This Week in Milford

October 9, 2019

Rock Around the (Poor) Clock (Management)

Filed under: actual action, exposition comics, football, Gil Thorp, Just plain sad, Tilden — teenchy @ 8:36 am

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WDIG Newsflash: This just in: As a gesture to honor the memory of the late Bull Bushka, Milford High to change the nickname of its football team from the Mudlarks to the Scapegoats… Wait, what’s that?… They’re only giving that nickname to their backup running back? Never mind. Back to our regularly scheduled broadcast.

Geez, good thing Rubin remembered to give us the score yesterday, a week and a half into this game. We never saw any scoring plays so how we got to 19-14 is anybody’s guess. We also never saw Gil burn through all of his second half timeouts, or implement the game plan for the second-string running back to get the ball on every play.  He might have had Schuring look a little further downfield on fourth and long, but maybe Charlie saw Gabe Salazar overrule Gil’s play call in the huddle and thought he’d do the same thing.

No matter. Charlie missed it by that much and now that the Tilden game is over, the blame game can begin.

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September 28, 2019

With A Great Ground Game Comes Great Responsibility

Filed under: Coach Kaz, exposition comics, Fat Guys, football, freak hands, Gil Thorp — teenchy @ 2:29 pm

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After a hot sweaty workout complete with gun show, Gil and Kaz towel down and make a little pillow talk. His guard down, a dreamy-faced Gil lets slip just exactly who it is he fantasizes about during these training room sessions. Kaz pretends not to notice, instead continuing his amateur private dick schtick and nosing around for more info on the tight-lipped Chance Macy.  There are as many valid reasons for a high school student with otherwise good grades to be a year behind other students his age as there are readers of this blog.

Speaking of Chance, quick cut to his dinner table where Macy dwarfs his grandparents and where there’s also an empty chair. Grandpa follows Gil’s lead and adds another to the pile of cryptic comments in the fall arc thus far. Where are Macy’s parents? Is he gonna have a similar backstory to Silent John Pascoe? Will it make Chance’s grandparents his equivalent to Aunt May and Uncle Ben? Will he get bitten by a radioactive spider next?

September 26, 2019

“Did You See Him With Shades On And Carrying A Bottle Of Jack Out Of Milford Beverage Warehouse?” “I Did.”

Filed under: big arms, Coach Kaz, exposition comics, Gil Thorp, Milford Weirdos, song parody — tdrewhardin @ 1:11 pm

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Down in the dumpy, roach-infested digs

We’d roll and fall in green

You wore a beehive like this Spalding pigskin

Too much Sassoon, too pepper-gray

 

Why don’t you leave me

So I can possess the game

I hated you, I loved football too

 

Bad calls in the night

Coach told me I was going to lose the fight

Leave behind my

Thorpiverse

Thorpiverse

Thorpiverse Heights

 

Coach Thorp, it’s me, I’m legal age

I’ve passed the physical, I’m still eligible

Let me in the game

 

Coach Thorp, it’s me, I’m etc., etc., etc.,

 

Gang, I apologize, I had this one wrapped up for Christmas but a personal matter turned up and like Grandma Macy, she was was hard to bounce out on the street so I had to find her bifocals which we FINALLY tracked down under the cushion of the couch along with the remote we’ve been searching for for several months. Thank God we weren’t trying to find her dentures. Under the seat slobbering on the channel function? Yuck.

Anyhoo, Today’s post includes a performer I have always admired. Her music is electric and scintillating and really gets in me. But I grew up on Alice Cooper, no problem. I grew up on Black Sabbath, in particular, Ozzy Osbourne, no problem. I lived to tell about it every time I played “Children of the Grave”, the lead-in “Embroyo”, if you want to get greedy, off of “Master of Reality”. I grew up on Frank Zappa and Captain Beefheart, no problem.

NONE of these performers have scared the shit out of me the way Kate Bush does. She has an eerie presence that works and adds the touch to her music that really sends me. One night at 2:00AM, I was reading an article on her that I had to put down, her photographs were THAT frightening. But that’s what also makes it appealing for me and will add, in my opinion, the punch to this plotline that is enigmatic and starting to limp after a strong start at the Milford Marathon. God, I hate to see what happens at Heartbreak Hill. Kate will be there to deliver the death blow, trust me.

 

At the 26 mile mark, situated at the beveled loading dock at Milford Foundry

“Gil, want some Gatorade? You look like you could use some.”

“Hell, no. I can suck it a few more yards. I’ll have my picture with my family proudly beside me.”

“That’s nice, but the photographer went home for the night.”

 

If ya gotta pass the ‘rithmatic Final by studyin’ the multi-plik-a-shun tables ’til the rooster crows early mornin’ so yuz can FINALLY pass 3rd grade and be eligible as a redshirt freshman for the junior varsity football team and ya FINALLY got 9 x 9 cuh-rehct by placin’ 9 monkey wrenches on the hood one way and 9 the other way, pointin’ towards the dice in the rear-view mirror, ya might be a redneck.

