The joke would work better in Family Circus, but not out of the mouth of someone in their mid-twenties.

  96. I speak Jive
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    Crankshaft – Are we supposed to care about this? This old woman has always been portrayed as so unpleasant and downright despicable that I feel only a sense of schadenfeude at her problems. Not that anyone else is the strip is any more likable.

    Pluggers – Why in the world would the Plugger mention that he doesn’t work in the store? I’m sure that all of us have been asked directions in stores when we are not employed there; don’t we just tell the asker what he wants to know without giving him our life story? I hope that means that I am not a Plugger.

    Rhymes with Orange – I love this.

  97. I speak Jive
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:21 pm [Reply]

    Sorry – “schadenfreude.”

  98. Crankshafts funky smelling corpse
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:28 pm [Reply]

    Dick Tracy: Gertie Gavel + Axe = Awesome mayhem. (Now with wrist wizard too!)

    FW: Here’s hoping for death by training accident.

    RMMD: Please, more tits.

    Bigporn: Not this again.

    9CL: This isn’t funny.

  99. Crankshafts funky smelling corpse
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:31 pm [Reply]

    Crankshaft: Nigerian scam goodness!

  100. Poteet
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:41 pm [Reply]

    MT — My erotic feelings are already dead by the time I read MT because I usually read A3G first.

  101. jayjaybear
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:42 pm [Reply]

    Who knew Senator Larry Craig was a plugger?

  102. Poteet
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    9CL — Brooke is now trying to ruin Solange, the one 9CL character I can actually stand. Please, Solange, escape! You deserve a better home.

  103. Cannibal Crustacean
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:51 pm [Reply]

    @wossname (#94): When she saw what she had done,
    She gave Dick Tracy 41.

  104. Anonymous Botch
    October 30th, 2012 at 12:56 pm [Reply]

    Josh, I’m sorry to say that I understand why pluggers know where the restrooms are. For male pluggers, at least, it’s the inexorable growth of the prostate gland. In a few years, you, too, will understand it. Another thing to look forward to!

  105. Baka Gaijin
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:08 pm [Reply]

    Today again Leroy Lockhorn proves that to get the babes, you don’t need to be tall, have a great body or even a full head of hair. You don’t even need to be enveloped by a cloud of Axe body spray or have a sense of style. You just need to be able to go out there and shake your groove thing, no matter how loose and saggy it may be.

  106. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:08 pm [Reply]

    FC-Will this be the only pussy Jeffy is allergic to?

  107. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:08 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#90):

    June will be popular in the community.

  108. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:13 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous Botch (#104): Josh will probably be fragged by an angry Tom Batiuk before his prostate enlarges enough to notice, I’m sad to say.

    Don’t know if it is better or worse than becoming a Plugger, however.

  109. Artist formerly known as Ben
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:17 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#52):

    9 – Thought balloons. Solange leaves the ranks of animals and becomes just another human with a tail.

    AKA Skinny Garfield.

  110. The Ghost of Jarrod
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:21 pm [Reply]

  111. Daniel
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:23 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers That reminded me of the Seinfeld shot of an urgent Kramer running to find a bathroom in Central Park, and the camera just zooms out.

  112. Artist formerly known as Ben
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    @hogenmogen (#42): You just know that we’ll eventually see “50 Shades of Sickly Brown” jokes in Marvin.

  113. Baka Gaijin
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:32 pm [Reply]

    Did anyone mention “Plugger” is short for “Toilet Plugger” yet?

  114. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:37 pm [Reply]

    MW-It sounds like Jim is going to be getting a talk from Mary. He’ll be gnawing his other arm off just to get away from her.

  115. Anonymous Botch
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:37 pm [Reply]

    @Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol (#108): I disagree: I expect that Josh will be fragged by a gleeful Tom Batiuk.

  116. SF_Reader
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:37 pm [Reply]

    I guess that makes Larry Craig a plugger.

  117. tallyHO
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:42 pm [Reply]

    apt3g Margo — Poor Margo. Walking around for two days in a blue haze muttering and mumbling aloud, drawing both titters and stares of concern. She’s needs a publicist to get her out of this tizzy that LuAnn’s Lovah hath wrought upon her psyche.

