This Week in Milford

May 2, 2022

They Shoot Video, Don’t They?

Filed under: actual action, baseball, Brown Hair, Colorist Error, Heather Burns — nedryerson @ 3:44 pm

So, what have we got going on today? It’s still Heather Burns inexplicably shooting video for the Milford Star. That’s right. This dying media enterprise that dumped Marjie Ducey’s salary to hire this dolt is trying to stay relevant by putting video on its website. It’s also diluting it’s all ready craptastic prep sports coverage by replacing garbage reporting with a shaky video of people in the stands? Notice that Heather isn’t using a tripod and she’s holding that “beast” out in front of her. Yeah, that’s the ticket. Visitors to the Milford Star website have been clamoring for this kind of content. If you can’t get a video of a kid sitting in a tree*, the next best thing is randos watching the Mudlarks!

Oh, yeah, there’s a baseball game going on and Gonzalo Aceves is throttling Central. I assume panel 2 indicates that Central batters can only manage weak grounders against Gonzo’s dazzling stuff. Huzzah!

Of course, all this is mostly in service of our A plot, the mysterious Mr. Hamm, who is camera shy for some undisclosed reason. Ruth Hamm is even throwing herself in front of Ol’ Hamm to shield him just in case Heather manages to get a clear, in focus shot of the mysterious bastard. Ruth Hamm may be so afraid of being identified that she changed her hair color since the last game.

*Kid stuck in tree refers to a strip from many years ago where the storyline was about this kid Andrew Gregory who was running around Milford taking videos of exciting things (like a kid sitting in a tree) and selling them to the Star. I was going to try and embed the images from Jason’s posts back in 2008 as it might be more dynamic than just linking back to the posts, but it’s an ordeal to scroll back through fourteen years’ worth of images used in this blog. Links will have to suffice. I think Andrew had a better camera than whatever relic Heather found down at the Star.

March 26, 2022

Somebody Could’ve Used a Magic Peacock

Admit it, gentle readers: Unless you’re a fan of one of the other remaining teams in the Big Dance, you’re all St. Peter’s fans now. March Madness has its own magic peacocks this year, and they have nothing to do with an imagined reincarnation of a player’s recently deceased sibling. Not the Catholic university in North Jersey anyone would have expected to shine in the tournament, is it? Always great to see a Cinderella in March, and yet another reminder that it’s easier for schools to be competitive in college basketball that they can be in college football.

It’s also something to talk about besides this arc-ender that feels like a mistake. This story feels like it should have ended yesterday, with these two mooks hanging Pranit Smoothie upside down by his ankles in front of a stunned home crowd an emptied-out gym. (A shame Pranit Rock couldn’t have them doing the same to his welchers. It would’ve made more sense than that cockamamie bunch of lies he cooked up.) Betcha Gil wasn’t expecting his hired muscle to flex on his own teammates.

Reading today’s strip give me the feeling that Rubin & Whigham intended yesterday’s strip to be the last in the arc, then realized that they had not only counted the days incorrectly but also forgot to end it with their signature touches:

Lame joke? Check!

Main character exiting through doorway? Check!

Awkward high-five/fist bump? Check!

Jazz hands? Check!

Hey, did anybody notice they’re playing baseball again? With more wacky rules to make the game more attractive to the attention-span challenged? Wonder how Rubin will approach the season. Another spunky, talented out-of-towner moves to Milford and joins the Mudlarks? The team rallies around a stuffed animal or some other superstitious good luck charm? A slight infraction leads to the benching of a star player until the last game of the season, when nothing’s on the line? What’s the over/under on any of these happening?

See you Monday to find out where it all starts. Until then, go Peacocks!

