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Metapost: They’ll do it every time … in Austin!

Hey, everyone! As I may have mentioned here in the past, I’m going to be at the South by Southwest Interactive festival for the next few days (I’m actually typing these very words on a plane winging its way from Baltimore to Austin)! I’ll be on a panel about the future of blogging (if such a thing exists) on Saturday morning, and generally going to dorky panels and bumming around town. So if you want get together and talk about, I dunno, new media, or money-making schemes, or what not, shoot me a line maybe we can meet up! I’ll also be documenting my experiences in a show diary for, if for whatever reason you can’t enough of that sort of thing. I will be doing my darndest to fit my normal comics-mocking into my busy schedule; apologies in advance if posts are late, or if more of them than usual have titles that include the words “quickies” or “one-liners.”

And now, to justify the existence of this post for the vast majority of you don’t care about anything in that last paragraph, here are some awesome vintage They’ll Do It Every Time panels sent in by faithful reader Rachel! (And those of you who have started reading this blog in the last few years, after the death of the feature’s final artist — well, check the archives, for awesomeness.) We begin in 1943, with the feature’s core creative mission — savage complaints about minor inconveniences, often tinged with sexism — was already well established. From a historical/anthropological viewpoint, we also learn that butter used to have its own counter at stores, and it took a long time to buy butter, for some reason?

Also of note is the mysterious Chinese take-out box on the counter labelled “oysters.”

Here’s another one from 1943 that offers a more interesting historical look at World War II than the last six months of 9 Chickweed Lane. Apparently it was common for serving GIs to hear drunken tales of exploits from World War I? Irritating, but the bowler-hatted fellow’s advice to drug the man’s drink seems a bit excessive.

Now let’s jump ahead to 1956. Here we’ve arrived at the two-panel ironic whiplash we know so well from the Scaduto era, though the subject is at this point rather quaint. Also familiar to longtime TDIET will be the “Howcum?” interrogative that starts the thing off.

Here’s another 1956 installment with a lot of features that would be right at home in the panels from the ’00s: the wacky, on-the-nose names (“Pothooks” and “Bigdome”), the generic white-collar office setting (though again the specific gripe is now thoroughly outdated), and, tucked away in the thanks-to note at the lower right, an (imagined?) act of savage violence.

And finally, a top ten list of gripes, again ranging from the familiar (bosses suck!), the familiar but probably no longer considered suitable for the comics (your husband spends the household budget on booze for his buddies!), and the archaic (burning trash befouls your line-dried laundry!). Not sure if the numbers are meant to be tongue-in-cheek; if not, they say a lot about the readership the trip once had — and the everlasting pettiness of the American people.

137 responses to “Metapost: They’ll do it every time … in Austin!

  1. PeteJayhawk
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:41 am [Reply]

    Gee, I wonder what possibly could have been happening in 1943 that resulted in rationing of various food items?

  2. Roto13
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:47 am [Reply]

    The dude who did that comic DIED? I had no idea.

  3. loudfan
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:50 am [Reply]

    “The battle of Vin Rouge”! I love these. I wish someone would publish a collection of these old strips — I’ll betcha you’d learn more about life in the mid-20th century than in any history book.

  4. Red Greenback
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:51 am [Reply]

    Please excuse me, I have to go frappe my radiator.

  5. zenvelo
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:55 am [Reply]

    I wonder if the first panel is based on Grand Central Terminal, with its famous Oyster Bar.

    And remember butter didn’t always come in 1/4 lb. sticks…

  6. D. Moe
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:04 am [Reply]

    What we call Chinese takeout boxes now were originally designed for oysters. They’re even technically called “oyster buckets.”

  7. Charlene
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:41 am [Reply]

    Before butter came in the familiar one-pound blocks (or 1/4 lb sticks in the US, I suppose), you bought it in bulk, like you’d buy potato salad in a deli today.

  8. KarMann
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:56 am [Reply]

    BTW, today’s Lio is a must-see!

  9. tool
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:01 am [Reply]

    Trash is still burned, usually in backyard 55-gallon drums, in the more rural areas of our United States. Clotheslines are still used, too.

  10. Farley's Revenge
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:02 am [Reply]

    Hmmm…I just might have to rev up the Mustang and head up IH35 to Austin in a few days.

    @KarMann (#8):

    Lio, as usual, rocks. Could you imagine Lio and Calvin living on the same block?

  11. Farley's Revenge
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:17 am [Reply]

    RMMD: June, translated: “Take your milk and beat it, you little face-changing troll.” Seriously. That little kid’s face is never the same from one panel to the next. She’s got a real career ahead of her as the special effect “morphing head” in some horror movies.

  12. Master Softheart
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:45 am [Reply]

    Those are glorious. Once, when I was merely an Apprentice, I sealed myself in the stacks of a major university library and experienced the Depression and WWII by sequentially reading every issue of Newsweek (News-Week initially) supplemented by archived newspapers on microfilm from 1933-1948. The past isn’t merely a foreign country, it is an exceptionally strange and interesting one.

    Y145: Dingo, the Essence of Purity and Virtue Incarnate™: I was having a difficult day today. Even aside from teaching two seminars on political violence and terrorism and another on the history of labor repression in 19th century America, I also had a parade of students through my office all day and soul-deadening departmental administrative obligations. I wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart for making me giggle maniacally at the words “Inflatable Jesus” to the point where I had to close my office door to avoid being thought completely mad by my students and colleagues. Well, at least to avoid providing them with additional evidence.

    BC: I have the strongest feeling that this must actually be a joke – I mean, all of the context clues suggest that it is. But with God as my witness, I can’t figure out how.

    Garfield: On the one hand, the last few weeks of Garfield have really recalled the glory years of the strip, with more diverse settings, weekly structuring of joke patterns, and greater detail of characterization and environment. On the other, of course, it also reminds me that the glory days of the strip weren’t as good as I remember them from my childhood, so this is hardly a mixed blessing.

    GT: “Are you always this slow with girls?” Damn, I either didn’t attend the right high school or I should have gone back while in college to score with the ambitious, high-achieving senior girls. Either way, this plotline is way more racy than Gil Thorp(e) deserves.

    S-M: Because Peter Parker wasn’t repulsive enough with just his laziness, self-pity, and aggressive stupidity to define his personality, now we get to see his pettiness and venality up close and personal with that horrific rictus in panel 3. Will this strip content itself in any way before all of my childhood fondness for Spider Man is destroyed?

    Phantom: Talk about hardcore, Savarna was about to bazooka the surrendering pirates and she casually justifies it to the Phantom on grounds of convenience? Forget Kit Walker, baby, with sociopathy like that you should be dating Dick Tracy. Or maybe Dick Cheney, who no matter what you think of him at least arguably has the advantage over Tracy of existing in conventional Euclidean space.

    JP: “Greedy men always underestimate the wrong people.” A profound sentiment, to be sure, but I think it’s wasted in Sam, who himself seems too wasted in panel 3 to even remotely comprehend the exposition of a past plotline. And if the Fashion Police were to choose to prosecute Sam’s tie in panel 1, I don’t think the decision would encounter any objections at all.

    MT: I have a doctorate in political science and I can’t figure out how frequent visits to the Parker Brothers in a float plane would be a valid proxy for one’s status as a “real politician.” Education is a journey, I suppose – though I never imagined that Mark Trail would be my guide on that trip.