    Obviously, she and Evan must be on the “outs” because you’d expect him to be a shoulder for her to lean on; a receptive ear for her to vent. But, alas, no. I’ll help Margo out by suggesting she stop by the liquor store, buy a brown-bagged bottle or her favorite cheap wine and do it up right. Celebrate your crazy reputation, Margo. Embrace it before the crazy embraces you.

    Snufflesmithalus: Oh, Snuffy! Have you no shame? You go behind the kids’ backs and take candy that should be theirs! What about bodacious code for living? Tsk tsk!

    Spidey and the Stache* Ooh boy! This is gonna be like an early 80s buddy cop tv show! Let the hilarity ensue! We can only hope this version of Kraven the Hunter is wearing platform shoes and walks struts with a cane and has a lion on a leash.

    What would be awesome is if there’s a guest appearance by the Spideymobile!

    *or, Spidey and the Man, Carnival Jones, Scarey Chasin’, Dumb Bumbo, The RoachDork Files, JJ and the Cub Reporter, McClod?

  118. tallyHO
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:43 pm [Reply]

    @SF_Reader (#116):

    Now, don’t be so quick to judge. We don’t know what positions Larry Craig takes.

  119. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:45 pm [Reply]

    MT-”Yep. We’re such a small island that you can stand in one spot and see everything. No need to walk around. You can even see the giant dolphins from outside this little hut. Nope those aren’t whales. The whales are much bigger.”

  120. Alfred E. Neuman
    October 30th, 2012 at 2:07 pm [Reply]

    @Dr. Weird (#206Y) said: “@Alfred E. Neuman (#198):
    The one problem with your scenario is that hilarity never ensues in Funky Winkerbean.”

    I should have said, what passes for hilarity in FW will ensue. For example, after Cory returns from West Point, his friends and family will give him a 21-smirk salute.

  121. greghousesgf
    October 30th, 2012 at 2:12 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers must not live anywhere near where I live, then. Around here almost no stores have public bathrooms.

  122. Red Greenback
    October 30th, 2012 at 2:16 pm [Reply]

    Stop! Leroy time!

  123. tallyHO
    October 30th, 2012 at 2:17 pm [Reply]

    Dennis Menace–Gee whiz! Mr. Wilson looks determined to make a fool of himself with his over-the-top portrayal of a poli…waitasecond! Is he expecting candy to fill up that bucket or cold hard cash?

    Hi & Lois Seriously, what is Thirsty smoking? Seriously.

    Hagar Gee whiz! Hagar’s tourist ship business was a fleeting venture. He’s back with his back against the wall.

    Funkity Winkerwoes Let’s be frank here. This strip has shown time and time again that it is perfectly capable of making molehills into mountains and mountains into big props for small stories. The events being depicted are predictable enough. Even though I don’t know who any of those three characters are, you know how it will end. In a casket.

    So, forget about it, Jakes. It’s Funkyfrown!

  124. Nehemiah Scudder
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:00 pm [Reply]

    @greghousesgf (#121): I’m sorry to hear that. You live in a big city? Not even the big-box stores?

  125. Baka Gaijin
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:03 pm [Reply]

    @SF_Reader (#116): I’m not asking what he’s plugging. Not asking.

  126. Buck Ripsnort
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:11 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers– No, no Josh! The joke is that “Pluggers” are frequently “plugged up” ha ha, and have to go to the toilet because they’re OLD! See, OLD people frequently have GI problems, like that old kid in Marvin! Ha ha.

  127. Anonymous
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:43 pm [Reply]

    …And I thought when pluggers were in a hardware store, they crapped in the display toilet fixtures.

  128. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:46 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#123): Mr. Wilson looks like Jon Arbuckle on a date, which is to say, nothing like any politician in the last half century – and even back then, it was more or less a lark – and the comical getup was stars and stripes, not plaid and paisley.

  129. bats :[
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:46 pm [Reply]

    @Crankshafts funky smelling corpse (#98): re 9CL: no kidding. If this goes on, I’m just going to admire Solange, or perhaps erase all the text and substitute my own.

  130. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:52 pm [Reply]

    Pluggz: It’s down at the end of aisle 13, past the exterior doors. I just came from there myself. And trust me, pal, do NOT go in there!.

