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Mark Trail: Like St. Francis, but much more violent

Mark Trail, 1/21/14

WHOA, you guys, Mark is actually taking Rusty fishing, again. Do you think he might actually … like him, or something? Not if today’s strip is any indication! Remember, kids, Mark Trail knows all sorts of useful nature facts, which is why you should follow his lead and just feed pelicans by hand when they fly into your boat, even though they’re aggressive hypercarnivores with huge, powerful wings. Clearly the only reason Mark is doing this is because he’s hoping the pelican will mistake Rusty for a tasty fish and eat him, or because an hour on a boat with his misshapen ward has sapped him of his will to live and he figures an agonizing death in a pelican’s gullet is preferable to this.

But our pelican friend subbornly refuses to kill, so Mark just decides to violate all the rules of space and time by casually grabbing onto the pelican’s ankle desite the fact that the pelican is clearly like six or seven feet away from him. “Jessica Canupp, pelican point … hmm, interesting! I hear they’re doing top-secret experiments on faster-than-light travel there! Come on, Rusty, let’s follow this pelican through the wormhole that brought him here, since the laws of physics are clearly collapsing in this region and our very molecules will collapse into subatomic goo if whe stay much longer!”

Herb and Jamaal, 1/21/13

Honestly, if you told me that this strip was going to start focusing less on playful banter down at the Heart and Soul restaurant and more on Herb’s forbidden erotic fantasies, the kind he can’t tell anybody about, I’d have been cautiously open to it. But if this is the sort of thing that’s in store for us, then no thanks.

249 responses to “Mark Trail: Like St. Francis, but much more violent”

  1. Congo Bill Bailey
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:24 am [Reply]

    I de-deuce that the joke in today’s “Monty” involves a pair of 3-D glasses and a pair (or more) of deuces. Keep it classy, Meddick!

  2. Congo Bill Bailey
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:33 am [Reply]

    Clearly, this no ordinary pelican. Jessica Canupp is the widow of Milt Canupp, creator of the “Steve Pelican” and “Terry and the Pelicans” comic strips.

  3. Midtown
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:34 am [Reply]

    FW: Funky looks intrigued; an extra-marital affair will liven up this comic.

    MT: Mark looks intrigued; an inter-species affair will liven up this comic.

  4. White Rabbit
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:35 am [Reply]

    If Barney Googled Snuffy, would he get a…Hillbilly Blitzkrieg?

  5. Nekrotzar
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    So here I am, following a nice refreshing three day weekend, just getting started on the day and ready to take on the world, and DAMNIT I’M LOOKING AT HERB NAKED IN THE SHOWER.

  6. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    9 Chickweed Lane: I have no goddamn idea what’s going on in this strip anymore, and I suspect Brooke McEldowney doesn’t either.

  7. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    @White Rabbit (#4): There’s no stopping the hillbillies from bopping…

  8. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    A3G-”To catch it you are going to have to throw it and not just hand it to me.”

    FC-Actually you’re in your sixties. It’s just that your parents have been slipping drugs into your food.

    JP-This could make Alan’s movie a blockbuster when word gets out about how he handled the snake.

    MT-”That sounds like a story. I’m sorry, Rusty, but I’m going to have to drop you off here while I investigate this.”

    RMMD-So that wasn’t just some playfulness between a husband and wife who love each other.

  9. Chareth Cutestory
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    Herb and Jamaal: I wonder if any highly caffeinated waste water runoff from daily coffee showers would affect local fish and wildlife, hahaha wait, who cares? Herb needs a morning pick me up.

  10. Aggie Mack
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    @Huckleberry Fink (#y203): John Grisham’s Mark Trail: “He’s also wearing a pair of women’s thong underwear. Where do you suppose he got the pelican briefs?”

    If it’s a size 6, Mark gets first dibs!

  11. Dr. Mabuse
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: What makes you so sure “He probably mooches from everybody who fishes out here” isn’t being spoken to the bird?

  12. Dr. Mabuse
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:42 am [Reply]

    Herb and Jamaal: Herb, I think Pam Grier spelled the name of her character “Coffy.”

  13. Tom, the Sailor Man
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:45 am [Reply]

    Lesson for today: If Herb invites you over for coffee, take a loofah.

  14. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    During times of famine, it was said, the mother pelican would draw her own blood to feed her young, and the early church quickly adopted the pelican as a symbol for the Christ. Do you see anyone worshipping a seahawk? You do not.

    Bloodsport for a blood religion. Yep, that’s our pelican.

  15. Mibbitmaker
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:49 am [Reply]

    H&J: He’s so addicted to coffee that it isn’t enough that he’s getting jolted awake without it already. Seek appropriate help, Herb…

    A3G: “Bigamy, Tommie. Think about it, won’t you?”

    Curtis: Mmmmm…. You can practically taste the “Status Quo Is God” already…

    FW: “I’m sorry. That name was from our funny period. SO long ago….”

    JP: “Don’t worry, Brungilda, I’m used to handling snakes. I was a judge, remember?” (silence) “Don’t you read Non Sequitur? Look, must I spell it out for you?! L…A…W…Y……..”

    MW: “What, Mary? Cornball quoting again?! Really, Worth, I’m actually glad you left!”

    Phantom: Is that a candle or is his desk erupting?

    6C: What’re you complaining about, Shulock? You don’t draw Reply All!

    9CL: I’ll say!

  16. Kevin on Earth
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:50 am [Reply]

    ASM: JJ: “No! Smell! I totally crapped my pants!”
    TV Host: “So has the TV Host!”

    JP: Gilda: “Don’t move! If I do this right I can get the snake and Alan’s head in one shot!”

    GT: “Yeah, it’s pretty easy to look like a basketball player if you have the uniform…idiot.”

    MW: Too bad the Central Park Shover didn’t appear in the clouds…i miss his grin.

  17. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:51 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: This storyline’s dènouement has been so boring it made my nipples invert.

  18. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:54 am [Reply]

    You people are so worried about seeing Herb in the shower, while Mary Worth is going full-on wet dream on a plane.

  19. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:57 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: You wanna break Mr. Pelican of his mooching habits? Toss a couple of Alka-Seltzers in with the fish. Call it a “learning activity” by measuring the size of the pelican’s pouch as the seltzers fill it with foam.

  20. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    Hagar the Horrible: Apparently they haven’t been at sea very long. Another month away from women and they’ll be pumping those sea cows like an oil rig into the North Sea.

  21. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:04 am [Reply]

    Thatababy: See, Peter Parker? This is how “Spidey Sense” is supposed to work, before danger approaches.

  22. Jim in Wisc.
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:05 am [Reply]

    Family Circus Freaks: “Monster Game”? How appropriate, considering that these kids look like mutated trolls.

    Crankenschäft: “Well, when you put it that way …” says the 90 year old man who’s still driving a school bus.

  23. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:05 am [Reply]

    Luann: Surprisingly good advise. Too bad Tiffany has had to do a lot of flip-off’s to her so-called friends.

  24. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:07 am [Reply]

    The Lockhorns: I can’t believe it’s The Lockhorns: Unexpected and unique humor.

  25. Mibbitmaker
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:07 am [Reply]

    Archie: They’re so hard to stuff in those mylar bags…

  26. Christopher
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:09 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: Hmm, interesting. See how I can easily grab him by his leg, Rusty? Now you try it. Just grab his leg. Then shake him around a bit, maybe punch him, and see how he responds.”

  27. pugfuggly
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:11 am [Reply]

    MT Hmmm…this plot is strangely reminiscent of a previous Mark Trail adventure. Of course this one is on salt water, with saltwater fish, saltwater birds, and saltwater bands, presumably left by some saltwater widow living on an island with a bunch of friendly walruses. Naturally, this widow of the sea doesn’t waste her time banding birds with bible quotes: she worships Neptune, lord of the briny deep, or as he’s known to true believers, ‘Jessica’.

    H&J I think this strip could really use a ‘Great Gazoo’-style character who went around granting wishes at inopportune times like, say, changing that tap water to scalding coffee.

  28. Downpuppy, shocked & appalled
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:13 am [Reply]

    @Tom, the Sailor Man (#13): Lesson for today: If Herb invites you over for coffee, take a loofah the first train out of town.

    I mean, c’mon!

  29. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    Did I miss someone’s mashup of this one or this one? Oldies but goodies.

  30. Horace Broon
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    A3G: I’m glad A3G is bucking the stereotyped comedy bit that women who already have guys are particularly keen on catching the bouquet, much to the horror of said guys, but there must have been a better way of doing it than having Tommie misunderstand what catching the bouquet is about.

    Crank: Jeez, Ed’s making up for that moment of weakness at Christmas when he was almost nice to her, isn’t he?

    HtH: I’ve actually heard the theory that the dugong or sea-cow is the origin of the mermaid legend. My feeling has always been “No-one was at sea that long.”

    JP: “Don’t move, Mr Parker, I’ve been looking for an excuse to point a gun at you since we got here!”

