This Week in Milford

October 6, 2021

There’s a Certain Aurora Around Milford Volleyball

Tevin Claxton is either shaping up for a career in the diplomatic corps or one as a weatherman, as Boyd Spiller’s constant insults about his so-called “choking” roll off his back like so much rainwater. Time will tell if Claxton’s teammates will take up his case and put Spiller in his place (e.g., taped to a locker). How’s Gil gonna quash this dissent on the football team? He doesn’t have a spunky little libero to tease Boyd over to her house with the promise of her mama’s brownies this season.

Speaking of brownies and snack foods generally, where and when are Tevin and Gordon getting those post-game Blastos? Is this happening Friday night, on the way back from Kettering? Or is it happening early on Saturday, at the Milford Swifti-Mart? I don’t recall my high school sportsball activity bus stopping for food anywhere on the way back from a road game.

On to actual Saturday, early, where Mimi leads a busful of girls to something called “The Aurora Invitational – Powered by Coffee.TM” I suppose Coffee is the paid sponsor for the Aurora Invitational. That looks like Marty Moon’s sippy cup Mimi is clutching, so odds are there’s something else besides coffee in it. How she ended up with Marty’s cup would be a red herring worth exploring.

I’m assuming this is a volleyball thing? The girls are wearing Milford warmups so it’s nothing to do with gymnastics. The only volleyball Aurora Invitational I could find online was a tournament in Missouri over a decade ago. Pity it’s not in Illinois; Mimi could treat the girls to a round of Stan Mikita’s Donuts with that coffee.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-c-LRR2cYqY

meta: Thanks to Ned, tdrew and rob for rearranging the deck chairs to cover for my absence on Saturday. Sorry so late with today’s post. Juggling too many things at work.

September 25, 2021

Where Were You the Day The Bucket Got Its Liquor License?

teenchy here. Dunno where robmize is. I’ve got a busy afternoon and evening ahead of me so I’m not gonna wait any longer and put up a double post. I’ll be traveling next weekend so hopefully rob, or Ned, or tdrew can cover for me then. Heck, maybe even timbuys could pop back in for a cameo. (Tim, you out there bud? Miss you here in the rotation.) Anyhoo, on with the show.

September 24, 2021

No clue who Chance’s blocker Gordon Achebe is IRL (any relation to the famed author of Things Fall Apart?) but Kimberly Gordon-Achebe is Program Director of the University of Maryland Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship and consultant of the Programs for Assertive Community Treatment (PACT)-child division.  There was a Gordon Achebe on the team last year, but he looked a little different back then. This year’s Gordon isn’t about picking sides in a QB controversy but more about covering for his triple-threat backfield teammate, Chance Macy.

Chance has been around since 2019 so we really shouldn’t be learning much of anything new about him. He lives with his grandparents; his parents haven’t been in the picture and he doesn’t hold them in high regard. He has (or at least had) anger management issues. He got plenty of exposition during that season while Chet Ballard tried to smear him to win his stepson some playing time and his love.

Heather was in Iowa while all this was happening, so it’s news to her. Maybe she should take that superfluous finger off her temple and use it to Google some of Marjie’s old articles from the past two seasons before she decides it’s news for Star readers. Off to The Bucket for postgame festivities…

September 25, 2021

… and a surprise appearance from Kianna Bello, who apparently had back-to-back sports practices but got to catch the Mudlark football game. Guessing volleyball practice came first; there’s no way Mimi would schedule an event that conflicted with Gil’s! No, Mudlark sports reign supreme, and Mudlark football reigns the supremest. It doesn’t take an Alexa Watson to figure out that Kianna will be dropping gymnastics quicker than you can say “I’ll take my Bucket Daiquiri in a go-cup, please and thank you.”

Passed out face-down in a booth isn’t a good look on a star athlete. Either learn to hold your liquor or stop burning the candle at both ends. All that’s missing from this amusing scene is a puddle of drool coming from Kianna’s mouth.

September 22, 2021

#blownoffthorp

So much for that breather! The Mudlarks slow things down so much that night turned into day. Milford scores 13 more points after switching from the vaunted Delaware Wing-T and hangs half a hundred on Oakwood. It’s a wonder Tod Andrews (that is Tod, innit?) isn’t giving Gil a piece of his mind for running up the score on his hapless Owls.

Up in his crate, Evil Spock Marty gleefully calls the game. No doubt he believes Marjie Ducey’s departure to warmer pastures has cemented Milford’s status as his town. Marty had better keep his head on a swivel, though, since Heather Burns is on the scene quicker than you can tweet #radioisadyingmedium.

Heather’s thumbs are quicker than Marty’s lungs, and her approach to sports reporting is fresher than Shane Beamer’s postgame presser after the Georgia-South Carolina game. She’s got no time for Gil’s old man football coachspeak; she’s off to track down the man of the hour, Chance “Don’t Call Me Blowtop” Macy, and give him a squeeze.

Careful where you grab Chance, Heather: five years’ age difference might not mean much to the cruisers at Barney’s Pub (speaking of Evil Spock Marty) but when it’s a recent high school graduate and a high school senior, well, let’s just say it’s not always looked upon kindly.