  131. KreatureFeatures
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:52 pm [Reply]

    Thanks, Josh, for the laugh regarding Mark Trail.
    Mark’s island prison is a joke. (Read Papillon if you want a good escape-from-a-tropical-island story.)
    And to bunivasal, I agree, “Down past the exterior doors” is unnecessarily confusing.

  132. Anonymous
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:53 pm [Reply]

    @Alfred E. Neuman (#120):

    Now THAT is unsettling plausible.

    In unrelated news, the town of Paradise Valley is going to build a 9 foot tall Family Circus statue as a tribute to Bil Keane.

  133. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:08 pm [Reply]

    Between Friends is annoying the crap out of me this week. After about a month of “My son’s teacher asked if I would speak in her class, but that might embarrass my son for about an hour, so I don’t know if I should do it,” we are graced with a week long running series of gags about what every woman supposedly feels during a given weekday. Monday, every woman is supposed to feel like a graceful Queen Victoria or something. I work in a predominantly female office. On Monday morning, there are no queens, crowns, gowns, jewels or that graceful manner. It’s all “OMFG, I can’t believe my weekend is over!”

    Today we get “PacWoman: the treadmill begins”. The video game is actually called “Ms. Pac-Man”, there is no treadmill and if there were, it would have begun on Monday, not Tuesday. There are also only 4 ghosts, not 6 as pictured. Yah, so we all essentially know where this is headed. By Friday, the “everywoman” will feel frazzled and looking forward to the weekend. Oh wow. Saturday, she sleeps in and drinks coffee in peace. Ooh.

  134. Artist formerly known as Ben
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:10 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#132): That’s awesome. I love the idea of a towering bronze Big Daddy Keane watching over the town square.

  135. hogenmogen
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:13 pm [Reply]


    “The lagoon is beautiful. You can wash up there!”

    “The lagoon? NO! IT’S NOT SAFE!”

  136. The Kangaroo
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:18 pm [Reply]

    Josh, re: Pluggers: old farts just have to go to the bathroom more often as the plumbing deteriorates. Plus, the Plugger archetypes – sexagenarian working class humanoids – are often caregivers for young grandchildren who do the same. Normally I love your comments about “Pluggers” because they’re spot-on…as a Democratic volunteer in a Red State I see what they illustrate often…but this one smacked of ageism. It’s not as bad as calling Curtis a “burrhead” but it’s in that neighborhood

  137. Downpuppy
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:23 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#129): Don’t you dare go making 9CL funny. It would disrupt the entire Order of the Universe.

    Although I would love to see PJ rough them up.

  138. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:27 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#132): A 9×7 foot bronze statue is going to be tough to knock over without explosives…

    Did I just type that in?

  139. erdmann
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:28 pm [Reply]

    9CL: I’ve been covering elections for 24 years and I had never come across the word “plebiscite” before. Frankly, I’m sorry that had to change.

  140. Liam
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:31 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers-But do Pluggers know which ones are the best restrooms?

    Pluggers 2-”Exterior doors”? Is he talking about going outside? Is that what Pluggers do? They take dumps on the sidewalk.

  141. bats :[
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:33 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#134): with the title of the statue supposedly “Giddy up, Daddy,” though, I’m expecting no less than pony play. In the words of Barfy, “barf!”.

  142. Alfred E. Neuman
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:41 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#132) said: “In unrelated news, the town of Paradise Valley is going to build a 9 foot tall Family Circus statue as a tribute to Bil Keane.

    How appropriate. They grow a lot of melons in Arizona.

  143. Shrug, Speaker to Trailnappers
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:41 pm [Reply]

    @hogenmogen (#135):

    “In Communist small island, YOU wash LAGOON!”

  144. Dartpaw86
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:46 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers never leave hardware stores, ever. So it makes sense he’d know.

  145. Diligent Dad
    October 30th, 2012 at 4:56 pm [Reply]

    I said what I thought was best for my daughter. I was calm and friendly, polite and respectful. I did not yell. To characterize it otherwise is a misstatement.

  146. Artist formerly known as Ben
    October 30th, 2012 at 5:16 pm [Reply]

    @Diligent Dad (#145): What is this in reference to? I can’t see any other comments having to do with the kind of incident your alluding to.

  147. Percival Dunwoody
    October 30th, 2012 at 5:21 pm [Reply]

    Why do you think they call them “pluggers”?

