This Week in Milford

January 16, 2020

Catch As Catch And Pass.

Filed under: Gil Thorp — tdrewhardin @ 12:58 pm


So much for striking while the iron is hot. Looks like Chris put his lightning rod down to go take a pee behind the bleachers.

Didn’t Coach Thorp say several days ago that when the opportunity is there, you need to pounce (his exact words) ? Look no further than today’s strip to observe that Gil’s Experiment failed. That’s right, Chris Schuring is still in the mode that when you see 10,000 Indians at Little Big Horn, kick it out. Don’t be like William Armstrong Custer and force the shot. Some refs literally call No Blood No Foul and even if there’s blood, you’re dead on the ground with 37 arrows. Then ya gotta sit on the bench for at least the next dead ball or whenever you wipe away the blood, according to the Blood Rule in High School Basketball. Sucks.

Now we still have several strips to go and even Hi “Lois Wouldn’t Be Caught Dead With That Hairdo Nor Her Brother Beetle Bailey” James was getting in on the act and exhorting to not be so unselfish. Sometimes you can dunk with Sitting Bull camped in the lane and they’re not calling Illegal Defense. So Chris might actually get out his Zippo and light it up and reach Wilt-like numbers. Hey, there’s parity not only in College Basketball but in Gil’s teaching methods. It’ll come ’round, I’m sure.

You gotta be ready when opportunity meets reality, Chris. Shoot one for the team. As Knute Rockne once said, good players come out to shoot, not watch the game.


If yore told ta shoot with yore shotgun at Milford Fish & Wildlife Management Area even though ya cain’t stand to watch an animal get killed but natural instincts naturally kick in and ya atomize a squirrel ya treed with yore beagles and ya wind with Squirrels ‘n’ Bits fer dinner, ya might be a redneck.


And what is a COOKIE doing on the basketball floor? Man, don’t the refs call illegal debris on the court anymore?

Wait a minute, that’s a BASKETBALL. One that’s collected a little too much sand at the beaches of Mudlark Lake Resort. I mean, that sphere is chock full o’ chocolate chips, Gang. Couldn’t you see the commercial


Pillsbury Dough Boy performing a reverse slam, a Magic Johnson no-look pass to Michael Cooper for an easy 2, a half-court heave for tickets to sit courtside behind the Mudlark bench, a baseline jumper, a Kareem sky-hook

“And the best part is, they’re still warm enough to dunk in your milk at bedtime”

Quoth The Pillsbury Dough Boy as the obligatory poke to his stomach ends the commercial.

Man, that has possibilities. When the opportunity is there, you need to pounce, Pillsbury Dough Boy.


The night Wilt scored 100 points, Billy Cunningham was interviewed after the game

“Yeah, me and Wilt combined for 105 points.”


Come to Jeff Smith Marathon in Edwardsville, Indiana. I’m tellin’ ya, as I came in to pump my gas, they were moving cars in and out of the garage to fix and get fixed. Now THAT’S busy. And Bre was there with the smile on her face and the usual courteous service. Crystal and Georgiana are always great with customers too. Heck, when I was leaving, they were still moving cars in and out of the garage. Keep that business rollin’, My Friend. And keep up the good work.

Support Small Business, Gang. You need to go where everybody knows your name. The Good People at Jeff Smith Marathon know mine.


shiny happy people playing D

Shiny Happy People playing D



Keep him from the hoop

Guard him Shove him

Spread the D around

Chin up Hands up


Move your feet in step so he won’t shoot from 8


Ooooooookkkkkk, REM out of the way, Gang, doncha just love it when the Shiny Happy People are always guarding the Mudlarks like in P2? I’ve heard of puttin’ on your Game Face but stapling on that semi-smile is a tad unnecessary. Everyone in the building knows you have focus. We don’t need a Smiley Face to turn up the intensity.

But you old-timers, I’m sure, are used to players with happy feet and face trying to take the Mudlarks out of the offense. But with Gil displaying his own happy visage several days after a heartbreaking loss, the Mudlarks know how to match up. The other team seems to overlook that in the scouting report. Yeah, it won’t do you any good, Mudlark opponents, if you have a coach who’s made a career of smiling for the camera when you’re staging a rally. If the bear DOES bite you, you just smile, then bite it back. Little wonder why Milford has a winning record over the decades.