 

P1 is scary but if Thorpiverse thinks it’s going to get to Chance singing “The Red Shoes”, I think we better stick with Kate, thank you very much. We are led to believe that Chance is the second coming of Ted Bundy, about to chop up Grandma Macy with a Ginsu knife once he gets off the team bus, unbeknownst to the kids sitting behind him, talking about girls, football, what’s available online at The Bucket (“Let’s order that Bucket Tunaburger again. It’s got tuna wild-caught out of Mudlark Lake.” “HOLD ON. My phone ain’t working.”) .

And what sucks, We were getting used to Chet being an asshole and tolerating his inchoate methods for dealing with his stepson and his potential football talent or dealing with Coach Thorp and his coaching in absentia and still putting a product on the field. Aren’t you getting vertigo jumping from Stiff-Necked Lout to Norman Bates about to turn Grandma Bates into sawdust? Like Robert Frost, I prefer the Road Less Confusing. But I know a lot of you aren’t into “Fire and Ice”. Diff’rent strokes for diff’rent folks.

STILL, once the only player who hasn’t been carded at Milford Lounge gets off the bus, I would like a little stability here. It’s time to get back to normalcy. So the League of Nations was a bad concept and now we’re going to have to endure every man for himself. But, Hell, we’ve had plenty of practice watching Chet at football games. Talk about grandstanding in the name of your own ego. His son better make the NFL and make this damn thing worth it, is all I can say.

 

Oooohhh, game gets close, it gets chippy

On the other side from you

I bitch a lot. I whine a lot

Wish I got ‘Dad’ from you

 

Don’t let Dreher back, Chuck

Cruel Macy, my one blot

My only other running back

 

Too long, Chance is in the play

Charlie’s coming in on second down, to put it right

He’s rolling right to

Thorpiverse

Thorpiverse

Thorpiverse Heights

 

Charlie, it’s me, I’m obnoxious

I’ve read the pattern, I’m a pro at this

Let me call the plays

 

Charlie, it’s me, I’m etc., etc., etc.,

 

Well, did you think the lyric was going to be “I’m a Good Samaritan, I believe in sportsmanship, shake the hand of your opponent when you lose, Charlie”? Hell, we could end the football plot RIGHT NOW and take a sneak preview into basketball. But noooooooooo, Chet’s gotta be an asshole for about 2 more months before we schedule the Billy Graham Crusade at Milford Outdoor Amphitheater. Can’t have Chet answering the altar call before October. Ooops, I forgot, we still have Ted Bundy and his grandma. But you can only chop her up 31 ways if that plot lasts until Halloween. Better to drag this jalopy all the way to the finish line. Jughead Jones will be there at Heartbreak Hill with a Radio Flyer full of Bucket Burgers.

 

Oh, come on, coaches. In P2, we are subjected to a conversation a bit on the unrealistic side. I was only kidding about Chance being compared to Ted Bundy. They aren’t.

As long as we’re going to be ostentatious about weightlifting and hoist something your average senior citizen with his or her yearly pass at the Milford Athletic Club could jerk up and down without Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em head serving as a spotter, why don’t we at least get real. I have dealt with, either in Babe Ruth or at the private school I coached, SEVERAL players who were short on conversation. That didn’t make them Lizzie Borden. As long as they showed up ready to play and listen, giving me 110%, I really didn’t care if they weren’t much for words.

Now don’t get me wrong. I think it’s in every coach’s best interest to establish an excellent relationship or at least a workable rapport with your players as long as you’re in the same dugout or on the bench.  I can honestly say that I could get players to crash through a wall for me as long as I treated them with RESPECT (Notice big case letters) . The players were GREAT to me and they made me who I am. They took the wins, I took the losses.

But common sense rules the day. If Chance doesn’t have a meat cleaver in his locker, I think it’s safe to say that his grandma will sleep another night. 2541 will enter another halcyon period since it’s hard for me to imagine Silent Chance attacking his grandma with his Boy Scout knife out of his drawer.

Time to hit the sauna, Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Head.

 

Today’s headline in the Milford Enquirer

“O.J. Cleared On Rape Charges In Grandma Macy’s Living Unit!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Judge Ito knows me better than that. I wouldn’t touch her with gloves on or off.”

 

Then in P3, Coach Kaz is really sweating it out, either from bench-pressing the 25-pound weight (allowing for 5 pounds on the bar) or the agony of cerebralizing whether they’re harboring someone who’s old enough to file for Social Security benefits. Heavy-duty mental loads like this can be hell on the last rep, we know, Coach Kaz. Gil is there with a Handi-Wipe.