    FW: That’s so inspiring.

  13. Kelly
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:55 am [Reply]

    >Trash is still burned, usually in backyard 55-gallon drums, in the more rural areas of our United States.

    I come from the north-west corner of Montana, which is pretty darn rural, and I don’t know that anyone up there routinely burned trash. I mean, sure, paper plates and napkins might go into the heat stove, if it was going, or would be soon. And if there was an outdoor fire for whatever reason (just for fun, or camping, or cleaning up wood scrap), someone might throw an inappropriate bit of trash in, but not in bulk.

  14. Scuzzy
    March 12th, 2010 at 4:40 am [Reply]

    What’s that droning, high-pitched whine?
    Oh, it’s just My Cage.
    “Whattaya mean, we can’t show characters pinching loaves in each other’s mouths?!? You FASCISTS!!”

  15. dale
    March 12th, 2010 at 5:01 am [Reply]

    @Master Softheart (#12):

    Mark Trail

    The senator visits camps without doing any fishing: that could make him a politician. It could also mean he doesn’t want people to notice he spends a lot of time at the Parker brothers’ camp.

    On 3/1 I suggested that they are supplying him with illegal game. If that’s all they’re doing, they wouldn’t need to keep people away. I still think their primary business is growing pot.

  16. athena
    March 12th, 2010 at 5:12 am [Reply]

    The second panel of today’s RMMD has to be one of the scariest things I’ve seen lately.

  17. Hiyame
    March 12th, 2010 at 5:49 am [Reply]

    Even though this has nothing to do with the post, I just thought I would mention it. I just finished reading through the archives, finally catching up today. I will have you know it took me a year, an entire year, to read all the archives. Quite an impressive load of work there, Josh!

  18. Mr. O'Malley
    March 12th, 2010 at 6:24 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#yy213): Let me reiterate what I said on March 10:

    JP: I take it they weren’t sure about having an artist so they planned several weeks of nothing but dialogue balloons.

    I hope they hold off with Neddy for a while. I would hate to see something like this:

    Gloria: How are things at home, Sam?
    Sam: Neddy just came back from Paris. You should see her new outfits. Ooh la la!
    Gloria: What does Abby think of that?
    Sam: I think she was a little bit jealous, because she went shopping and bought herself a few gowns as well. She makes the Oscars look like Cherry Trail’s high school reunion!
    Gloria: Oh, by the way, the widow D’Vito left a message that she wants you to come over for a drink.
    Sam: Get her on the phone and see what she wants to tell me.

    @loudfan (#3): Quite a while ago I managed to acquire some collections of Bruce Bairnsfather cartoons. Gives you a perspective on WWI you can’t find many other places. I guess Bill Maudlin did the same for Americans in WWII.

    @Master Softheart (#12): I have also spent some time reading microfilm. It’s kind of cool that you can do it on Google now. Of course if you have nothing planned for the next three or four weeks…

    @Hiyame (#17): I’m impressed that after doing that you still are able to post somethoing coherent.

  19. The Ridger
    March 12th, 2010 at 6:36 am [Reply]

    I believe the GIs should ask Lushwell why, if he was responsible for the Armistice, he didn’t wait till the war was actually won? You know, so they didn’t have to go back and clean up his mess…

    March 12th, 2010 at 6:52 am [Reply]

    DT: That guy is George Steinbrenner! Shades and all! They will hear from his attorney pretty soon!

    Or has this been noticed already?

  21. Mr. O'Malley
    March 12th, 2010 at 6:55 am [Reply]

    MT: I have a plan—that requires a naked woman>!

    OBH: “Psheeeew” is pretty funny.

    Pluggers: Are those his grandchildren or his coon dogs?

  22. Chyron HR
    March 12th, 2010 at 7:50 am [Reply]

    Leave us not forget the October 29, 1929 TDIET comic–

    WHYFORZIT? Stockbroker Crudlow walked up six flights of stairs to his office in the morning… “Good exercise builds character, you know!”

    But when he got there, this dumb noodnik jumped straight out the window! “Ulp! G-G-G-Goodbye, cruel world!”

  23. Little Guy
    March 12th, 2010 at 8:09 am [Reply]

    @KarMann (#8):

    Epic. Totally Epic.

    And you-know-who is there in the background, hidden so that Tatulli doesn’t get a nasty C&D with fresh Canadian Air.

    But the metaTDIET is awesome. I’m melacholy that it didn’t get zombified.

  24. Rachel
    March 12th, 2010 at 8:10 am [Reply]

    I am glad you like the panels and that there is a place to share them! I would love to see how large these strips were in the newspaper, since there is so much detail in each panel. The WWII panel with Lushwell and the GIs is one of my favorites, since the “kids” are now my grandparents!

  25. Hi There
    March 12th, 2010 at 8:18 am [Reply]

    Chillin’ at the VA’

    Now, Wally stands up

    Wearing a snug pair of jeans

    “There is one more thing.”

    March 12th, 2010 at 8:19 am [Reply]

    OBH: Okay, here I go again, pounding the drum again — but as funny as this strip is, look how careless the drawing has become.

    Detorie, you are getting sloppy!

  27. Lanfranc
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    There are many smaller airports that don’t have jetbridges, as well as some budget airlines that don’t use them to save on costs, so the airport TDIET is not as outdated as you’d think.

    JP: Good call, Mr Wilson. Having a couple of boring characters talk about what happened is so much more interesting than actually seeing those things happen…

    MW: …but not quite as interesting as having boring characters discuss boring things that happened after we already saw those things happen. Ms Moy wins again!

  28. Whippersnapper
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:14 am [Reply]

    ‘Shaft: Yup, because who doesn’t want a piece of that? And how is it that Crankshaft doesn’t know how to fill a prescription? I assumed that everyone in Batuikland was heavily medicated, if not for some horrible terminal disease, then simply to make it through another miserable tragedy-filled day.

  29. Shawn S.
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    Bigdome, never tear a carbon copy! All that carbon monoxide gas is now spilling into the office.

  30. gleeb
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:22 am [Reply]

    Dick: If someone else kills his son before he gets a chance, he is going to be so angry.

    ‘bean: “That’s it?” Yeah, what happened to the Nightmare of Faceless Bureaucracy that you were pushing yesterday? Man, this used to be a funny strip. Funny because Batiuk took it seriously, but still messed it up all the time. Now it’s like he’s slipping, which is just sad.

    Mark: I guess the Senator has a very small constituency, so every vote counts, even the two Parker brothers’.

  31. anon
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:26 am [Reply]

    Funny how blah current comics often seem, and how fascinating vintage comics are to read and pore over…the artwork is better, the stories make reference to a bygone world. I wonder if 50 years from now people will be reading Luanne or 9CL for a glimpse of the early part of the century. When I was very young, I bought Marvel Millie the Model comic books, which featured fashions sent in by readers. What I wouldn’t give to see a copy of Millie from the 1960′s. (Even better was really vintage Katy Keane from the 40′s and 50′s, back in grandma’s day….you people don’t know what I’m talking about, do you?)

  32. 8th Man Fan
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:36 am [Reply]

    In the news: Looks like the “Luann” musical is about to get some competition.

    Have no problem with the OBH artwork, but have to shake my head at two unfortunate art choices in the soap strips:

    1) The otherwise-great Paul Ryan’s decision to give Capt. Savarna a jutting, pointy chin in profile, which (a) doesn’t match the front view and (b) makes her look sort of Green Goblin-y.

