This Week in Milford

October 20, 2018

Let’s Hope Gil Doesn’t Bring In Social Services Again

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We’ve been down this road before, a little over a year and a half ago to be exact. Nosy classmates stick their noses where they don’t belong, Gil gets wind and the next thing you know another Milford High kid’s getting his family busted up like…uh, well, another family that got busted up.  And what’s up with Andre and Movie Boy Weird Joe Bolek getting so chummy so quickly? (I thought Andre’s first word balloon had an extraneous comma.) Are they gonna turn into this year’s Ken Brown and Mike Granger?

Why should Gil know about Tiki’s excessive tardiness? Is there some unwritten rule that Milford athletes who are chronically late to school get kicked off the team, or suspended for the first half against a cupcake non-conference opponent, or something?  Gil suspended Barry Bader for getting ejected but made him travel with the team; maybe there’s some similar obscure punishment in Tiki’s future. (Sorry, I left this sentence unfinished last night.)

Stranger things have happened, so if this ends with a GoFundMe to replace Tiki’s beater Plymouth with something newer so he can get his sister to school on time, then I’m cool with it. Sorry to keep y’all waiting on today’s post.

 

 

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October 17, 2018

Milford @ Jefferson: Haiku

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The Jeffs are wearing

Helmets that look like Dartmouth’s

Or pencil sharpeners

 

Another team dressed in

White at home, like the Cowboys

Or Bayou Bengals

 

When did the players

Stop wearing wristbands and switch

Over to Fitbits?

 

Tiki Jansen won’t

Be getting torched on this play

Saw that pun coming

 

But wait, he’s been flagged

For making a reacharound

Not in the shower

 

Marty Moon cannot

Believe his eyes; dancing ice cubes

In front of floodlights

 

That’s liquor talking

It’s just some good old lens flare

Lay off the rotgut

 

 

October 13, 2018

Sister Act

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Thank goodness we don’t have to listen to Kaz pretend to be a film buff to get a kid to play football anymore. That was getting awkward.

Know what else is gonna get awkward real fast? The secondary plot about Tiki Jansen. Besides not being a star and having a ratty orphan car, we didn’t know much about him until last week, when we learned he has “a slow sister problem.”  Rubin left it to interpretation then that Tiki’s sister might have a hard time getting ready for school. Now he drops broad hints that fifth-grader Angela might not be in the regular Milford school system.

How is Rubin gonna tie all these loose ends together?  Maybe Joe Bolek gets together with Tiki and Angela and they watch films of Nate Kaeding together, I dunno. (Nah, that makes no sense; Kaeding was a placekicker, not a punter.)  I shudder to think how this strip is gonna handle IEPs, Least Restrictive Environments, developmental pediatricians and all the baggage that comes with them. On that bright note, Happy Saturday, TWIMers!

October 10, 2018

Kaz Has More Balls Than Joe…

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… and that’s all I have to say about that.

Seriously, what kind of bullshit rationale is that for joining the team?  What can Kaz and Gil expect out of this kid Joe?  With such a short attention span, who’s to say Bolek won’t wander off just when the Mudlarks need him to punt a ball away? He can’t even be bothered to stick around to see the end of the game. (Here’s where I break the fourth wall for a moment to ask TWIM‘s unofficial SID billytheskink how many times we’ve been shown a Milford football game without knowing who won.)

I could be bothered to supply a rationale for Joe – for example, he’d seen enough of Milford’s bad, non-Sam Finn punting to know that the team needed him – but why should I come up with an excuse for him? He’s gonna need enough excuses for himself when his teammates stuff him in a locker for not coming out and busting his hump in practice from the beginning of the season.

October 3, 2018

I came here to snark on bad coaching, not to become a cineaste!

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Kaz and Joe stood there and looked at each other in silence for five minutes?  That settles it: Kaz is not salaried faculty or staff but hourly contingent labor. In any universe even remotely based in reality a coach might have given a student 5 seconds – okay, 10 seconds if we’re being generous – to answer before telling them to get out of their office the hallway and go to their next period class, or catch a school bus, or whatever.

As with The Legend of Bagger Vance, I’m not going to rehash the plot of Rififi here. The Wikipedia entry for the film states that “[a]fter he was blacklisted from Hollywood, [Director Jules] Dassin found work in France where he was asked to direct Rififi. Despite his distaste for parts of the original novel, Dassin agreed to direct the film. He shot Rififi while working with a low budget, without a star cast, and with the production staff working for low wages.” Low budget? No stars? Staff working for low wages? We could be talking about the Mudlark football team and its coaching staff.