  148. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    October 30th, 2012 at 5:23 pm [Reply]

    @The Ghost of Jarrod (#110): When we lived there, we still saw those VIRGINIA IS FOR LOVERS bumper stickers, where the “V” is replaced by a big ol’ heart. Like a blank space, pretty much. I always wanted to take a Sharpie and draw in a letter. “S” was my favorite, though “N” had a certain appeal.

    @Anonymous (#132): In unrelated news, the town of Paradise Valley is going to build a 9 foot tall Family Circus statue as a tribute to Bil Keane.
    I recommend something like this one!

  149. commodorejohn
    October 30th, 2012 at 5:52 pm [Reply]

    If that Family Circus statue doesn’t look like Soviet propaganda art, I will be very disappointed.

  150. Calico
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:11 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#148):
    Why is that statue guy trying to shake those babies off like the plague?
    I’m an artsy type no doubt, but sometimes I really wonder – and I guess that’s the whole point. : )

  151. Señor Tortilla
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:17 pm [Reply]

    DtM: Does any politician look like that any more? Did they ever?

    FC: Man, that cat looks totally pissed. “If the fat kid holds me for one more second, I’ll shred his face off!”

  152. Calico
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:21 pm [Reply]

    @Crankshafts funky smelling corpse (#99):
    Polish Spam, Nigerian Scam! What a day it’s been!
    Does Rose even use the internet? SHe just seems to sit in her new crypt room and bitch about everything.

  153. Diligent Dad
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:27 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#146): Sorry, it’s a personal reference. I didn’t mean to alarm you with my random comment. I just needed to say those words, to an audience of strangers, because I’m feeling like the bad guy for pointing out the obvious at home. Personal venting concluded – please carry on. Your humorous comments are salve to my wounds.

  154. tallyHO
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:32 pm [Reply]

    @Percival Dunwoody (#147):

    If you are expecting a serious answer, I’d say it is because they “keep plugging along”.

    If you are open to anything, I’d say they need daily fiber supplements nowadays.
    You could say that they crossed the Constipaticon and now can only look back to more care-free days when regularity meant dealing with other annoyances, like the price of gas creeping up to almost a dollar; the type of snow Pluggers were used to all year long (bad TV reception); back when balanced diets meant carrying multiple take out pizzas before home delivery became the norm; a heated discussion would mean who’s turn it was to face the saber-toothed tigers and gather more Sun-god offerings (what you and I call: firewood).

  155. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:35 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#149): Never saw Lenin hunched over on all fours, carrying Stalin piggy-back…

  156. bats :[
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:35 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#149): oh geeez…don’t do this to me!

  157. tallyHO
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:39 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, Speaker to Trailnappers (#143):

    I just popped some poppable corn and am at the ready expecting Mark to make with his Fists of Desalinization. I wanna see him punch up some potable water (and this poppable corn could use some salt.)

    Though, before I go back to doing other things: Where is Andy Dog?*

    *And is he out chasin’ frogs?
    /Dylan-ese whine

  158. Sequitur
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:41 pm [Reply]

    Oh, look what Ripley’s is telling us…

    Following the hanging of public criminal George “Big Nose” Parrott in Carbon County, WY, USA — a local doctor had his skin made into a pair of dress shoes!

    If you check the genealogy of the local doctor you’ll find that Margo is a descendant. Margo only uses foreskins.

  159. Beetle Bumstead
    October 30th, 2012 at 6:46 pm [Reply]

    @RMMD: “Taking care of Dolores, why aren’t they taking care of me?”

    October 30th, 2012 at 6:59 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#158):


    i know that from all the nuts i have been around

  161. bats :[
    October 30th, 2012 at 7:01 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#149): what is the title of the work of art? “Saturn Tenderizing His Children”?

  162. commodorejohn
    October 30th, 2012 at 7:10 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#156): Do it…doooo iiiiiit….

  163. AhClem
    October 30th, 2012 at 7:27 pm [Reply]

    @hogenmogen (#133): regarding this week’s “Between Friends” theme:

    …we are graced with a week long running series of gags about what every woman supposedly feels during a given weekday…

    This week? That has been the one-joke theme of this strip since the days when dinosaurs roamed the earth — or since Beetle Bailey began, which is even older.

  164. Sequitur
    October 30th, 2012 at 7:40 pm [Reply]

    @AhClem (#163): When Beetle Bailey roamed the earth.

