This Week in Milford

December 27, 2022

You Took The Words Out Of My Mouth, Coach.

Filed under: Gil Thorp — tdrewhardin @ 10:07 am

Pink Floyd released a classic “Dark Side of the Moon” in 1973 and it stayed on the Billboard Top 100 Album chart for several years. With their tracks being played in several different venues, including athletic arenas, I can see how this masterpiece stood the test of time. One of my favorite tracks, “Us and Them”, sums up Gil’s feelings here in today’s strip. What’s interesting, Gil has taken his fair share of attacks on his character and competence (don’t get me or the TWIM readership started) but I personally haven’t seen him engaged in a Milford-Against-The-World mentality. If they exist, they number the fingers on one hand.

Anyway, with all the plots running here, there, and everywhere topped off by Big Brother voting to excise monetary support for Milford High Basketball, I think it only appropriate to express the Mudlark mood as of late


And Them

And after all, they’re only

Ordinary men


And you

God only knows,

This plot is not what we would choose

To do

Backward, he cried, from the rear

And the b-ball team died

And Coach Thorp sat

As the play on the court

Moved from side to side

We have endured several crashes-and-burns during the so-called Football Plot. Where was the story with Jami and Pedro going? Dungeons & Dragons, in more ways than I one. And Jami cold-cocking some smartass girlie-girl and getting off with a wrist slap? Melissa Gordon picking up the tab at Denny’s and then what? She shortly thereafter declared bankruptcy as a result? The volleyball team showed some action but naturally it went into the woods behind the football stadium where the Jensens and Bigfoot abide in a Hooverville condo. Even the football team left more questions than answers. When everyone saw Gil drag out the VCR and tape that hadn’t been used since Gibson shocked the world with his 2-run shot off Eckersley, tell me you weren’t expecting Gil to exact revenge AND GETTING IT on Butthead after the latter was flapping his jaws on the videotape. Instead, we got a Guideposts lecture that beclouded the reality that Gil bit the big one. Again.

The clincher was Heehaw on her deathbed. Like everything else, we got a teaser but not much else. Funeral arrangements, if she even died at all, would wait until after the 5-game season. Hold on, Heehaw, don’t croak yet. We’re still in the Playdowns.

And okay, some plots got jettisoned out of the pickup truck because they were going nowhere and smelling like rancid deer meat but basketball, even though the rest of the world is commencing Conference play, would come to the rescue. Not so fast. Gil gets a cue card announcing that basketball would not receive the proper financial due and that car washes and World’s Finest Chocolate sales would pay the way if you wanted to see your players wear uniforms before the opening tip. Even though car washes improvised while there’s snow on the ground might pay a few dividends, how many times are the Mudlark kids required to wipe the slush off the windshield to apply Turtle Wax? Coach, there’s a reason why basketball was in the budget in the first place SPORTS COST MONEY!!!!!!!! Do you honestly believe putting a gun to your players’ heads to sell Electrolux Vacuum Cleaners will make up for any shortfalls in the basketball programs???? Yeah sure, let’s have the kids sell Milford Vending Spicy Hot Fruit Cake door-to-door and we might be able to pay the first installment on the gym. Basketball backboard has a crack in it? No problem, we’ll sell raffle tickets for a chance to win Heehaw’s estate. No uniforms this year? No need to resort to shopping at Goodwill Discount Bargain Outlet when we can sell Avon to the students right before they get in line at the cafeteria.

Coach, there’s a reason why many readers argue that you’re out of touch with reality. The last two days are Exhibit A in that regard.

Today’s Headline in the Milford Enquirer

“Dr. Pearl To Veto The Sale Of Milford Peacock To Private Investor, Even With Budget Cuts Looming!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Dr Pearl Spokesperson: ‘Dr. Pearl feels that this avian institution is beyond any monetary value that would besmirch the name of Milford High School. Moreover, cleaning its cage is cost-effective.”

I can see Cami Ochoa’s (have to believe that is she, given the context) viewpoint and concern. But WHAT is she doing at the Boys Basketball practice? Don’t misunderstand me, women coaching boys sports is becoming more frequent and I highly endorse it. But you know Thorpiverse. Cami today, gone tomorrow. Let’s sweep the details under the carpet that might cause confusion and hope nobody notices when there’s a lump sticking up in the shag fibers. Oh well, we can just shoot Cami in the head along with Heehaw and Mr. Ed should push come to shove. No sense in anybody panicking. We won’t send flowers to Mr. Ed’s or Cami’s funeral because we may need to resurrect the latter like we did with Marjie Ducey. Just say the wrong person got buried. Yeah, that’s it. Howard Cosell was the one that got his brains blown out. Marjie and Cami were under the table at Coffee Cantina when Goodfellas dropped by.