BTW, how do they know all this unless they were riding on the bus THEMSELVES? And, okay, if they didn’t ride in the Coach’s Limo (So THAT’S where Thorp keeps his golf clubs in the summer when he’s not not-coaching during the school year) , or in a separate bus which some schools do if the team is carrying a lot of players (i.e., Sophomore bus, Freshman bus, etc.) , and they indeed rode with Ted Bundy and his arguably subversive, slightly dangerous demeanor, what were they doing, observing the entire bus ride back to Milford? And not celebrating with the rest of the team? Concern is one thing. Stretching the storyline so it makes the half hour slot without having to fill in with another Toyota Corolla or Breeze Detergent commercial is another. The silver lining to the latter might be I’d get a towel out of the box when I’m dumping detergent in the washing machine with the “rinse” letters barely legible at the Milford Laundromat to wash my tube socks but that’s about it.

But us Thorpiverse veterans are used to Rubber-Band Man scenarios. Stretch away, Coaches.

 

“And that just about wraps up the Milford Marathon here at the finish line here by the Wacky Water Slide here at Mudlark Lake. Jerry Pulver Jr. wins the event in a record 2:27:16. Coach Thorp and Coach are yet to be accounted for. I understand they got lost by the drawbridge by The Bucket. They had to wait ’til the Milford & Oakwood frigate finally got its orders. That gives me an opportunity to take a station break. This ius Marty Moon and you’re listening to WDIG-Radio, a division of Learfield Sports.”

KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK

“Go away!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m training for the Milford Marathon!!!!!!!!!!”

“Honey, it’s 2:37 in the morning. And why are you training in the bathroom in the basement?”

“I gotta stay mentally strong. You can’t have any lapses in concentration when you’re chuggin’ for 26 miles.”

“Darling, I can give you that extra boost if you’ll give me a chance. Now come to bed with me.”

“Mrs. Shaw, you don’t understand. I have to be at my peak performance. That’s why I’m drinkin’ all these Nutrament Dutch Chocolate shakes. There’s plenty more behind the Pennzoil 10W-30 bottles here in the closet.”

“Aren’t there linens in there too? Where’d you put those?

“Blubba blubba, you’d be surprised how many Holiday Inn towels can cover a case full of Nutrament French Vanilla and Bar’s Leaks. Why it’s a match made in Heaven. And you can’t have any dissension when you’re at Heartbreak Hill. I’ll be sprintin’ like Jesse Owens if I got the Nutrament Black Cherry Special Blend wrapped up out of view.”

“And I don’t EVER remember your buying running shoes.”

“Ickity ackity oop, uh uh, I bought some cross trainers at a yard sale. Kid ran ’em in the Milford High School X-Country meets. Still got some high school invitationals left. I’ll be runnin’ like the wind at mile 15.”

“I just hope the crowd doesn’t notice the wimpy thing between your legs by then. Hard to hide that one with a Holiday Inn towel, My Love.”

 

“What could I say? She had me and she knew it and I knew it. It was time to take the towels back to Holiday Inn and pay the $7.00 Missing Merchandise Fee, then head down to Milford Men’s Clinic to deal with MY OWN missing merchandise. With treatment programs that work, my significant other came out of hiding and none too soon. I won my age division at the Milford Marathon thanks to the sprints I won in bed. Boy, it’s nice when you can pump your arms and your significant other simultaneously. My wife sure as hell agreed. But don’t take my word for it. Run on down to Milford Men’s Clinic and win your own age bracket. There’s plenty of ribbons to be won there. Come and claim your own Blue Ribbon. You’ll be glad you did.

 

Gang, thanks for your patience. I can only pass it along BUT I WILL. Y’all mean the world to me.

 

Ooohhhh, let him have it

Let Charlie take the game away

Oooohhhh, let him have it

Let Chance slice Granny away

You know it’s Gil, Cathy

 

Chet, it’s me, I’m concerned

I’ve come home, you’re so frazzled

Let Charlie, though fumbling, through the window

 

Chet, it’s me, I’m cornered

Etc., etc., etc.,

 

What are Gil and Kaz doing, pumping iron in Thorpiverse Heights? I hope they have plenty of Off!

Well done, Kate.

 

 

 

August 27, 2019

P4:” You Wade In The Kiddie Pool Of Journalism And Your Mother Drives A Pickle Wagon.”

Filed under: exposition comics, football, Gil Thorp, Just plain sad, Marty Moon, Pissy faced Gil — tdrewhardin @ 2:44 am

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There I feel better.

Oh, yeah, that’s right, we’re talking Gil and Marty. Well, shut my mouth with some crumbs of corn pone that fell off the table at the First Annual Mudlark Kick-off Tailgate Luncheon that’s been alternating with football practice that’s been going on for about 2 weeks. Marty is back.

