This Week in Milford

August 4, 2021

“I’d keep playing. I don’t think the heavy stuff’s going to come down for quite a while.”

It’s a day full of cliches at the MCC, but why blind pigs and acorns? Why not blind squirrels and nuts? Blind pigs and acorns make the best jamón ibérico de bellota, but with size of the bets Carter’s been making I think squirrel jerky Underwood Deviled Ham is more in line with his budget.

Meanwhile, something mysterious appears on the horizon. Funnel cloud? Vic Doucette’s grandpa van? Hendricks’ crappy shot to bluff Heather and Gil? Why not all of the above? Will this group call it quits before they get to see the true nature of the sandbag, or will they play through and tempt the wrath of higher powers?

meta: Wasn’t Local H a topic of discussion on a Rock ‘n Roll Thursday some time back? I’ve lost track of those ever since I switched from posting Thursdays to Wednesdays. In any event I just stumbled across Local H’s cover of TV On The Radio (a band I’ve really been into for the past year or so)’s “Wolf Like Me.” Sharing it here with the original to jog memories and invite comparisons.

August 2, 2021

And We’re Golfing!

Filed under: Gil Thorp, golf, Milford CC — nedryerson @ 3:47 am

Gil and Heather are not wasting any time! They’re gonna play golf with Carter “Cart” Hendricks to get an up close and personal look at Cart’s technique. Does Gil routinely gamble on the golf course. I guess he’s going to have to to get the full picture. Maybe Gil’s mission is only to see how good Hendricks’ game actually is and we won’t see any gambling. We’ll find out soon enough. We’ll also see what Heather’s role is supposed to be. Maybe she’s been lying in the weeds waiting to drain both of these chumps of some cash. She’s got huge debts to pay off after all.

I wonder how long we’ll stay with this golf outing? Will it be like the golf sequence in Goldfinger? I love that sequence. If you think it’s long and boring, try reading Fleming’s novel. He describes pretty much the whole round of golf. At any rate, Gil Thorp is not James Bond. There is no tight pacing to disrupt here, so I say let’s watch some golf and really meet this plot head on. It’s your honor, sir.

July 31, 2021

Summers in Milford Are Like Deodorant

sandbagger (n.) – one who conceals abilities or assets at first in order to gain tactical advantage later.

John Jawor is back, looking like he’s dropped a few pounds since we last saw him. That’s not all he’s dropped: there’s also the heavy hint that Carter Hendricks is a sandbagger on the links at the MCC. I freely admit I’m no golfer, so I don’t know the veracity of this explanation of the origins of the term “sandbagging.” However, if one of Hendricks’ patsies gets wind of what’s been going on and breaks his thumbs, I won’t be disappointed.

The only violence we’re likely to see is the awkward crashing together of this summer’s disparate plot lines. Will Gil and Marjie hatch a secret plot to have Heather Burns go undercover as an easy mark for Hendricks in a coed scramble? I’m about as eager to find out as I am to watch the rest of baseball season.

July 21, 2021

Getting Hammered at the MCC? What Else Is New?

“How small of a stipend are we talking about, Mr. Coach Thorp?

“Remember how far I held my fingers apart earlier? That’s how small your stipend will be.”

“Seriously? I thought you were talking about your post-practice shrinkage in the showers.”

“Just for that crack, no hot dog for you. Just a drink per game.”

So between her internship at the Star and her stipend from Gildeaux, Heather’s gonna pay down those student loans. Yeah, sure. Maybe that’s where the “I’d love to have you” part comes in. (Offensive line coach at a Big Ten school? Only if she was coaching them the way Clara Bow was alleged to coach the boys at USC.) But hey, at least she’ll be making more than Steve Boone. Can any of the faithful confirm whether he ever got a raise? Will he quit once he finds out about Heather?

Back to the golf mooks. TIL Vegas is a golf betting game for foursomes that involves combining each of a pair’s scores to get a numerical value; the pair with the lower value for a hole wins money from the pair with the higher value of a certain amount per difference in stroke (see here for an example). It’s just more filler to hammer home the point that gambling’s going on at the MCC, but the fact that Hendricks is still wearing his red polo shirt might lead us to think he’s an MCC employee, in which case his betting would be either doubleplusungood or quickly swept under the turf.

July 19, 2021

Carter Presses

Filed under: Gil Thorp, golf, huge earrings, Milford CC, Pointy Fingers — nedryerson @ 5:33 am

Let’s get comfortable here at Milford CC. We might be here for a while and that’s fine by me. I want to find out about Carter Hendricks. Gil seems to indicate that Hendricks has been a staple on the course since last summer, so maybe he’s not a hustler if he’s a known quantity. Also, he seems to be playing in the same foursome as before, so if he’s hustling them repeatedly, it’s kind of on them. Are the the same guys? I don’t know for sure. They are just grey silhouettes today. I guess I’m just going by one guy wearing the same hat. Plus there was a bald guy in the group in the last strip. We don’t have time to get names from these guys, so who knows.

How will Heather Burns fit in? She interviewed at the Star, so she has some journalistic ambitions. Is there a story in Carter Hendricks or maybe just a personal interest? Like, where are we going with this?

