Archive for April, 2020

Joe and the cucumber sandwiches

April 30, 2020

Today’s Rhymes With Orange cartoon, “Tea Time”:

(#1)

You are expected to recognize, from the title and from the drawing (showing a teapot, teacups, sugar bowl, and 3-tiered tray of fingerfood) that this depicts an afternoon tea — not tea plants in the afternoon, or merely the beverage tea taken in the afternoon, but (from NOAD):

noun tea: … 3 chiefly British a light afternoon meal consisting typically of tea to drink, sandwiches, and cakes.

But that won’t help you with the text, in which one tea sandwich asks of another (identified as female) why the latter brought Joe — Joe clearly referring to the one discordant element in the drawing, who appears to be a hamburger bun overstuffed with a meat filling, some of which has spilled out onto the table. Messy, messy Joe, who “just can’t pull himself together”.

Clearly, that one line, in conjunction with Joe’s appearance, is somehow the crux of the joke. But how?

For this, you have to know a bit about vernacular American foodstuffs, in particular the sandwich known as a sloppy joe. So it’s a pun on the name — and also, it turns out, a gender joke.

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Magritte by Banksy

April 29, 2020

Noted by Facebook posters recently, this Banksy takeoff on Magritte, photographed here from the side to make its 3-dimensional character clear:


(#1) Banksy’s This is a Pipe (2011), a play on René Magritte’s La Trahison des images (The Betrayal / Treachery of Images:  Ceci n’est pas une pipe)


(#2) The Magritte model

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Crochet me a word

April 28, 2020

Every 5 or 6 years, Kathryn Burlingham sends me a piece of outrageous fabric art tailored to my sensibilities. In 2014, it was the COCK cushion. Saturday, it was FUCK crochet art with a design from Not Your Grandma’s Crochet.

(In case this isn’t obvious: this posting is not suitable for kids and the sexually modest.)

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News for penguins: hop on lovepop

April 27, 2020

In the mail today, lovable pop-up penguins! In laser-cut kirigami!


(#1) From Gadi Niram: “I figure it never hurts to send you penguins” (there’s a Page on this blog on my postings about penguins)

From the company’s site:

Lovepop creates beautiful laser-cut pop-up cards designed on ship-building software and handcrafted in the ancient art form of kirigami.

Some of the cards are wonderfully elaborate, little kirigami treasures.

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The rainbow penguin of regard

April 25, 2020

I’ve been getting more gifts conveying regard and affection. I’m an old man who has for some years now felt brushed aside, treated as already academically dead, while I write extremely quirky, relentlessly analytic, highly personal, and often outrageously sexually open material for a tiny coterie of readers, but now in a time of constant death — so these gestures of friendship and respect (some quiet and plainspoken, some effusive) are a great balm. Today’s surprise was a tossed-off rainbow penguin drawing for me, accompanied by impossibly sweet thanks (which I won’t expose here) for my linguistic work and also my writings about my life. The penguin:

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A pandemic meta-cartoon

April 25, 2020

By JAK (Jason Adam Katzenstein), the New Yorker daily cartoon from yesterday:


“Personally, I worry that, with everyone wearing masks, readers won’t be able to tell who in the cartoon is speaking.”

The masks are part of daily life in plague time, and they conceal the wearers’ mouths. So in a cartoon you can’t tell who’s speaking. (In real life, there might be other clues, like vocal timbre.)

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Two cartoons for late April

April 24, 2020

In the world of annually recurring dates, Wednesday was Earth Day, Thursday was St. George’s Day, and tomorrow is World Penguin Day. Into this olla podrida of holidays walk a pastor, a priest, a rabbi, and a pie-throwing clown working as an erotic masseur.

Colby Jones, cartooning as Sir Colby, with a meta Walk Into Bar joke; and Bob Eckstein, offering the comic amalgam of clown and masseur.

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The wolves of Rome (and Venice)

April 23, 2020

I see from my calendar that Tuesday (4/21) was Wolf-Suckling Day, celebrated around the world: Romulus and Remus, their lupine foster mother, the founding of Rome, the year 753 (conventionally assigned to this event, and then sometimes used in reckoning dates: AUC ab urbe condita ‘from the founding of the city’), and the equally conventional date that is April 21st on the (Gregorian) calendar we currently use.

Then, right before the day itself, a stern warning from the World Wolf-Suckling Foundation site:

IMPORTANT BULLETIN: Because of COVID-19, all events for Wolf-Suckling Day must be virtual, NO EXCEPTIONS ALLOWED. There is a site matching up prospective wolves and suckling boys, but it’s run by the city government of Rome and is currently in some disorder. EXPECT LONG WAITS FOR SERVICE.

Meanwhile, could we suggest some excellent, well-produced WOLF-SUCKLING PORN sites, providing guides to satisfying wolf-suckling experiences in the privacy of your own homes.

Then, my mentioning this Italian wolf on Facebook naturally led Ned Deily to ask about Il Lupo di Venezia, the composer Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari: what about his day? As it happens, I have not disregarded this native of Venice on this blog. Details below.

Finally, the WWSF bulletin above moved me to reflect some on the syntax of the verb suckle, which I’m putting off to the very end because my discussion is heavy with explicit references to sexual acts in very plain language; kids and the sexually modest should bow out of the posting at that point.

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The therapist is in French

April 20, 2020

The following cartoon, in French and unattributed, has been making its way around Facebook in the last few days:


(#1) “How do you [polite] feel this week?” – “Much better.”

Therapist and patient, both cowering in the anxiety of persecution. But this week is better. Much better.

Presumably, it’s being passed around as a pointed commentary on the fix we are all in currently. Even better is appalling.

It doesn’t take a keen eye to see that #1 is a rip-off of a Bizarro cartoon: the drawing style, the content (the Psychiatrist meme is a Bizarro evergreen favorite), the two odd Dan Piraro symbols. And so it is, from 2/15/11, almost a decade ago.

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Quick shot: return to 24th St.

April 19, 2020

It’s about diners. It’s about cartoons. It’s about San Francisco. Obviously, it’s about Zippy the Pinhead (from 4/15):


(#1) Yes, some of us left our hearts in San Francisco, but Zippy left his pants

This being a Zippy strip, you are guaranteed that this is a real place; in fact, it’s a pretty famous one (though now closed down, of course). And not only is Zippy returning to 2801 24th St. in SF, we as cartoon readers are returning to this very scene, but with different dialogue.

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