Archive for the ‘Language play’ Category

Eat it! The oral humiliation you deserve

February 17, 2019

Yesterday’s Wayno & Piraro Bizarro:


(#1) (If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 3 in this strip — see this Page.)

A play on desserts (on the menu) vs. the deserts of just deserts. Plus a small cascade of idioms on oral humiliations. With a nod to the nasty rough edges of the verb eat (and, while we’re on the subject, suck). (Eventually, this will lead to some very plain-language talk — not for kids or the sexually modest — about some social and sexual practices among gay men. I’ll warn you when the topic is imminent.)

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Revisiting 25: Alligator Goodbyes, now in song

February 14, 2019

Back on 6/4/11, in “Alligator Goodbyes”, a t-shirt with 14 instances

of a verse form that I’ll call the Alligator Goodbye, on the model of “see you later, alligator” (at the top of the shirt):

(#1)

Now, a much bigger assemblage of AGs — 27 of them — on the Language Nerds Facebook page, in b&w:

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Allusions to titles past

February 13, 2019

The Economist, wildly given to jokey headlines for its stories (and sometimes also their lead paragraphs or final paragraphs), performed a Proustian double play in its 2/2/19 issue: in two successive stories, headlines that are both plays on Proust’s title À la recherche du temps perdu, in two different English translations (both of them widely quoted in English).

on p. 21, about Facebook turning 15: “Remembrance of posts past” (Remembrance of Things Past)

on p. 22, about the consequences of the US government shutdown: “In search of lost time (and money)” (In Search of Lost Time)

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Captain of our fairy band

February 13, 2019

(Hot guys in very skimpy underwear, suggestive verse, but generally playful and not actually X-rated. Use your judgment.)

Today’s  Daily Jocks sale ad, for Marco Marco Valentine’s Day homowear, with a caption in two parts, one raunchy doggerel, one Puckish:

(#1)

Lincoln Darwin Valentine
Is a cutup friend of mine
Loves the boys with all his heart
Loves them hard in every part

And the youth, mistook by me,
Pleading for a lover’s fee.
Shall we their fond pageant see?
Lord, what fools these mortals be!

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Age cannot wither them

February 11, 2019

Today’s Zippy has Griffy and Zippy marveling, once again, that almost all cartoon characters, themselves included, never seem to age. In particular, Nancy and Sluggo are always and forever 8 years old — in Cartoonland, where age cannot wither them (nor custom stale their infinite variety). But in Ivan Albright’s art world, even Nancy, sturdy Nancy, grows old:

(#1)

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The thinking condom’s typeface

February 10, 2019

On Facebook recently, a plaintive scream from Tom Meadows (reproduced here exactly as in the original):

PLEASE LATEX LET ME BE FREE OF THIS PROBLEM WHY ARE YOU SO CRUEL

Typing the whole thing in ALL CAPS introduced an ambiguity that Meadows and his readers then exploited for playful purposes. The ambiguity:

reader EK: I feel like a latex problem is very different from a LaTeX problem

Tom Meadows: I have a latex/LaTeX merger – my condoms are now nicely typeset

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Displaced icons of art

February 9, 2019

Prompted by Michael Palmer on Facebook, this Bizarro pun from 9/9/12:


(#1) (If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 7 in the strip from which this panel is extracted — see this Page.)

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Three Pearls

February 6, 2019

… Before Swine(s), with language play. From 10/6/18, exploiting the ambiguity of /flu/ as flew or flu ‘influenza’; and two testicular cartoons, from 11/1/18 (nut sack) and (yesterday) 2/5/19 (go nads).

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Mandolin Orange

February 4, 2019

Alerted by NPR this morning and entertained by the band’s name, I checked out Mandolin Orange and really liked what I found.


(#1) Mandolin Orange recording “Wildfire” 11/2/16 at Paste Studios in NYC

And they’ll be playing at the Fillmore in SF next month:

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A camelid from darkest Peru

January 29, 2019

A souvenir from Juan Gomez, who visited Peru (Cuzco, Machu Picchu) with his family for the New Year’s holiday: a little stuffed llama I’ve named Glama Grrl (he’s seen here perched high in the spathyphyllum forest on my worktable):

(#1)

The Peruvian camelid has been exploited for all sorts of word play purposes, perhaps most famously in the light verse of Ogden Nash, but also in joking that turns on the fact that the element llam– has (at least) three separate sources in Spanish (referring to the camelid, to fire or flames, and to calling (out)). Glama Grrl will then lead us to the original traveler from darkest Peru, Paddington Bear.

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