This Week in Milford

March 29, 2021

Congratulations, Debbie

…and we’re moving on.

We open on the lovely porticoed entrance to Milford’s Library where the Library Board is meeting. (The Library Board is comprised of the Library Board, get it? See, the Library Board can both refer to the board as an entity as well as the members of the board collectively. Panel one has a little fun with that. Isn’t that fun? C’mon folks, help me out. I’ve got nothing to work with here. Actually, this is less than nothing, but I digress.)

The Board has just concluded one piece of business (probably a resolution to torch all those little free libraries springing up all over town that are “very bad for business”) and our chair, Linda, is throwing open the floor for other business. Now look at Karen, seated next to Linda. She’s leaning forward because she’s about to launch into one of her frequent interruptions about Linda’s lax adherence to Robert’s Rules of Order and insist on a vote on something or other, but before she can get a word out…

Joe, who has been waiting through numerous boring agenda items that he clearly hasn’t been following, drops a bombshell on the Library Board. Debbie has been offered a great job in Denver…and they’re moving! So suck it, fools. Joe will miss working with the Board but he’s outta heeeeere (like Doug from when the strip was kinda sorta trying to be about sports).


  1. The chairwoman bears a remarkable resemblance to Doonesbury’s Miss (Honey) Huan, Uncle Duke’s Chinese sidekick.

    Comment by vaganova — March 29, 2021 @ 6:39 am

  2. @Vagnova…she looks like the real PP’s sidekick, Marcie, too but yaaay….were finally movin’ on from that silly Vic/Tessi bullshit. Must be a dam big-ass library too to have a table-full of people that big for their board. P 4: “…hey! …that’s great!…who’s Debbie again?…”

    Comment by franku2016 — March 29, 2021 @ 7:29 am

  3. So Joe and Debbie are leaving a booming metropolis like Milford to move to a one horse town like Denver. How short sighted of them.

    Comment by Bobby Joe — March 29, 2021 @ 8:10 am

  4. Yes, franku, I was going to say something about the size of that library board– at least seven– myself. Maybe we’ve been mistaken all along, and there is more than one tank.

    Yes, I’m back to posting. The god-awful non-story (more like a free-association test) which just ended drove me out for a time.

    Comment by vaganova — March 29, 2021 @ 9:12 am

  5. Milford Mudlark Record Book.xlsx guesses we’re turning the page to baseball/softball season, so lets all take a look back at a pair of divergent different basketball seasons for the boys and the girls. The boys began and ended the season with wins, the girls did so with losses, but it was the Lady ‘Larks who won the Valley Conference and made an increasingly rare playdown appearance. Given that, let’s lead with the ladies’ worksheet from Milford Mudlark Record Book.xlsx

    2020-2021 Milford Lady Mudlarks Basketball – 6-2 (6-0 in the Valley Conference)

    L @ Bowsher – “close” (a rare repeat non-conference opponent, the Lady ‘Larks beat Bowsher back in 2004)
    W v Central – by 5
    W v Jefferson – 50-43
    W v New Thayer
    W v Oakwood – 50-44
    W ? Valley Tech – “steamrolled”
    W v Tilden – 58-39
    L @ Burr and Burton Academy (playdowns)

    It could be reasonably assumed that the Lady Mudlarks lost to Madison during the season as Madison had to lose to both Oakwood and Valley Tech to put Milford in a position to win the Valley Conference when they beat Tilden. Since this game was not depicted, it is not recorded. Madison has not actually appeared as a Lady ‘Larks opponent since 2014.

    This season marks the Lady Mudlarks’ first playdown appearance since 2016, when they lost by 1 point to Parkland. While the girl’s basketball team saw no games depicted in the 2015-2016 of 2018-2019 seasons, they have been quite good in other seasons since 2015, compiling a combined record of 23-8 with 5 unknowns and two playdown appearances. Still, the team’s last playdown win was in 2005. Mimi Thorp’s record coaching the Lady Mudlarks stands at 86-38 with 9 unknowns (44-18 with 3 unknowns in the Valley Conference) and 2-4 in the playdowns since the first depicted girl’s basketball season in 2004-2005. She has never lost to New Thayer (5-0, 1 unknown) and has lost only once apiece to Central (5-1, 1 unknown) and Jefferson (7-1, 1 unknown).

