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Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 11/16/04

Do you ever read a comic and get the feeling that you’re just missing something? Like, is there a connection between a stovepipe hat and cleaning a chimney that I’m missing? Is the fact that she’s cleaning the chimney part of the joke, or is it just an arbitrary chore that the artist picked out, and it the strip would be just as “funny” if Maw were sloppin’ the hogs or darnin’ socks or whatever the hell it is she does with her time? Would I get this if I lived in the heartland and actually did an honest day’s work around the house myself, instead of hiring a migrant chimney sweep like the Chardonnay-swilling member of the liberal elite that I am?

Like most Americans — heck, I’ll go out on a limb and say most people — the first thing I think when seeing a hat like that is “Abraham Lincoln.” Maybe it would be funnier if Maw were saving the union or something, though you’d think that being a proponent of the Union cause would get you tarred an’ feathered in place like Hootin’ Holler.