March 23, 2022

A Good Season? Guess We’ll Have to Take Gil’s Word for It

Boy that Hollis sure took some tough stands, didn’t she? Calling out teammates who sipped hard seltzer and twisting Mimi’s arm to get more playing time and fluff up her resume was tough. Speaking of tough stands, tough guy Gil finally eases up on Pranit Hollywood when nothing’s on the line…

… or at least we’re being led to think that. A quick scan of the game results and I see Milford’s at 4-2, 2-2 in the conference, with 1 unknown outcome.* More than one conference loss usually implies no playdowns, so it’s safe to say the Mudlarks are playing out the string. And of course Milford was out of it because Pranit didn’t play. No one ever steps up for Milford.

Now, with nothing on the line and Kaz pulling the baseball gear out of storage, Gil relents and lets Pranit Smoothie back in the game. A meaningless win, some platitudes for the next two days, a lame joke on Saturday, and then time to pound that Budweiser hit the old batting cage. Wonder if Pranit will ever collect on the gambling debts owed him. Guess we’ll have to wait and see if he shows up for baseball with all his limbs intact.

What a wasted use of Marty this season. No way he wouldn’t have gotten word of Pranit’s suspension and run with it like a drunk with scissors. Even the Chief is phoning it in. He’s put Tevin’s head on Gordon Achebe’s Ted Kluszewskiesque body.

* The season so far:

@ All Saints W, 57-56

Redford W, 60-54

Jefferson L

Goshen W (“a bounce back”)

@ New Thayer W (“comfortable”)

@ Madison ???

Central L, 58-60 (notice how a three would’ve won it? Pranit the implied scapegoat)

March 16, 2022

“Coaching”? Bwahahahaha! >snort<

I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to post today’s strip but I can’t stop laughing at it. Will update directly. >snort<

Phew! That took longer than I thought.

Of all Milford’s rivals Valley Tech is always the chippiest, and the girl with the blue ponytail does her best to keep up that tradition. First with the reach-in, which begs the question: If someone fouls Hollis, does that make her a Talley whacker? Then, having heard all the on-court talk about Hollis being a selfish, bossy snitch, VT girl fires off a sarcastic fascist salute. Heil Hollis!

All that pales in comparison to the chef’s kiss that is the last panel. Acquiescing to a player’s request to change positions and, well, letting her succeed there is considered “coaching”? Pretty low bar to clear in Milford to be sure, but that’s no bar at all. Maybe Gil agrees and he’s the one being sarcastic.

Oh, and when was the last time you saw anyone play racquetball? For me, I think it was during Poppy Bush’s administration. Even then, everybody’s racquets had strings.

March 12, 2022

Even a Broken Coach Is Right Twice a Day

Filed under: basketball, Brown Hair, Heather Burns, High Five Fail, Madison Time, Mimi Thorp — teenchy @ 2:59 pm

Today’s post title originally had something to do with hogs or squirrels, but I was informed that using that language is considered ableist. Suffice it to say that Mimi got lucky in Madison when Hollis stepped up and into the guard slot with some success. So what if some of her teammates are yapping about her cutting in on someone else’s playing time? That’s part of Mimi’s job – not the job of some first-year zoomie-in-waiting – to nip dissension in the ranks in the bud.

Besides lucky Mimi, everyone else in today’s strip appears to be some kind of rando. These two Lady Mudlarks in the foreground aren’t any we’ve been introduced to by name. They don’t seem too pissy about Hollis’ playing time or lack thereof; they just seem happy to have beaten Madison, even if their handclasp/high five/whatever seems a bit awkward.

This dark blonde/light brown-haired woman Mimi’s chatting to about Hollis’ game: gotta be Heather Burns, right? Who else would give a rat’s about how Hollis played and, what’s more, who else would Mimi give a rat’s to share her thoughts on Hollis’ game with? Hollis’ mom?

Not much else to add today since this is sort of an anti-cliffhanger. Nice set of posts by my fellow bloggers and nice, insightful comments by you gentle readers this week. Hope your team gets selected on Selection Sunday tomorrow. If not, hope they get selected for the NIT. If not, hope they find a decent replacement for their canned coach (at least that’s what I’m hoping).