I could maybe understand Marty not participating in the festivities, given Marty’s propensity to not sleep with the enemy. Marty indulging in a sloppy joe while stabbing Gil in the back with a butcher knife just seems out of place, even by Marty standards. Gobble that Steak ‘n’ Shake Sirloin Cheeseburger With a Side Order of Cheese Fries, washing it down with an icy-cold Mudlar-K-Cola Pepper Pop (to avoid copyright issues with Dr. Pepper, you understand) , then quoting that Gil’s secondary eats jelly beans just might make Marty a little too sleazy. Which probably explains why Mr. Moon showed up after Sam Finn got carted off in the pickle wagon.

I can see that.

“Well, looks like they’re done pumping Finn. What the Hell did he eat? Is that bagel and lox I see on the ground? What kind of a tailgate luncheon are we running around here? Spinach Quicheburgers? In this heat? Time to spring into action.”

Enter Marty.

Post-tailgate fellowships will never be the same.

 

Cheryl Fox, you represent America. While interviewing for disabilty yesterday, you very patient, knowledgable, and professional. Hailing from Cincinnati, Ohio and as a service representative for Humana, you love your job and you love helping other people. And you do it with a smile. Many people could learn from Cheryl’s example about what it takes to make America great. Many times, you gotta put your nose to the grindstone, which you’ve done as a bus driver for several years or as a keen phone service representaive with a lot of savvy, backed by an understanding of human nature. Gang, if you see her, treat her with respect. I salute you, Cheryl. We need more like you.

 

Really, I was just making an off-hand joke, not really intending to go anywhere with it. Doesn’t THAT sound like a familiar theme in Thorpiverse.

But with all the blockin’ and tacklin’ and munchin’ and crunchin’ and faintin’ and caterwaulin’ and threatenin’ law suits, this is a sudden turn of events that’s gotten me a tad suspicious.

Did Marty sneak out from under the tackling dummy when they were done with a slightly-ill-advised picnic? What was he hoping to find? Kids weren’t eating their vegetables? Gil wasn’t using a fork when scooping the macaroni salad? The coke canister exploded and they had to wipe off several uniforms with dish towels when they weren’t calling 9-1-1 about the casualties?

“Nothing major. Everybody go back to their seats and enjoy the chicken nuggets. The ambulance just made its last trip. The EMT said most of ’em should be OK.”

 

If Marty is to dig up any dung, he’ll do it as a GI Joe Action figure as in P1. He and Gil are engaged in mortal combat, well, at least in a war of wits. This is an annual event us Thorpiverse fans relish every year. Just kick back in the Broyhill recliner, put the popcorn on the TV tray, pop the VCR with the remote, and enjoy. Hey, your VCR is another TV, right? Or so the VCR instruction manual says when you first set it up? Then it’s like watching a Rambo doll kick-boxing with The Riddler doll through not one but TWO TV’S!!!!!!!!!!!!! In front of the Land of the Gigantic Offensive Linemen!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Entertainment at its finest. To think, some of you were going to the Milford Majestic on 1/2 Price Seating Night to go watch “Puking from Too Much Mustard on the Planet of the Apes!!!!!!”.

 

Because the amphitheater I pass every night might want to consider updating its matrix board after seeing Death Cab for Cutie scheduled for July 7th, much as I like the group

 

Today’ headline in the Milford Enquirer

“O.J. Suing Milford Outdoor Amphitheater Concerning Slim Whitman’s ‘Night Of Memories In England’ Tour!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I had no idea the dude was dead; I’m lettin’ Cochrane handle the refund application procedure. I’m willin’ to settle out-of-court.”

 

While I’m letting my stomach settle from the Beans ‘n’ Cornbread Fellowship sponsored by the Milford Football Parents Booster Club (dues are only $25 every year, free food and an 8 x 11 portrait of Gil in the raw, suitable for framing) , I’m a little perplexed.

What does he mean by battling at a few positions? I guess there’s not much competition at long snapper, not that I’m expecting kids meeting out in the parking lot after practice, duking it out for the guts and the glory of this particular sentry post.

And some of you think Gil might have quarterback on his mind when discussing the battles where there ARE battles at some of the spots. Ahhhhh, careful. One year, a couple of quarterbacks went down and they had to resort to Milford High’s chess champion who also had a serious heart condition, Darren McBride. So as long as Gil is speaking in vague generalities, you’ll just have to use your imagination. Now the silver lining in the black cloud of Gil’s laying bare his ambiguities with Marty is that I think Gil has the players ON THE FIELD in mind when talking up the lack of competition at certain spots. I can say without fear of contradiction that the water boy’s job is safe for another year. And Rick Scott will not have to look over his shoulder for any comers who dare amble from the parking lot with a medical bag in hand. Rick can breathe easier and buy another pair of jeans. He’s got the job security, what the hay?