Leave it to Thorpiverse to insert a little flash to this plot that might eventually get pitched in the wastebasket. But has anybody ever heard of a basketball rack????? Where did Cami get this bag of basketballs????? Were they dropped off at her doorstep by the UPS driver? Ho Ho Ho, Coach Thorp, Merrrrryyyyy Christmas. You’ve been a good boy this year. Cupid, hand him that bag I have in the back of the sleigh. Leave one for Yukon Cornelius to play with Bumbles.

I am really trying to make sense of this, pointless venture that it more than likely will be. They were washed ashore on the Atlantic Ocean and Gil was at a resort just south of Atlantic City when he happened upon this treasure that dodged the sharks and the barracudas. Amazing what happens when you’re tanning on the beach.

Then I wonder what Gil is lugging around. More basketballs???? Some volleyballs in case the basketballs are flat and he doesn’t possess an air pump? Some Miller Light and ice after practice is over? Practice is getting off the ground in a promising fashion, oh boy. And is that Coach Kaz in the background? With those slightly dumpy shorts? They look like apparel he dragged out of the lost-and-found bin in the locker room when no one was looking. Plus one of the players looks like he’s wearing swim trunks. I hope that’s not what Coach Thorp is lugging around in that wheelie basket. Joe, those swim trunks won’t fit? No problem, I have a whole smelly conglomerate of them in this contraption. Help yourself.

Finally, no one, I mean NO ONE wears sunglasses at practice. I know Thorpiverse is attempting to instill a Joe Cool perspective into the basketball practice after the football season prevailed through a dreadful array of hits and misses (mostly misses) , but Joe Cool needs to see the basket if he’s shooting a layup and blinding himself indoors is only adding fuel to a fire that needs to get stomped down upon with the basketball rack.

Cruises are popular and I like the trip ideas but Antarctica cruises are a bit dicey, or so it seems to me. Until they have the Antarctica Hilton to stop at, I think I’ll pass for now

Late Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“Coach Thorp Undergoing Cost-Cutting Measures To Finance And Salvage Basketball Season!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I called my travel agent and told him to cancel my hunting expedition In Antarctica this year. Let the polar bears and penguins breed so I can have a reason to lodge at the Marriott next year.”

In Dr. Pearl’s office, the 1911 RCA Close ‘n’ Play screaming out “Tractor Rape Chain” from Guided By Voices

“Dr. Pearl, the Milford Petting Zoo called again. They want to know if you’re willing to scale down the asking price.”

“At this juncture, Coach Thorp, it’s a negative factor there.”


And Blue

And who knows

Which is which


Who is who

Haven’t you heard, it’s a hodgepodge of words

Luke’s flunky helper cried

Listen, son, said Coach Thorp with a gun

Game balls are all inside

Gil, quit stating the obvious in P2. Like we haven’t noticed the last 60 years. It took you six decades to wake up and smell the coffee? But as Coach Stuard always taught me, you are the tree as a coach, the players are the branches. Gee, if the team is underperforming, could it be it’s because the coach is underperforming? Duh.

If the players are the branches, they are drawing from a dead tree stump. Ginkgo trees do not yield whirlygigs. Oak trees do no yield figs. Did you ever see an elm tree drop drupes in your front yard? Gil, if you want drupes, buy a dogwood tree and shut up. I know you’re expecting pears to come out of the walnut tree you stuck out your back window where the mutant poplars breed but all I’m seeing are trees that could pass for stick figures in a hangman’s game if you held the perspective at the correct angle.

When you’re at the bar flirting with Beth the Bar Sleaze and wondering why it’s not working with Mimi and the kids, I little wonder why ANY of your teams are underperforming. Yeah, this isn’t just a basketball concept. Even though the football team went 7-2, it was about as lame of a 7-2 season as I’ve seen. We had to navigate through Heehaw flirting with death, Jami and Pedro playing 5-Stud D & D, Mimi flirting with divorce as if divorce WAS Beth the Bar Sleaze, Dr. Pearl exhibiting an ostrich and trying to convince the Milford Student Body that this ostrich was actually a Mudlark that was simply incubated under the wrong heat lamp, with the volleyball team scratching a couple of wins when Thorpiverse ran out of ideas for future soap operas. That’s before we EVEN get to Luke Butthead and his smoochy wife, especially out on the golf course. Oh, but your team was 7-2, Coach. Let me give you another kiss while my husband is putting. SMACK!!!!!!

