This Week in Milford

January 20, 2018

Jadine, honey is that you?


Okay, we get it. Paloma Padilla is suffering from survivor’s guilt of a sort, as she’s complained to her teammates at The Bucket for the past two days. Apparently when you say “chunky bracelets” they just bring you those, too. If this week has been prologue, we’ll spend the next couple of months having Paloma and everyone else tell us about things that happened that we never get to see happen.

Tell-Don’t-Show Disease has spread to Jacky Elenore (who Googles up a blank; guess that spelling throws things off) and Jadine Bynes, who rubs her cheek as if to show us some abrasion or contusion inflicted on her by Paloma. Jadine’s a veteran Lady Mudlark who’s used to getting knocked around by her teammates during practice. She should know how to handle that by now, assuming she’s gotten over those stomach problems.

I’m more impressed by Jacky’s ventriloquist act; throwing your voice while drinking water isn’t the easiest trick.

Today’s post title was a gimme. Get you some!


[technical difficulties, please stand by]

Filed under: Gil Thorp, metapost — teenchy @ 1:09 pm


As I write (2:00pm EST) GoComics has not updated its Gil Thorp strip for today. I didn’t realize GoComics performed a nonessential government function. Stay tuned…

January 13, 2018

Gil Thorp Doesn’t Care About Huddled Masses


Boy, I sure feel like trotting out my New Yorker-referencing post from last March. Could Gil be any more of an insensitive prick? Jordy’s cousin Jorge has had his home destroyed and is just looking for some semblance of order in his life right about now. All Gil cares about is that the kid isn’t as tall and broad as he’d like in the showers on the court. Remember, Gil, you go to war with the basketball team you have, not the one you might want or wish to have at a later time.

Surely Coach Thorf can pull out his Little Golden Book of Sports Strategies from the Early 20th Century and find one suitable for a team full of guards. Small ball, run-and-gun, a lot of forced switching up on defense, with a focus on speed, agility and a whole lot of conditioning training – the options for a size-challenged basketball team are out there. Then again, for a coach who pulls old formations and strategies out of his ass mid-season and expects his players to adapt almost immediately, that may be too much to expect.

Jordy Castillo is becoming that rarest of birds in the Thorpiverse: a guy with a goatee who isn’t a cardboard villain or fly in the ointment.  Jorge looks to come from good stock.

January 11, 2018

I bet he can handle himself alright if he has to


Born in Puerto Rico

Raised in Georgia

My mama gave me the basic facts of life (of life…)


On top of all that, he played for the Nats.* Geez, hasn’t Jorge Padilla suffered enough?

Today’s inspiration:

*He could instead be the economist or the lawyer, which would be par for the Rubin course.

January 6, 2018

Look for the Union Label


Jordy Castillo was Milford baseball’s best story almost three years ago, but his story was never told.  Now it might be – or at least his backstory since then.  I think Kaz is trying to tell us Jordy went to play junior college (a/k/a “juco”) baseball, since junior chambers of commerce don’t typically have baseball programs.

Looks like Jordy’s already joined the union, if I read the lettering on his jacket correctly. What brings him to Gil’s office, and what’s captured his attention there?

“Say, Coach, that’s a nice team photo of your state football champions you got there. Looks like there’s some substandard wiring behind it, though. I heard the Milford School Board went with the lowest bidder when they upgraded, went with some scab – I mean, non-union – outfit to do the job.  It’d sure be a shame if it shorted out back here.  You could lose all these nice pictures, and that coffee pot, and your mug with your name on it… Oh, where was I? So, yeah, I’m an apprentice electrician now.”

It’s way too early to tell if Jordy is Chekhov’s electrician, but if this arc turns into a story about the current job market and the pursuit of a trade versus a college degree after high school it could be interesting, if not ham-fisted as per usual.

January 4, 2018

Hoops Analysis This Soon? Why Bother?


Every now and then an astute TWIM commenter brings up the notion that Neal Rubin’s Milford, in which high school kids go out for, make, and play regularly on teams in multiple sports, isn’t necessarily an accurate reflection of the current state of youth sports in the US. We occasionally get a glimpse into that world – the summer 2015 arc being a prime example – but by and large it’s a phenomenon that gets overlooked in the Thorpiverse. Given that the deepest drink of success juice Gil’s had in along time came by way of a kid whose sole focus up to that point had been a single sport, you’d think he’d be more amenable to the idea. It might even make for a more intriguing story line than we’re used to seeing. (Me, I was wondering if there’d be some ramifications from Jaquan Case walking around Milford in a hoodie in summertime, but Rubin spit that bit.)

But the Gil Thorp model of team-building probably plays well in places where they still read GRIT Gil Thorp in print. It keeps Gil in a coaching monopoly and Marty in a spiffy crate. So maybe we’ll get treated to a quintet of lunky hoopers dishing out elbows and concussions whilst setting picks for A.A.Ron Aagard (whose splintered home life will hopefully get picked up on as the arc progresses) and another wispy guy in the Max Bacon/Lini Verde mold.

December 30, 2017

He goes on after some lip-sync chicks


On this waxed up floor and these painted halls
My dad showed up and grew some balls
Tonight, tonight, we’re gonna run the veer
My creepy uncle’s outta here

New Thayer had us down six-oh
Then we got the veer to flow
Took a hit and I got up slow
Knocked out? Rick Scott didn’t know
Doctors said I was good to go
Football, not just talent shows
Gary told mom to say “no”
Told me to play talent shows

Well Uncle Gary never said “‘Bye, Rick”
Always knew he was kind of a dick
I’m feelin’ good since that knee I took
Oh, Gary, always givin’ that look

First I had a mild sprain
Doc made me skip a game
Coach Thorp made me take it slow
Least I got to sing at home
Uncle Gary salts the mine
Makes a YouTube video
Just wanna play the line
Not just play at talent shows

Well it’s the slowest year in my life I guess
In just two weeks, it’s Valley Tech
Season’s been a wreck…

Can they roll
Without Soto?
Coach Thorp, he can use the phone
‘Cause my mom, well, she don’t know

Might be playin’ in the snow
Week before the talent show
My old man still calls me “kiddo”
We might still play in March, you never know

It’s too late for playdowns, here we go…

(profuse apologies P. Westerberg)





December 28, 2017

There’s a 10-cent Big Guy Deposit Fee in Milford


As this strip stumbles forward to end the football season and the calendar year simultaneously, the slapdash approach to tying up loose plot ends prompts me to approach today’s post in a similar fashion.

“That big kid?” Maybe Gil should’ve signed up for baseline testing himself.

Nice to see Marcie from Peanuts grew up and landed a teaching gig. Is she teaching math (cosines?) or opera (Così fan tutte)? That big kid can sing, or so we’ve been told.

The part of Ricardo “Call Me Richard” Soto, Sr. is being played today by Ivan Reitman-era Bill Murray.  I reckon Billy was able to tear himself away from Mr. Bakst at The Gin Joint. YHS was unable to make it to Charleston this Christmas and so, not unlike Marty Moon, is drinking alone.

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