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Zits, 7/8/09

True story: I got braces at the age of twelve, and for the first few days the experience was so painful and disorienting that I couldn’t really eat anything more solid than well-boiled pasta. This is almost certainly typical, but nobody had really warned me about it in advance, so it sort of freaked me out, and I began to worry that I’d be spending the next two years eating things that didn’t require much chewing; thus, before my mother returned from work one evening, I staged my suicide in protest. It wasn’t a particularly elaborate simulation — a florid “Good bye, cruel world that I can no longer masticate properly” note and me sprawled dramatically on the couch — and my mom’s first reaction was laughter, which means either it was wholly unconvincing or other things I don’t care to think about.

Anyway, this is my way of saying that I may be biased here, but I don’t think Dennis is telling some hilarious anecdote in panel one. The way he’s pointing at his metal-caged mouth is particularly troubling to me, and I imagine he’s actually saying “I think you made it too tight! Oh, God, the pain is unbearable!” But, accustomed to having his feelings on the matter ignored, he just slouches off with a resigned “schormz,” knowing that the discomfort will subside just in time for his next appointment, when the cycle begins again.

Family Circus, 7/8/09

Wait, a vegetarian … and all that shaggy hair … my God, have the Keanes allowed a dirty hippie into their home? The animal cracker bit may indicate that his mind has been reduced to pudding by the demon reefer, but more likely he’s just making a joke (which is also entirely unacceptable in polite company, because it confuses the children). I also suspect that if he heard Jeffy referring to him as “Mr. Coverly” he’d say “Hey, call me Jack, little guy! My dad is Mr. Coverly.” Anyway, why would our family of upstanding patriots allow this sort of person to sit in their living room and eat their generic potato chips? I suspect that he’s a new neighbor, and the clan patriarch is giving him one last chance to renounce his hateful philosophy and get a job that requires a tie; failing that, his long-haired head will be put on a spike on the Keane Kompound’s walls, as a warning to others.

Beetle Bailey, 7/8/09

I was going to make a crack about illegal use of a work-related credit card here, but on the scale of corrupt Defense Department spending, this is probably as low as it gets, even if Beetle and Miss Buxley are eating at an establishment that makes waiters wear tuxedos to serve soup. Anyway, I’m guessing she’s paying because she thinks that this way he’ll have to put out. Good luck with that, sweetie!