I do agree with Cami, sports, like in many small towns, is life. I may have told this story before but I feel deserves a repeat. Vincennes Lincoln (the Alices, from the book “Alice of Old Vincennes” by Maurice Thompson) won the 1981 Boys Basketball State Championship, coached by the controversial Gunnar Wyman who was noted for benching star players if they weren’t up to snuff which not surprisingly ruffled a lot of feathers. It became so heated that a petition was passed around to remove him as coach. Personally, I always admired him for his tough but fair approach. Eventually his players bought into his “The best five, regardless of your Joe Cool or economic status, were going to be on the floor playing” style. When they won the State, Wyman kept the petition list. I hope your name wasn’t on it.

They really ought to get a petition to just remove these officious and phlegmatic plots. I’ll sign my name anytime.

Special Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“Coach Thorp Keeping Petition In His Garage For The Time Being!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“We were 7-2 this year. Coach Luhm shouldn’t have signed his John Henry after all the sloppy joes I saved for him in the microwave in my office.”

In Gil’s office one day

“Kaz, it’ll work. Run off 500 copies and I’ll get the stamps later.”

“Gil, he beat you this year. Ain’t nobody going to sign a petition to remove him as coach. And I’ll have to put up with his bull next year.”

I would take Cami’s statement more seriously if I wasn’t observing two potential Mudlark players making ultimate jackasses of themselves. What in the name of Coach Kim and his Amazing Technicolor Buttkisser are they doing in P2? One appears as if he is performing “Beer Barrel Polka” and if I wanted to really watch this malarkey, I’d watch the Lawrence Welk Dancers do this rendition when Lawrence Welk is leading his band in “Du, Du, Liegst Mir im Herze”. The only thing missing here is the disco ball hanging off the distant basketball goal. You go, chump.
Then the other one apparently hasn’t figured out that this isn’t swimming class. He can save the breaststroke for a later time. Neither one of these yahoos have figured out that this is BASKETBALL. When in Rome, act like it. At this point, you’re frenzied like this is a Roman Holiday.

If ya wear blue and brown rather than the usual cam-ee-flazh ta throw off tha 8-point Buck ya is targeting with yore sawed-off shotgun, ya might be a redneck.

At Milford Travel Agency one fine day

“…and for an extra $1800, we can take you to Papua New Guinea in time for the National Luau Day. Your polar bear meat should thaw by then. What do you say?”

Talk about brown and blue. P3 just absolutely sums up the confusion running rampant when Roy G Biv appears on the scene. They were red the other day, they’re UCLA’s colors today. And what is that lightning bolt (likely) on that player’s shirt? That’s going to clash with the peacock disguised as an ostrich looking like an emu incognito as a rhea frocked as a bald eagle trying desperately to look in character. Good Mudlarks are hard to come by. And as somebody mentioned on the Gil Thorp Go Comics site, this mug is the only one actually playing basketball. Coach, if they’re underperforming, take a wild guess why. Don’t kill the messenger. Or the shooter in P3 because that may be all you have this season.

“We’ll return for the exciting conclusion of ‘The Only Game in Town’ in The Sweet Gil Remembered series after these messages. You’re watching WDIG-TV.”

“There, damn, just a couple more inches and I think I got it!!!!!!!”


“Daddy, I gotta poopie badly. As in right now.”

“Just a second, Keri, honey. Daddy’s got a major problem but with this Vicks NyQuil Cough Suppressant, he’s just about to solve it. They have a male enhancement ingredient that’ll knock an impotent dinosaur back to the Pleistocene period!!!!!!!”

Mimi approaches the bathroom door after setting the Crock pot and the Milford Circle K Rotisserie Chicken for several hours

“Gil, what’re you doing, I’m afraid to ask.”

“Oh hi, Honey. I just felt like my manhood wasn’t elongated enough and I felt positive action need to be underwent if I wanted to stretch the issue right before bedtime.”

“I was wondering what happened to my measuring spoons.”

“Mimi, it’s like this. If my manhood can’t fill out a teaspoon, there is no sense in going to war. Patton didn’t defeat Rommel with an erection only a camel could appreciate. This thing is going to elongate and puff out into my Thermos bottle or I’ll retreat even if General Braxton Bragg is telling at me to fall back into formation.”

“Mommy, I can’t find my protractor or slide rule anywhere.”

“What????? Gil, give Jami his tools back now!!!!!! He has homework and a geometry quiz on Monday!!!!!”