And it won’t do you any good to execute a Game Face Extreme (P1) so you exhibit the intensity of Godzilla. You may destroy the town of Milford by stomping on and smashing every building in sight but Milford still more often than not walks away with a W.


“Gil, our house was here this morning.”

“Let our opponents do what they want, we still have the Holiday Tourney trophy.”


Today’s headline in the Milford Enquirer

“O.J.’s Condo Overrun By Them!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I need to call Milford Pest Control. They even ate my Maserati.”


And geometry prevails once again in P2. Baryshnikov executed that ballet move in “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies.” If he can perform that coup de grace in those gym shorts the Madison defender is wearing, he’s got my vote for World Class Dancer.

The consolation prize is he still doesn’t have to worry about Chris doing any pouncing, not yet anyway. The minute Chris decides to switch into Dominique Wilkins-taking-on-the-rest-of-the-Milford-gym (dude could dunk, though, treadin’ lightly) , those gym shorts will get a serious workout. I hope the Madison defender has needle and thread in his gym bag.


My high school sociology teacher, Mr. Lawrence, an excellent teacher, BTW, made the astute observation in class one time that the average TV viewer had the educational level and general outlook of a 13-year-old. I couldn’t agree more.

But does Thorpiverse think he can take that one and run with it in P3? Just yesterday, Chief ‘Abbreviated Name Who Rides On Pintos was motioning as if encouraging Chris to shoot. That would make sense. Again, don’t be TOO unselfish, Chris. You need to show a little game yourself if you want to help the team win. Pounce on the grizzly while the rest of the team is holding the beast down. The opportunity is there once again.

But evidently Thorpiverse is ruining that logic put forth by Mr. Lawrence and insulting our intelligence. Some of us did graduate from kindergarten, Coach.

You don’t think we didn’t NOTICE that Chris is still pretty much being gun-shy, not that it wasn’t a pretty kick-out for a bomb that could set the tone for this game? Oh, yeah, instruct him one way yesterday, then tell him that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it TODAY. Just let that leaky pipe keep leaking. As long as we have water to pour in Mr. Coffee so that we can slurp our Eight o’ Clock Decaf, there’s no need to call the plumber, no matter how many times Gil and I have handed you the Milford Yellow Pages to get his number on the landline. I can’t wait for the instructional video to come out.

On a Jane Fonda Aerobics Workout

“Remember yesterday when I told you to sit up and down 1000 times to the music of Eric Clapton’s ‘Tangled in Love’ to  remove the flab from your gluteus maximus? Change of plans. Today I want you to stand on your head and pump those cheeks straight off the wall, music still the same. Clapton is God, y’know.”


And I LOVE the chunky bracelet observations many of our readers posit. That and the flying saucers, part of which we see in P3, DEFINITELY qualify for Pantheon of Mysterious Objects. Hey, I’d be a little leery if someone was chirping contradictory advice while a UFO was suspended over us and taking notes.


“Schuring dribbles courtside right. Down to D Squared in the low post. 13 on the shot clock. He’s double-teamed and kicks it over to Antonio Davis on the left baseline. Nothing doing and sends it back over to Schuring, 5 on the shot clock. Schuring penetrates, then kicks it back out to Reggie for threeeeeee…”

BOOM BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

“Whatever advice Coach Thorp has thrown Schuring’s way is doing no good here. Schuring seems to be pursuing his own agenda, much to the Pacers’ favor.”

“Gotta get after it, Chris.”

“I agree, Slick. And now Madison calls time-out to talk things over. With 4:55 left in the 3 quarter, it’s the Pacers, 75, Madison, 63, on the Fan Duel Scoreboard. We’ll be back in a moment. This is Mark Boyle on the Pacers Radio Network.”


“Do you need insurance but are living within a budget? Are you afraid that the police will pull you over when you can’t show your insurance card, let alone your registration? What if your house burns down after the toaster malfunctioned from an overload of Pop Tarts?”