    MW: “Help me! I’ve been trapped in Mary Worth’s mind like so many others! If you kill her, we’ll be set free!”

  31. Little Blue Bicycle
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:18 am [Reply]

    MT: I assume Jessica Canupp runs a cannery where she illegally cans endangered species. Or else she’s a porn star.

  32. DAS
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    There is certainly a hyper-carnivore joke to be made isn’t there? Along the lines of “I have a cat and a dog. Cats are supposedly hypercarnivores, but mine kinda just lazes around all day. Now my dog … he’s a hyper carnivore”

    So, in re MT, are pelicans hypercarnivores, hyper carnivores or both?

  33. TheDiva
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:21 am [Reply]

    H&J: Yes, nothing like being covered in a hot, sticky beverage to brighten your morning!

    MT: “Bird bands” must be the “you meet in a tavern” of wildlife serial inciting incidents.

  34. Esther Blodgett
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    FW: Wow, that’s a really dickish thing to say to someone you’ve just met. I don’t even have a joke. That’s just really a dickish thing to say.

  35. pugfuggly
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:26 am [Reply]

    FW Of course the first step in any good fitness program is to break down the trainee psychologically with verbal and emotional abuse, then rebuild them from the ground up. So we’ve got a good start making fun of Funky’s name, now let’s move on to his appearance, intelligence, and odor.

    JP “Oh god! The snake…Mr Parker…WHICH IS WHICH?!

    MW Jeez, Mary doesn’t even bother citing the snowflake motivational poster she cribbed that quote from. Or was it the one with the guy on the mountain top with his hand in the air?

    SM Ah, the proportional dickishness of a spider…

  36. Cloudbuster
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:26 am [Reply]

    FW: In Westview, verbal abuse from the hired help isn’t just expected, it’s required.

  37. Old Folkie
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tommie and her Mom continue their conversation on the revolving platform…

    FW: Start off with your new client with an insult – no wonder Westview’s economy is failing.

  38. Old Folkie
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:31 am [Reply]

    Amazing – in the time it took me to type my FW comment and post it, 3 other curmudgeons posted basically the same comment – are the stars aligning this morning or what?

  39. bunivasal
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:35 am [Reply]

    Mark’s not giving that pelican a fish. That’s clearly a soggy condom full of cocaine. Is Mark a drug smuggler? My god… autistic nature doofus was the perfect cover. He wasn’t protecting the wildlife, he was protecting… his turf.

  40. TheDiva
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    9CL: Also no logic, no coherence, no research, no pacing….

    A3G: Wow, this is a huge affair for something they only had a few weeks to organize! On the other hand the wedding party is just dressed in whatever they pulled out of the closet that morning, so you can’t have everything.

    C’shaft: It’s funny because Crankshaft doesn’t care how many children he endangers.

    FW: You know those signs they always post in employee areas that say things like “Customer Care is Job #1!” I wonder what they look like in the Funkyverse? “Barely Veiled Contempt is Our Policy!” “Service With a Snide Remark!”

    Luann: Silly Tiffany, don’t you know the only proper way to respond to mean comments is to harbor bitter resentment for years and years, eventually venting your pent-up anger by creating a strawman antagonist you can shame and humiliate?

    MW: Poor Ken, he doesn’t even rate a “giant head in the clouds” vision. All he gets is a thought bubble emerging from the dark, empty void that surrounds Mary at all times.

    Phantom: “Dear Diary: Boy, my striped dance belt is chafing today….”

    Pibgorn: Okay, you’re deliberately stalling on getting to the violent deaths of these characters at this point.

    SM: Do you suppose there are people who do this in real life?
    “Oh no, a car has slammed on its brakes in front of me, I’m going to crash! I’d better depress my own brake pedal quickly, so that I might–” *BANG*

  41. Jim in Wisc.
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:53 am [Reply]

    Garfield: Someone with the patience to do the work could create a classic “Garfield Minus Garfield” from today’s strip.

  42. Tom, the Sailor Man
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:00 am [Reply]

    @Esther Blodgett (#34):

    That’s just really a dickish thing to say.

    Well done! Doesn’t quite roll off the tongue like “Christ, what an asshole!”, but it makes a nice generic comment for most FW strips.

  43. seismic-2
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:08 am [Reply]

    MT: “Hmm, interesting!”
    “Jeez, Mark, are there any depths to which you won’t go to take me fishing?”
    “No, Rusty, it’s just that this is way too good a story to pass up. Just think about it – the band says this pelican comes from Pelican Point. A pelican from Pelican Point! Can you believe that? I mean, what are the odds??? Man, what a scoop this will be!”

  44. jim, some guy in iowa
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:11 am [Reply]

    Funky could get religion, healthwise, and turn Monotoni’s into a healthy pizza joint – but as business withers, the drama increases – would Funky stick to his new found principles or would he cave to Westview’s deep emotional need for deep dish grease?

    or, he could just putz around the way he has been

  45. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:12 am [Reply]

    H&J: In college, I read that the flavor packets for ramen noodles had unhealthy amounts of sodium, so I didn’t eat them. Being dirt poor, I also didn’t throw them away. One friend suggested that I should put some in the dorm shower as a prank. We got drunk and did it, then forgot. Two days later, I saw one of my dorm neighbors, and I asked why he smelled like ramen noodles.

    He tried showering it off, but the first two showers were in the same stall that got him that way. The next two lessened the smell, but it was really worked in to his skin at that point. He was mad. I got turned in by the idiot friend that suggested it in the first place. I got my door pennied shut and found a condom (he claimed that it only contained mayonnaise) on my doorknob, amongst other things.

    The moral of this diatribe, Herb, is that there’s no musky cologne that mimics the fine scent of java for a good reason.

  46. Rapid-Fire Shrug
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    Recent A3G: “And by ‘Penn Station,’ we mean Penn Jillette’s apartment. He’s a magician, you know, so he can make the trains run anwhere…”

    Yester A3G: “You don’t need to lean in so close, Mom . . . I can “catch your bouquet’ from here, and so can everyone within half a block. I realize weddings make you nervous and all, but geez…”

    Today’s MARK TRAIL: Mark missed reading the first line of the pelican-message, which was “For a good time…”

    HAGAR THE HORRIBLE: Hagar, tired of keeping his show biz talent under a bushel, decides to try out for THE DUGONG SHOW.

    brain bleach alert:

    FAMILY CIRCUS: “You’ll be four in a few months, but I doubt if you’ll be “up” until puberty.”

    JUDGE PARKER: This is not the first time the Judge has heard his wife tell him to “Quit fooling around and put that snake back where you found it!”

    end brain bleach alert

  47. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:19 am [Reply]

    MW-To keep the pilots from freaking out and crashing their planes the FAA has mandated that all of Mary Worth’s reminisces be reduced to thought bubbles that can fit inside the plane.

  48. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:19 am [Reply]

    MT:
    Panel 1 – Mark is in his default mode of a human male approximate height 6 feet.

    Panel 2 – Mark decides to shrink down to half that size, then…

    Panel 3 – Mark explodes to a 12 foot behemoth, but with the same mass, as not to sink the water vessel.

    Or is it that the pelican magically grows and shrinks like it is the Alice of Wonderland? Doesn’t matter, we’re off to Pelican Point! “We” being the reader and Mark. Rusty, you wait here in the boat for a minute. And when I say “minute” I may mean “week and a half” or something. Enough time to get kidnapped and escape and foil a crime or something. Any way the cookie crumbles, I’ve got some punching to do. Sit. Stay.

  49. Clint Brawny
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    Shirtless Herb: DO NOT WANT.

  50. Odie Odo
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:22 am [Reply]

    Zippy: Notorious horndog Mr. The Toad is alone with a woman he just hypnotized. Frankly, today’s strip has “coerced sex” written all over it.

    Definitely not cool, Mr. Cartoonist!!!!

  51. gleeb
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:22 am [Reply]

    ‘bean-Finally, the punch line. Betcha didn’t notice before that “Funky Winkerbean” is kind of a silly name, did ya?

    Ben-A Louisville slugger and a one-way ticket to Vancouver.

    Pluggers-…choke their knobs.

    ‘shaft-Ed sees an opportunity to spread misery and leaps at it.

    Hagar-He’s disappointed because he doesn’t want to have sex with a seal.

  52. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:27 am [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#40):

    Wow, this is a huge affair for something they only had a few weeks to organize!

    We never see them planning parties, or interacting with a wide group of friends, or even interacting with the guests at these parties. The only logical assumption is that for events such as the Governor’s Ball or a wedding, the A3G Usual Suspects find a conference—say, a gathering of office-supply salespeople—choose an inconspicuous spot, and stage their event with a convenient crowd-scene background.

    Of course, the fact that they feel the need to do so indicates awareness of an audience—of us, in other words. So, yes, Margo knows you exist; think about that and let the chill run down your spine.

  53. "Hold That Shrug!!!"
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:27 am [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#14):

    re quoted line: “Do you see anyone worshipping a seahawk? ”

    Half of the population of Seattle these days, I’d think.