 

And do I dare say it? Gals, you better clutch your boyfriend if he’s nearby. Everybody else grab the nearest bleacher or lawn chair, if you have one handy.

 

Marty has a point.

OMIGOD, THE SKY IS FALLING, QUICK, COVER THE SALISBURY STEAK, USE THAT REYNOLDS FOIL TO PROTECT THE AMISH POTAT-

Usually, when Marty comes to call AT ANY TIME, particularly in the Fall, it’s not good news. His rapier wit just grates our nerves and you want to dump the bowl of 3 bean salad on his head. If the team is looking at an awful year because the entire defensive line graduated and went to Milford Vocational & Technical Institute to major in Bowling Pinspotting Mechanics, Marty is sure to be the resident buzzard and feed off the roadkill. Nothing like sticking a few more ginsu knives in Gil’s already-stale Swedish meatballs.

This time, Marty is hard-hitting but within the parameters, only asking what is becoming somewhat obvious. It didn’t help Gil that the ambulance drove away with a casualty and depleted his roster even more. Marty has artillery.

It’s just that Marty might have to turn in his WDIG certification if he continues to practice journalism ethics while negotiating with his nemesis. And speaking of nemesis, is it really necessary to portray Gil as the second cousin of Dr. No? We’re still recovering from Marty’s reform movement. One day at a time.

 

If ya gotta go to the hospital cuz ya swallow’d the whole durn Betty Crocker Dutch Choklit cake and washed it down with a case of Bud at the Milford Foundry 167th Annual Company Picnic and the EMT’s gotta have 23 yuk buckets to pump ya in the ambulance on th’ way ta Milford General, ya might be a redneck.

 

Ooooooookkkkkkk, time to bring sanity to this God-forsaken-plot-in-the-making. Gene Rayburn is back with a vengeance. Take the stage, Gene

“Dumb Dora was sooooooooooo dumb (HOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DUMB!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SHE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) , she thought the 385th Annual Mudlark Chew-and-Grind Pre-Pigskin Picnic was held on ____________.”

 

Come to think of it, Waylon Jenning’s grandson interviewing Dr. No’s illigetimate child might be a deadly combination for a potential plot in football. It’s getting off on the right foot in P2, give it a chance.

In the interim, Gil is enjoying a Foghorn Leghorn Moment in P3, leastwise, it’s hard to imagine Gil directing that comment at Joey Tribbiani and Chandler Bing over by the Boston Baked Beans tray. Even if they and the rest of the Friends cast enjoy food, football, and fellowship, that doesn’t make them shallow. Gotta stick it on Marty, Foghorn. Do not waste a funny on a show that is hilarious and often makes fun of what is serious in Thorpiverse.

Even if it was a cheap laugh. Hey, it got a chuckle out of me. I choked on my cole slaw.

 

RRRRRRRRRREEEEEEEEEETTTTTTTTTTCCCCCCCCCCCHHHHHHHHHH

BBBBBBBLLLLLLLLLLLLLOOOOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

UUUUUUUUUPPPPPPPPPPCCCCCCCHHHHHHUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCKKKKKKKK

“No question, I was a hurt puppy that day. The Milford IGA had smuggled in kangaroo meat from Australia and tried to sell it to the Mudlark Football Parents Booster Club as Big Mac’s. Luckily, one of the split ends fighting another split end for his job and his turkey giblets saw the label on the ground and got the truth.”

“Hi, this is The Shark with Joe Sharkey Law Offices. I couldn’t believe my ears when Sam Finn told me he had devoured the whole plate of burgers illegally imported on the Mayflower and took a detour following Magellan’s route to finally deliver unrefrigerated kangaroo meat, having trekked several twists and turns and neap tides from the Brisbane slaughterhouse to Mudlark Practice Field property. They could have at least gone half on the duty.

What added insult to injury was Mr. Finn then had to run the steps at the stadium. Going up and down the steps with a dead cow strapped on you as a dead weight might make you faster but in the humidity he was exposed to, he was a sitting duck for bursitis, malaria, whooping cough, turf toe, hepatitis, and athlete’foot.”

“I got a check from Milford IGA for 6.03 × 10v23 dollars. I remember the amount because I memorized Avogadro’s Number when Ms. Rizk was getting boring. I can save up for college and I was able to pay for the Pepto-Bismol 100-pak at Milford Emergency Clinic. And I can afford limo service to practice, Mom doesn’t have to rush from work at the Milford Toyota Plant to take me to practice. Thanks, Shark.”

“There you have it. If you ate the wrong salad and the soy milk tasted a little funny, call 1-FON-THE-JAWS today and get piece of mind when you get food poisoning from rigatoni. Insurance companies are working to protect their ass from paying out claims from an idle piece of carrot cake and keeping the food industry in the clear. Fight back with an attorney who knows his way around the block when fighting company picnic suppliers. One call, that’s all.”