    2) Graham Nolan’s depictions of children need some work: Sarah’s heavy eyelashes and full lips comes across more Toni-like than child-like. The balloon head doesn’t help, either. Can’t complain about June, though.

  33. The Grandstander
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:39 am [Reply]

    The “They’ll Do It Every Time” strips brought back a lot of great memories. Would always read these with my dad at the breakfast table back in the early ’60s. Always loved a boss named Bigdome! Have to agree with loudfan in #3 – a compliation of these strips WOULD be better than any history book!

  34. Uncle Ritzy Fritz
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:40 am [Reply]

    I like the “alleged cartoonist” self-deprecation in the TDIET Top 10 intro box. Sadly, though, 450 newspapers? And evidently that was just the number that carried TDIET at the time. Are there even that many left?

  35. Ed Dravecky
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:43 am [Reply]

    Watching vintage movies and learning about life in the 1940s and 1950s can greatly enhance your appreciation of “Bugs Bunny” cartoons. (If that’s not enough motivation then, well, that’s just sad.)

    And curse the luck! I’m stuck in Dallas all weekend and can’t jaunt down I-35 to Austin. Have fun on Sixth Street and ask the locals for restaurant recommendations.

  36. Bryan
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:06 am [Reply]

    While you’re in Austin, you can stop by the LBJ Museum and Library.

  37. B. Racoon
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:27 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (y#225): I can assure you there are no surveillance cameras currently operating in or around your abode.
    After that incident a few months ago with the intruder I had a few cameras installed on the outside of your home until it seemed safe to remove them. Never were there any on the inside. Hammy was hanging around the survillance shack during the time the cameras were in operation. The only time he saw you was the few times you happened to walk in front of one of the cameras and I must admit that wide angle lenses do not make for the most flattering image. I hadn’t told you about the cameras because I was concerned for your safety and didn’t want you to act unnaturally or try to avoid the cameras or even try to find them. That may have been a mistake and I apologize if it makes you feel uncomfortable.
    However, it’s possible that if you knew of the cameras you would have treated us to a song and dance.

  38. shermy glamrocker
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:36 am [Reply]

    @Chyron HR (#22): Let’s not forget the Dec. 8, 1941, TDIET.
    Panel 1: Sgt. Schnozzle staggers into his Pearl Harbor barracks after a long night of bendin’ elbows with the boys at the NCO club, lookin’ forward to sleepin’ in on Sunday.
    Panel 2: But at 6 a.m., WOULDN’T JA KNOW! (illustration of Zero piloted by bucktoothed, slant-eyed Japanese stereotype, strafing the USS Arizona while BOOM-ing bombs throw debris all over the panel).

  39. Mr Foofram
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:37 am [Reply]

    This is the first time in years that I have laughed at a OBH strip. Bravo! PSHEEEEW!

  40. Peripheral Visionary
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:37 am [Reply]

    TDIET: I suppose it’s a sign of my deep-seated misogyny that the first one resonated with me. Although in our modern times it’s not the exact change; it’s more likely to be the loudly ringing mobile phone that prompts several minutes of desperate searching through the bottomless depths of the latest designer handbag.

  41. Bryan
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    @shermy glamrocker (#38): Let’s not forget the Dec. 8, 1941, TDIET.

    It beats those rabidly isolationist TDIETs from the thirties.

  42. Edgy DC
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:52 am [Reply]

    “Get out of the way, Lady! I need to buy my copies of UMPH! and WOW! I’ll be damned if I’m going to get through my morning commute without my daily hardcore porn!”

  43. Pirk
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:55 am [Reply]

    Phantom – “. . . in my pants!”

  44. HalibutStance
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:55 am [Reply]

    When and where I grew up, TDIET was looked upon in certain circles as being so corny and lowbrow that it probably would have been instant social death just to admit awareness of its existance. So, HOWCUMIZZIT? that it was always one of my favorite strips, even back in the late ’60s, when I was just turning teenaged and thought that I was ever so hep? It’s probably because I was just becoming aware of the fact that there was a whole world outside of our tidy suburban enclave that I knew nothing about, and Jimmy Hatlo’s brilliant work informed me (forewarned me?) of the endless streams of petty annoyances and BS that I would have to deal with once I left that pseudo-idyllic lifestyle for something more realistic. Scaduto ably carried the TDIET flame long after Hatlo’s departure and, in all honesty, it just might be for the best that the strip passed on when Al did. If I recall correctly, he was purty durn old when he departed this mortal coil, and the strip always seemed to be somewhat stuck in an indeterminate past, probably because of that fact. I just can’t see a TDIET with an updated, post-modern look and post-ironic feel. It just woldn’t seem right. RIP, my old friends.

    Josh, if you ever have the opportunity, it might be amusing if you could post some of Scaduto’s “Little Iodine” strips – another guilty pleasure.

  45. house.kirk
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:57 am [Reply]

    Butter and margarine were both in very short supply during World War II… when they were available, you needed lots of ration “points” or coupons to make the purchase, and long lines formed. Even Mrs. Truman fell afoul of this. Everybody in her women’s club was assigned to bring something to a luncheon. Her assignment was a stick of butter, which the White House housekeeper (held over from the Roosevelts) refused to let her take! She said they didn’t have enough to last through the end of the month, and Bess Truman said they needed a new housekeeper; Bess won.
    Great to see these TDIET panels. Some night in the late ‘fifties I turned to the next-to-the-last page of the (Providence) “Evening Bulletin,” looked at the funnies, and realized… I could read! Jimmy Hatlo is one of the new friends I fell in love with that night, along with Gil Thorp, Buz Sawyer, Steve Roper and Mike Nomad, Rex Morgan and June Gale, Dagwood and Blondie, Pete Fletcher and Mary Perkins, Li’l Abner and Daisey Mae, Dennis the Menace, the Peanuts gang, and even Henry (though not much reading was required there).
    Seeing the Family Circus fifty-year retrospective last week reminds me that when FC first appeared we all said, “Hey — this is the guy that does ‘Channel Chuckles’!” TV was still fresh enough to exercise a real fascination, and Bil Keane had a panel cartoon that appeared on TV pages. Like FC, it had an unusual shape… like the picture tube on an early TV. Two recurring characters were Dimbulb and Aunt Tenna, who sound like they should be in TDIET.

    Jasper Jinks

  46. Scott Blacula
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:59 am [Reply]

    Mr. Bowler Hat:

    “All right, Pete, we’ve found our mark. Time to surreptitiously drug him and ruthlessly sodomize him in the back room. Maybe when he wakes up from his coma in a strange location with mysterious bruises and cuts all over his body he’ll think twice next time before exaggerating his war exploits. Also, I’m Hitler.”

  47. Muffaroo
    March 12th, 2010 at 10:59 am [Reply]

    Crock – The cook is actually cooking food! Food that doesn’t even talk! I mean, the kind of food somebody could ingest. This kind of stuff never happened when Parker was alive.

    Dick – It happened! It happened! The gun we saw way, way back in Act 15 has been fired. Nuts. If it hits the kid instead of the dad, my prediction will be backwards and Pops will have to, uh, form a rock band or something. I haven’t really thought this through. Gretchen!

    Fred – Ha ha! He was talking to space aliens all along.