    ////It’s not a popular religion in San Francisco, though.

    (I can’t believe I just made a football joke. I *hate* football. But the demands of CC-snark require sacrifices from all of us….)

  54. Albert
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:29 am [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#14): “Do you see anyone worshipping a seahawk? You do not.”

    You do now. SUPER BOWL BIYATCHES!!!!!

  55. the REAL Mark Trail
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:29 am [Reply]

    there’s STILL MORE FISHING to come!
    Also, this is NOT the bird banding story involving bible quotes (that ran a couple of years ago), so let’s go ahead and stop suggesting that!
    I was prominent in the creation of this story and wanted to do something involving Rusty a bit ans well as give myself the opportunity to draw a variety of animals (a lot of the upcoming Sunday pages will “coincide” a bit too)

  56. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:34 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tommie, the superstition of catching the bouquet is to indicate who will be the next to be married, not next to be engaged. Since you and your roommates have a history of breaking more engagements than Evil Knievel broke bones, I’d suggest going through the time-honored tradition and making mom happy.

  57. Odie Odo
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:44 am [Reply]

    Herb and Jamaal: Once the water washes off his spray tan, Herb is just another short, chubby, middle-aged WHITE guy.

  58. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:44 am [Reply]

    MT: “Jessica Canupp, Pelican Point” Hmm… Interesting. Since they’ve used radio frequency chips to track birds instead of printed tags for almost 20 years now, it is a miracle that we have found the world’s oldest pelican.

    Rusty: Let’s take him home and make him a pet! I’ll name him “Pointdexter”, because he came from Pelican POINT!

    MT: This WILL make a good STORY!

  59. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:51 am [Reply]

    FW: Yeah, I’m only here because my wife is making me.

    Instructor: Good, since she’s my real client, then I feel free to crassly insult every facet of your pitiful being. Winklebean! Ha! Flunky Winkerbum! Haw! Is that your gut or are you pregnant with a whale?? Ha ha ha! Now drop and give me twenty! This is great, Finky!

  60. Droopy Says
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:51 am [Reply]

    @Midtown (#3): MT: Mark looks intrigued; an inter-species affair will liven up this comic.

    Really? Are you certain Mark and Rusty don’t belong to the same species of whatevers? So much can be explained by that simple observation. There might be no sexual dimorphism among Lofo subsapiens, or at least none obvious to human eyes. Perhaps the females have adapted a rugged, manly appearance as protective coloration in the wild. Indeed, what if Rusty is the seldom-observed male of the species, a small, drone-like creature whose only purpose is to show up, fertilize the larger females and then wander his territory in search of new mates? His frequent abductions may in fact be a mating ritual in which the oversized, khaki-clad females–who clearly outnumber the males by a huge ratio–seek to dominate the gene pool by hoarding the rare male of the species. Under this theory it is clear that the male of the species would require little if any intelligence to survive, becoming dependent upon female competitors to supply its needs. Indeed, this lack of intelligence would explain Rusty’s persistent interest in Mark Trail and Doc, who are yet to reproduce. It would also imply that Cherry is not native to the Lofo world, and is probably a human biologist studying the habits of with a detached interest in L. subsapiens.

  61. A New Day
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:56 am [Reply]

    If this turns out to be somebody’s pet pelican, I’ll be the happiest lil’ Mark Trail reader on the planet.

  62. Will
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:56 am [Reply]

    SFx: Somebody tell Commissioner Gordon that the Batsignal is on the blink again.

  63. the REAL Mark Trail
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:00 am [Reply]

    @A New Day (#61): STAY TUNED!

  64. Droopy Says
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:05 am [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#55): So the pelican band bears a quote not from the Bible, but from some other sacred text? Could it be the Kama Sutra?

  65. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:06 am [Reply]

    MW I’m intrigued: Ken’s floating head appears inside the cabin, not outside drifting among the clouds! Does this mean Ken enjoys unique intimate status among Mary Worth’s circle of friends? Is he particularly special to Mary? Will we see him again in the flesh, or only as Mary’s fantasy? Is it a warning sign that I spent time pondering this mystery?

  66. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:13 am [Reply]

    MW-Excuse me, Ma’am, but you are going to have to store that thought balloon in the overhead bin.

  67. Spunde
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:15 am [Reply]

    Herb and Jamaal and fanservice: Which one doesn’t belong?

  68. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:17 am [Reply]

    MT-Jessica Canupp? That’s a silly name for you, Mr. Pelican.

  69. Oregonian
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:18 am [Reply]

    JP – Okay everybody, sing along with me!

    Well, sit right back and you’ll hear a tale,
    a tale of a fateful trip
    that started from this tropic port
    at the dock of a cruise ship.

    The navigator read the map
    while the driver hit the gas.
    Five passengers rode in the van
    and they watched the jungle pass.
    They watched the jungle pass!

    Pete’s clothes they started changing shades
    from green to blue to white.
    Some passengers tried to sleep it off
    while the others held on tight.
    The others held on tight!

    The SUV it finally stopped
    at this muddy riverbank.
    With good-guy Pete! And Gilda too!
    The judges and their wives!
    Chekhov’s gun will add to the fun,
    you can bet your lives!
    You can bet your lives!

    So join us here for the next two months
    as the plot it creeps along.
    With any luck, before it ends,
    we’ll see April in a thong!
    We’ll see April in a thong!

  70. bats :[
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:24 am [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#6): bring on the kitties!

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#14): in the historical recreation group, the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA), the pelican is a HUGE thang, the symbol for the highest service award a person can get (kinda like an Eagle Scout), based on this legend…serve ’til you bleed. In just about everything I’ve read about the symbolism of the pelican, there is the allusion to Christ sacrificing Himself. (Heck, in just about every medieval bestiary, there is some aspect of Christ attributed to this beast or that bird.)
    OTOH, and I wish I kept the reference, one spin on the pelican legend is that the bird kills her disobedient chicks, and then is so filled with remorse, that she feeds them her own blood to bring them back to life. I was very surprised to read this departure from the usual story.
    I think this would’ve been called a Thelican, though…

  71. Joe Blevins
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:29 am [Reply]

    MT: “Jessica Canupp, eh? Sorry, Ms. Canupp. I didn’t immediately realize you were female. I apologize for calling you ‘buddy’ earlier as if you were a male intimate. No disrespect intended. I’ll avert my eyes now if you want to do any… uh, feminine things. *cough*

    H&J: I’m almost tempted to look up “coffee shower” on UrbanDictionary.com. Almost. Not on Google image search, though.

  72. bats :[
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:29 am [Reply]

    I’m sure that you can find it on You Tube, but a couple of years ago, someone had the rather sick foresight to video a pelican somewhere on the West Coast (San Diego, Venice Beach, Santa Royale) actually eating a pigeon. It was kind of gruesome (no blood, but a lot of writhing in the pelican’s pouch until the pelican can swallow it), but if this is what it takes to manage those dang rats with wings…

  73. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:32 am [Reply]

    Luann-That’s not a flip off. A flip off involves the middle finger to be extended.

  74. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:35 am [Reply]

    MT-”He probably mooches from everybody who fishes out here! So I no reason not to give him some fish.”

  75. Marc
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:37 am [Reply]

    9CL- I’ll do one better and go with three words: What the fuck

    A3G- Schulock and Bolle have never actually been to a wedding have they? Even though I was nowhere close to existing yet in the 60′s, I’m almost positive that nobody dressed or acted like that at weddings then either.

  76. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    @A New Day (#61): I had my chips on “pet story” so I’m with you.

  77. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:45 am [Reply]

    BC: While I have realize that this strip is supposed to depict the manager being handed a beer by a very short person, I cannot unsee my first impression: while the media interview is in progress, the gory, pulverized remains of the person who once played centre have been scraped off the floor and packaged into the mason jar which we see in panels two and three.

  78. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:48 am [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#55): Given the amount of recycling we’ve come to know and love in this story you have to let up pretend that they’re in a time loop, until events prove otherwise.

  79. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:57 am [Reply]

    Luann No, a flip-off is more like this: hold your hand up palm facing you with only your middle finger extended. This will be an important tool for communicating with Luann.

  80. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:59 am [Reply]

    @Amos Snarkadder (#79): Ooops! oversnarpologies, Liam!

  81. Duke of Earl Grey
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:04 pm [Reply]

    Let me get this all straight. Mark is letting a bird mooch of him instead of leaving it to find it’s own food as nature intended. Mark apparently wants to fish with Rusty. In our last adventure, Mark was beaten up instead of doing the beating. Are we sure that at some point, when we weren’t looking, Mark Trail wasn’t replaced with a changling?

  82. Duke of Earl Grey
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:05 pm [Reply]

    Changeling, I mean.

  83. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:09 pm [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#18):

    … while Mary Worth is going full-on wet dream on a plane.

    Or, as Mary likes to refer to them…

    Fond Memories.”