Hi, this is Mr. Dr. Pearl. Some of you know me as the husband of the principal of Milford High School. But what you don’t know is that when she and I got married, we were unsure how to finance our insurance. Renting out a residence at the Versailles Palace wasn’t cheap and neither was renter’s insurance. Thank Heaven the pros at Milford Farm Bureau Insurance were there to offer a policy that covered everything up to the sateen covers on the bed. Good thing, I didn’t want to sleep with my wife on the couch we financed from The Salvation Army even if renters insurance covered that as well.

But Milford Farm Bureau Insurance also sells automobile insurance. And did it ever come in handy when my Model T collided with some kid in his Trans Am blasting James Brown’s ‘It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s Man’s World’. The company not only underwrote the engine overhaul, the kid got fined several thousand dollars for violating Milford City Noise Ordinance.

And for you business owners, golly, are you in luck. Milford Farm Bureau Insurance is headquarters for workplace insurance. When a factory worker fell in the vat at Gil Thorp Pure Pork Sausage Enterprises, the worker received Workman’s Comp and Gil received a check to recover piece of mind. Tighten the bolts on the metal stairway along with assurances of no more accidents that went beyond a Band-Aid, and the check was as good as in the bank at Milford Federal.

Come down and talk to one of the agents and see how Milford Farm Bureau Insurance can help you get started on a policy that won’t strain the pocketbook. You owe it to yourself to see all the amenities they have to offer. Me, I’m glad me and the missus don’t have to share the toilet anymore. That’s correct, even the bathroom’s covered on our homeowner’s policy.

Milford Farm Bureau Insurance. People who care and dare to show it with their great rates and service. People like you and me who all agree Gil should be run out of town. Well, they don’t have a policy on that. Yet.”


Thanks for your patience, Gang. Things got busy but FINALLY able to kick it out to Muench Man. God, he better make it.


Heard after another take on Shiny Happy People video

“Keri, let Jaime ride the tricycle for a while.”


Jack La Laine on TV one morning

“Come on, Grandma, I know I told you to run in place yesterday but today I want you to do some knuckle push-ups. We’ll tone up those stomach muscles one way or the other.”


January 15, 2020

You Gotta Have ‘Watha

Filed under: basketball, big arms, freak hands, Gil Thorp, Madison Time — teenchy @ 6:59 am


You might think that a kid named Hiawatha would be nicknamed “Hi” but this is the world of the comics. Beetle Bailey’s brother-in-law already goes by that name and even though Gil Thorp has been around since 1958, the Walker-Browne Comics Consortium has seniority. Then again maybe Rubin has baseball on the brain and was thinking of long-time Royals catcher (and later manager) John Wathan. I know The Duke was who first came to my mind; after all, Hiawatha is a catcher too. Since I have baseball on the brain, it naturally followed that I thought of that seminal work on Japanese baseball and its reflection of Japanese culture.*

Time for the Mudlarks to start conference play and boy is Chris Schuring edgy. ‘Watha (sporting a new ‘do since football season) and Tom “Butt” Muench try to calm Chris, but little do they know about Chris’ secret humiliation in Gil’s office. Sure, it’s one thing to tell someone to trust their instincts, but what if their instincts and their coach’s directive conflict? Something tells me there’ll be a lot of passing but not a lot of scoring, and the Mudlarks will leave Madison with a big L. If that other big L Teddy DeMarco ends up stuffed in a locker by Saturday, it’ll have been worth it.


*If you’re bored this winter and in need of some hot stove reading material, I highly recommend you pick up a copy.

January 13, 2020

Tell Chris To Watch His Noggin!

Filed under: Chunky Bracelets, general nonsense, Gil Thorp — nedryerson @ 4:33 am


Still no word on who this administrative lady is chatting with Gil in the teacher’s lounge about student athlete’s GPAs. We know she’s a witty one, though. Upside the noggin with a Reebok? That’s some colorful slang. Mystery Admin is also quite dialed in to happenings in the student sphere at MHS. She knows all about Alexa’s pursuit of the valedictorian seat as well as Alexa’s potential for footwear assault. One might speculate that there is some kind of gambling going on based on the student rankings and that Miss Mystery is the one who has “hot tips” gleaned from skulking in the hallways, eavesdropping and/or monitoring social media accounts. She’s a Fantasy GPA Insider! Subscribe to her newsletter if you want any chance at taking the trophy.