September 8, 2021

Two Digs for the Price of One

So yeah, these mooks were on the JV last year. Tevin got a case of the yips on more than one occasion and cost them… something. Second place in the Valley JV conference, prolly. It might not have entirely been Tevin’s fault, since Boyd Spiller might have thrown a few lookout blocks at key moments. Tevin might not let him forget it, either, as he jerks a thumb in Boyd’s direction. At least I think that’s supposed to be Tevin’s thumb; why would Boyd insult himself? Shades of old Eight Elbows and Jaquan Case here. Anyhoo, I expect old Gordon will be keeping tabs on the beady-eyed Spiller, who seems like the kind of guy who’d get fragged by his own troops.

On to the volleyball court where Kianna Bello lays out a dig. Let’s see if her gymnastics talents come into play here. Or not.

Added new category: Colorist Error. May attempt to apply it retroactively to the summer arc and the miscolored Bemidji State rain jacket.

August 18, 2021

What Is It About Industrial Solvent Sales That Leads People to a Life of Crime?

So much for Carter’s – I mean, Carson’s – stint in the Witness Protection Program. Little Miss Investigative Reporter Wannabe has joined the MCC (why else would she be wearing the same colored polo shirt as everyone else? Maybe it’s a Bemidji State polo shirt), thrown on no fewer than six of her extra jangly bracelets and blown his cover. Time for him to hit the road, create another alias and sell stolen golf shoes from the trunk of his car.

It’s been a long day at work (meta) and it’s not over yet so yhs is firing off a late post. I could spend the rest of the evening trying to analyze this so it makes some kind of logical sense but why try? Rubin is throwing exposition left and right to make this golf cheat – clearly the lowest form of humanity in the Thorpiverse – look like even more of a criminal. The Milford Country Club is not a court of competent jurisdiction but here it carries more weight than the Supremes. Do we even have to point out that being charged with a crime isn’t the same thing as being convicted of it? By the end of the week Carson/ter will have been found to be behind the art heist from the Gardner Museum and the ammonium nitrate explosion in Beirut.

How did Hendry/ricks get younger looking from P1 to P3? Is he going to de-age with each accusation until he turns into a fetus, or was he really this age to begin with? Come to think of it, couldn’t these photos of him online have been deepfaked? We know Google exists in the Valley so the “1959 with cell phones” excuse can’t last for much longer.

Really, instead of looking all deer-in-the-headlights and throwing up the jazz hands, all he had to do was stonewall, call Heather’s little screen grabs “fake news” and he’d have been in the clear. After all, if you repeat a lie often enough, doesn’t it become the truth? Tens of millions would agree.

August 14, 2021

One Short of a Foursome Again

At Casa Thorp, Gil quickly moves from leaning in behind Heather Burns before Mimi comes back into the living room delivering three Red Bull and vodkas. That ain’t all she’s delivering: with that crop top along with the less formal sweatpants with built-in camel toe, she’s bringing the fan service in on that same silver platter.

Before Heather loosens up and gets ready for this threesome, she has to drop the bombshell from the last threesome she had with Gil: that there was no such person as Carter Hendricks until two years ago. Before then, he was known as Jami Thorp Rupert Hall. No, he’ll end being someone else – Henry Carter or some such – who played for Boise Bridgewater Bemidji Ball State in his color-shifting rain jacket.

Now that that’s settled, can we wrap this up and give Heather her Milford Star by day, Milford Mudlark by night dual life ASAP? NFL preseason got fully under way tonight and so will high school football in a lot of places over the next couple of weeks.

August 7, 2021

The Facepalm Is Mutual, Gil

As robmize pointed out yesterday, after this past week’s strips the summer plot has as many holes as the swing of one of those kid golfers Gil teaches at the MCC. Shirt colors change, golf carts appear and disappear, and Gil finally remembers that Heather called him before the round with Carter and not the other way around. Gil also remembers that he’s married after glimpsing that giant wedding band on his giant paw, so it’s not just his shirt that quickly turns blue. Still doesn’t stop him from asking Heather if she wants it in P3 (you know what they say, big hands, tiny wristwatch)…

Oh, wait: it’s not Gil Heather wants, it’s a paying job with benefits – and not the kind that Gil’s offering her as a Milford High assistant football coach. Until now her only lead had been with the Milford Star and it would seem Marjie’s boss has been dragging his feet with a job offer. Now Heather’s got a shot at a hospital PR job. Which of the the three offers her more of a future? Newspaper journalism is in its death throes and we can estimate how many female high school football coaches there are in the country. Hospitals are always gonna need somebody to put a positive spin on the lack of open beds, the high cost of procedures, and the latest MRSA outbreak, so it’s not like that’s ever gonna go away.

All Heather needs is Gil’s confirmation that she has about as much of a future coaching football as she did playing soccer and she’ll be out of Milford quicker than you can say “Monmouth.” Sending Heather to Central City gets her out of Gil’s hair, lets Marjie maintain job security, and keeps Rubin from having to remember backstories and developing consistent character traits for her in the future.

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.

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