  84. lambcannon
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    Yeah those coffee enemas in Tijuana sure didn’t help Steve McQueen

  85. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:26 pm [Reply]

  86. bats :[
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:30 pm [Reply]

  87. Powers
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:33 pm [Reply]

    FC: Decades, Jeffy, from all available evidence. Decades.

  88. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:46 pm [Reply]

    @Aviatrix (#76): I’m so mad. I put my chips down on “crooked politician in bed with developers”. Now I’m going to have to wait till the end of the story arc before I get to spin the wheel again. Who knew Elrod would recycle “bird with mysterious leg band” so soon? Damn it.

  89. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:51 pm [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#55): Thank you for explaining that this is NOT another story about bird bands involving bible quotes …so, is the pelican’s bird band going to hold auditions for a rhythm guitarist and a drummer?

  90. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:57 pm [Reply]

    MT: It’s not a biblical quote. It’s a coded message from the Jesus Panic PAC. “Jessica Canupp”, indeed.

  91. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:59 pm [Reply]

    @Amos Snarkadder (#83): I’ve had many of those. Everyone gathered around the little pot of melted cheese sauce, dipping their bread. No, wait, those were “fondue memories”. Never mind.

  92. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 12:59 pm [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#63): is this story based on the pelican rescue shelter on Florida’s west coast that has been featured on the news? If so, IT WILL MAKE A GOOD STORY!
    //Actually, from what we’ve previously seen, the best chance any new MT adventure has of being a good story is if TRMT is holding the reigns!
    (ATTEN: TRMT … make sure you show the above comment to Elrod)

  93. Everything Is Better with Monkeys
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:02 pm [Reply]

    Luann – without snark, Tiffany is my favorite character. I actually enjoyed today. I weep that we will return to Quill and Gunther rolling around in the grass in the least interesting way possible. Followed by Bernice doing the full time job of a guidance counselor in the least interesting way possible. Followed by Delta being boring. All of which are preferable to Brad and Toni.

  94. I speak Jive
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:06 pm [Reply]

    FW – This is a change – the hired help taunting one of the main characters. Usually it is Les showing his contempt for and superiority to salespersons and government employees. Is this a sign of the Apocalypse?

  95. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:17 pm [Reply]

    Uh oh. Tiff is upstaging Luann in her own comic right in front of her by giving unconventional advice that the kids actually believe instead of the normal tripe “Oh, no, you’re not fat… you’re… uh, fluffy?” Or “Sticks and stones and I forget the rest of the rhyme but it was written by Shakespeare or was that something about roses by another name not that you’d understand either tired bon mot.”

  96. Hogenmogen
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    @Everything Is Better with Monkeys (#93): Yeah, the next story arc with Brad & Toni needs a monkey. Everything would be better that way.

  97. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    MT – “Jessica Canuup, Pelican Point … hmm, interesting!”

    (Rusty): “WHAT is it that Jessica can Up you at, Mark? Points in shooting hoops? ha ha ha ha!”

    “Real funny, Rusty! Why don’t you take a nap and dream of dinosaurs or something!”

  98. FafnerMorell
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:22 pm [Reply]

    MT: Obviously, Mark isn’t really going fishing with Rusty – instead, it’s a hologram projecting Mark’s image. Actually, it’s not a hologram – that’s waayyy too techy for Mark Trail – instead, it’s a magic lantern. A magic lantern being projected from a nearby lighthouse. Wait, no… maybe Rusty has been kidnapped again and this is just a dream he’s having after being chloroformed?

  99. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:23 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#86): Bwahaha! The Shover lives on!

  100. Uncle Lumpy
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#96):

    Oh c’mon – the Brad/Toni relationship clearly has a monkey. Unless we’re going to have that monkey/ape argument again.

  101. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

  102. seismic-2
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:26 pm [Reply]

    MT: “And verily he spake unto them, ‘Lo, know that my grace is with you always, even unto the ends of the earth. But not unto Pelican Point, because no one in their right mind would go to such a place.’” – Canupp 5:26

  103. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:29 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#86):
    Speaking of taking some artistic liberties to do some modifications to a daily comic strip… (RE: today’s Mark Trail, panel #3)… SAY! Doesn’t that red bird band in panel #3 look like a small red BIC lighter that Mark is trying to roast the pelicans leg with? …guess Cherry forgot to pack a lunch for them again!

    Now, THAT would make a good modified comic panel!

  104. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:30 pm [Reply]

    Gil Thorp-”Hey, 25! Nice tits!”

    Blondie-It’s funny because Dithers is a cheapskate.

    JP-Whose head? Alan’s or the snake’s? I’m leaning towards Alan’s head.

    Sally Forth-Remember, Hilary, you must indulge your father in his eccentricities least he takes an ax to you.

  105. TheDiva
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:34 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#70): Oooh, I hope the SCA is involved here! I’d love to see Mark Trail wander into a group of big, bearded men who hit each other with rattan weapons for a hobby and who don’t take kindly to sucker punches.

  106. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:35 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#73):

    Luann-That’s not a flip off. A flip off involves the middle finger to be extended.

    And sometimes kids just figure it out on their own.

    More useful tips!

  107. Carter
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:42 pm [Reply]

    Mark Trail: delivering all the ankle-banded-bird action that audiences are clamoring for.

  108. aphthakid
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:44 pm [Reply]

    LUANN: So, once again, Tiffany is working with the kids while Luann just stands around looking smug. And you’ll notice which of the two the kids go to for help and draw pictures for.

  109. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:44 pm [Reply]

    MT – About 15 years ago my son spent the winter months doing commercial shark fishing off the east coast of Forida. He has some great photos of the day a huge pelican landed on board his boat and stayed with them for the afternoon while enjoying all of the chum it could eat. My point here is, just as Mark Trail has a nose for the cosest all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast, any self respecting pelican always knows where they can find a good meal!

  110. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:47 pm [Reply]

    MT-”Rusty, you don’t mind if I give this pelican your lunch.”

  111. tallyHO
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:52 pm [Reply]

    Happy Birthday, Bob Weber Junior!

    May Slylock Fox and Maxwell Mouse need not solve the mystery behind how your great cartoons exist! May they know to leave well enough alone.

  112. Tom, the Sailor Man
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:54 pm [Reply]

    Before legally changing her name to “Canuup”, Jessica Camus was widely known for her bird-band quotes. Now that would make a good story!

  113. Jessy S.
    January 21st, 2014 at 1:58 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#73): I think women do it differently and try not to be so rude. On the other hand, men do it for attention purposes and to be competitive. With that said, Luann sure looks pleased with herself in the last panel.

    Sally Forth: I know blizzards are a bit old around here, but the opening panel in each of this week’s strips shows that at least four to six inches of snow has fallen. If this strip was set in North Dakota, the entire family will likely be at school and work once Ted shovels the driveway and walk. Heck, he can just push the snow off to the side.

  114. Poteet
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:06 pm [Reply]

    MT: Warning, here comes a rant and I’ll try to keep it short. Bird banding — regulated, requires permits, scientific research, an official program of the USGS. People are not allowed to randomly grab birds and attach bands to their legs saying “Kilroy was here!” or “Proverbs 3:5!” or “Buy Fatgone Pills, They Really Work!” And in the case of large waterfowl, the bands are generally large and colorful and have large numbers and/or letters so that observers with telescopes can see and record the colors, numbers, and letters and report them to researchers WITHOUT having to grab the legs of the waterfowl!

    Oh wait, it’s LoFo. I forgot, sorry. Sure, Jessica at Pelican Point, why not. She’s probably a lovely person with curly hair and a wasp waist and a really cute puppy.

  115. Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:07 pm [Reply]

    MT: Another bird band??? ………I still have my Bible Bird Band!

    RMMD (a.k.a. The Adventures of Sarah’s Book Deal): How do you know, Buck? Did Doris just shoot you in the ass? ………..Hey, can we shoot SARAH in the head with that nail gun??

    Love is…: Prancing naked on the sidewalk in the rain.

  116. Alter Ego
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:11 pm [Reply]

    love is… giving her something to wear in her latest piercing.

  117. kanomi
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:12 pm [Reply]

    Mark Trail just wants to shut down another Good News avian leg-band ministry. Why is Trail such an atheist I just don’t understand.

  118. Jessy S.
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:20 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#111): And today’s “six differences strip is great as well.

  119. Odie Odo
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:22 pm [Reply]

    @lambcannon (#84): Yeah those coffee enemas in Tijuana sure didn’t help Steve McQueen

    Never underestimate the restorative power of one of Jamaal’s coffee enemas (administered lovingly to his partner Herb).

  120. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:23 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#96): @Uncle Lumpy (#100): You could also make the character of Shannon much more fun if you interpret her as a monkey. Suddenly, her biting people and TJ breaking down the drywall in case she found her way behind it makes a lot more sense. As does Brad’s newfound affinity towards her.

    See, even Luann is better with a monkey!

  121. Mikey
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:28 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#102): MT: Could be end of times stuff, as I recall: “and all will share of the bounties of the sea, and the pelican and troll will float side by side..” -Camus 3:16

  122. Calico
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:28 pm [Reply]

    MW – what, no thought balloon outside of the plane?
    Mary, I hope you aren’t slipping.

