Mark Trail, 2/28/11
“His name is Mark Trail and he is American.” God, has any phrase ever been so perfectly calculated to make your proud to be from the U.S. — or, if you aren’t from the U.S, to make you ashamed for being a filthy foreigner who can’t vote for the same President that Mark Trail votes for? (Mark Trail casts his ballot with his fist, so that there’s never any question of “voter intent”.) My heart was so swelled with patriotism upon reading this that I almost missed the insane implication that underlies this statement, namely that Mark somehow drifted in his small boat to another country, an exotic tropical island inhabited by white people. Who are these mysterious tribeswomen? Why have they dragged Mark back to their home rather than seeking medical attention for that festering black wound on his forehead? What oppressive regime causes them to fear being discovered in even this half-assed act of kindness? Why does Mark keep an autographed photo of his wife in his wallet? Is it in case he forgets her name, or forgets which of the baffling and terrifying females in his life he’s married to?
God help me, I have to say that I like almost everything about this Crock strip. I like the way the camel is drawn to some kind of realistic scale, dwarfing the bartender and all the human-sized furniture in the strip. I like his nonviolent but apparently extremely effective threat to slobber all over our speciesist barkeep. But mostly I like the dialogue-less third panel, in which the camel grins at us triumphantly, with the telltale cartoon bubbles over his head indicating that he’s already well on his way to being drunk. Kudos to you, my soused desert-dwelling friend!
Today’s B.C. accidentally raises an interesting question about primitive societies: in tiny early hominid bands — there can’t be more than, what, 10 named characters in the entire B.C. universe, right? — where everyone knew each other intimately, could much of what we think of as crime ever happen?
Apartment 3-G, 2/28/11
Ha, it’s only Monday and Margo is already getting lit. There’s a number of ways this story can end — in recriminations, in violence, in oversharing — and all of them are delicious.