This Week in Milford

January 14, 2020

“In Other Words, If You Want To Make Honor Roll This Semester, You Have To Reach Double Bonus.”

Filed under: basketball, Boredom in Milford — tdrewhardin @ 1:59 pm

011420

This is the city. Milford USA. It’s a city like any other city, it has its parks, residential areas, factories, shopping centers, and schools. But unlike other cities, this city contains a high school with a gentleman who coaches multiple sports and sports multiple absences. When he does appear on the scene, sometimes questionable activities appears in his rearview mirror. The fans have long since tolerated his inept attempts to lead the kids to victory. I’ll smoke my Camels in the Milford Police Department break room and read the racing forms and bet on the winning horse at Milford Downs.

But when he oversteps the line and ethics and the law are in double overtime, that’s when I go to work. My name’s Friday. I carry a badge.

 

It was a typical winter day in Milford. Lots of sunshine but a hint of a blizzard was in the forecast later this evening. There were a lot of frisbee golfers out at Milford Frisbee Range taking advantage of the balmy conditions.

My partner, Bill Gannon, and I were assigned to the Academic and Sports Fraudulent Operations & Enterprises Division of the Milford Police Department. The boss is Captain DeMarco.

We had been informed to be on the lookout for dubious operatives pertaining to a certain student. Her name was reported to be Alexa Watson. She went by the nickname “Grade Shark”. She had a reputation for dumping anyone in the river who aced her on the Trig Final. We had encounrered a couple of bloated bodies but the only thing we observed when she opened the trunk were the groceries. This investigation was going to take time. Lots of time.

“Joe, just talked to HQ on the talkie. Found another one in the creek. His slide rule had leeches all over it.”

“Not surprised. If you want to go to Harvard, you better cover it up. And fast.”

“How does she do it? Right now her record is clean while the student body is declining.”

“Beats me.”

“I guess if you want to go to Yale, you simply say ‘Boola, Boola’ when you’re smoking in the bathroom.”

“Some kids know how to break the rules and get an ‘A’ on the term paper, I guess.”

“Kids these days. Commit armed robbery at Milford Federal and graduate Summa Cum Laude. I don’t get it.”

“Me neither.”

“Joe, are you seeing what I’m seeing?”

“Time to go to work. Let’s go.”

Watson was seen carrying a basketball into the Milford gym. She committed the same fatal flaw every criminal makes, performing something out of character with the script. When you stood out like the burnt pickle on a Bucket Burger, you were a sitting duck for the law. Watson would be quacking a long time on this one.

 

If ya get caught in the file cabinet cuz ya wanted ta change the grade illegally on yore woodworking project in Introductory Woods class cuz ya found some treated wood that’d hold up better on yore outhouse that ya built, ya might be a redneck.

 

Gang, if there’s 3 inevitable items on the table us Thorpiverse veterans are inured to, it’d be death, taxes, and the revolving door and I don’t mean leading into Gil’s office. Thorpiverse always keeps us well-stocked with anonymous characters who step out of the sewer line of some random street in Milford and apprise Gil of a situation like the one we have on our plate today. We have no clue what function Mrs. Jane Doe is serving at this juncture nor her job title. Is she a teacher? Counselor? Department Head of Industrial Arts? Whatever her role, she is one of a million people who remain incognito while serving as a bridge to the plot-for-a-day scenario, a tactic well-used by Thorpiverse since its inception.

“Dr. Pearl, we need more buffer pads for the machine. And we need 3 more orders of toilet paper after Gil used a whole roll from that Faculty Enchilada Brunch this afternoon.”

“Certainly. BTW, did you get that PSAT score report audit on the sophomore class? The State called about it again about 15 minutes ago.”

 

Then there’s academics practically being called a contact sport. This is another flailing attempt for Thorpiverse to use a literary device, in this case a metaphor, to inflate the plot when in reality it needs to hit the Milford Men’s Clinic sooner than Coach Shaw and that’s pretty puffy, if you ask me.