  123. Peanut Gallery
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:31 pm [Reply]

    MT – “So, this old bird’s name is Jessica! That’s a funny name for a boy bird!”

    “But Mark, maybe it’s a female –”

    “Shush, Rusty! All animals are male unless you are actually watching them give birth!”

  124. Mikey
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:32 pm [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#109): Oh, I get your point now! The pelican mistakenly landed there because he thought Rusty was a bucket of chum. Easy mistake, Mr. Pelican!

  125. Odie Odo
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:33 pm [Reply]

    @Tom, the Sailor Man (#112): “Canuup” is Ukrainian for “can of whoop ass.”

  126. Bill the Butcher
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:34 pm [Reply]

    Hey, Rev Scudder? You there?

    Couldn’t write your amalgam essay today, I’m sorry. I have, however, finished a story:

    http://www.bill-purkayastha.blogspot.in/2014/01/the-man-in-corner.html

    I’m going to sleep now, seeing as it’s 1 in the moaning.

    Good groaning, all.

    (Oh, by the way, when I post comments from my cellphone here, it will be as Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist, and when from my computer, as Bill the Butcher. I hope that clears that up. Yabbadabbadoo.)

  127. Bill the Butcher
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:35 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#120): I always thought Shannon was a midget North Korean spy myself. I wrote a thesis proving that a year or two ago…

  128. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:35 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#72): Follow Josh’s link in the post. The rats-with-wings video is posted at the bottom.

  129. Pocket
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:37 pm [Reply]

    I can’t believe I’m the first person to bring this up. Herb clearly hasn’t heard of Shower Shock caffeinated soap, which is exactly what it sounds like. If I ever get to the point of needing a caffeine buzz to wake up in the morning, I think I’d prefer that approach over coffee, from a cup or a showerhead.

  130. Odie Odo
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:44 pm [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#6): 9 Chickweed Lane: I have no goddamn idea what’s going on in this strip anymore, and I suspect Brooke McEldowney doesn’t either.

    I hope this is the first (and last!) retelling of Bill’s story. If Brooke STILL hasn’t gotten it right, he might try again in 2015 or 2016.

  131. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:51 pm [Reply]

    Interestingly enough, the pelican may be mentioned twice in the Bible, once at Leviticus 11:18 and once in Deuteronomy. I say “may be,” because it’s a variant reading of “desert owl”:

    But these are the ones that you shall not eat: the eagle, the vulture, the osprey, the buzzard, the kite of any kind; every raven of any kind; the ostrich, the nighthawk, the seagull, the hawk of any kind; the little owl and the great owl, the water-hen and the desert-owl, the carrion vulture and the cormorant, the stork, the heron of any kind; the hoopoe and the bat.* (Deuteronomy 14.12-18)

    1. What the fuck is a “hoopoe”?

    2. Hoopoe would be a good glam rock band name.

    3. Bats are safe. No word on bats :[

    4. The * at the end of the passage leads to a note: “Identification of several of the birds in verses 12-18 is uncertain.” Well, now you tell us.

  132. Odie Odo
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:55 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#2): Jessica Canupp is the widow of Milt Canupp, creator of the “Steve Pelican” and “Terry and the Pelicans” comic strips.

    I’ve been trying for decades to get Jessica to sell me a particular “Steve Pelican” Sunday featuring Steve’s ward Poteet Pelican.

  133. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:55 pm [Reply]

    @Bill the Butcher (#127): More recent research indicates that it is Sarah Morgan from RMMD who is a midget North Korean spy.

    Infiltrating the arts community and extorting capital from them – Spy!
    Biting people when they get their fingers too close – Monkey!

  134. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 21st, 2014 at 2:57 pm [Reply]

    Oh, my. “The Hoopoe is a colourful bird that is found across Afro-Eurasia, notable for its distinctive ‘crown’ of feathers.” Indeed it is. (Suggestion for a Mark Trail Sunday strip!

    But get this: the scientific name for a Hoopoe is Upupa epops, which is surely a better comic strip name than anything in the funny papers these days.

  135. Peanut Gallery
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:00 pm [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#134): The hoopoe was named for the sarcastic cries of indignation it emits whenever it’s reminded that ravens have had a famous poem written about them and hoopoes haven’t.

  136. Peanut Gallery
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:03 pm [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#131):

    But these are the ones that you shall not eat: … the kite of any kind

    I guess that tree in today’s Peanuts is screwed.

  137. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:03 pm [Reply]

    @Amos Snarkadder (#83): Aw, thanks to bats :[ for the shout-out, but where’s here original link? I only see Amos’!

  138. Dennis Jimenez
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:04 pm [Reply]

    MT – I dropped a white bomb on the head of Jessica Canupp of Pelican Point and all I’ve got to show for it is this crumby red aluminum band….

  139. seismic-2
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:05 pm [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#134): the scientific name for a Hoopoe is Upupa epops, which is surely a better comic strip name than anything in the funny papers these days.

    It would provide a week’s worth a material to the personal trainer in today’s FW. Be careful what you ask for.

  140. Daniel
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:09 pm [Reply]

    MT I’ve handled literally hundreds of pelicans in my life. They have little vestigial worm-tongues and they hiss like Satan on a REALLY bad day. Sometimes they spin around if they want fish.

  141. Uncle Lumpy
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:19 pm [Reply]

    @Bill the Butcher (#127):

    I always thought Shannon was a midget North Korean spy myself.

    This is widely known!

  142. Uncle Lumpy
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:22 pm [Reply]

    I’m pleased to say that this site is the top result of a Google search for “Bible Bird Band”, ahead of both actual bird-banding sites and sites of Bible bands that sing about birds.

  143. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:24 pm [Reply]

    @Chareth Cutestory (#9): Some environmental engineer may already be dealing with caffienated shower runoff.

    @pugfuggly (#27) on Herb and Jamaal: I’d pay to see that.

    @TheDiva (#40) on Luann: Inner Beauty!

  144. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:25 pm [Reply]

    @Clint Brawny (#49): Is this the “shirtless Herb” that a few months ago was accused of wearing a sweater to the gym’s showers by Jamaal?

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#55): I’m aquiver in anticipation.

    @Amos Snarkadder (#65): Warning sign. Big red blinking warning sign.

    @Liam (#66): COTW-worthy!

  145. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:29 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#135): The hoopoe was named for the sarcastic cries of indignation it emits whenever it’s reminded that ravens have had a famous poem written about them and hoopoes haven’t.

    Sadly, “Quoth the Hoopoe, ‘ooop-ooop-ooop’” doesn’t convey quite the same sense of dread as the original.

  146. Droopy Says
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:31 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#114): We’ll get some really good artwork out of it, so I’m not going to complain. Much. There’s more on the USGS and bird bands here:

    http://www.pwrc.usgs.gov/bbl/

    and a sub-page about colored bands here:

    http://www.pwrc.usgs.gov/BBL/homepage/aboutaux.cfm#colorleg

    The band in today’s MT is red, so let’s all give TRMT credit for having done some research. I’m going to guess that having Mark read the band’s inscription, then track it down, would have slowed the story too much. This sub-page makes it clear that the USGS doesn’t answer casual requests for data:

    http://www.pwrc.usgs.gov/BBL/homepage/datarequest.cfm

  147. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:53 pm [Reply]

  148. Calico
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:54 pm [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#55):

    I have my Genesis bird band hanging on the wall of my office, replete with original cord and feather.
    Now let’s hear it for the band Genesis, with a bird!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eG53nM03iac

  149. "Pssst -- Hey, Shrug, Over Here..."
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:55 pm [Reply]

    @Alter Ego (#116):

    LOVE IS: In most places, if you are minding your own business in a public park and some stranger comes up to you and says, “Hey, want to buy a genuine diamond ring real cheap? It, uh, fell off the back of a truck!” and you express interest, the stranger whips it out from a concealed pocket inside his trench coat. And if you say “Don’t need a ring, but about a fine wristwatch? Or what else ya got?” — said sleazy stranger pulls those other offerings out of that same interior pocket.

    In a world where everyone goes naked, it’s a lot harder for him to conceal the merchandise as he trolls the park. I guess what I’m getting at is that I don’t want to know just which “interior pocket” that guy is whipping things out of.

  150. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:55 pm [Reply]

    Herb and Jaamal-There is something funny about the image of Herb writhing in agony on the floor of the shower being scalded by hot coffee coming from the shower head.

  151. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:56 pm [Reply]

    @Marc (#75) on Apartment 3-G: My impression of weddings in the 60′s come from sitcoms of the era. Most weddings are small affairs held in chapels. Even Major Nelson and Jeannie’s wedding wasn’t very big, and he’s a world-reknown astronaut!

    @Illustrator Steve (#89): A bird band. Please tell me none of the Shoe characters are disallowed from auditioning. Please!

    @Hogenmogen (#96): An angry bitey stabby rabid monkey!