Go for it, Gang. I gotta go to the Milford Clinic and get treated for trauma. Mixing Marty and decency was like adding water to acid. Add acid to water if ya don’t wanna splatter.

 

“So ya think McBride can settle the issue at QB after he’s taken a couple of Rolaids?”

“These inane questions are testing my patience, Mr. Bond. I can insert a Sun Yat-Sen flunky at the position in my quest for world domination.”

 

 

On a Rolaids commercial

“Gil, how do you spell ‘relief’?”

“R-O-L-L-U-P-T-H-E-D-I-N-N-E-R-R-O-L-L-S.”

 

 

August 21, 2019

Sloppy Seconds for Marjie?

Filed under: Chunky Bracelets, exposition comics, football, Gil Thorp, Marjie Ducey — teenchy @ 7:42 am

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A lot of you TWIMers are a lot closer to your football-playing and coaching days than I, so I’m not going to speculate too much on how accurately Rubin & Whigham portray early season practice. I’m sure there’s a lot of variation in when practices go to full pads, though I often nitpick when I see the Mudlarks wearing what look like full game uniforms in practice. Even if those are last season’s game pants and jerseys and not busting the budget, I don’t recall equipment managers ever putting stripes and decals on helmets until maybe the day before the regular season starts. No reason to get them scratched up in practice, and you can always come up with some BS story about having to “earn” them to motivate the players.

Credit where credit is due for Gil, Kaz and Mark bringing the players in when they think it’s too hot and/or humid. August practices where I grew up were 90/90 affairs almost every day; many if not most of our players worked on farms up to and sometime even after the start of school so heat exhaustion could easily have been a thing. This was also the time when common wisdom was moving away from salt tablets to Gatorstuffs for treating dehydration.

But enough of that: what’s up with with this training table, and why is Marjie invited? She usually just shows up with a notepad while Gil rattles off the names of Rubin’s friends on the roster. “Sloppy joe day” must be code for some unspeakable filth that can’t be called by its real name in a family newspaper.

July 31, 2019

Meet the Flemings

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Just in time for the dog days of summer, this dog of a strip. This right here is some boring stuff.

That’s Reid Fleming, World’s Toughest Milkman and his dad, former NBA point guard Vern, on the receiving end of a Hadley deposition that’s not a deposition. Too bad dad Fleming isn’t actually Vern, ’cause Hadley could’ve let Jaquan tag along and have quality time with him. He does earn the Pantheon of Hair tag for that luxurious nostril hair he’s artfully groomed into a mustache.

Trying really hard to figure out the number and location of Hadley’s elbow joints such that she can get her hand that close to her shoulder and at that precise angle to roll up and flick a booger at the Flemings. Also trying to figure out why Papa Fleming shushed Leonard when he said the Mudlarks need Tiki. Is Leonard implying that Milford needs to attract players from other schools in order to field a competitive team? Given how much effort the Coaches Thorp and their assistants have put into developing and coaching up talent compared to the instant impact transfer students have made on their respective teams, I’d say the answer is a qualified “yes.”

July 4, 2019

I Like Mike-And Jaquan Too.

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I think it is a safe bet that we will not see a golf ball, let alone a golf course in the next, oh, 18 panels (approximately 6 strips, in other words-egad) , not as long as Gil is modeling on a billboard for Bacardi Rum.

As several of our readers have mentioned, we have switched gears and are subjected to a crash course in the NBA. Just don’t expect to see Kareem, Magic, Dr. J. or Bird to appear in this Love Story wannabe.

“Here, Preppie, here’s the ball back. You got it all over my hot dog. Goddam, Preppie, the mustard stains will never come out of this blouse. Watch your passes!!!!!!!!”

Nope, we will probably go a month taking a tour of the NBA and only see Jaquan and Hadley Venom writing their 1000-words-or-less essay on how they met each other. You might wanna pull up a chair on this one. You know how home movies drag out.

On July 28th, at the 458th word

“So then he said, ‘Sure, I’ll autograph this Spalding for you. Anybody in this section got a pen?’ Then he slam-dunked on Moses Malone and dedicated it to me as a token of our vows we made with each other.”

And to think, there’ll be basketball in July to bunk the golf plot in order to boost the ratings of the readership. Boy, aren’t you excited? Why slog through another month of My Three Sons hacking away at MCC Golf Course on #5, Par 4, Dog Leg Right when you can watch 24/7 of the NBA mixed in with Jaquan Barrett IV and Hadley V. Cavalieri talk about how they got romantically involved on the S.S. Minnow while Gilligan and the Skipper engineered the whole crowd off the deserted island. And to think, it was because The Professor suggested to The Skipper to plug the hole with one of Jaquan’s shirts. It was long enough.

