Arbitrary donuts

Today’s Zippy:


Zippy’s Arbitrary Donuts, spreading clarity through surrealism in today’s sociopolitical landscape. Alarmingly, the truck grows smaller with each panel. (No, I don’t know why.)

The allusion in the last panel is to “Without vision, the people perish” (Proverbs 29:18 in KJV), which continues “but he that keepeth the law, happy is he”.

The donut truck has appeared in Zippy at least once before, also without an easy interpretation, also with the truck growing smaller with each panel. That was all the way back on 3/25/04:


Putting aside that puzzle, I note that donuts, donut shops (some with huge donuts on their roofs or in front of them), diners serving donuts, etc. are a regular drumbeat in Zippy. His world is Donut Land.

Now for some actual linguistic content, Zippy strips with donut puns — all orthographically based, do not / donut — in their titles. Five of them, with one repeat pun (good things bear repeating).

My favorite is the first, “Donut ask, donut tell” from 1/16/04:


(Og Mandino was “The Greatest Salesman in the Worl” — see the Wikipedia entry.)

Then “Donut try this at home”, twice (9/24/05 and 4/25/11):



Then “Donut ask for whom the jelly rolls” (a play on “Do not ask for whom the bell tolls”), from 9/17/13:


And finally “Donut go gentle” (… into that good night), from 7/8/15:


2 Responses to “Arbitrary donuts”

  1. Christopher Goodwin Says:

    In the Arbitrary Donuts strips, my sense is that the truck does not shrink; rather, the viewer is backing away

    • arnold zwicky Says:

      That would have been my interpretation too, if the advertising logo hadn’t been there to serve as a reference for judging scale. But maybe we’re supposed to disregard the logo.

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