Zippy: fun with names

Today’s Zippy, with preposterous names for pinheads and references to commercial products (plus a diner):


Kindle Paperwhite, Mojito Rockaway, and Yahoo Supercomputer at the Polka Dot Diner. With the Esso Drop Girl in the last panel.

(The country of Lapsang Souchong, nestled between Belgium and Ethopia — that’s a big nestle — is a silliness bonus. And then there’s the bad clam juice, the attraction to striped neckties, the Pilgrim clothes, and the horsey rides. Don’t try to make sense of this package; Bill Griffith specializes in absurd juxtapositions.)

The Kindle Paperwhite is an e-reader, and Yahoo! does indeed have supercomputers. Mojito Rockaway looks like just a silly combination of the name of the drink and a geographical name, either the Rockaway Peninsula in Queens NY or Rockaway Beach in Pacifica CA; no doubt you can get a mojito in either place, but I see no special connection between either place and the drink.

The Polka Dot Diner (Restaurant, on the signs) is probably the one in White River Junction VT, pictured here:


Then there’s the Esso Oil Drop Girl (as she was usually called). From the RetroPlanet site:

The Esso Oil Drop Man is an advertising character that was first seen in campaigns by Esso’s Danish company during World War II.  He was created to explain the reason behind shortages in petroleum products during the war.  Soon after his debut, other European affiliates began to use this cute character in their advertising campaigns.

In 1958, the Esso Oil Drop Man was introduced in the United States for Standard Oil, the larger company that owned Esso.

… The Esso Oil Drop Man was paired with the trademark slogan, “Happy Motoring!”  This may be the reason he was named Happy.

… Sometimes, Happy appeared with an oil drop woman, but little is known about her or her name.  They often appeared together driving in a red convertible.

In the 1960s, Happy’s popularity began to slide and eventually [he] became nonexistent after the domination of the Humble Tiger in the advertising campaigns.


(The Esso Drop Man was sometimes referred to as the Esso Drop Boy.)

2 Responses to “Zippy: fun with names”

  1. Robert Coren Says:

    “Don’t try to make sense of this package”

    Occasional conversation at our breakfast table:

    J: Zippy is weird today.

    R: (glancing out window) Yeah, and the sun rose in the east today.

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