January 11, 2020

Now Featuring The Incredible Shrinking “GIL” Mug


After a week of actual action and actual coaching in practice, we were overdue for some actual off-court wackiness in Milford. Where else would we have expected it than the teachers’ lounge?

Today’s strip finds Gil with a horribly dislocated hip and holding a stack of papers with what looks like a pile of French fries. Cue this MHS administrative type lady coming to him with news of player grades, presumably in his role as AD. Would this have not mattered more at the beginning of the season, when grades might determine eligibility? Or does Milford have some arcane rule that if your grades start dropping, you get kicked off the team?  That might explain the underachievement all these years.

Now what is it about Alexa’s academic issues that has caused Gil’s head to bobble and his coffee mug to shrink? Could it be that Mimi’s sudden emphasis on her playing offense has Alexa distracted from the books? Or was it Mimi’s playing grab-ass and the thoughts of blowing the whistle that have shaken her? Maybe Miss Watson is tired of the computer/virtual assistant jokes and is thinking that tanking a few grades may make those jokes go away. There’s never a good reason for sabotaging your chances of leaving a tank town, so the latter is kind of doubtful.

January 9, 2020

Poppin’ The 3 With Both Skates On, That’s The Gil Thorp Method.

Filed under: basketball, Gil Thorp, Mimi Thorp, Steve Luhm's Ghost Mops These Floors — tdrewhardin @ 10:10 am


1 & 5

I’ve been waiting too long

Your mindset’s all wrong

Oh, 1 & 5

We need you


1 & 5

Can’t you shoot from outside

Make sure you don’t slide

Oh, 1 & 5

Shoot, shoot, shoot


I never thought of you a project

Thought you had game

I’ll never opine that way anymore


I hope you aren’t a reject

Gotta protect my fame

Hit from the arc, I implore


God, “99” from Toto just gives me a rush, always has.



See Gil teach

See Gil warn Spot not to lick out of the toilet

See Gil point towards the basket

The basket is our friend

You need to shake hands with it

See Chris learn

Chris shoots


See Slick go bananas

Chris dunks

What a handshake, Chris

Don’t slip on the ice

Dick and Jane consulted the rule book

You can hang on as long as you brace yourself

Windjammer Dominique Wilkins throwdown, Chris

Jane gives it a 9.5

Do that in the game, says Dick

Anyway, Gil and the rest of the gnomes are attempting to teach Chris Schuring how to negotiate on the ice while streaking down the court on a fast break. While those gnomes are under the bleachers taking a smoke break, well, Gil, I hate to break it to you, I mean, I know you’re busy preparing for Holiday on Ice and you’re instructing one of the crocodiles how not to slip and fall with the basketball when being defended by a hippo to the music of “Fantasia” but you have to have OTHER PLAYERS if you want to practice the 3-on-2 or 2-on-1 fast break. But it’s not too late. You can call other players out of class 20 minutes even if they may be in the middle of a test or giving a speech which is 50% of their grade. The teachers will understand.

As long as academics are given the same priority as the pork fritters in the cafeteria, well, if Chris is running the floor on the break and needs to learn to shoot when he’s wide open, well, there’s wide open when no one’s at the gym but you and your pet project but if we’re going to go ahead and practice as if there’s 9 other players within the lines, you can’t be wide open if nobody’s there. I’d twist Dr. Pearl’s arm a little harder next time. Make sure they’re dressed and ready to hit the hockey rink, er, basketball floor by the time the second lunch bell sounds. Hell, they can learn their trig tables some other time. We gotta learn to drive to the rack when the 2 in the 3-on-2 are scratching their vitals at the half-court line.


If ya wear duck boots cuz the last time ya shot a runnin’ 10-footer in the lane, ya slid and slammed inta the third official in the 3-man system even though he shoulda been trailin’ the play and not callin’ thangs from the free throw extended, ya might be a redneck.


While Tchaikovsky’s “Russian Dance-Trepak” is blaring from Dr. Pearl’s office into the gym (guess digital technology does wonders) ,


I agree, Coach, you skate the way you practice.

I still think practicing in the Grand Canyon won’t simulate playing with teammates or against the other 5 guys out there, but these are teachable moments and should be treasured for a lifetime. And hey, the other team might have to go potty while Chris is executing the break or is open from the corner. Any given day.