February 16, 2022

Some Hints Are Bigger Than Others

Could you be bothered to sort out the botched language in yesterday’s strip? Yeah, me neither, except to figure out that the end-of-game long bank shot caused the team Pranit bet on to not cover the spread. So he lost on a bad beat. Bad beats are statistically unlikely, but don’t tell that to self-righteous Tevin there. He needs to stop smoking whatever he’s smoking there and do the math.

Doesn’t it seem like Tevin’s itching to rat Pranit out to Gil and Kaz? Now there’s a strategy: Getting tired of playing sportsball but don’t want to quit voluntarily? Get a teammate kicked off the team for something that violates someone’s moral code. Bonus points if the teammate is a good player. Miss the playdowns; season ends early; and you look like the better person – or at least the morally superior one.

That gambit may actually play out on the girl’s team. Some rando blonde lady we’ve never seen Mimi introduces Cami Ochoa (which one? there are multiples), who she’s promoting from JV to varsity during the season. This doesn’t happen very often at Milford High; the last one I can think of is the scrawny but speedy football receiver Max Ortiz. Too many bodies on the Lady Mudlark bench now? Time to make room for Cami!

But who has to make room for Cami? How about the one player who, with the exception of one game, hasn’t been playing as well as she had last season? The one who tasted hard seltzer at a party last week? Now Zoomie-in-training Hollis can dime Cressa out and get her kicked off the team. Talented but inexperienced Cami is too little, too late; Milford misses the playdowns; and Hollis looks like the better person – or at least the one who upheld an honor code.

What about Cressa? Collateral damage.

February 5, 2022

“Jefferson beat MYOB, that’s how Jefferson did.”

“Not checking scores, Coach. Just nudes from some rando chick I don’t know. Kelly something-or-other. Says she’s a travel agent, wants to take me around the world.” If Pranit Hollywood had any stones, that’d be his reply – not only to Kaz but also to Tevin. “Oh yeah, got some pics of that little gymnast girl you been sniffin’ around, too. Said she was gonna balance my beam.” At least it’d explain Pizza Pranit’s breaking out in a sweat and sheepish grin.

Today’s strip is a whole bunch of mind your own damn business. How does Kaz know if Pranit Fitness is checking scores if he’s not looking at Pardon My Pranit’s phone? When did Tevin get appointed team captain, or to a service academy? Does everyone at Milford High think The Daily Pranit’s business is theirs now? Of course they do…

… or at least they did once he opened his trap about his Sportsduke shenanigans to more than one person. If Pranit of the Apes had kept his frickin’ mouth shut, the only problems he had would’ve been his own, at least until his losses started affecting his play. Not until then would the coaches have cared about what he does off the court. We already had the “gambling is bad, mmmmkay?” story line this past summer. Did we really need it again?

January 1, 2022

And Pranit Was His Name-o!

Welcome back and Happy 2022, TWIMers!

The year and the Milford boys’ basketball season starts off on a high note when Trevor Lawrence Gabe Landau kicks it outside to the one Mudlark who hasn’t been chilly stinking it up from beyond the three-point line, Pranit Smith. Pranit drains the trey, or so we’re told; no onomatopoeic “swish” of confirmation but no onomatopoeic “clang,” “clunk” or “thunk” either.

Cut to the bench where Gil has pulled off his jacket and given it to Kaz to wear for the final seconds, or at least it looks that way. This is the first we’ve seen of Kaz during this game, and maybe he had one on this whole time. Is Gil in shirtsleeves or still in his jacket? Did Pranit drain the color of of Gil’s jacket like he drained the trey? Are we gonna have to figure out the teams and the players from one panel to the next from here on?

meta: It pains me to have to post this, but as I write news comes over the wire of the death today of Deacon Dan Reeves. Bad enough that we’re reeling from the loss of Betty White and Celtics hero Sam Jones yesterday. Deacon Dan got a shout out from yhs in TWIM some time ago.

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