    @TheDiva (#105): Rattan weapons, for reals? Interrresting, veddddy interrrrresting.

    @Calico (#122): Obviously Mary just wasn’t so smitten with Ken.

  152. soccerhead Amy
    January 21st, 2014 at 3:58 pm [Reply]

    FW: Flunky: My wife, who was a hot majorette in high school, but is now as big as a house,signed me up to work with a personal trainer.
    If you see someone at fitness center wearing a pizza joint T-shirt, you know it’s one of the new years res crowd

  153. Mikey
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:01 pm [Reply]

    MT- SO bird band color is very important, apparently. TRMT must have sent a note to the colorist to get things right:

    To: Colorist
    From: TRMT
    Re: Today’s Mark Trail colors.

    1) Bird band: Important!! Bird band MUST be RED. This strip relies on it’s true to life realism and plausible storylines, so please make the bird band red!!

    2) StorkPelican:Use leftover Ken Kensington yellow for beak

    3) Mark: ManlyFlesh brand fleshtones only

    4) Rusty:
    Torso: Anything available
    Hair: Poop toned ochre

  154. Shrug, for the Birds
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:02 pm [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#131):

    I’m reminded of the old joke that goes something like (half of the ‘mudge posters will stop reading at this point…):

    Forest rangers come upon a guy in the woods who is cooking and eating an American bald eagle. Very illegal. Haul him up before a judge, who asks for explanation. Guy says — was lost in the woods, starving, couldn’t find any other game around, debated with himself, said “no–can’t do this to symbol of my country, will rather starve” — starves some more — finally can’t take it any more; kills the eagle, but as he’s cooking it he salutes it, sings “Star-Spangled Banner” over and over, and so on to do it homage. Sobbing etc.

    Judge is touched, decides under the circumstances to let the guy off. As he’s being let free, the judge can’t resist asking: Just what does bald eagle taste like, anyway? Answer: “Oh, sort of like whooping crane.”

  155. Shrug, for the Birds
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:04 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#142):

    Thereby once again pointing the value of having all of the old comments up and searchable again! (So thanks again for that, Uncle Lumpy!)

  156. seismic-2
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:14 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#142): Interesting (mis-)information about the banding of birds can be found elsewhere on the innertubes.

  157. Baka Gaijin
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:21 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, for the Birds (#154): And whooping crane tastes just like California Condor.

  158. Esther Blodgett
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:29 pm [Reply]

    @Bill the Butcher (#126): Writing under two different fake names? Dude, that’s crazy talk.
    Love,
    Chuck

  159. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:30 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#157): I know, eh? I thought it would be way more like dodo, and I was surprised how much gamier it is than passenger pigeon, but I guess that might have been the marinade.

  160. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:38 pm [Reply]

    MT – I predict after lunch Rusty will fall asleep in the proverbial green ™ fishing boat and dream of peradactials with pelican beak pouches.
    …that or the pelican will fall asleep and dream of the legendary hidious dinorustysaur which is said to roam the southern part of the state not too far from a nearby area while looking for someone to take it fishing.

  161. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:42 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#157):
    To me Condor tastes more like spotted owl.

  162. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:47 pm [Reply]

    @Bill the Butcher (#126):
    One of Jeff Dunham’s dummies by the name of Acmed called … he said he wants to talk with you.

  163. bats :[
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:50 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#100): “TJ — Man or Monkey?” Discuss.

  164. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:56 pm [Reply]

    MT – There is something very fishy going on in panel #1 … HOW could Mark possibly have known that Jessica Canuup named her pet pelican “Buddy”?!

  165. Illustrator Steve
    January 21st, 2014 at 4:58 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#163):
    Neither. The correct answer is…(drum roll please)… Garbage ape.

  166. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:07 pm [Reply]

    MT: “Jessica Canupp, Pelican Point”? What book of the Bible is that from?

  167. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:09 pm [Reply]

    MW: Mary’s expression and the creepy thought balloons she gets over her head explain why she no one ever sits next to her.

    FW: Wow. This girl is rude. Which is enough for Funky to want to bang her, I’m sure. Not that he has a shot.

    Archie: I note with disappointment that Betty and Big Ethel haven’t fused into a single two-headed being as they initially appeared to be.

    JP: Yeah, Alan’s not going to take kindly to that order, as he now thinks he’s having a very Freudian dream.

    RMMD: You see those pigeons in the background picking bits of popcorn and potato chip debris from between the cigarette butts? They’re not surprised either.

    HtH: There’s a little something that can make them look better, Hagar, and it’s called “alcohol.”

    GT: Ha ha, Mimi is a better coach than her husband, even though she can’t remember what sport she’s coaching. “What are we playing here, lacrosse? Whatever, just keep up the good work.”

    6C: Ah, so this is where Margaret Shulock puts the dialogue that’s too hilariously cruel for Margo to use on Lu Ann.

    Momma: A big bear, still puckish from snacking on Antigonus in “The Winter’s Tale” is about to eat Sonia and Francis.

    Marvin: Would you rather have poop jokes, or sub-Family Guy humor about damaged women? Not since Scylla and Charybdis…

    A3G: Wow, don’t get too exuberant, Tommie.

  168. bats :[
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:12 pm [Reply]

    @Odie Odo (#130): Maybe he won’t have to remainder all those copies of the Edie is a Nazi book then…

  169. greghousesgf
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:18 pm [Reply]

    Why is Moose ogling Veronica? Doesn’t he pound on any guy who so much as talks to Midge?

  170. Congo Bill Bailey
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:25 pm [Reply]

    @Esther Blodgett (#158): You mean I didn’t have to post here under my *real* name?

    WHY DOESN’T SOMEBODY TELL ME THESE THINGS?

  171. Ebenezer Wasabi
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:35 pm [Reply]

    @greghousesgf (#169): Actually, I think Moose is ogling ARCHIE.

    Archie has finally awakened in Moose the stirrings of a love that dare not speak its name…

  172. Droopy Says
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:39 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#170): You’d know these things if you came home once in a while!

  173. Ebenezer Wasabi
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:40 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#150): There is something funny about the image of Herb writhing in agony on the floor of the shower being scalded by hot coffee coming from the shower head.

    The image of Herb writhing in agony is funny under any circumstances.

  174. Uncle Lumpy
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:46 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#170):

    Also, we all had a meeting over Christmas break and swapped names. Let me know if you need a scimitar.

  175. walt d
    January 21st, 2014 at 5:49 pm [Reply]

    Dennis: Bingo!

    Dennis: Second guess: A doll that looks like Dennis that she imagines saying all the things she wants to hear.

    NS: Wiley regularly trashes business people. This is the first time I recall him going after a specific person.

    The Barn: I read this strip and I frequently imagine that Hagen must be a vegetarian. But if so, he surely must understand that the whole point for the existence of domestic livestock is to provide products–milk, wool, meat, etc.–for home consumption or sale. No products equals no livestock. Although I’m definitely a meat eater, I think it’s a pity this strip isn’t one of the biggies. In subtle and very unsubtle ways, it points out where that stuff in the grocery comes from. It’s also a lot better in writing and drawing than most of what is found on the comics page.

  176. Arabella
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:04 pm [Reply]

    RWO: I LIKE THE IDEA OF A DEDICATED SARCASM FONT- SOMETHING EVERYONE ON THE INTERNET WOULD USE AND UNDERSTAND. WHAT?? oh, sorry. nevermind.

  177. Uncle Lumpy
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:14 pm [Reply]

    @Arabella (#176):

    And here I thought that was all taken care of!

  178. walt d
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:16 pm [Reply]

    FW: “Miss, it’s true that I have a name that’s easy to make fun of. But at least I don’t have. . .”

    RMMD: “I believe that was established some time ago, Buck. Are you saying that she did it again?”

    RMMD: To Wilson and Beatty: Buck may be a sad sack but his story is a hundred times more interesting than that other one you’re messing around with, and potentially even has something to do with medical issues. Hint, hint!

  179. the REAL Mark Trail
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:17 pm [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#92): VERY KIND of you to say! Thanks!!

    @Baka Gaijin (#144): “aquiver” hahahahah

    @Mikey (#153): Sadly, the person that colors the dailies ignores me (as evidenced by the dinosaurs in the Slumber Mountain storyline)

  180. Calico
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:23 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#151):
    You’re right, it’s a medium crush. No need for in-the-clouds-heads.

  181. Calico
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:24 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#177):
    I hate Comic Sans. Yecch.

  182. Poteet
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:34 pm [Reply]

    9CL: As someone who has a problem akin to prosopagnosia, I’m used to not being able to follow the plots of movies. If there are characters who look alike (several young men with black hair, say), I just watch the interesting images moving along and at the end, I may try to figure out what happened. So that’s the spirit with which I’m now reading 9CL. Along with the usual loathing, of course.

  183. Poteet
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:37 pm [Reply]

  184. Poteet
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:39 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#146): Good point, and thanks, some of that info is new to me. I’m through ranting, got it out of my system, and will now look forward to enjoying the story and the appealing pelican images and the punching of whomever deserves to be punched.