    Gil – Talk to the hand, Cassie. It’s a slow hand!

  48. Muffaroo
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:00 am [Reply]

    Mark – “Seems nice” … “don’t think he does any fishing” … “visits the Parker camp quite often” … good lord, this is going to be a three-ring scandal when it breaks. Embezzlement? Money laundering? Illicit sex? No, this is going to go all the way to raccoon chaining!

    Mary – In the first panel, I get the impression Dawn has just thrown up a little bit in her mouth.

    Ziggy – What did you expect, Z? “Minute steak” is actually a description of its size.

    Recipe Time – Every now and then I remember stuffed dates. You slip a pecan inside a pitted date and roll it in some sugar to modify the stickiness. Repeat until you have enough for a binge. Then eat. No waiting.

  49. Muffaroo
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:02 am [Reply]

    Josh – Another item of note in the first 1943 TDIET panel – Zippy already had his own magazine, where he probably looked with scorn at newfangled trends like radio comedians and viewed comic strip and advertising icons from the 1890s with affectionate irony.

    Re the 1956 one, we had to walk to the ramp at O’Hare on a flight that was eight hours late while bringing our baby daughter home from China, and that wasn’t the end of the fuckups on that flight. When Sarah finally stopped crying, I cried for a while.

    @Master Softheart (#12): Today’s BC is what I call “humor-shaped.”

    @Kelly (#13): In Northern Colorado, we burned trash in a drum out back until almost 1970. There’s a farm house near here (western NY) that has a drum out back, but I haven’t seen smoke coming out of it.

    @anon (#31): I do know. When I revisited Katy Keene in the 70s, I was surprised to find out how poor the artwork was. As to Milly the Model, I was more of a Patsy Walker man myself. I guess Al Hartley was better then.

    @Ed Dravecky (#35): Ed, here’s something else that can enhance the enjoyment of Bugs Bunny cartoons (and any other cartoons from the 30s onward): Eric Costello’s Warner Brothers Cartoon Companion. I had the privilege of serializing this in Apatoons for a while, and now it’s on the web, cross-linked and everything. Seriously: this is a wonderland/timesink on a par with TV Tropes.

    @house.kirk (#45): Yeah, I remember CHANNEL CHUCKLES. Very Keane stuff. Those puns are a look into his very soul.

  50. UncleJeff
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:02 am [Reply]

    @Kelly (#13): I live in Wisconsin, in a town of 8000 population with several other larger communities nearby and we still have farmers burning trash.
    The Department of Natural Resources (DNR – Damn Near Russia) has tried for years to put an end to it but they’ll burn anything in those trash barrels…including old oil filters and rags which create a nice black smoke.

    Rachel: Thank you for those wonderful TDIET panels. That was back in the day when a good-sized daily newspaper would have two or three pages of comics and gave the strips a lot more space for artwork.

  51. Muffaroo
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:05 am [Reply]

    Left something out: We had to walk to the ramp in the rain. And they kept parceling out info about the plane on a “any minute now” basis, so we never had supper, expecting to feed ourselves on the plane. Then the plane, for some reason, was unable to heat up some water so we could feed our child.

    Sorry. Not lighthearted enuff when I think about it.

  52. Bryan
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:05 am [Reply]

    Fred Basset: Holy cow, something in Fred Basset that indicates that it’s taking place in the present day!
    Luann: I like that Brad is apparently using a Jitterbug phone.
    Phantom: I also like the way the pirates are careful to wear their personal floatation devices.
    Rex Morgan, MD: Here’s your milk, Easter Island Head!

    March 12th, 2010 at 11:12 am [Reply]



    1 (6 oz.) pkg. semi-sweet chocolate chips
    1 (6 oz.) pkg. butterscotch chips

    Melt together just until melted. Supreme 1/3 c. miniature marshmallows 1 1/3 c. nuts 10 cherries, drained 2 candied pineapple rings, cut in 5 pieces each 1/2 c. coconut
    Divide the melted chocolate in 4 portions on wax paper. Knead marshmallows in one. 1/2 cup nuts in one. Shape in logs; roll in nuts. Press the other 2 in rectangle, 8 x 3 inch. Chill 5 minutes. Put cherry in one; roll up. Roll in nuts. Press pineapple in the other; roll up. Roll in coconut. Chill. Wrap in foil.


  54. Hibbleton
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:16 am [Reply]

    I love that the bar still has a spittoon in the ’43 tdiet. These snippets of history are great. My uncle turned 100 last August. It blows my mind that when I watch an old movie from the thirties he was living that life as an adult.

    RMMD: Proportionally a child’s head is larger than an adults in relation to the torso, but come on. Sarah looks like she’s from Easter Island today.

    March 12th, 2010 at 11:21 am [Reply]


  56. commodorejohn
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:23 am [Reply]

    @Squid Countess (Y222): Hey, good to see you around again! I assume you’ve been following the comics while you were gone, but just to make sure: you didn’t miss Mark Trail‘s magnificent squid Sunday this past November, did you?

    Agnes – This kind of thing is why I love Agnes. It’s not quite as good as having Ozy & Millie back, but it’s close.

    DT – So…I’m no ballistics expert, but at this range (well, I’m assuming they’re at close range from the fact that they’re having a conversation, but really who the hell knows) would using yourself as a shield even work? Wouldn’t the bullet just go right thr-oh, right, this is Dick Tracy. What the hell am I doing trying to apply physics to it?

    Dilbert – Dilbert has been a little hit-and-miss with the feng shui jokes this week, but this one in particular is a hit.

    FB – If you removed the last panel, today’s Fred Basset would be almost interesting.

    FW – Wow. That was in no way the most paint-by-numbers piece of laziness I’ve ever seen. If it weren’t for all the hi-larious hijinks leading up to it, it would almost be so generic as to be wholly unworthy of remark.

    GT – So if Gil Thorp does decide to have actual janitor-on-student intercourse as a plot point, could we please, please, pretty please have Steve thinking “So much for all my moral convictions!”?

    Love Is… – the roofies kicking in.

    Luann – Well it’s no “fuck you, mom, I want to be left alone and you can’t stop me,” but it’s a start.

    MT – Wait. Was there ever any indication that they’d have to sneak in, or did Mark just decide to do that because, well, duh! That’s what you do when you go to the Bad Guys’ fortress!? Ten bucks says he’ll be humming snatches of the Rambo soundtrack.

    MW – Bob Newhart, no!

    MC – I do like this approach to handling censorship. I’m just waiting to see what the original strip was…

    OBH – Ruthie shows those Family Circus twits how it’s done.

    Phantom – I. LOVE. THIS. WOMAN.


    SM – Man, Peter has no poker face at all.

    Edison Lee – You. Are. Retarded.

  57. Morndew
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:26 am [Reply]

    @Kelly (#13):

    I live in upstate NY, and I can tell you-from the summer nights I have had to keep all my windows closed-that trash burning is alive and well around here. In 55 gallon drums at that. It is supposed to be just wood and paper, but few people abide by that, and the smoldering scent of plastic and parts of couches is one of the less-than-lovely aspects to my DH’s ‘lets go live in the country’ line of BS.
    Oh…do I sound bitter?? So sorry. Time to go burn my car battery!!

  58. Toots McMorgan
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:27 am [Reply]

    Be it just me or do th’ lad Curtis seem a wee bit more menacing then Dennis?