    2020-2021 Milford Mudlarks Basketball – 3-2 with 2 unknowns (1-2 in the Valley Conference)

    W v Rogers – 64-59
    W @ Perrysburg – by 8
    ? v Maumee – probably a win, given the way everyone acts after the game, but not conclusive
    ? v Unknown Opponent – same outcome as the Maumee game
    L @ Oakwood – 55-59
    L @ Central – 53-66
    W v Tilden – Milford “handles” them

    The Mudlark’s playdown drought continues into its eighth year, with the last appearance coming in a 2013 loss to the Hamilton Big Blue and their lucky pig. They have not won in the playdowns since a 2006 victory over North Bend. Gil’s record since 2001 stands at 167-68 with 16 unknowns (85-48, 7 unknowns in the Valley Conference) and 12-4 in the playdowns (half of those wins coming from 2001-2002’s state champion team). Since 2001, Gil holds a winning record against every single Valley Conference opponent, even longtime thorns in the side Jefferson and Madison. Excluding the 1996-2000 seasons, Gil’s overall record in basketball is 756-323 and his teams have won 9 state championships. It is most definitely his best sport.

    One interesting statistic about this season – Milford was undefeated, both boys and girls, in games emceed by Vic Doucette.

    A total of 30 named characters appeared during the basketball season, 14 of them new to the strip. Only 4 of those 14 were Milford students, though: Doug Guthrie, Vic Doucette, Tessi Milton, and Cressa Baxter. 3 named characters were name drops of real people who didn’t actually appear in the strip: Vinnie Johnson, Michael Schumacher, and William Blake. No hall of name candidates appeared, in the opinion of this spreadsheet document.

    And with that, Milford Mudlark Record Book.xlsx wishes everyone a happy Easter, a happy spring, and will return sometime after flag day with a report on the baseball and softball seasons. Those two sports hold Milford’s longest playdown win droughts, 2003 for baseball and 2004 for softball.

    Comment by billytheskink — March 29, 2021 @ 9:50 am

  6. Awesome, billytheskink. As always, thank you very much!

    Comment by nedryerson — March 29, 2021 @ 10:38 am

  7. I’d be curious what Gil’s real record was this year. Considering most high school teams play close to 20 regular season games, there are a ton we have no idea what happened. For all we know, Gil’s boys could have went 18-2 or 3-17 or anywhere in-between.

    Comment by MopMan — March 29, 2021 @ 11:01 am

  8. @Mop…who knows if Gil even had a team that played more than five games since all that they did was focus on his “conference leading better half”, who then got her ass whipped within about ten minutes of getting off the bus for their big “playdown game”

    Comment by franku2016 — March 29, 2021 @ 12:07 pm

  9. MopMan, that is a good question. Rubin has rarely used the devices his predecessors did to depict a more true-to-life length of the basketball (and baseball and softball) seasons, things like multi-game montages, using a narration box, and having Marty Moon or Paul Strange deliver expository dialogue about the season record and standings during sports broadcasts.

    Also unlike his predecessors, Rubin usually divides his attention between the girls and boys teams during the season, which gives him less time to employ such devices, depict games, and cover the season’s plot. Rubin began writing this strip during baseball season in 2004 and the softball team has been depicted in some form in every season since, with girl’s basketball being MIA in two recent season but otherwise a fixture in the strip as well. But Rubin’s endeavor to include both boys and girls teams has not even kept the number of depicted games in these seasons at the level of Jerry B. Jenkins or Jack Berrill’s boys only seasons, and in the last few years, depicted games have been even more scarce. Compare these average numbers of depicted games from Jerry B. Jenkins’ last 3 seasons writing the strip to those of Rubin’s entire tenure and of Rubin’s most recent 5 years:

    Basketball – 24.7 games
    Baseball – 23.0

    Rubin’s entire tenure
    Basketball – 10.2
    Baseball – 11.4
    Boys and girls basketball combined – 18.2
    Baseball and softball combined – 16.6

    Rubin’s last 5 years
    Basketball – 10.0
    Baseball – 7.8
    Boys and girls basketball combined – 15.2
    Baseball and softball combined – 13.2

    Comment by billytheskink — March 29, 2021 @ 1:23 pm

  10. Yeah, it wouldn’t be so hard to throw in the occasional, “A week after having their five game winning streak snapped…”, or, “Milford brings their 12-8 record to Oakwood…”

    Comment by MopMan — March 29, 2021 @ 1:29 pm

  11. Milford Star headline: “Sir Burns Books at Milford Library; Thorps Organize Smores and Weenie Roast. Gil Says Waste Not, Want Not Whatever that Means as He Chugs Rotgut “
    Long headline but it’s a horseshit newspaper in a horseshit tank town.

    Comment by Jive Turkey — March 29, 2021 @ 4:02 pm

  12. A library? A place of learning, literary arts and culture?? I’m so happy because it means Peppermint Patty won’t be within 50 miles of the place…

    Comment by hitorque — March 30, 2021 @ 7:35 am

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