  185. Poteet
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:43 pm [Reply]

    MW: Oh, nerts. I was hoping that since we saw Ken without his peehead on Sunday, our final floating glimpse of him might be the more dignified white-haired version. No such luck.

  186. Alison
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:43 pm [Reply]

    @Everything Is Better with Monkeys (#93):
    Tiffany is my favourite “Luann” character as well, after PUDDLES, that is. Puddles and Tiffany should have their own strip where they have solo adventures and don’t have to associate with idiots like Luann, Quill, Gunther, Bwad, etc.

  187. Alison
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:48 pm [Reply]

    “Mary Worth”: And that is the end of Ken. Of course, a normal person would get the guy’s e-mail address or cell phone number so they could stay in touch, but this is MW and so all anyone ever gets is lustful memories, never to cross paths again, like it’s 1875 or something. Hell, I’m surprised Mary even uses airplanes; I would think that would be too technologically advanced for her. I’d think she’d push herself cross-country to NY in a rusty old railroad car, using a big stick like an oar in a row boat.

  188. Fritz G
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:51 pm [Reply]

    H&J – If hot coffee came out that showerhead, I would so like to flush the toilet while you’re in there.

  189. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 6:57 pm [Reply]

    9CL: no joke in French is sans blague now spoonerize it like Beenex Klox to get blan sague perhaps sagouin which would mean “filthy pig” or “bungling idiot.”

  190. Dale
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:04 pm [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#179):

    On the Seattle PI site, someone is claiming to be Jessica Canupp.
    Is she for real? If so, is she reading here?

  191. Majicou
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:12 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#182): When it comes to Brooke’s characters, we all have prosopagnosia.

  192. Dale
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:18 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#182):

    I don’t have the problem, but in a lot of British TV productions I can’t tell anyone but the main characters from anyone else. Maybe it’s casting, maybe not enough time to establish who the characters are.
    As a kid, almost 60 years ago, I had that problem with British movies, but only the men. Black hair, black suits, medium build.

  193. Droopy Says
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:25 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#182): Never read 9 Chinless Lane with any kind of spirit. It will be crushed as thoroughly and wall-of-textually as anything in Funky Winkerbean.

  194. demoncat4
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:25 pm [Reply]

    mw and some where ken is smiling thinking thank god i am rid of mary not relizing as mary flies back to santa royal she has future plans for him. rmmd. omg it took a visit by rex and june for buzz to finaly admit what every one knew doris tried to whack him with the nail gun which means rex will wind up taking him in .

  195. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:26 pm [Reply]

    MW-And so without Mary’s help Shelly’s fundraising for Promise Haven turned into a disaster and it was forced to close it’s doors the following year.

  196. Nehemiah Scudder
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:35 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#174): Also, we all had a meeting over Christmas break and swapped names. Let me know if you need a scimitar.

    Hey, show me again how that script file works to automatically delete the Turkish garage door opener sites. It’s like playing whack-a-mole here!

  197. Uncle Lumpy
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:40 pm [Reply]

    @Alison (#186):

    Tiffany is my favourite “Luann” character as well, after PUDDLES, that is.

    Ah, you must’ve missed the big “Puddles Saves Christmas” story of ’06. Else you’d be a-hatin’ Puddles wif thet thar heat o’ a thousands Suns, by cracky!

  198. Nehemiah Scudder
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:43 pm [Reply]

    @Bill the Butcher (#126): Looking forward to it, Doc. Evidently you have strong opinions on amalgam.

    // As all right-thinking people should.

  199. Alison
    January 21st, 2014 at 7:52 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#197):
    What in the holy hell what what what.

    I went searching to see more of this and from what I can figure, Puddles also visited Santa, and then it turned out it was all a dream of Luann’s. These may be different stories. What a weird and confusing thing.

    I would be okay with Puddles suddenly starting to talk if he would say things like, “Your boyfriend is quite obviously gay, Luann” and “Your raging jealousy of Tiffany is very embarrassing, Luann” and other things none of the human characters will say.

  200. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:00 pm [Reply]

    @Aviatrix (#189): That. Is. Eerie.

  201. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:05 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#192): And the women have shapeless hairdos and mouse brown hair, plus everyone wears national health eyeglasses so there are only a few frame styles and in the villages there isn’t much genetic variation.

    @Dale (#190): PeopleByName lists addresses and phone numbers of seven people in the US named Jessica Canupp: one each in Michigan, Las Vegas and Missouri and two in each of South Carolina and Georgia. The last two states seem our best bet for pelican habitat. We can stalk these Jessicas in the coming weeks if enough clues are offered, but perhaps their friends and family will alert them to their newsprint namesake and Google will lead them to us.

  202. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:09 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#185): I’m sure Ken is disappointed too. As an actor he knows the importance of a good headshot.

  203. Liam
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:12 pm [Reply]

    MT-”Hmmm, interesting. When I tell that pelican to point it refuses to do so.”

  204. Dale
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:25 pm [Reply]

    @Aviatrix (#201):

    in the villages there isn’t much genetic variation.
    R U trying to tell us something?

    At least in the high-rent areas you can tell the servant women from the quality folk by their outfits.

  205. Peanut Gallery
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:29 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#174): It’s true! For example, the new Baka Gaijin loves clowns!

    Just typing that is giving me the heebie-jeebies. Evilscaryclowns! EEEEE! (QLUNQ)

  206. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:30 pm [Reply]

    @aphthakid (#108): I didn’t snark on Luann today because it looks like, tentatively speaking, the Evanses are realizing that Tiffany isn’t the mean girl she’s always been presented as, or at least not in this context. Is the last pony crossing the finish line?

  207. Amos Snarkadder
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:35 pm [Reply]

    A3Giraffe Egad! What’s going on with Tommie’s mother’s neck? That is so weird. Her brief, recent appearances have been freakish.

  208. Peanut Gallery
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:38 pm [Reply]

    Pelicans have always been good to Mark Trail. It was a pelican that told him “the ocean is always fascinating”, and by the way, “LOOK OUT”!

  209. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 21st, 2014 at 8:52 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#197): Ah, 2006. Late-era FOOB with Brooke McEldowney-level political commentary (Politicians, amirite!?). And in Apartment 3G, two characters stand side by side and talk to each other while the perspective spins around like a black hole with indigestion.

  210. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 9:08 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#208): That pelican is different, though. The LOOK OUT! pelican is grey-blue and the red-banded pelican is white. Perhaps if we wait patiently until Sunday we can learn more, including how pelicans taste (compared to bald eagles) and how we can contribute to preservation of pelican habitat. (Keep your Rustys on a short leash and do not leave your green canoes unattended).

  211. Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:04 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#206): I think we need to wait two days till the Evans duo suddenly realises that they are, OMG, casting the designated whoreslut Tiffany as a sympathetic character, and go all out to humiliate her. Take that, tramp!

  212. Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:05 pm [Reply]

    @Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist (#211): One of the problems I have with your language, which I speak well on the whole: is a duo singular or plural?

  213. queek, SoC, KC
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:07 pm [Reply]

    Shame from bb,u.

    Shame from Poteet.

    Two Little Somethings for bats :[. *squee*

    what’s really inside the Intertubes.

    Frank Miller’s Inspector Gadget.

    I never thought I’d see a combo of RUSH and Ponies. (only one of my favorite songs ever.)

    Canadian Kitty.

    corgsqui

    baby Pudge. *brainmush*

  214. Droopy Says
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:15 pm [Reply]

    @Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist (#212): According to my dictionary, “duo” is singular. The plural can be either “duos” or “dui,” so duo has a duo of plurals.

  215. queek, SoC, KC
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:17 pm [Reply]

    ok, I had to add one more.

    the Tumblr is called “handsomedogs”, and truer words were never spoken.

  216. Hank G.
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:17 pm [Reply]

    @Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist (#212):

    One of the problems I have with your language, which I speak well on the whole: is a duo singular or plural?

    Singular, even though it’s referring to two things. You seem to understand this on some level, since you used a singular verb.

  217. Red Greenback
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:27 pm [Reply]

  218. Sgt. Stoned
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:35 pm [Reply]

    MT: Maybe the note on the pelican’s leg is wrapped around a gold ring etched with a biblical verse.

    MW: No matter where you go, there you are. Or something like that.

  219. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    January 21st, 2014 at 10:42 pm [Reply]

    @queek, SoC, KC (#213): Aw. That looks very much like Truffles, my English bulldog from many years ago.

  220. the REAL Mark Trail
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:09 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#190): Dale… NO… Jessica Canupp is indeed based on a friend of mine, and she lives here in my town (in Georgia)… she’s got a heart of gold! Remember during the storyline a while back regarding “Mollie and Oscar Otter”? Mark got in a fix and a reporter named Jason Smith came into the story? Well, as some here may recall, Jason was actually a friend of mine, and, tragically, before his story started running, he died. I was with him that night, in the hospital, with several others… we were all stunned… shocked… the REAL Jessica was there, and at “that final moment” of Jason’s life, the REAL Jessica, walked over, sat indian style on the floor and held Jason’s hand as he passed… heart of gold

  221. Aviatrix
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:42 pm [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#220): Well then … a happy 34th birthday to Jessica next month.