Heard one day at the Milford High School faculty lounge


“Man, somebody needs to fix their drill. It’s just grating my nerves while I’m eating McD’s Chicken Nuggets. What are they working on, drilling a hole to China in the chem lab?”

“Naw, I understand Gil is practicing David Paich’s piano lick from ’99’. Trying to spice up his comedy act at the Milford Comedy Club.”


1 & 5 (oooooo, ooooooo)

You’re not 14 anymore

Need to shoot the ball much more

So says my EKG clipboard

Oh, 1 & 5

I’m begging you


1 & 5 (ooooooo, ooooooo)

Tho the basket’s out of whack

The scoring’s on your back

Got to shoot or catch some flak

Oh, 1 & 5

On our knees for you


I never thought this would work out

Score on crooked rims

Don’t want to shoot there in the second half


I always thought that you’d pan out

Jordan is your sobriquet

Don’t think anyone will laugh

Oh, 1 & 5


And to think, the past 1-2 weeks we’ve been more concerned with Riemann’s Theorem than basketball, now suddenly, after calling the NBA Director of Scouting for more players, Mimi is going to try her hand at coaching. You know she’s serious when she buys a clipboard at Milford Apothecary along with the Drewry’s 24-Pack and her medicines. One-stop shopping wins championships every time.


At the Milford Comedy Club

“…what do I look like, Jeff Porcaro in that spaceman outfit while playing the drums?”

Dead silence

“Well, here’s another song from Toto. Let me get my Wurlitzer tuned. Anybody heard of ‘Africa’?”


Mimi, we appreciate your merry-go-round modus operandi but didn’t Milford WIN the last game? And speaking as a coach myself, sure, there’s always something to work on but acting as if one of the halfcourt’s one great big couch and you’re Mrs. Freud really isn’t going to wash. I just as soon hear Hank Snow perform Toto’s “Hold the Line” at the Grand Ole Opry.

“I blew the layup, Coach, because I suppressed my sexual libido. It happened watching Sesame Street. I had this thing for Bert and Ernie and didn’t know where to go with it. Affected my jump on the rebound.”


Because I’m a little unclear what “abjurement” means after reading the book on proper usage of English

Today’s headline in the Milford Enquirer

“Milford High School Gym To Further Pursue Abjurement Of Ice For A Basketball Floor!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Coach Thorp: We’re goin’ parquetry like the Celtics. I want every Mudlark thinking like a champion. We’ve abjurred the head cases.”


And we head to P3 with more pschoanalysis. And I could take taking the lunatic out of the head if what was said had a logical trail to it. Okay, some kids do grow faster than their coordination will allow. But how that makes them defensive specialists is beyond my comprehension. When the quick-as-a-hiccup point guard found out that all Alexa Watson had to do was fall on her while the former was on a breakaway to the hoop, okay, I’ll swallow that but if that same point guard, after being treated with multiple concussions and contusions from one redwood tree too many falling on her, her coach might have gotten smart and told her to shoot OUTSIDE. Redwood trees taking Binary Functions in 3rd grade could only stretch so far.

Really, Thorpiverse, you have to have a sense of grace to match your growth spurt or they’ll run circles around you. Studying integrals can only provide so much defense, then you better move your feet, y’know, slide ’em when you’re guarding your man. The floor is slick enough.

Take it away, Gang. I’m helping with the videotape. Sometimes you can catch what you missed in the practice. Gil started taking showers after we noticed dandruff flaking on one taping.


“…what do you take me for, Zak Starkey as a part-time drummer for The Who?”

The jukebox, playing “Afternoon Delight” by Starland Vocal Band can be heard in the corner

“Ladies and Germs, Comedy is not the only talent in Coach Thorp’s repertoire. Here he is now to perform Toto’s ‘Rosanna’ on the trombone!!!!!!!!!!”



“…I never thought it would happen

Chris is not the same

Won’t bear this dumb plot anymooorrrree…”


January 8, 2020

Susan Gets the Cherries, Alexa Gets the Pits


What else do Alexa Watson and Chris Schuring have in common besides being in competition for Milford High valedictorian? A reluctance to take shots, apparently.  If not for the media relations director of the National Cherry Festival (at least I think that’s who she is; fits Rubin’s MO of Pure Michigan shout-outs), the Lady Mudlarks might not have been able to hang on to beat the Lady Raiders.