  59. Sparky AKA Able Bodied Seaman Craggy Fjord
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:27 am [Reply]

    Stripey Butt: Savarna needs a real man. Walker is being too soft-hearted and wimpy here.

  60. Écureuil Écumant
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:37 am [Reply]

    Hatlo was sure a hack. You can’t tell one character from the next, their faces all look the same. He must have been the inspiration for A3G!

  61. Écureuil Écumant
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:38 am [Reply]


  62. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:46 am [Reply]

    MT: The quintessential Mark Trail panel: a meticulously, lovingly rendered turtle in the foreground, with four hastily drawn, indistinguishable humans in the distance, surrounded by randomly floating balloons of dialogue that no actual human would ever speak.

    PC: Haha! It’s funny because God doesn’t give a shit!

    Lio: Let me add to the praises above: total win!

    JP: Cripes, even Sam is bored with this story. And he’s getting paid $100K to listen to it.

    (I do like the shout-out to Barreto, though. Nicely done, Guest-Artist Guy!)

    SM: Yup, that’s some high-class, big-city newspaper operation, in which the editor in chief writes checks for random guys who wander in with photos.

    SL: Um… water? Buoyancy?

  63. TheDiva
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:48 am [Reply]

    Cathy: Thank you, you just made me consider the possibility of Cathy and Irving breeding. I’m going to go huddle in a corner and cry now.

    C’shaft: I hope hitting is involved in what comes next. No jury in the world would convict you, Pharmacy Lady!

    FW: This is the way the plot arc ends: not with a bang, but a whimper. And maybe a smirk.

    Lio: For the win.

    MW: Yeah, it made Kurt realize his life could have been a lot worse!

  64. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:48 am [Reply]

    @Lanfranc (#27): Perhaps there should be a Borification Showdown: Which strip takes a plot with the most promise of interest and manages to bee-grind it into submission?

    @B. Racoon (#37):

    However, it’s possible that if you knew of the cameras you would have treated us to a song and dance.

    Or more!

  65. Aqua Karen
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:53 am [Reply]

    I’m an Austinite, though I’m more of a lurker than a poster. I hope you have a good time in our fair city, Josh!

  66. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:56 am [Reply]

    @Squid Countess (y#222): SQUID COUNTESS!!! *gives tentacled hugs*

    Lio: OMG, best Zombie Strip joke EVAR!

    MC: ok, Ed, get the original up on your blog, I want to know why JeffCeeCee are back. Please?

  67. Calico
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:58 am [Reply]

    @house.kirk (#45):
    Somewhere in our family archives is a WWII ration book, with little stamps and (I seem to recall) little wooden buttons, like coins.
    Oleo (margarine) was invented around this time, and my boss’ Mom remembers a little packet of orange food coloring that came with the oleo, which was mixed into the stuff by hand, so as to give it a buttery-like appearance.

  68. Mollie
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:59 am [Reply]

    My favorite thing about “They’ll Do It Every Time” is the title. A strip that was just about everyday annoyances could be called “It Happens Every Time,” but this one has a more specific mission. It’s not about annoying circumstances; it’s about the particular groups of people who inconvenience you, and how right you are to hate them. So a strip that could have been about how it seems like you always get stuck behind a slow-moving customer when you’re in a hurry is, instead, about how those stupid idle women, with their frivolous shopping for food items and their little change purses and their big fat behinds, are always getting in the way of men who have enough actual WORK to do without having to make the effort to conceal their disgust on top of it.

    The other thing I love is the unnecessarily complex punctuation. Even in the 1940s I’m pretty sure you could do without a hyphen in “butter-counter.” And the guy complaining about being late for work would probably increase his efficiency if he stopped pausing for ellipses and commas in the middle of every sentence.

  69. Braniff
    March 12th, 2010 at 11:59 am [Reply]

    The cartoon about air travel is timeless in a couple of ways. Many of the commuter carriers and low-cost carriers do not use jetways–so the passengers have to cross the tarmac before boarding the plane. Indeed, a new airport in Japan opened without jetways, and there is another airport in Branson, Missouri which intends to serve tourists–without jetways (at this time).

    Moreover, many of the commuter planes have props on them (for the matter of economics).

  70. Buck Ripsnort
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:07 pm [Reply]

    OOOH, OOH! I’m the first one to tell folks to look at Ces’ hit on Mary Worth — .

    Lio: Is Peanuts really a Zombie strip if it wasn’t taken over by newer, lesser hands?

    OBH: Why is this man the ONLY cartoonist who seems to know how kids walk, talk and stand?

    MC: Ok, I’ll bite; where do I find the uncensored strip, Power?

    March 12th, 2010 at 12:12 pm [Reply]

    @Braniff (#69): AHH! OOH!! HI THERE BRANIFF!!!
    i thought you were defunct

  72. rocketbride
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:12 pm [Reply]

    my first thought upon reading this post was “ooh, you can see broken social scene three months before i do!” i’m such an indie rock nerd.

    but i love the social scene! and i’m starting to think of amusing, rock-themed TDIETs now.

  73. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    @Buck Ripsnort (#70): Hey–that’s not Ces’s link. Please re-post? (I’m on a different computer without all my good bookmarks!) Thanks!

  74. Bryan
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:21 pm [Reply]

  75. ElkMeadow
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:23 pm [Reply]

    @anon (#31):

    I wonder if 50 years from now people will be reading Luanne or 9CL for a glimpse of the early part of the century.

    Oh gads, heaven help them.

  76. Lloyd S.
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:25 pm [Reply]

    “Apparently it was common for serving GIs to hear drunken tales of exploits from World War I?”

    It was common enough that it was a cliche of the times. How else would it have made it into TDIET? If you watch movies from that era you may see some references. The 1974 Broadway Musical “Over Here” (starred the Andrews Sisters, great 40′s pastiche music), which was basically a WWII nostalgia trip, featured three WWI vets doing just that, and even had them doing a song on their romatic exploits in France (“Hey Yvette”). Among other things, the show’s cast featured John Travolta, Treat Williams, Marilu Henner, and Ann Reinking at very early stages in their respective careers.

  77. commodorejohn
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:25 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#62): It was my impression that “high-class” is not a term you’d use to describe anything about Miami.

    @Buck Ripsnort (#70): Last time Ed did this, he put the original strip up at the official My Cage site. It’s not up yet, but I imagine it will be within a day or so.

  78. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:30 pm [Reply]

    @Bryan (#74): Thank you–worth it! (Pun semi-intended.)

  79. The Grandstander
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:30 pm [Reply]

    I remember a TDIET panel that invloved a guy named Bullister who calimed that he was at every major, historic sporting event that ever took place. “I was there!” was his trademark line. Since then, the term “Bullister” has become a generic application in our family whenever someone plays the “I was there” card.

  80. Calico
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:31 pm [Reply]

    FW – “Oh, there IS one more thing – you have cancer.”

  81. Toots McMorgan
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:32 pm [Reply]

    @ElkMeadow (#75): Or th’ Ploogers. They be thinkin’ we all be animal-people an’ that they be evolvin’.

  82. Chyron HR
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:32 pm [Reply]

    Between Friends – “Have a croissant with butter” and “go to Burger Barn with the office” is what passes for “hedonistic” in Canada? That explains a lot about Lynn Johnston.