I’d be okay with the next 28 panels of this strip having no dialogue and just action. You?

 

metapost: Do any of you loyal readers read TWIM on a smartphone?  I compose it on a Dell laptop with AdBlock Plus installed, but usually read comments during the day on an Android phone. Often when I do, I get spammy popup ads telling “Dear Andriod User” that I have won something or other and which I cannot close or navigate away from without closing my browser.  If anyone else is having those problems, please comment (I mean, in addition to any snark) so we can get to the bottom of this. Thanks.

September 29, 2018

If Joe Is Rannulph, Then Who Is Bagger?

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Well, that’s not the movie I expected Joe Bolek to be talking about.

I honestly struggled with this post for a couple of hours, as Rubin’s analogy – or, rather, my interpretation of Rubin’s analogy – has made me a little uncomfortable.  Without rehashing the entire plot of The Legend of Bagger Vance (or The Mahabharata) here, suffice it to say that the film was roundly criticized for its reliance on the stereotype of The Magical Negro.  If Joe sees himself in the Rannulph Junuh/Arjuna role, who does he see as his Bagger Vance?

Andre Ruffin, who told him that the Mudlarks need a punter? Andre’s the only identifiably black player we’ve seen in the arc thus far, but his role has been more a conduit of information rather than a guy who makes things happen or a stern member of the judiciary.  Kaz, who’s trying to convince him to come punt for them?  Since Joe calls Kaz “Mr. K” and not “Coach K,” I don’t think Joe can go for Kaz being his mentor. Besides, Joe’s already been clued in about the Mudlarks’ punting woes and has probably concluded that no one on the Milford coaching staff can properly coach a punter.

Maybe, then, it’s Joe who sees himself as Bagger Vance: a godlike sage who will teach some hapless Mudlark the fine art of punting, asking for nothing in return but the opportunity to analyze game film. Next thing you know, we’ll see him down by Rosemary and Cameron, handing out The Bhagavad Gita.

September 26, 2018

Save Filion

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Today’s missing panel 4:

Kaz (chasing Andre Ruffin down the hall because, unlike Gil, he doesn’t have the power to pull kids out of class): Who’s this punter Mike Filion told me you know about?

Andre Ruffin: Um, he’s sick. My best friend’s sister’s boyfriend’s brother’s girlfriend heard from this guy who knows this kid who’s going with the girl who saw him pass out at Schultz’s Polynesian Garden last night. I guess it’s pretty serious.

Who is this imposter claiming to be Mike Filion, anyway? Whigham needs to find a model for Filion and stick with it.  No matter how he looks, Filion has smarts enough to throw Kaz off his scent.  He saw that shitshow unfold in Oakwood and wants no part of it. Maybe he’s no unicorn in football cleats but he knows that one roughing the kicker call (and I wouldn’t put it past Valley Tech to try it) and Milford’s out a starting QB.

Anyone wanna bet that the kid who used to be pretty good at punting is movie buff Joe Bolek? Yeah, didn’t think so.

 

September 22, 2018

Don’t Look So Excited, Jason

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Jason looks as though he’d rather be keeping wicket for the Croydon Gentlemen as Kaz readies him to go over the top, then under the bus.  If this is the same Jason (Weibe) who just scored a touchdown on the last drive, why put one of your offensive weapons at risk like that?  I get that he’s a tight end and, unlike Heather Burns, probably has enough size to hold his own on the line, but still: we’ve seen no exposition that he’s practiced at the position.  How many elbows does Kaz have to get his arm around Jason’s shoulder like that?

Speaking of the anatomically implausible, is Sam Finn rolling on his own ankle as he reaches for the felt electric football?   That’ll set up a Weibe-to-Malouf punting combo even more disastrous than the last two.  There are obvious answers here, first being have the Mudlarks’ regular center snap the ball directly to Sam, who can take a two-step drop and and quick-kick.  If Milford operates out of the shotgun from time to time, the center should be used to snapping the ball a greater distance than a conventional snap, which would give Sam even more room for a quick-kick.

This will give Marty, now sporting cupcake liners in his headset, prime fodder for his postgame show.  How could Gil, Kaz, Steve & co. put such an ill-prepared special teams unit on the field?  Did they spend too much time on baseball?

metapost: The slow-motion disaster post-Hurricane Florence continues to unfold in Bakst country.  We no longer get a bonfire in Milford, but down there is a bonfire that’s having its own share of troubles.  Again, if any of you TWIMers were in the path of Florence and are dealing with the aftermath, holler at us and let us know you’re alright.

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