Phoebe manages to elude the disembodied fist threatening to bonk her on the head to deliver the message to Alexa. Dunno if that was spontaneous or if Mimi planted that bug in her ear. Pulling kids out of class for 20 minutes then making them dress out and stand in front of her while she lectures them is not a Mrs. Coach Thorp thing, but if the Milford girls don’t start putting up more points Mimi may be forced to follow Gil’s lead and actually do a little coaching.


January 7, 2020

You Go Shootin’ While I Go Fetch A Player.


Well, you shoot the ball

And I’ll go recruitin’, Honey

You swish the nets

And I’ll do some callin’, Babe

You line it up down the free throw hole

I’ll go fishin’ with my crawdad pole

For players, tall and fine


Gang, WHERE did Phoebe Keener come from? Was she one of those guest stars that popped out of the woods on Gilligan’s Island?

“Skipper, I just saw another Mudlark down by the lagoon. She was working on her lay-ups.”

“Oh, Gilligan, you’ve had too much of that coconut juice again. Why don’t you go lay down in the shade, Little Buddy, and get some rest?”

Why get on the phone, Mimi, and attempt to get more players when they seem to be coming out of your linen closet? Besides, isn’t that what TRYOUTS are for? Then you’ll never have to look in your shower stall again for a center who can score and rebound.


I was intrigued by You and the Law, a fascinating read on the different facets of the law. The Yale Professor of Law who wrote it made an especially interesting observation on the fact that you couldn’t appeal to your State Supreme Court for issues such as traffic fines (basically appeals on a State’s Constitution are heard) . Soooooooooooo

Today’s headline in the Milford Enquirer

“Coach Thorp Will Not Pursue DUI Case In Milford Superior Court!!!!!!!!!!!!! Will Enroll In Defensive Driving School In March!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I still think I got a raw deal on my Constitutional rights. Making me walk a straight line while I got Wrigley’s Spearmint in my mouth? Where’s the justice?”


As long as players are going to come out of Brigadoon, I might as well point out that Phoebe and that Harding defender couldn’t execute the Pee Wee Herman Dance any better than in P1. Mimi, having trouble locating players with some moves and good court vision? Look no further than this game. See, if you look within your own camp, it’s amazing what you can find. And all you need now is a record player to play that sax rendition of the dance, and an outlet to plug in the record player, naturally.


Well, you text a line

And I’ll go beggin’, Honey

No lane violations

And I’ll be a suck-ass, Babe

You pop the 3 down in the hole

I’ll be in the hallways with my crawdad pole

Honey, this takes time


And what OTHER entity could that be in P1 than The Blob returning to eat a player or fan or two? Sheesh, no wonder why Mimi can’t get anybody to play on the team. And what is St. Elmo’s Fire doing other than aiding in abetting with The Blob in devouring a fan who’s holding the “Kick the Shit out of Milford” (musta slipped a 20 to the security when he paid his admission ticket) ? If there’s one thing us Thorpiverse veterans can always count on, it’s a conglomerate of the Shadow People who have been pasted together for over 60 years. And the beauty is, the Harding fans and the Milford fans aren’t sitting in their separate clumps, er, sections. Yeah, I’m afraid the Shadow People or The Blob does not discriminate. Mudlark fans have been eaten at a steady rate along with Oakwood fans, New Thayer fans, etc. for 6 decades.

“Gil, where’s Jaime and Keri?”

“I don’t know. They were here just a minute ago. Yuck!!!!! What’s that giant red piece of Play-Doh doing on the verandah?”


If ya gotta use somebody’s jumper cables ta fish yore shotgun outta the crawdad hole that landed there cause ya tripped on some fresh deer droppings and ya pay the man a 6-pack of Bud for his successful efforts, ya might be a?redneck.

“Coach, I heard you need a power forward for the team.”

As Gil gets up from humping Mimi

“I do, but next time, don’t climb through the window. We’ll fix the door handle, I promise.”