    My Cage – I don’t have the first appearance of the Censor Sheep on hand, but CeeCee seems to have developed quite the, uh, CeeCees. Is this part of a plot to gradually enlarge her, Power Girl-style, until the “uncontroversial humor” becomes downright pornographic and the syndicate has no choice but to run the original controversial strip?

  83. commodorejohn
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:36 pm [Reply]

    As far as They’ll Do It Every Time goes, it really takes the two-panel approach to make the strip work; with the older installments it just reads like The Outbursts Of Everett True minus Everett True.

  84. commodorejohn
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:39 pm [Reply]

    @Chyron HR (#82) re: MC: Right you are! So much so, in fact, that it wasn’t until this time around that I realized CeeCee was supposed to be a girl.

  85. ElkMeadow
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:46 pm [Reply]

    Brad is so tied to his mom that he can’t simply shut off his phone? “‘Mom, I’ll call back in an hour, G’bye” *off*? Or better yet, just turn the thing off without answering in the first place.

    Run, Toni, run!

    (Others elsewhere have called it–he’s gonna leave the phone on and Nancy will hear everything.)

    Also, in my city, the highest-income high school in the district is putting on “West Side Story”, and the kids are buying their own costumes at Goodwill! AND if it’s anything like the one my kids went to, everyone who auditioned gets to be on stage for the big musical number.

    Gunther, get yourself a lawyer.

    March 12th, 2010 at 12:48 pm [Reply]

    MT- Wow. I must be a little slow. I just noticed that every sentence in Mark Trail ended in an exclamation mark (unless it’s a question). That’s obnoxious! No wonder everybody is getting into fisticuffs all the time! They’re either always yelling at each other or very indignant with what they are saying!

  87. Walker of Dog
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:56 pm [Reply]

    Those vintage TDIETs are great, and a nice insight into the past without all the nostalgia. In a later panel, Lushwell claims credit for the Treaty of Versailles and is beaten senseless by a pack of bar patrons. Ever happen to you? A fledgling German republic is assessed a crushing war reparations debt.

    RMMD: Anyone else get a mini-Eva Longoria vibe from second-panel Sarah?

    S-M: Calm down, Peter – you’re reading the magnetically encoded bank account numbers at the bottom of the check. The actual amount won’t even cover the replacement feathers for your tattered angel wings. Well played, as always.

    Phan: Dear Savarna: If you view prisoners as a bother instead of a source of endless dark pleasures, you’re doing it wrong. Sincerely, Margo Magee

    MT: “He’s a real politician! Why, this very dock we’re standing on was funded by an earmark he added to a bill establishing National Pipeline Safety Day! Yep, the senator sure knows his way around a trough!”

  88. dull_old_man
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:58 pm [Reply]

    @Muffaroo (#49):

    Thanks for the link to the Cartoon Companion. I will spend much time there. I was thrilled to find the baseball entry for Bugs, but couldn’t find any trace of Kill the Wabbit. Tried O for opera, tried W for Wagner, tried R for Ring of the Nibelungen, tried V for Valkyrie–couldn’t find it. I’ll keep reading it hopefully.

    My first exposure to most of high culture was through Bugs–Hamlet and the Marriage of Figaro come to mind first. The Three Stooges had a lot of opera, too.

    I hope that after the flight from China, the joys of parenthood found you soon and often. I’ve been on flights when the pilot announced a group of families returning from China; when they filed by, I couldn’t tell whether the parents or children looked more shell-shocked.

  89. Rita Lake and the Special Goddesses
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:59 pm [Reply]

    I’m chuckling at the titles of the magazines in the first panel: “WOW STORIES,” “UMPH,” and “ZIPPY.” I wonder what sort of content one could find in the pages of “UMPH.”

  90. Dingo, the Essence of Purity and Virtue Incarnate™
    March 12th, 2010 at 12:59 pm [Reply]

    @Master Softheart (#12): Thank you for that post, Master Softheart. My days at my company are slowly beginning to make Tim Burton out to be a master of cinéma vérité. I got home last night and had the opportunity to see the NSFW inflatable Jesus. It was a cathartic laughter. The lamb of God, indeed.

  91. Mr Foofram
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:10 pm [Reply]

    DTM: At first I thought the squiggle above Dennis represents his distinctive odor, then I realized it’s actually a door handle. I presume the odor doesn’t require a graphic manifestation.

  92. Dingo, the Essence of Purity and Virtue Incarnate™
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:10 pm [Reply]

    @Muffaroo (#48): Y’know, I’d love it if the kids would come up with some bizarre new sexual position or odd ritual to drive all of us oldsters (I’m 45) crazy and call it “raccoon chaining.” Hmm. Maybe tagteaming Helen Hunt and Gwyneth Paltrow when they’re dressed up for awards shows.

  93. Professor Fate
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:12 pm [Reply]

    FW: okay so we go from a Wally who when he isn’t trolling for pity sex from his one armed ex, is portrayed as being just moments from getting a lip lock on the business end of a Glock to one who attitude is, well whatever man, yeah my life’s a mess but what can you do? The hell? In the space of two strips we move from Dark night of the Soul to something more like an afternoon drizzle- which is in keeping with the spirit of the strip but really? That’s it? Well another anti-climax cul de sac from the master. Funky Winkerbean where even someone dying of cancer is drained of all dramatic possiblities leaving only smirking, bad pizzia and weird obsessions.

    MW: As we leave our sandwich eating horrors it looks like we will never see Old angry colored gin woman again. THis makes me sad.

    9CL: Since we know that they got together eventually, all this has the drama of watching someone decide which side of his toast to butter.

  94. McManx
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:12 pm [Reply]

    I grew up in the 60s and loved the Sunday “TDIET” which featured “Hatlo’s History”, a twist on “what really happened” in various historical events.

  95. JupiterPluvius
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:17 pm [Reply]

    Hatlo’s art has so much snap (also, everyone’s so fat, which is kind of fun to see in comics–it seems like the only fat people left in comics are Curtis’s teacher and The Menace’s neighbors).

    There was a butter counter in the Atlantic Hill Market in Cohasset even when I was a kid (1960s/1970s)–they would cut you slabs of a giant block of butter and wrap them in wax paper and weigh them. It was indeed time-consuming.

  96. JupiterPluvius
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:18 pm [Reply]

    And “He fought the Battle of Vin Rouge” is genuinely witty. I love people sometimes.

  97. Baka Gaijin
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    @HAMMY THE SQUIRREL! (#55): AAAHH! Get me my Stradivarius, pronto! I’ve got me a clown to FLOOOOOOOM!

    Cathy: AAAHH! Get me my Stradivarius, pronto! I’ve got me a marriage to FLOOOOOOOM!

    Pluggers: Pluggers have an entourage because small dogs like eating big bear poops.

    Pickles: For a look at Dolly, aged 82. “He’s gotten very distinguished extinguished-looking over the years.”

    Mark Trail: Senator Wally’s smuggling counterfeit Monopoly, Life, and Parcheesi sets. How do you think SantaRoyMart can sell them for so low?

    One Big Happy: Just when I thought Avis couldn’t be any uglier, get me my Stradivarius, pronto! I’ve got me a, a, whatever-it-is to FLOOOOOOOM!

  98. Perky Bird
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:28 pm [Reply]

    TDIET: I’ve gotta say, even when I am a wreck and the house is a mess, I’ve never had visitors show up wearing a top hat or carrying opera glasses.