Yeah, yeah, Alexa shouldn’t have her hand on the player’s fanny when the latter is working on the cosine wave (“Let me see, cos 60 degrees equals 1/2-HEY, will you quit pulling down my shorts?”) . Don’t want to let the game get out of control. Call it tight now. If it’s a foul, call it, if the player takes 5 steps with the graphing calculator, call traveling, if the player is in the arctan area for 10 seconds, call 3 seconds. We don’t the game to get out of hand. We completely understand, Thorpiverse.

 

Today’s headline in the Milford Enquirer

“O.J. Ejected After Flagrant Foul In Milford Parks & Recreation 6 Feet And Under League Basketball Game!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Witnesses confirm he kicked Spud Webb in the groin while Webb was contesting a breakaway dunk.”

 

2:27PM. Bill and I went to talk with Mrs. Doe about the reports she attempted to turn in to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction. We managed to flag her down just as she was about to give them to the mailman before he took off in his LLV on his mounted route. We had hope this would help in eventually cracking the case

“Look, Gil forgot to put a stamp on it. That’s why it couldn’t be mailed.”

“Sir, we’re asking Mrs. Doe that question.”

“Oops. Sorry, Gentlemen.”

“Quite all right”

LLV drives away out of the Milford High School parking lot

“Alexa begged us not to mail it. I gave in because I have a soft heart for kids plus Chris blew the game. I couldn’t reward people who choke in the clutch.”

“So what did you do next?”

“I gave them to Dr. Pearl. She said she would throw them away as they were supernumerary reports and did not affect the Bell Curve. Alexa still had a chance to catch Chris with these reports in the garbage can.”

“Ma’am, you can’t throw away confidential information just on the whim of your bleeding heart. You could wind up in the hoosegow.”

Gannon had a point. Flirting with somebody’s academic future was analogous with Mimi’s analogies. Both were dangerous and inexplicable.

“Is there anything else?”

“No, ma’am, just sit tight until we complete the investigation.”

“Will I go to jail?”

“Not sure. That’ll be up to the Director of Academic Fraud Bunco Division.”

“Alexa’s a nice kid. She deserves only the best. She really respects Mimi Thorp. And Gil also.”

“But so does Chris.”

Somber music sets in

 

Oh Brother. These so-called Teachable Moments like we’re supposedly experiencing in P2 is about as laughable as all get out.

Like, what is your point, Mimi? If Wilt scored 100 on that fateful night in ’62 at the Hershey, Pennsylvania gym, he’d have his Honorary Diploma from Milford High School? I can understand trying to motivate to score more but just about a week ago you were in your office beating your brains out, loosely speaking, attempting to improve your team. It’s bad enough that that went nowhere and in time it’ll more than likely STILL GO NOWHERE but do you have to run up the score with SAT analogies?

Let me see if I’m understanding you correctly

POINTS::GRADES—–GIL’S HAIR::VIDAL SASSOON RECYCLABLE SPRAY BOTTLES

That might work but points can be differentiated but Gil’s hair could arguably be compared to The Blob movie in the ’50’s. Let’s try again

POINTS::GRADES—–NUMBER OF YEARS DR. PEARL HAS ROAMED THE EARTH::DENTURES SHE HAS POSSESSED IN HER BUREAU DURING THAT TIME

The analogy is an obvious dead-ringer but too verbose for an SAT test. The writers of Cliff Notes Guide to SAT Preparation would have a fit trying to cram that in their latest edition. Nope, better look elsewhere

POINTS::GRADES—–MUDLARKS::LOSERS

Now THAT’S an analogy. Both can distributed singularly like points and grades, and the more you have of one, the more you have of the other. Mimi’s Direct Proportion passes with flying colors on this one.

 

WHO SHOT COACH SHAW::MYSTERY—–CURRENT PLOT:ENIGMA

It works, Gang. I wouldn’t be surprised that we get to the bottom of either one.

 

And THE DAGWOOD BUMSTEAD BACKGROUND CHARACTERS ARE BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You old-timers know what I’m talking about. Dagwood is ringing out Blondie because she is spending way too much at some department store and the nameless blob of people are looking on in curiosity, bewilderment, consternation, interest, etc. But before the punchline delivers its punch, The Blob (not the same as Gil’s hair, The People Blob, mind you) is seen doing different things, making purchases, checking sizes of shirts and pants, hunching in some corner (“Dagwood, what is Mr. Dithers doing over by the drinking fountain?” “I Dunno, Blondie.”) , laughing and yukking it up with a fellow shopper, that sort of thing.