And then we have Cindy Brady a/k/a Susan Wilcox-Olson who appears to give the Lady Mudlarks an outside scoring threat. Okay, Mimi, I understand you were desperate and had to enter the Milford Interdenominational Church for Susan’s wedding ceremony to beef up the roster (“…with this ring, I thee wed EXCUSE ME WE NEED YOU IN THE LINEUP, MRS. WILCOX-OLSON) , but couldn’t it have waited to change the surname from Olsen to Olson at the Milford City Clerk’s until after the game? If she can shoot, let her fire away, we’ll take care of the details later. I know we gotta reverse her maiden name and married name EVENTUALLY, let alone spell her maiden name correctly, but if Mimi needs Rolaids and needs it now, you don’t spell relief “B-U-R-E-A-U-C-R-A-C-Y”. You got a chance to win the game, Mimi, don’t blow it on a technicality.


On the S.S. Enterprise

“Scotty, see if you can maneuver a little closer to Xeneid. I understand the gasses are not noxious enough to allow us to penetrate the biosphere.”

“I don’t know, Captain, the ship won’t sustain much more with that magnetic field at our throats. And we are being fired upon even as we speak.”

“Spock, have you had many dealings with the people?”

“They’re not known to create problems with negotiations, if that’s what you are indicating. I can print out a communications cable-”

That notorious danger siren is sounding. Everybody is frozen. The door opens.

“Spock, is that one of their citizens?”

“I’m not sure. May we help you?”

“Yes, I understand the Milford Lady Mudlarks need a point guard off the bench in case Phoebe Keener needs a rest. Did I press the wrong button?”



And SOMEBODY CAN COUNT. Yes, there are 2 legs attached to each human torso in P2, although one player didn’t take her Rolaids and wound up with Club Foot. It must be hard to do lay-ups during warm-ups.

And minus points for the crotch shot of the coach. When The General was leading the 1976 Hoosiers to the National Championship, Scott May and Quinn Buckner and Kent Benson didn’t take orders from The General’s private collection. Couldn’t you see somebody’s crotch in Cream and Crimson? Didn’t think so.


You bomb it away

And I’ll grovel with my pleas, Honey

You drive baseline

And I’ll be petitioning, Babe

Shoot and-one from the ball you stole

I’ll fish at The Bucket with my crawdad pole

Honey, this 2-guard is mine


I love Diana Hacker and her ideas on style when writing is priceless. Not a day goes by that I don’t read something from her.

And right now, she would have a cow on how the sentence from P2 leads into P3.

If I’m getting the gist of the matter, Alexa “Don’t you dare call me ‘Gauss'” Watson is passing to Susan Olson-Wilcox-Olsen-in-the-Brady-Bunch-credits for the go-ahead score, THEN LATER passes to Phoebe Keener for an insurance score. Fair enough.

But of course, Thorpiverse has Hacker steamed because the way the sentence is structured, Susan Brady is getting the ball to score then subsequently sending it to Phoebe for another score. The way the modifiers are mangled, Harding is owed a possession which is unlikely to be settled so Milford will likely win because literary style went the way of Chris’ street clothes in the previous tete-a-tete with Coach Thorp. Amazing how many games Milford has won in 60 years riding the miscarriage of justice.

“That’s a split infinitive.”

“Game, set, and match, Thorp.”


Tomorrow’s headline in the Milford Enquirer

“O.J. Miffed Over Being Informed That State Supreme Court Will Not Hear Case!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I was NOT double-parked in front of the Milford Lounge. The farmer’s pick-up had a flat.”


And dangling modifiers aside, I like Phoebe’s Hokey-Pokey with the ball

You shoot with both hands in

You shoot with both hands out

You shoot with both hands from your chest

And you shake things all about


You do the funky lay-up

Then you turn yourself around

That’s how the game will turn out.


Game won by choppy sentences and a poor rendition of the Hokey-Pokey. Hey, an ugly win is better than a pretty loss.



Because I love to cook and was fascinated with all the combos with white grapes you could partake of


“And Marcia passes to Cindy over to Jan cross-court pass to Wilma who finds Betty on the baseline who kicks it out to Reggie for 3…”


“And Slick, Harding has called a time-out to talk things over. With 3:52 left in the 3rd quarter, it’s the Pacers, 89, Harding 86, the Pacers on a 12-2 run. We’ll have more on the Fan Duel Scoreboard in a moment, this is Mark Boyle and you’re listening to the Pacers Radio Network.”

