Archive for the ‘Language play’ Category

Fidel of the Castro

August 23, 2015

The latest Funny Times arrived a couple days ago, and as usual there was a bunch of cartoons I laughed at, and some I wanted to post, but I couldn’t find usable copies or even identify the artists, despite trying several routes. Here’s my favorite of the set, a cartoon with no signature at all, and a style I didn’t recognize. So here, a description.

We see a burly Fidel Castro, with a smoking cigar in his hand and heavy-duty pecs on display, one notably pierced, plus metal stars in one pierced ear and on his epaulets. Titled as above: Fidel of the Castro, punning on his family name and the name of the San Francisco street that gives its name to The Castro, the gayborhood.

Leads to the cartoon would be much appreciated.

Ice cream, roadside fiberglass, Caillebotte, and more

August 13, 2015

Today’s Zippy takes us lots of places:

(#1)

It shows our Pinhead talking French Impressionism with a roadside ice cream stand that happens to be a fiberglass replica of an ice cream cone. (In Zippy, roadside fiberglass artifacts are almost always chatty.)  Degas (gauzy ballerinas), Monet (soft-focus water lilies), but especially Gustave Caillebotte: men scraping floors and flying, drying, laundry.

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In the Basque diaspora

August 9, 2015

(Warning: much of this posting is about gay porn and male hustling, and it refers in plain language to the male body and to male-male sexual acts; the photographs are not actually X-rated — such images are in a related posting on AZBlogX — but the posting is not for kids, the sexually modest, or the easily offended.)

In a comment on my posting about the Basque language and the Basques in the U.S., someone using the name “Dirty Harri” (it’s a joke, as you’ll see, a play on the title Dirty Harry) picks up a news story about disagreements in 2013 between Aitzol Azurtza, the president of the New York Basque Club, and the visiting Iñigo Urkullu, the president of the Basque Government. During this contretemps, it was revealed (by others) that Azurtza had had a career in gay porn, under the stage name Antton Harri; Azurtza had come out some time before, but it was not generally known in the Basque world (in NYC or elsewhere) that he was a gay pornstar (of some repute), or indeed that he’d worked as a rentboy in NYC. Under the cloud of the porn revelations, Azurtza resigned his Basque Club position “for personal reasons” and not long after moved from New York to Palm Springs CA, where he lives now. A piece of reporting from the time:

(#1)

(On the left, Azurtza in business suit. On the right, Harri in his work clothes.

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Language cartoon Wednesday

August 5, 2015

That would be today, with three language-related cartoons in my inbox: a Rhymes With Orange, a Mother Goose and Grimm, and a Bizarro:

(#1)

(#2)

(#3)

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cheesy pickup line

August 4, 2015

From George Takei on Facebook, this elaborate visual pun, presented like a captioned cartoon, with an entertaining disjuncture between the image and the caption:

The cheesiest pickup line ever

(Takei is scandously bad about crediting the sources of the things he posts — he just passes on things he comes across — so I have no idea who created this image or where it was originally posted.)

Three content words, each exhibiting crucial lexical ambiguity: the Adj cheesy, the N pickup, the N line.The whole thing is a N + N compound pickup line modified by the superlative of the Adj.

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green … egg … (ham)

August 4, 2015

It starts with a paper by Elizabeth Closs Traugott (with my assistance) at the recent International Pragmatics Conference in Antwerp, on metatext in the cartoon xkcd (full set of slides linked to here). After Elizabeth gave the paper, she got a comment from someone asking if she knew of a comic strip with mouse-over texts and further texts that emerge from inside those mouse-overs (another layer of cartoon complexity beyond those I have written about) — a daily or weekly strip with a name that Elizabeth thinks had green and egg in it, but of course wasn’t Green Eggs and Ham.

I’ve now been trying to track down this mystery strip, but without success, mostly because Dr. Seuss keeps getting in the way. But I’ve come up with seven interesting new cartoons for your entertainment.

Note: yes, Elizabeth should have written the name down, or gotten the name of the commenter (who was not someone familiar to her), but things tend to be rushed and chaotic at these giant conferences, so it’s easy to slip. Now I’m hoping that someone will recognize the strip from her description (which I’ve paraphrased above).

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Jewtoons

August 3, 2015

On John Kron’s Facebook page:

(#1)

A little exercise in Yinglish.

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Clown time

August 2, 2015

Today’s Rhymes With Orange:

(#1)

A fine pun for a Sunday. But you do have to know about this:

“The Tears of a Clown” is a song by Smokey Robinson & the Miracles for the Tamla Records label subsidiary of Motown, originally released on the 1967 album Make It Happen. It was re-released in the United Kingdom as a single in September 1970, where it became a #1 hit on the UK singles chart. Subsequently, Motown released “The Tears of a Clown” as a single in the United States as well, where it quickly became a #1 hit on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B Singles charts. (Wikipedia link)

On YouTube:

Name play in the comics

July 30, 2015

Two cartoons this morning with plays on proper names: a Mother Goose and Grimm playing on Simon & Garfunkel, a Bizarro playing on the Big Bang theory and possibly also The Big Bang Theory:

(#1)

(#2)

(If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in #2 — Don Piraro says there are 2 of them — see this Page.)

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Name rhymes

July 25, 2015

Heard recently as music accompanying an NPR show: Cab Calloway performing “Everybody Eats at My House”, rhyming (or half-rhyming) food names and personal names, beginning:

(1) Have a banana, Hannah
Try the salami, Tommy
Get with the gravy, Davy
Everybody eats when they come to my house

(Four-line verses, with three that rhyme food names with personal names, plus a constant final line. The verse form should probably be called a Calloway.) (more…)


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