  165. Jamus The Bartender
    October 30th, 2012 at 7:57 pm [Reply]

    Rex Morgan: So, they’re strippers. Well, I feel a little bit better now.

    Sally Forth: Maybe they’re at a key party, and the real party is next door or something. Either way, Sally and Ted with swingers….something to think about.

  166. Dale
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:00 pm [Reply]

    @pastordan, lazy professor (#3):

    Solar Power

    The source paper does some very casual use of the terms energy and power.

    Start with basics. Assume the shining sun provides 1 kW per square meter (the Sandia Lab site is unavailable for checking this).
    Scale this up to the 65 acres of your community garden and you have 263 MW of solar POWER any time the sun is shining. If you can really get 30% efficiency in converting this to electrical power, 263 * 0.3 = 78.9 MW of electrical POWER.
    Finally, if the sun shines 6 hours per day, 78.9 * 6 = 473 MWh of ENERGY per day.

  167. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:01 pm [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#24): I heard it as Exotic: Wearing a feather; Erotic: Using the feather; Kinky: Using the whole chicken.

  168. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:09 pm [Reply]

    MT: Who thinks bathing in salt water is a good way to get clean? Doesn’t it make you all sticky?

  169. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:12 pm [Reply]

  170. pastordan, lazy professor
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:43 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#71): I shudder to think what sort of corollary effect that might have on Rule 34.

  171. pastordan, lazy professor
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:46 pm [Reply]

    @Santa Royale With Cheese (#82): To be fair, Terry Gross seems to have interviewed everyone at least once already. Hell, I’ve been on three or four times myself.[*]

  172. commodorejohn
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:55 pm [Reply]

  173. pastordan, lazy professor
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:56 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#166): Uh, yeah. I see your post is…made of…numbers. And things. So…, I agree!

  174. un malpaso
    October 30th, 2012 at 8:56 pm [Reply]

    Interestingly, Pluggers are the exact opposite of Marvin, who is proud of his ignorance of bathroom locations. Even more interestingly: most Pluggers are only about 10 years away from returning to Marvin status!

  175. Peanut Gallery
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:05 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#60): A librarian… as in exotic?

    (Sorry, Matt, I know that was your line, but I got impatient.)

  176. pastordan, lazy professor
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:05 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#172): For a minute there, I was sure that link was going to take me to an old Omni magazine…

  177. SurrealKangaroo
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:28 pm [Reply]

    I am sure it has been said a thousand times by now, but today’s Pluggers featured artwork that was recycled. I am too busy to look up the date, but it I remember it being about working in a hardware store after you retired.

  178. Tin Lizzie
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:35 pm [Reply]

    So I’m an often-lurker who’s been kinda sick and is using the Comics Curmudgeon to cheer up. And I went to check out the day’s comics, as I usually do.

    And I got to A3G, and I thought “All right! I love Apartment 3G” with absolutely no trace of sarcasm. And right now I’m just really hoping that’s the painkillers talking.

  179. Dale
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:38 pm [Reply]

    @bunivasal (#32):


    “Past the exterior doors” sounded strange, but the crapper is probably in some far corner of the building.

    This would have been funny if it had been about a customer who knew where every product was. If a person needs to know where every restroom in town is, it isn’t funny.
    Piss on you, Richard Danca of Newton, Mass.

  180. Sequitur
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:41 pm [Reply]

    @SurrealKangaroo (#177): Speaking of recycled, did anyone else notice that Hi and Lois was an old repeat. Thirsty hasn’t smoked in years.

  181. Poteet
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:51 pm [Reply]

    @Tin Lizzie (#178): For me, today was an unusually likeable A3G, and by “likeable” I mean that after her horrified insight today, I’m hoping that tomorrow we’ll see Margo making her annual Halloween sacrifice to Hecate, pleading to get her mojo back. She’s definitely been sliding downhill for the past few months.

  182. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:56 pm [Reply]

    I think that I may be spending too much time in silly places on the internet.

    I saw a bit of bathroom graffiti today,

    “I <3 ponis"

    and my first thought was, "oh, that poor illiterate brony, he forgot the 'e'."

    then I realized that the "o" looked more like a theta, and that I was the one with the misplaced ‘e’.