 

If ya git drunk with a fifth of Jack at the Milford Lounge listenin’ ta someone spill out thar guts over how they is gonna git thar shotgun weddin’ arranged at the Milford 24-Hour Chapel after meetin’ at a game of H-O-R-S-E and ya decline ta be the Best Man after the gut-spillin’ is said and done, ya might be a redneck.

 

Gil, I think you missed your calling. As mentioned previously, Chief Coach-Who-Does-No-Coaching does an admirable job posing with that Svedka, getting sloshed while listening to Jaquan ramble on about his blossoming relationship with Hadley Ventriloquist. Well, she’s practically throwing her voice in the relationship, not to mentiin in the panels.

Anyway, I hope roses don’t take this long to grow if we’re describing how long it takes for Jaquan and Hadley V. to talk about their relationship from the initial encounter to when he got down on his knees at a booth at The Bucket and proposed while she was slurping on a shake.

Hey, I got it. We could kill 2 birds with one stone. Engage another golf plot by talking about when they teed off their relationship (with the clubs and friendly words, Gang, not getting mad at each other because he was going to do a reverse slam and she got in the way) at #1, Par 3, Short Porch and culminating in when they decided to tie the knot while he is trying to dig out of the sand trap on #17, Par 5, Straightaway. To think, she became Mrs. Case while sand is flying everywhere. And he saved par.

They could talk about the Cubs’ repeat chances on #18, Par 4, Dog Leg Left since there’s time left over while Gil can get even more slushy on another Svedka. He should be sober enough to keep the club head straight with the ball. Oops, I forgot, he’s still at the MCC Bar and Grill doing his sloshing and slushing. Oh, just pretend. Gil is omnipotent, after all, if he is God. Just look at it as God portrayed as Foster Brooks.

Just think a whole month’s worth of a golf plot with “Where do I begin…etc., etc.” gently accompanying a golf plot that actually has meaning. No sense in Oliver Wendell Barrett mixing it up with punk kids. Ruins the atmosphere.

“Preppie, those teenagers need to learn some manners. And keep their hips shoulders straight when teeing off.”

 

This 4th of July, remember why we celebrate. Our Forefathers debated and argued and compromised and finally hammered out a Declaration of Independence we can all be proud of and that has more than stood the test of time. It is a model that has been emulated by governments throughout the world. Get to know this wonderful official document and your Constitution as well. Don’t let them die off in vain.

Thank you to my grandfather, Leonard Thomas Hardin, cook in the U.S Army in WWI, and my step-father, Gabriel Feltner, Jr., infantryman in the U.S. Navy in WWII, who served proudly to keep the Declaration of Independence and our Constitution alive. Please remember our Veterans in your own way to let them know it was not in vain. I always take 5 minutes a day to thank a Veteran. But do what works for you but PLEASE remember them.

Lest We Forget

 

We reach the action (in “Gil Thorp”? Talk about contradiction in terms)  part of our story in P2 where Jaquan is still in a heavy conversation with Hadley V. while running the break. Wasn’t he a center for Bishop Tardy?  I realize a lot of big men can dribble in the NBA but give us a warning, Thorpiverse. This transition from Parick Ewing when he was at Cambridge Latin to Magic on a 3-on-1 break with Worthy on one wing and Cooper on the other wing takes time to digest while we’re still getting to the bottom of “How I Met My Soulmate”.

And I realize Thorpiverse evidently doesn’t watch too many NBA games but I hate to break it to you, Thorpiverse, Jordan didn’t run the length of the floor and flip a nice dish to Pippen for a nasty flush job while negotiating with the peanut vendor for a Cracker Jack and a $10 Large Diet Coke. Oh, you owe us one, all right, Thorpiverse.

“Yeah, gimme that Mike & Ike Jelly Beans box and a Mr. Pib-NICE SHOT, PIP. WAY TO BE LOOKIN’. STILL GOT THE STROKE, MY MAN!!!!!!!!!

We now return to the game, already in progress.

 

“A bad plot brought you together?”

“After he shanked one in the woods. He told his caddy to give her an autographed program from that night. He had to take a drop after the plot landed in the algae.”

Today’s headline in the Milford Enquirer

“Case And V. Baxendale To Exchange Vows After He Proposes At The Milford Pro-Am Biddy Ball Tournament!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Case waited until after the 3rd quarter to watch his nephew play and his coach fulfill the one-quarter-per-half rule.”

 

P3 is just leaving an opening wide enough for the Milford City Dump Inc. truck to drive through.

We don’t have one but TWO Smokemaster grills. Unless the one on the left is a picnic table with headlights. Complete with matching tortilla plates.

Did the Milford Big Lots run a special on matching His and Her’s Smokemaster Special Edition Fireball Unit?