  222. bats :[
    January 21st, 2014 at 11:54 pm [Reply]

    @queek, SoC, KC (#213): Two…TWO little batlings! Ah! Ah! Ah!

  223. jim, some guy in iowa
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:08 am [Reply]

    JP: “Don’t fondle the wildlife” may the the most appropriate bit of dialogue ever in this comic, which is all about the anticlimax.

  224. Inexplicable Bear Tongue
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:10 am [Reply]

    Good thing I’m not a gambling man, because if I were, I would have lost a lot of money betting that Ken, once rejected by Mary, would meet Mary’s friend Shelley and start a relationship with her. After all, in the comics if you can’t get together with the woman you want to, her single friend who you’ve just met is always just perfect for you!

    MT: Once again, nature writer Mark Trail feeds, befriends and grabs a wild animal without a thought or care in the world.

    Hey TRMT, can we have a story of where Mark gets his face torn off by a bobcat after he tries to tickle it under its chin? Or maybe he picks up a rabbit and the rabbit disembowels him with a vicious kick to his midsection? If those suggestions aren’t sexy enough, have Mark visit Africa and have his testicles torn off by a territorial chimpanzee right before the chimp beats him to death with its hands.

  225. Huckleberry Fink
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:15 am [Reply]

    Phantom: “She should not be here! Liberry is OUR private place!”

  226. jim, some guy in iowa
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:21 am [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#224): if Mark tried that with Gilda from Judge Parker around, *she’d* probably shoot him for fondling the wildlife. Damn killjoy, she is. Almost as bad as Guran in today’s Phantom!

  227. Huckleberry Fink
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:25 am [Reply]

    Shoe: The Perfessor likes putrid chicken nuggets because they remind him of his former mother-in-law.

  228. billman
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:26 am [Reply]

    @Liam (#66):

    Well done! FTW, COTW, and any other acronyms of approbation.

  229. Droopy Says
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:34 am [Reply]

    Spiderbland: The van ain’t rockin’, so Parker comes a-knockin’.

    You Don’t Know, Dick: What better way to tell a detective story than by not letting a detective uncover the fraud? It’s not like Dick Tracy and the MCU are doing anything else with their time.

    Family Circus: Something about yeah, just put PJ inside the drum. I dunno what it is about this strip, but today it’s more annoying than usual. Maybe it’s the way Billy holds his hands behind his back. There’s just no way those stubby arms could bring his hands together behind his pudgy back.

    FW: I think the best way to work on Funky’s problem areas would be with a wrecking ball, but I’d settle for a little modern implosion technology.

    GA: What has no legs to stand on at any time of the day? A Gasoline Alley story.

    Judgemental Parker: Lady, in this strip everything bites but the wit.

    Mark Trail: I was hoping the pelican would carry off Rusty, the way that pterosaur abducted Raquel Welch in One Million Years BC. It looks like our feathered friend is no birdbrain.

    Phantom: Well, Guran, it’s not like O Ghost can take her into the bedroom.

    Pluggers learn at a young age that hard works earns you nothing but low wages and an unhealthy diet.

  230. Huckleberry Fink
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:35 am [Reply]

    Rex Morgan: “I also have hemorrhoids and flat feet. You’re the doctor — what should I do?”

  231. Poteet
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:38 am [Reply]

    @queek, SoC, KC (#213): Hahaha! I could write up a sign or two regarding certain cats in my house, but then I’d be afraid they might do it to ME.

  232. Baka Gaijin
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:39 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#167) on Mary Worth: Thought balloon to keep people out of the adjacent seats. All this time I’ve been doing it wrong with fart balloons.

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#179): A ha! A clue. Archery will be involved in the story. Hm. Ms. Canupp uses pelicans as targets in her bow-and-arrow club.

    @Alison (#199): I’d love if Puddles had sporadic speaking abilities. I’d love him to have the speaking personality of, say, the personal trainer in Funky Winkerbean or Aggie from Mary Worth’s spa adventure.

    @Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist (#211): Sad but true.

  233. Huckleberry Fink
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:45 am [Reply]

    Henry: Wait, you didn’t actually expect him to SING to his dog, did you?

    Beetle Bailey: Miss Buxley’s bulging midsection is proof she’s pregnant with Beetle, Jr.

  234. Baka Gaijin
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:50 am [Reply]

    @Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist (#212): Use the word “magnum” instead. Even though the word denotes a pair of bottles of wine, there’s no reason we can’t repurpose the word for other duos.

    @Droopy Says (#214): “…for other dui.”

    @Aviatrix (#221): There are no secrets in the 21st Century.

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#224): It’s not too late for Ken and Shelley. Mary hasn’t deplaned yet or debriefed Toby next to the Charterstone pool over tumblers of Potato-Ade. Once the debriefing has occurred, the storyline’s characters are frozen in time.

  235. Dale
    January 22nd, 2014 at 12:57 am [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#220):

    Given that Jessica is real, what did you mean by “NO”? She isn’t reading CC?

    Are you just using her name, or will the character be a depiction of the real Jessica?

  236. Huckleberry Fink
    January 22nd, 2014 at 1:00 am [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#205): It’s true! For example, the new Baka Gaijin loves clowns!

    Right. And the new Poteet thinks Slim from “Gasoline Alley” is fascinating!

  237. Poteet
    January 22nd, 2014 at 1:05 am [Reply]

    S-M: I can’t remember which of you demented-genius Mudges first theorized that the manbot is actually trying to “ravish” Spidey, but thank you so very much for making each day of this story a new ordeal. “The manbot’s almost on TOP of me!” Dear god.

  238. seismic-2
    January 22nd, 2014 at 1:06 am [Reply]

    JP: Did Woody Wilson just admit that everything in this story bites?

  239. Poteet
    January 22nd, 2014 at 1:07 am [Reply]

  240. Aviatrix
    January 22nd, 2014 at 1:36 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#237): Oh come on, there’s no way you can blame that idea on us. Look at the artwork, for heaven’s sake. You wouldn’t need to edit a line of the art to make the porn version. And most of the dialogue could remain intact, too.

  241. Dale
    January 22nd, 2014 at 2:29 am [Reply]

    MARK TRAIL

    Jessica rescues injured pelicans. After restoring them to good health, she puts a band on and sets them free. Could be she trains them to work as homing pigeons for the Navy.
    The band has only her name and town? Not a good indication of her intelligence.
    No. Mark stopped reading out loud because he knows Jessica. (Mark know people everywhere except in the vicinity of LoFo.) If Rusty catches on, the whole world will know.

  242. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    January 22nd, 2014 at 3:07 am [Reply]

    Like a lamprey, Mary fastens onto another host shortly after detaching from her previous host, and immediately begins draining his precious bodily fluids.

  243. Mr O’Malley
    January 22nd, 2014 at 3:10 am [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#131): What about Psalms 102:6 ?

  244. Mr O’Malley
    January 22nd, 2014 at 3:28 am [Reply]

    @Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist (#211): But I think that “the Evans duo suddenly realises that they are…” is preferable to “the Evans duo suddenly realises that it is…”.

    Compare “When the crowd spotted him, it turned down the alley where he was hiding” and “When the crowd had him cornered, they started throwing bricks at him.” “They” would work in the first one, but “it” would not work in the second. In this example I think it depends on whether to emphasize the collective or individual nature of the act.

    Collective nouns like “government” or “team” take a singular verb in American English and a plural verb in British English.

  245. Liam
    January 22nd, 2014 at 8:04 am [Reply]

    @billman (#228):

    Thanks. Let’s see if your suggestion and Baka’s suggestion have any sway.

  246. Liam
    January 22nd, 2014 at 8:12 am [Reply]

    @queek, SoC, KC (#215):

    That’s so cute.

  247. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    January 22nd, 2014 at 8:20 am [Reply]

    @Liam (#246): isn’t just?!?

    I grew up with black labs (and beagles) and consider them just the bestest dog around.

    The Internet may love corgis, but they can’t retrieve ducks from the water worth beans.

  248. gleeb
    January 22nd, 2014 at 9:46 am [Reply]

    Dick-Defrauding an old fool isn’t much of a crime. Sure, the production of film to do it makes it esoteric, but I want a good juicy murder.

    Believe It or Else-Ruth Bader Ginsberg from the free throw line!

    Judge Privileged-Everything bites? She is in the wrong line of work for someone who hates the jungle.

  249. Marion Delgado
    January 23rd, 2014 at 4:35 am [Reply]

    You toss fish to pelicans you don’t let them take it off your hands unless you want to be bitten. When you’re trying to lure those big fish that jump out of the water you have to first avoid or shoo the pelicans who will give you a nasty bite otherwise and steal the fish.

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