    *true story*

  183. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:57 pm [Reply]

    @Jamus The Bartender (#165): *been there, wrote that*

  184. Sequitur
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:13 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#181): And MARGO spelled backward is OGRAM which is a middle inside out way of spelling ORGASM. I know there no “S” in MARGO or OGRAM but if you could see Margo from the waist down you would see that she has no S either.

    I need a drink.

  185. tallyHO
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:28 pm [Reply]

    @SurrealKangaroo (#177):

    “Of course I work here, punkish stranger. I lost my pension when Enron collapsed.”
    You know know you’re a Plugger when you spend your Golden Years mopping up restrooms at Home Depots.*

    And before that,
    @Sequitur (#180):
    I saw that, too. Tres chic, Thirsty! Weird thing is if it is a repeat then I am not sure where either Hi or Thirsty stand when it comes down to their philosophies.

    *How many years need to pass before a Dog Plugger needs to retire?

  186. Baka Gaijin
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:33 pm [Reply]

    @un malpaso (#174): Simplifying your post: Pluggers look forward to the time where they can poop anywhere.

  187. un malpaso
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:44 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#186): I know! and who could blame them?

  188. Old School Allie Cat
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:01 pm [Reply]

    I was pretty sure Pluggers shit in the woods.

  189. Erich Clapton
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:04 pm [Reply]

    Funked-up Beans: Given that ole’ Tom’s never been to basic training (I have) and he doesn’t have a clue about anything that remotely approaches reality vis-a-vis the military, I guess saying that the Army DOES NOT send personnel to escort you to basic training is not needed. Hell, they don’t even care about you until you graduate basic. You can leave anytime you want (basically. . . hey, pun not intended, it just worked out). This is some stupid shit.

  190. Dale
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:04 pm [Reply]

    @pastordan, lazy professor (#173):

    I thought you might agree. With your background, you would realize that the guys who wrote Numbers used very imprecise counting methods.

    A passing observation. If you cover your entire community garden with solar panels, your crops will have to grow in the dark. The solution – mushrooms, lots and lots of tasty mushrooms. (*) The money you earn from selling mushrooms and electricity will enable your flock to buy fresh produce from the grocery store just the way God intended.

    (*) This was/is being done in a played-out limestone mine north of Pittsburgh, PA. The temperature is correct and stable and the darkness is free.

  191. bats :[
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:04 pm [Reply]

    Baka Baijin: I love the comic “Thatababy” with a burning passion and would love for everyone to read it. However, you should probably skip the 10/30/12 edition. Just sayin’…

    And if you’re not keane on works of art, I’d skip this, too…

  192. Sequitur
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:05 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#185): That was a bit “noir” wasn’t it.

  193. Sequitur
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:07 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#186): Oh, great. Now I gotta yell at Pluggers to get off my lawn.

  194. Sequitur
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:09 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#191): That was a bit “noir” wasn’t it.

  195. bats :[
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:14 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#191): Gaijin. I knew that. :)

  196. Sequitur
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:18 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#195): Baka Baijin is Baka Gaijin’s clown-loving estranged cousin.

  197. Poteet
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:19 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#184): Your comment is making sense to me, so apparently I need a drink also.

  198. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:44 pm [Reply]

  199. Sequitur
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:06 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#197): I recently bought a book by Garrison Keillor at a book store bargain table for a dollar (how the mighty have fallen). In it he mentions geographical peoples that are made fun of. He mentions Clevelanders and Jerseyites and then he mentions Iowans. The first two are a given but Iowans? Except for an occasional corn joke I would never think of making fun of Iowans but then I remembered that Garrison Keillor is from Minnesota so I guess Iowans must seem hilarious to him.

    I need another drink.

  200. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:12 am [Reply]

    @Calico (#150): Believe it or not, they are some kind of djinns. The statue refers back to a folk tale I don’t know. But I like that there are four of them, just like the melonheads.

  201. Der Kömmëntätör, Herr Schnärkïnätör
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:18 am [Reply]

    PBS and Ballard Street – Funniest comics out there, Love them!!