Without much else to discuss, I’ll fall back on one of my favorite inane topics, the process of coloring the strip. The first item up for dissection is the white band aid Carter Hendricks has on his finger. I can’t recall ever seeing a white band aid, at least not the standard consumer band aid for tuna can injuries to digits. But if the finger is already Caucasian flesh tone, then I guess a colorist has to make a choice on the band aid. Whigham didn’t make it a Spiderman band aid to telegraph anything exotic, so we get this “unnatural” white one.

The other coloring issue that has nagged me for the last few strips is that it seems like the coloring person or persons in their usual laziness and/or inattention to the actual story seems to think Gil and Carter Hendricks are the same person. Sure, two different characters can wear the same colored clothing. This is a sports strip, often with many characters in the same team colored gear. But, as a rule, it is probably best to differentiate different characters, especially characters with similar looks, by putting them in different color clothing. When Gil and Hendricks have been in the same strips, they’ve both been in red. The colorists don’t know what’s going on, and don’t care.

July 17, 2021

Please Let This Golf Shark Be Gil’s Long-lost Son

Filed under: Gil Thorp, golf, huge earrings, Milford CC, Recycled art, talking hand — teenchy @ 11:35 am

Continuing with an idea thrown out by robmize yesterday, kids fresh out of college do not need to have their life’s trajectories neatly laid out before them the moment they’re handed their diplomas. The realities of today’s working world and the high costs of post-secondary education weigh on today’s twentysomethings like they did on few generations before them. So kudos to Rubin for painting that aspect of Heather’s character with a fairly accurate brush. Still Gil can’t help but be a tiny bit of a dick with his little dig at the many things Heather tried to do during her high school days.

Speaking of tiny dickishness: I imagine Friend of TWIM and fellow Thorp snarker Mopman is having a field day with P2 here, skipping over the Get Smart references and going straight to the crotchal area.

Today’s bombshell may be an unintentional one, however. Between the hairline and the coloring, he’s made golf shark Hendricks into a dead ringer for Gildeaux and vice versa. Okay, maybe the sideburns are a millimeter or two different but seriously, how lazy can he get? Lazy enough that we could hope against hope that Hendricks is in reality long lost Thorp son Jami. Now that would make for an interesting summer plot…

Time for an afternoon siesta. Have at it, gentle readers, and catch you next week.

July 16, 2021

Summer Burns

Cant believe Heather doesnt know where Gil is in mid – July– didnt she go to Milford for 4 summers and hang out at MCC at least once?

What the hell is going on in P2? Bunch of little kids doing everything but learn to play golf. Nobodys even looking at Gil, or at each other. Again, the parents are presumably paying for golf lessons, and Gil says– Ok kids, lessons over. Go back to goofing around with golf clubs that in 1 case are longer then the kid. And if thats a putting green, then I’m a monkeys uncle.

P3 has the reunion with another former student, around whom the summer plot will presumably run. And first things first– Heather has no idea what she’s gonna do after college. No shame– many people take a while to find their niche in the competitive job market no matter how they did in college. But my god– by freakin July at least she should have SOMETHING lined up. Lifeguard, internship at some business, store manager, jesus– well maybe I’ll head over to the golf course and have lemonade with Gildo, and he can hook me up with some part time coaching gig until I find a real job. Those counselors at Milford really did a good job preparing me for the future. When all else fails, head to the golf course. Heck with college degrees, resumes, interviews, more interviews, ol Gil will always bail me out. Hey I could always wax the floors with Steve Luhm.

July 14, 2021

I’m shocked – SHOCKED! – that I’m using this line again!

We start today with more golf gibberish to the effect that grinning idiot Hendricks here flubbed a shot but got lucky and close to the hole. As a result, he wins a bet with the sturdy looking dude with the color-changing shirt and bucket hat. Shades of Lanny Penn again, maybe – but what’s this? I know there’s a movement afoot to replace Andrew Jackson’s likeness on the $20 bill, but it’s with Harriet Tubman‘s, not Val Kilmer’s.

Quick cut to the offices of the Milford Star where Marjie Ducey’s talking to her editor, whose body looks suspiciously like Gil’s when he’s making the mangia bene hand gesture. Presumably he’s got Heather Burns’ resume in front of him, which should look a little like this:

EDUCATION

BA, Journalism, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, 2021

High School Diploma, Milford High School, Milford, ??, 2017

WORK EXPERIENCE

Assistant Coach, Milford 7-on-7 football practice, 2017

Life Coach to Confused NBA Players, 2017

Varsity Football, Tight End, Tackling Dummy, Fifth-String Quarterbacks Coach, Assistant Trainer, and General Distraction, 2016

Varsity Soccer, Dead Weight, ???-2016

Alright, Rubin’s got about six weeks for this arc. How are these rando panels gonna come together, then, gentle readers? Heather Burns gets a job with the Star, but not a permanent job – Milford’s too much of a tank town to need more than one reporter – so she’ll serve as Marjie’s unpaid intern. Marjie puts her on the trail of this gambling and counterfeiting ring at the Milford CC, launching Heather’s career as an investigative reporter* somewhere else while Marjie gets to keep her top dog status at the Star.

*Because that worked out so well for Dafne Dafonte.

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