Congratulations, Phoebe and your cohort in P2, you are now part of Dagwood’s crowd. Yup, you are filling in space during Mimi’s Lifetime Lesson, sure to trickle down to your ears even as Mimi is lecturing. You might want to put down the beach ball and take some notes.

And this is my point. Usually, if a coach is in a one-on-one session with a player to emphasize a point, the OTHER players are involved in a shootaround or practicing free throws or doing a light jog before practice. Not too many high school practices include players with thumbs up their asses and Dagwooding it while the coach is exhorting another player to improve his or her game. It’s great you have your uniforms on but this is not a modeling show. The baskets are around somewhere in the gym. You’ll just have to look for them. I think I saw one by the Ski machine. They’ve been known to hide.

 

4:18PM. Bill Gannon and I stopped in to talk with Dr. Pearl. Safe to say the conversation was not going to be about her New Wave Granny hairdo. We wanted answers and we wanted them fast.

“We run an honest business around here. We would never stoop so low as to change a student’s transcript so that another student can get that student’s scholarship to MIT.”

“Look, Ma’am, we weren’t born yesterday. When a kid like Chris flunks Home Ec because he left Shake ‘n’ Bake in the oven too long, we get suspicious. He could have easily done a make-up assignment and cooked a batch of Zatarain’s Rice Pilaf.”

“The Home Ec teacher called in and could not shop at Milford 7-11 for emergency supplies.”

“That’s not our problem. I could nail you on Section 19, Article 57 ‘Engineering to Perpetrate Academic Alteration with Intent to Perform Bodily Harm’, but you have tenure and your wall is impregnable for the moment. But watch your back side, Dr. Pearl.”

“Let me assure you, academic integrity is our utmost concern at Milford High School.”

“Look, Dr. Pearl, Friday has a point. We’re not asking you to bare your soul for Mr. Schuring, so keep your gingham dress on. We just want things to be on the up-and-up so both Miss Watson and Mr. Schuring can stand on the podium and shake your hand when you confer their diplomas. Don’t send Mr. Schuring out to lunch for Bucket Crawdads while Miss Watson is graduating With Honors.”

“Chris will get the same treatment as Alexa, I’m committed to that concept.”

“And we’re committed to your keeping that commitment, Bucket Crawdads or no Bucket Crawdads.”

Somber music once again after Joe’s last zinger

 

P3-“Did you know your fly is open?”

Could also easily fit into Mimi’s balloon if that were left blank.

 

“We’ll return to the conclusion of Dragnet after these important messages. You’re watching WDIG-TV.”

 

“With January upon us, a lot of us got our wallets cleaned out from all that Christmas shopping. And if you live in the Skid Row subdivision behind the Milford High School Athletic Annex, buying The Good Life, when you can’t even afford foodstuffs, can be a hassle.

Hi, this is Coach Thorp speaking for Milford Beverage Warehouse. The good people at The Warehouse don’t want you to do without so they have started an exciting new program, the Name Your Price policy when buying liquor. It’s an innovative way of reaching out to the customer who cannot afford a 30-Pack of Drewry’s Dark because he has to pay off 2 court-ordered alimony payments. A man who couldn’t stay under the bed with another woman without a rolling pin bonking his head shouldn’t have to do without a cold one.

And check this out. You lucky dogs who sleep on the picnic tables at night at Milford State Park with nothing but an old Superman kiddie blanket are in for a treat. If you can pay $2.99 for Jim Beam Bourbon, The Warehouse will be more than happy to pour it an Erlenmeyer flask, duct-tape it, and send you out the door a free man.

And some of you lost your shirt at Milford Steamboat Casino and have to stay within a budget. No problemo. If you have $5.00, The Warehouse is only too glad to store Ecco Domani Pinot Grigio, the Wine of Champions, into large Styrofoam Dixie Cups. Shoot, they’ll even throw in a straw.