  202. This Guy
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:27 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#199): Iowan jokes are de rigueur in Minnesota. Most states have a rivalry with at least one neighboring state; as Georgia has its Alabama and Ohio its Kentucky (I don’t know any more), so does Minnesota have its Iowa. Of course, most Iowan jokes are of the repurposed “stupid person” variety, e.g.:

    Q. Why don’t they let workers in Iowa take coffee breaks?
    A. It takes too long to retrain them.

  203. Droopy Says
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:27 am [Reply]

    Spiderbland: Am I reading this right? Has Parker decided to steal the tiara and pin the blame on Kraven? Color me astonished, because I didn’t think he had it in him–the energy to do something on his own, that is.

    Creepy Les: At least Scuzzy McChinbeard isn’t wearing the asshat today. Although do public schools actually have “Halloween Assemblies?” If so, how much assembly is required to make FW interesting?

    Jugs Parker: Get that SUV off Buba’s mountain? Unlike Avery, Bubba takes going green seriously!

    Family Circus:

    Mock Trail: Okay, the next step is to find verify that there is enough gasoline in the warehouse to fuel a mororboat during an escape attempt. Then, find an accomplice who will aid in the escape. This is a lot like a PC text-adventure game, only without the adventure or the game, or even interesting text.

    Pluggers: When it comes to horses, Pluggers are by definition headless. And mid-less.

  204. This Guy
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:30 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#197): “I’m starting to sober up, and you’re scaring me!”

  205. Sequitur
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:37 am [Reply]

    @This Guy (#202): Poor Hawaii. They can only make fun of Johnson Atoll.

  206. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:42 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#199): Yes, some jokes about Iowa are told in Minnesota (where Iowa is sometimes referred to as Idiots Out Wandering Around), but I take no offense. Jokes seem to cross state borders in many directions. And when I visited Vermont years ago, I heard a couple of jokes about French Canadians. I’d guess that French Canadians have some jokes about Vermont.

  207. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:46 am [Reply]

    @This Guy (#202): Yep. And Iowa has Missouri jokes (and southern Iowa jokes, actually). I’d guess that Canada has U.S. jokes, unless they’re too nice up there.

  208. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:50 am [Reply]

    FW — I sure don’t remember any Halloween assemblies in my high school. Am I forgetting? I’d be interested in whether any other Mudges had Halloween assemblies in your high schools. Right now, I’m guessing this is another case in which Batiuk is indulging his strange flights of fancy.

  209. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:56 am [Reply]

    MW — “Yeah, I figure it’s a chance to try incest without actually trying incest, if you get my drift. After three weeks of GAME OF THRONES, I’m in the mood for kinky.”

  210. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:57 am [Reply]

    CRANKSHAFT — Come on, let’s cut to the chase. How much money did she send? Are we talking $100, major financial disaster, or something in between?

  211. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 1:00 am [Reply]

    GA — Well, shoot. I was hoping that as Slim reached for his jacket, a bony hand would reach up and drag him under the ground and he’d never be seen again.

  212. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 1:05 am [Reply]

    JP — Forget it, Bubba. You can try to turn your eyes into scary black pits all you want, but you’ve lost your menace for good. Once you showed Avery your expensive painting and cute little fish, it was too late. I’ll bet you raise Persian kittens on the side.

  213. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 1:08 am [Reply]

    A3G — Candy Sweet? *doubles over laughing*

  214. Poteet
    October 31st, 2012 at 1:12 am [Reply]

    RMMD — “And by ‘supportive,’ I mean the guys are willing to shell out $100 for a two-minute lap dance. They know it’s for a great cause.”

  215. jnik
    October 31st, 2012 at 1:51 am [Reply]

    At age 62, I guess I qualify as a plugger, since I, out of necessity,have amassed such knowledge of the locations of public bathrooms in town that I can see myself giving directions.

  216. Not Greg Evans
    October 31st, 2012 at 2:10 am [Reply]

    RMMD: I can’t be the only one who’s been thinking “Delores Clitoris!” all week.

  217. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    October 31st, 2012 at 2:28 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#213): So she’s got a walk-on role in Rex Morgan, eh?

  218. This Guy
    October 31st, 2012 at 4:00 am [Reply]

    So, I’ve just been reading some awful Tumblr bullshit (WHY!?) about how Jeph Jacques is worse than Hitler for drawing Marigold in a bikini and, uh, not giving her stretch marks or some goddamned nonsense, and now I despair for humanity all over again. Hooray!

  219. greghousesgf
    October 31st, 2012 at 12:06 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#124): I do live in a big city, right next to a bigger city. I usually don’t shop at big box stores.

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