  99. commodorejohn
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:29 pm [Reply]

    @dull_old_man (#88): The title of the “Kill The Wabbit” cartoon is What’s Opera, Doc? but for whatever reason it’s not in there. You can, however, view it on YouTube.

  100. bats :[
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:42 pm [Reply]

    @Little Guy (#23): the general comments have been that the person in back of the Lio zombie crowd is Elly Patterson. I think it’s Hi from Hi & Lois.
    And this is a GREAT GREAT GREAT strip today (oh, the actual movie “Zombieland” was good, too. Watch out for clowns, though.)

    @HAMMY THE SQUIRREL! (#53): interesting recipe, HAMMY, but cherries? Pineapple? Woo…too healthy for me!

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#62): re MT: you’d like to believe it’s a lovingly-rendered turtle. No, sweetie, it’s a ZOMBIE turtle! There was one of these spawn of Hell in the “let’s feed Mark to the gators” story — it’s only a matter of time before they overrun the earth!
    (*snif* I miss my slider, who apparently went to the Great Turtle Burial Ground (read, our backyard compost heap) last summer)

  101. Devil in the Drain
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:42 pm [Reply]

    GT: “We’ll only be gone two nights.” And lord knows, sex with dead-end older guys takes way longer than that. So Cassie won’t be able to get in any trouble. (Speaking as one of those d-eogs.)

  102. Sparky AKA Able Bodied Seaman Craggy Fjord
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:47 pm [Reply]

    Thought I’d share this:

    Eduardo was part of the Captain Action team.

  103. Sparky AKA Able Bodied Seaman Craggy Fjord
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:48 pm [Reply]

  104. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 12th, 2010 at 1:52 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#100): I’m not sure those two are mutually exclusive. Can’t it be a lovingly rendered zombie turtle from hell?

    (Besides including a whole bunch of super-smart people, this site also seems made up of real animal lovers.)

  105. Aviatrix
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:00 pm [Reply]

    @Mr. O’Malley (#21): And I thought they were going to disguise themselves as giant squirrels or tortoises.

  106. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:05 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#104):

    and not THAT way, either! (somewhat naughty/cute activities )

  107. Calico
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:12 pm [Reply]

    It’s not an inflatable Jesus, but it’s close:

  108. Sarah
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:13 pm [Reply]

    I live in Austin and would LOVE LOVE LOVE to meet up with any of y’all. Shoot me an email and perhaps a few of us could snag some of Josh’s time?
    Kite Festival perhaps?

  109. Calico
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:16 pm [Reply]

    @Chyron HR (#82):
    Well, they could opt for Tim Horton, Ashton, or Harvey’s…

  110. house.kirk
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:19 pm [Reply]

    As long as so many of us are discussing jetways… in 2007 I flew from Phoenix to Chicago to Philadelphia, changing at O’Hare after numerous delays. We arrived very late in Philadelphia, me HOPING HOPING HOPING I could still catch the last plane to Elmira… which was, coincidentally, just about the last plane to anywhere.
    We got up to the gate and spent ten minutes jockeying a few feet back and forth because they couldn’t line the aircraft up with the jetway. In the good old days of a wheeled ramp, we’d have been off almost instantly.
    Then they told us to wait at a certain gate for the shuttle, which had actually stopped running an hour earlier. Then we had to make our way on foot to the farthest terminal, EXIT security and be screened all over again in order to get to the Elmira flight… though nobody had any information as to whether it had taken off or not. “They’ll do it every time… in Philadelphia.”
    I must say that at the gate itself they were nice enough to actually stop the airplane that was backing out and open the door so I could get on board. Which they probably couldn’t have done had it required a jetway.

  111. Calico
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:19 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#106):
    What the hell is that thing on top of kitty?
    I love the look on the Pom’s face – a true “WTF?” moment.

  112. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 12th, 2010 at 2:39 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#106): True story: A few years ago, I was looking out at my back deck, and two squirrels wandered out and began doing the squirrel-nasty (and if you’re wondering, it’s very, very fast).

    So they finished and just stood there for a moment, and then the boy squirrel began to move up behind the girl squirrel, I guess to have another go at it—and she whirled around and bitch-slapped him!

    I guess once was enough.

  113. Bitter Scribe
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:06 pm [Reply]

    I wonder if getting bounced from the Chicago Tribune was the spark that ignited today’s Lio? It so happens that the Trib carries three of the four comics referenced in the second panel that I recognize. (Can’t tell who the guy between Hagar and Dagwood is supposed to be.)

  114. anon
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:10 pm [Reply]

    #63 – If Cathy & Irving were to breed, they would have done it by now. I believe the subject has been covered by the strips concerned with their friends with kids, mining parent-child comedy gold at a safe removal. I don’t think it’s in the cards as Cathy must be well into her 40′s by now; and can you IMAGINE that idiot ever changing a diaper? I see rubber gloves, a can of Lysol, a clothespin on her nose, arms windmilling in anguished revulsion, sweat beads flying, mouth an open soundless shriek of despair. No, confronted with the daily toil of caring for a messy creature, the persnickety, childish ick-factor takes precedence over any possibility of reproduction. Cathy and Irving will totter into senility, agonizing over gray hairs and lack of appropriate swimsuits, trying to match their scarf colors with the trim on their coats, and overfeeding a long succession of dog babies. Thank the gods.

    #76 – EEEE! I saw that play on Broadway in the 70′s, yes, Marilu Henner and John Travolta! And two Andrews Sisters! I enjoyed the hell out of it! Funny how it just ran for a bit and disappeared forever, there were some problems I can’t think of right now as to what brought it to a halt.

    #112 – …..sounds like a date I had before I got married, LOL.

  115. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:27 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#111): lobster of some kind.

    @Bitter Scribe (#113): I thought it was Smelly from FooB at first, but the earlier suggestion that it was Hi of H&L seems correct at second look. The forelock seems to fit.

  116. Crankenstank
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:31 pm [Reply]

    Below is an excerpt of the obit from Hatlo’s widow (Jimmy Hatlo, original author of They’ll Do It Every Time) who passed on last year — i sent this on to Josh but neglected to post it here. The Hatlos were part of this odd little cartoonist’s colony in Carmel, CA, roundabouts here.

    Eleanor Hatlo Lusignan September 29, 1908 – August 22, 2009

    PEBBLE BEACH — Eleanor Hatlo Lusignan, a longtime resident of the Monterey Peninsula, passed away peacefully on August 22, 2009 at her home, just five weeks short of her 101st birthday. She was the widow of syndicated cartoonist Jimmy Hatlo, who died in 1963, and of prominent Monterey physician Harry Lusignan, who died in 1992.

    She was born Lois Eleanor Dollard on September 28, 1908 in Collins, Ohio, the youngest of eight children. He oldest sister disliked a local girl named Lois and promptly announced she would never use that name for the baby, so “Eleanor” stuck.

    Eleanor attended Oberlin College in Ohio and the university of Utah in Salt Lake City, where she became a member of hte Alpha Delta Pi sorority. She later moved to San Francisco, where she worked in the advertising department of the Greyhound Bus company.

    In November 1935 she and a girlfriend got tickets to a football luncheon sponsored by the San Francisco Advertising Club. The door prize was an original cartoon by Jimmy Hatlo, then the sports cartoonist for the San Francisco Call-Bulletin. Eleanor ahd the winnning ticket. Her friend urged her to have Hatlo autograph the cartoon, saying it would make it more valuable. She was right.