And did you get sued out the wazoo because your semi plowed into a station wagon and now you’re on a waiting list at Milford Shelter House? If you have $3.99, The Warehouse will supply you with your demand for Michelob Ultra, both cans with the extra-safe tab so kid can drink it and steal your joy. And if you have a coupon, you’ll get an extra can at no charge. Sounds like sensible Free Market Economics to me.

So come on, all you freeloaders out there. Don’t be afraid to go through the double doors and dictate your policy. You can go through the same line as guy with the Visa Gold and the 24-Pack of Natural Light and not be ashamed. You can even sign up for the Mystery Pack. For $10.00, you can get a whole bag of goodies to take back to your cot. I’m not allowed to say what’s in the bag this month but last month’s grab bag had some Oreos, 12-Pack Corona Extra, Mott’s Apple Juice, Tylenol in Liquid Tablets, Knob Creek Whiskey, 750 Milliliters, Brawny Quilted Bathroom Tissue, and some Roscato Wine. Boy, I’d like to be able to wipe my butt, then sip on a pint in the evening on my verandah when the sun goes down.

Get your butt on down here and do your own wiping and tell ’em Coach Thorp sent ya.

 

It’s all yours, Gang. Time to down a Bud and sit on the bleachers and listen to Mimi’s words of wisdom. Life is good.

 

 

POINTS::GRADES—–MARTY MOON::SNAILS

“Chris, dammit!!!!!!!!!! Look at your own answer sheet!!!!!!!!!!!! And I ain’t loanin’ pu another #2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Mimi the Proctor looks up from her “How to Win Friends and Influence Players” by Dale Carnegie III

“Do I have to separate you two?”

 

On January 14th, 2020, Jane Doe was found guilty in the Milford Superior Court of violation of State Law 102, Section 9, Article 15 “Wrongful Forgery of Academic Documentation and Illegal Pedagogical Enterprises in the Line of Educational Duty” whichbis punishable by a fine of not more than $60,000 and imprisonment for a minimum of 60 years but not exceeding 89 years.”

Jane Doe standing with blank background behind her, the graphics in front of her on the TV screen

Mrs. Doe is currently serving 71 years in the Milford Maximum Security Plot Prison.

 

6 Comments »

  1. My HS slide rule turned up recently.
    As useless now as it was back then!
    Watching this plot crawl along to its inevitable RomCom collision makes me miss Aaron Aardark.

    Comment by Downpuppy, still (@Downpuppy) — January 14, 2020 @ 2:22 pm

  2. This is so slow-moving and dumb, it makes me miss Chet. She might just “go upside a player’s noggin with her Reebok to catch up” is one of the dumbest things to come out of this strip yet

    Comment by franku2016 — January 14, 2020 @ 2:54 pm

  3. downpuppy’s observation has me going through drawers looking for my old slide rule. I am sure I have completely forgotten how to use it– my grasp was limited even in high school. Now if you want me to pose a model or mix up a batch of alizarin crimson, that’s another story.

    Comment by vaganova — January 14, 2020 @ 5:47 pm

  4. It took me 5 minutes to work out how to do 2×3

    Comment by Downpuppy, still (@Downpuppy) — January 14, 2020 @ 8:33 pm

  5. I recall a commercial on local Chicago TV in the late 60s (before the days of personal calculators, when people really only had slide rules, oh, and perhaps a few rich businessmen had adding machines) — I think it was for Commonwealth Edison, showing some feel-good program they had for mentoring kids from the ghetto. A Com Ed rep held up a slide rule and said “did you know with this you can do every mathematical calculation except to add and subtract”. And all the ghetto kids had mouths agape, hoping that they, too, someday might work for the power company and have access to marvelous things like slide rules.

    For some reason that commercial has always stuck with me. And I did even have a slide rule for awhile in junior high, I think I even knew how to do square roots on it at one point. It’s a wonderful life.

    Comment by Moon Mullins — January 14, 2020 @ 10:24 pm

  6. I have my father’s slide rule in its leather carrying case. It’s made of very high quality materials and is immaculately crafted.

    I have no idea how to use it.

    Comment by timbuys — January 15, 2020 @ 7:34 am


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