“Tell Jami that I’ll return his stuff once I get my manhood at the proper angle. In softball, your best angle when hitting is 45 degrees. It’ll go back to the fence. You hit it at 90 degrees, it’s a can of corn for the pitcher. I will not go to bed with my manhood on a par with Droopy the Dog. I was not born to be harder than an overdrenched Honey Nut Cheerio.”

“Mommy, I heard Daddy say that he used the slide rule to calculate the circumference and the basal area divided by the diameter and taking into account that equal arcs have equal chords and he was able to convert inches to kilometers and found out his wee wee was less than the unit circle multiplied by a negative factor so he switched back to inches so he felt more like a man.”

“I’m going to kick daddy in his circumference if he doesn’t open this door. Gil, get your butt out here PRONTO!!!!!!”

“And watch my manhood get flushed down the commode when I still have to finish wrapping Odor Eaters around my manhood???? It’ll not only remove any halitosis, it’ll be the hardest piece of granite with no offensive smells this side of the Mississippi. Then I’m going to rub some Lanacaine on it later so it won’t itch so bad.”

“Daddy, is that why you dipped it in Scope? I know you want to smell clean-“

“He better not or I WILL serve the divorce papers!!!!!!!! Gil, get out here now!!!!!!”


“Hello? Coach Ochoa? No, I don’t know where the medical wrapping tape went. Did you check with Rick Scott?”

“I knew I was in trouble. Fortunately, there was a spare roll in my desk so no harm, no foul. But I still had manhood issues so I got my butt down to Milford Men’s Clinic where the ELONG-3500 Formula is a man’s best friend. I puffed up and have gad the time of my life every night. I only wish basketball was more exciting but there’s give and take in all you do. Come get your own fun at Milford Men’s Clinic today.”

Gang, until Milford has a swim team, I will continue to follow basketball. Swimmers disguised as basketball players have no place on this strip. But I’ll pretend if it’ll make you feel any better.

But God bless you anyway.

In Gil’s office, with Gil blasting “I Am A Tree” from Guided By Voices out of his boom box

“…are you sure the bag limit is 2 polar bears per year? I thought they changed that…”


And out

It can’t be helped

But there’s a lot of it



  1. 1. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    2. I don’t have enough vacation time left to explain why school budgets don’t work this way…

    3. I don’t know why Gilberto is crying poverty because Milford sure as hell isn’t destitute — They’ve clearly got equipment (basketballs), those plain-assed black and red uniforms and most importantly a facility to practice and play in… Believe me, I’ve known schools in the past who did have the latter two things…

    3a. It’s funny because Gilberto clearly has the clout, personal wealth and networking in the community to fund ALL Milford student sports, but we can’t work a storyline around that, can we?

    3b. Rod Barajas just took a major piss on all schoolteachers who have to spend a sizable portion of their meager paychecks just so their kids can have basic school supplies…

    3c. I swear to Christ if Barajas tries to fuckin’ blame “wokeness” for this bullshit, I’m done.

    Comment by Hitorque — December 27, 2022 @ 12:53 pm

  2. Well, I’m gonna take a leap of faith here and expect more from the hoops season, since HB sez that he knows basketball better than football. Maybe Gil’s Southwest flight got canceled and what he’s really dragging there is his duffel bag of shit he took when Emily first booted his ass. I agree that it looks like the kind of basketball bag that we had in the Illinois State U intramural dept back in the early 80’s. Speaking of old, I wonder if the Milford girls still use the same old ratty unis that HvB was whining about back in ‘05?

    Comment by franku2016 — December 27, 2022 @ 7:58 pm

  3. Great job, Hitorque and Frank!!!!!!! I love to read what you write!!!!! I like how what you say just hits HARD the essence of what’s going on in Mudlarkland. I always look forward to reading what you have to say.

    Gang, Keep Free Speech alive. It’s all we have to promote the Human Race.

    Comment by tdrewhardin — December 30, 2022 @ 10:51 am

  4. […] is Coach Ochoa coaching, exactly? The only strips we’ve seen in this season had her holding Gil’s balls in a sack or running the Milford boys through a dribbling two balls at once drill. Is there no […]

    Pingback by They seem confident, but Toby’s looking a little jaundiced tbh | This Week in Milford — January 21, 2023 @ 10:07 pm

  5. I just added Coach Ochoa as another category; Ned had it on his to-do list since the new year. Done.

    Comment by robmize2013 — January 22, 2023 @ 1:20 pm

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