“Ladies and Gentlemen, this week is National Wine Week right here in good ol’ Milford. Now I realize that many cities all over the country have their own Wine Week but the way Milford Beverage Warehouse looks at it, soaking in The Good Life is a year-round venture anyway.

Hi, this Coach Thorp and Man o Man, have I got some deals for you. Right here in our own backyard, Milford Valley is selling their premium White Wine Supreme at a door-busting $7.99 a bottle. Good golly Miss Molly, I’ll be knockin’ a few heads myself to get to the wine rack. Boy, I can imagine myself in my chaise lounge on the verandah, sipping on a glass of that good drinkin’ while munching on Mimi’s tuna-and-walnut casserole and indulging in creamed mayo caramel for dessert. Why use Pepto-Bismol when Milford Valley can churn your stomach just fine?

Then you discriminating connoisseurs will appreciate La Marca wines in select varities. Mmmmmm, mmm, I can taste that merlot as I down my Jif Chocolate Peanut Butter sandwich at the Milford PTA Parents’ Night Out. And with Key Lime pie for dessert, at $15.99 a bottle, I’ll have to admit I’m glad Jaime and Keri aren’t around.

But wait, there’s more. Woodbridge Grenache and arugala just hits the spot after a long day on the phone asking the scout at The Bucket who looks like a true center at the drive-in booth. Top both with Mrs. Butterworths and you can pitch your flapjacks in the garbage disposal. For $9.99 a bottle, I’ll dump all my Eggos in my freezer box in the basement down the drain.

But don’t get namby-pamby on me and believe that Milford Beverage Warehouse is nothing but a wine-infested rat-hole for the quiche-and-brie crowd. We still have a wide selection of Budweiser, Coors, Michelob, Miller High Life, Falls City, Blatz, Schlitz, you name it, we got it and in mass quantities. Bring your Milford Beverage Warehouse Visa Card and name your multiple. Only your trunk will limit your 18-pack purchases.

In fact, our deal of the week is Maker’s Mark Whiskey at an eye-popping $22.99 a bottle. At that price, I’ll cram all the Eggos in my toaster and with that Mrs. Butterworth Syrup, Breakfast in Avalon is a cinch.

But come see for yourself and get your own Lance Sour Cream Crackers off the gum rack while going through the line to purchase your Milford Valley White Wine. I think you’ll agree, Heaven is just a sip away. Only at the Milford Beverage Warehouse.”


Gang, have at it. I’m going to check Dick Vitale’s Basketball Lexicon again. I had trouble with the word “deuce”. I thought Dickie V was talking about a card game. I want to make sure this time when he calls Susan Brady a “diaper dandy”, he’s not talking about Pampers.


“…and you shoot for the goal

I’ll check Gil’s closet with my crawdad pole…”


At The Bucket one night

“Hi, I’m Melba, and I’ll be your waitress. What can I get for you?”

“Have you ever thought about playing onnthe basketball team? We need a guard-forward.”





January 4, 2020

All Suited Up and No Place to Go


Well butter my ass and call me a biscuit.  Gil Thorp is actually doing something tantamount to coaching today, but could he go about it any more awkwardly?

I mean really.  He pulls the kid out of class, makes him suit up in his game uniform, then makes him come back into his office to stand in front of his enormous window while he lectures him.  What sort of bizarre power trip/sexual peccadillo is at work here, I leave to the mind of the reader.  Talk amongst yourselves.

With that out of the way, let’s figure out how this weird scene advances the plot.  Schuring doesn’t mind taking the shots in practice against his crappy teammates, but hesitates to shoot against actual competition.  Now, at Gil’s direction, he’ll take more shots during games.  He’ll miss his share and, when he does, Teddy DeMarco will get into his head.  Good guy Chris will pretend not to care until he actually does, and his academics will suffer in turn.  Meanwhile Chris’ caring teammates will duct tape DeMarco into a locker until Teddy whines about his bad home life or whatever bullshit excuse bullies use for being bullies.  Everybody kisses and makes up and Milford still misses the playdowns.  Someone makes a lame joke and everyone exits, stage left, through a hallway.

What about all that valedictorian drama? That’ll have to wait until after spring sports are over and the school year ends, sometime around the Fourth of July.



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