“He’s a macho guy and wants his Polish sausage and flame-broiled angus beef grilled to perfection while they’re watching Harry and Steve negotiate the Cubs to another victory at Wrigley while she much prefers her Smokemasterette to char-broil veggie burgers while waiting for the Church Finance Committee to arrive anytime. Whatever the occasion, come hungry cuz Milford Big Lots has ya covered. And don’t forget the Kingsford, now on sale for a bargain at 8.99. A veggie burger isn’t the same without it.”

BTW, Robmize, you know I’ll never change(ha).

It appears she is at HIS grill, char-broiling the moon rocks that Neil and Buzz brought back from the moon while Gil is sipping on the Worcestershire Steak Sauce bottle. Sometimes you get wrapped up in the soap opera and pick up the wrong bottle by mistake. I’m wondering why the Bud Lite tastes funny. Anyway, Jaquan and Hadley Vermont are going to Six Flags on their honeymoon.

And finally, if you ever wondered where the word “meander” comes from, you have Thorpiverse to thank. To have gone from Chicago to Milford Country Club Golf Course to Milford Country Club Waffle House to Chicago to the poop deck in Gil’s back yard watching Mimi grill the Rice Krispies treats to anthracite coal black is a fait d’accomplait, let me assure you.

 

 

After seeing a “Clearance” sign on the storefront of Family Dollar

 

“Has someone died in your family? No better time to choke on a piece of KFC Mashed Potatoes than now.

Hi, this is Dr. Pearl for Milford Funeral Solutions. When my great grandfather died after serving proudly in the Norman Conquest, I was strapped for funds to locate an affordable casket. An administrator’s salary only goes so far.

Fortunately, Milford Funeral Solutions was there to ride to my rescue. They were backlogged with caskets in so many directions. Some were placed in the practice field of the Mudlark Football team, an Amish tent that was bought at a bargain and a dance the only thing keeping the mahogany structures from getting damaged by the elements. Nobody was dying. Everybody was taking their medicines and getting their flu shots at Milford Pharmacy.

We were able to scratch each other’s backs for a deal. They sold me a casket worthy of the Batesville Casket name, one where my great grandfather could lie in peace and still be allowed to mount his Purple Heart on his tummy. He’d had acid reflux but anyone who almost gunned down William the Conquerer with his derringer deserved the finest in funeral care without having to throw in his Winchester to cover the burial expenses.

And this week, Milford Funeral is running a BOGO special. That is correct, the Funeral Director at Milford Funeral Solutions is wanting to clear ’em out and make room for the new models coming in this week. So, rather than leave the older ones high and dry in a vacant lot behind Milford Federal Credit Union, our Ambassador in Funeral Relations has proffered this 2-for-the-price-of-one special to help both parties reach light at the end of the tunnel. If Jed Clampett accidently blew his head off while cleaning his rifle and Jethro didn’t survive the shotgun wedding, Milford Funeral Solutions knows how to ease the pain and the pocketbook at the same time. Viewing Jed and Jethro and knowing you’re only financing one of the funeral processions, an affordable cost at that, putting you in the tax bracket with the Beverly Hillbillies, if that doesn’t bring peace of mind, Elly May shouldn’t sneak in while the organ is playing “Beautiful Dreamer”.

And giving my great-grandfather the 21-gun salute while burying him with the drapeau du France draped over his pectoralis major and the Republic of France banner raised in his honor at the Milford VFW Lodge, Post 19, was a special tribute that tore my heart out but not my purse. I still had that after they named the Legion Baseball Field after him as a bonus.

When you get this kind of kindness, it is no wonder why they can clear the caskets off Gil’s hunting property just outside Milford. The buzzards are for hunting, not perched on an oak structure. Come see them today and have your own buzzards removed from your loved ones resting place.”

 

Comment away, Gang. Be forewarned that after seeing the bill of fare in P3, I am now convinced that Gil’s back yard is the only place in America where even the foreigners say “Don’t drink the water.”

 

“CUBS WIN!!!!!!!!!! CUBS WIN!!!!!!! Steve, you done with that barbecue pork chop sandwich?”

“Have at it. I can’t eat another bite. Gil and Mimi grilled enough to feed the Bleacher Bums.”

 

 

 

 

 

July 3, 2019

Jaquan Muffed a Pass But He Couldn’t Pass a…

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Aww, time for the meet-cute (more specifically, the meet-again-cute).  Over dishes stolen from the Coffee Cantina, Gil pretends to care about how Jaquadley hooked up. Deep into his second round of Long Island iced tea, he starts to slump in his chair as Hadley – thankfully not referring to herself in the third person – goes into flashback mode.  Guessing the rounded frame corners are Whigham’s shorthand for a flashback, not going full Batiuk with sepia tones and photo album corners.

Given Rubin’s poor pacing abilities, I have no clue how long he will drag this flashback out. If it ends up with Steve Luhm peering angrily through the Milford CC dining room windows before being tossed out on his ear, it might hold my interest.

 

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