    Hatlo signe the artwork, mentioning that he happened to have tickets to the upcoming Stanford-California football game. He wondered if Eleanor would like to go. Years later she recalled she wasn’t too sure about him, but she did want to see the Big Game, so she accepted.

    He was fond of saying, “The girl won the cartoon, but Hatlo won the girl!” They were married in Monterey in St. John’s Chapel at the old Del Monte Hotel (now the Naval Postgraduate School) in May 1937.

    Hatlo went on to become internationally known for his syndicated cartoons “They’ll Do it Every Time” and “Little Iodine”. Eleanor and Jimmy lived in San Francisco, Nantucket, and New York City. (Eleanor later credited her fashion senese to the coaching of friends who were New York models).

    After Wrold War II the couple settled permanently in Carmel, buying a Monte Verde Street house that today is the Tally Ho Inn. They joined a Carmel cartoonists’ colony that came to include such artists as Gus Arriola (“Gordo”), Frank O’Neal (“Short Ribs”) and Hank Ketcham (“Dennis the Menace.”)

    A son, Jimmy Jr. was born in 1949. In 1952 the family relocated to Pebble Beach, moving into a home overlooking the 13th green of the Pebble Beach golf course. Hatlo dubbed it “Wit’s End.” They become known for parties during the annual Bing Crosby Pro-Am (today the AT&T Pro Am) with Phil Harris and Alice Faye, Fred MacMurray, Guy Madison, and Bob Hope among the celebrity guests.

  117. mollificent
    March 12th, 2010 at 3:35 pm [Reply]

    @Little Guy (#23): According to Mark T. on the goComics comments, it’s actually supposed to be Hi from H&L. However, he could’ve been bluffing. I first thought of Elly myself.

    (It makes sense that it would be Hi, though, if the “zombie strips” are supposed to be strips that have outlasted their originators.)

    In other scathing comics commentary, anyone seen today’s Medium Large?

    ( @Buck Ripsnort (#70): Dang it! Skunked again.)

    @house.kirk (#45): You know, I honestly feel that I’ve learned more interesting facts about history and culture since I started reading this blog than I did my entire four years of college. Scary, innit?

    @commodorejohn (#99): You can also buy “WO,D?” from the iTunes store, as I discovered recently to my delight. (Though I’d rather have the entire DVD collection, budgetary restrictions do apply *sigh*).

    Ed Power, My Cage Writer: OK, come on, spill. Original strip? You can tell us. :)

  118. Gulielma
    March 12th, 2010 at 4:00 pm [Reply]

    Lio: I think the person between Hagar and Dagwood is either Elly or John of FBOFW

  119. mollificent
    March 12th, 2010 at 4:33 pm [Reply]

  120. Lloyd S.
    March 12th, 2010 at 5:38 pm [Reply]

    @anon (#114):

    I saw it too, though I was only 10 or 11 at the time. Wikipedia says it closed because of a salary dispute betwee the produceers and the Andrews sisters.

  121. John Small Berries
    March 12th, 2010 at 6:01 pm [Reply]

    Now, listen here, see? You give up the goods, or I’ll frappe your radiator!

  122. annabanana
    March 12th, 2010 at 6:42 pm [Reply]

    The ‘butter’ reference is due to wartime rationing. Butter was hard to come by, because fats were used in the manufacture of wartime munitions (don’t ask me to explain just how). Everyone got a certain amount of food ‘points’ and rationed items were sold only on certain days and you had to wait in line to purchase them. Unless, of course, your unpatriotic self had connections with friends who were dealing in the black market.

  123. Rachel
    March 12th, 2010 at 7:48 pm [Reply]

    @HalibutStance (#44): There were some panels featuring Little Iodine in my 1956 book. Was LI a spinoff of TDIET?

  124. The Ridger
    March 12th, 2010 at 8:12 pm [Reply]

    @Braniff (#69): Every time I fly to Knoxville from DC I have to go across the tarmac to our little plane. We do get a bus to take us out there – it’s so far away from the terminal.

  125. Burton Radons
    March 12th, 2010 at 9:05 pm [Reply]

    That drawing of the high class couple arriving in the top-right of the last picture is absolutely amazing. They’re posing in synch! Even if the house is spotless the sheer proletarianism of the very concept of a “side walk” has set them against the entire enterprise; surely whoever would deign to not live on a rose-lined parkway with no walking restrictions or visible grates to the /sewer/ could not be acceptable people. I just want to kidnap them and keep them locked in a room in my basement, so I can watch their minds slowly grasp the terror and grimness of their situation. It’s adorable!

  126. Mr. Beautiful
    March 13th, 2010 at 12:18 am [Reply]

    Thank you for posting those cartoons.

  127. Mr. Wuxtry
    March 13th, 2010 at 12:47 am [Reply]

    I really needed that TDIET fix. Bless you, faithful reader Rachel! In the ’40s and ’50s, TDIET ran three columns wide — about 6 inches — in the Denver Post and, I assume, other papers. In the Post’s front-page index, TDIET was listed simply as “Hatlo.” It was in the index because it didn’t run with the other comics, but was in a place of honor all by itself at the bottom of the “Rocky Mountain Empire page.” #79, Grandstander — Thanks for that refresher, I had forgotten all about Bullister. #95-96, JupiterPluvius — You have appropriated Mr. J.P. Bigdome’s first and middle names! I suppose this has been discussed before, but I haven’t had much time for the comments lately, sorry. #24, Rachel — More! Send more!

  128. Joe Btfsplk
    March 13th, 2010 at 1:32 am [Reply]

    “The Battle of Vin Rouge.” Heh!

    Also, is it wrong of me to think Miss Pothooks is kind of hot?

  129. jigolo
    March 13th, 2010 at 4:11 am [Reply]


  130. DavidMac
    March 13th, 2010 at 9:25 am [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#77): RE: Miami. More like “3rd world”.

  131. Married Agnostic Woman
    March 13th, 2010 at 12:28 pm [Reply]

    @D. Moe (#6):

    Yes, I just learned this yesterday. I’m reading a book called The Fortune Cookie Chronicles by Jennifer 8. Lee (the middle initial is not a typo). It is about the history of Chinese food in the United States. In the early 20th century, these “food pails” were used to hold shucked oysters. They have also held at various times ice cream, deli goods, and even goldfish at carnivals. Only later, starting around World War II, did they start to become synonymous with Chinese take-out.

  132. Jake Morgendorffer
    March 13th, 2010 at 3:39 pm [Reply]

    Sadly, the final strip is a more accurate reflection of what TDIET became before the end. Except, of course, that each little eye-straining gag would be the whole joke for the day. Ah, for the days when comics were large enough you could actually read them!

  133. Southern Girl
    March 14th, 2010 at 4:42 pm [Reply]

    Damn, as a newspaper employee, I’m just excited to see that people actually bought papers at one point in time.

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  135. Mac
    March 14th, 2010 at 10:46 pm [Reply]

    In trash-burning news from Alabama:

    Inconsiderate trash-burners of 2010

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  137. Kathryn Burger
    March 29th, 2013 at 11:32 am [Reply]

    Need help in locating an older comic from “They’ll do it everytime”
    Caption starts out:
    Things That Drive Moms Nuts -
    I have an old copy but would like a better one.

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