This Week in Milford

May 27, 2023

Doin’ the Bump, Not the Madison

The fun never ends in Milford as The Hammmmer’s blind magic rubs off on another Mudlark hurler. No-hitters aren’t that uncommon in high school sports given the frequent talent disparities across teams, but it’s a little surprising that a girl whose making the team came as a bit of a surprise* throws one in, what, her second or third start? Madison must really suck this year.

The Capitols’ suckiness extends to their sportsmanship as well. The sports world is full of egregious examples of fights breaking out during postgame handshakes; Juwan Howard v. Wisconsin (speaking of Madison) is only one in a long line. I’m not inserting any here but you can go to YouTube and take your pick. What set Big Barda off here? Was it that Dorothy didn’t take her glove off to high-five right-handed? Does it really matter if you’re high-fiving and not shaking hands?

What should be interesting (that is, should be interesting but will probably be disappointing) is the response to Big Barda’s elbow to the back. Dorothy has already turned the other cheek, but will her catcher – who previously threw hands at her – start throwing hands in her defense?

*Note that both Dot’s making the team and hurling the no-no both elicit one-word responses from Keri.

May 20, 2023

In Which Gil Decides to Wrestle with the Pig

I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it. – George Bernard Shaw

Credit where credit is due: In Luke Martinez, Henry has created one toxic character. His never-ending obsession to one-up Gil Thorp and beat Gil’s teams in every sport he coaches has managed to suck in both his assistant coach and Gil himself. He’s also managed to piss off his elder son who, if there’s any sense of irony in this strip, will soon quit the team and/or transfer to Milford High in the fall.

Why does Gil need to call Hamm? To ask him if he’s seen the Korean Nightmare* clip? He should know the answer to that.

Coachella is looking a bit off-character today BTW, Chief. She needs to shave.

That’s all I’ve got for today. My laptop has been crashing and not recognizing its charger for weeks, and today I finally had to back it up and reinstall the OS. Took hours. Sorry not to have more pithy insights.

Oh, wait: I came across this online earlier this week. It dates from the late 1930s and might be as appropriate to share as Kaz’s out-of-left-field Cab Calloway reference a few days ago.

* Or, as he was known in his home country, “The Nightmare.”

May 10, 2023

Many A Tear Has To Fall

Hello gentle readers, teenchy here. tdrew is MIA and so in the spirit of continuity I’m dropping Tuesday’s strip so that we can move on to Wednesday’s. Will check in on him directly.

The jayvee Lady Mudlakrs get pounded by Goshen and Dorothy isn’t happy about it. Keri continues to slide into apple not falling far from the tree mode, trying to tell her erstwhile nemesis to shake it off.

Meanwhile Coach Ochoa pulls a chestnut from a 30-year-old movie, albeit one that most ball-and-bat players know well. Wonder if she’ll tell them to avoid the clap next.

That’s it for Tuesday. See you in a few with Wednesday’s thrilling strip.

May 3, 2023

Getting (Mostly) Better All The Time

Filed under: actual action, baseball, Gil Thorp, Highlight reel — teenchy @ 10:13 am

Not a lot to complain about today. First two panels are on point. The ball with speed lines and without seams (second time we’ve seen it this season) makes me think of the old Jack Elrod Ball in Mark Trail.

Third panel shows that Whigham still sucks at drawing home plate and the lines around it, as well as at continuity with the batter. He was a righty yesterday, which may not be that big of a deal. At all levels of baseball a batter can change sides until the pitcher comes to a set position to pitch, and the batter may switch sides as many times as he chooses. There, I gave you an out, Chief. Now go study this diagram.

We don’t know explicitly who the Bobcats are although canonically Central is the Bobcats. The turquoise unis kinda give off an old Marlins/D-backs vibe. Hope every Milford opponent doesn’t have to wear them. They’ll start to stink after a while.

April 8, 2023

Bang! Zoom! A’ta’zhóón!

Well there ya go. Milford wins the Valley on a tie-breaking, buzzer-beating trey from Leo A’ta’zhóón. Apache ball wins the day. Nice arc-ender from Barajas tbh, but why you gotta have the Native guy saying “Ugh!” not once but twice? Not cool. Nice tribute to Kaz from Gil with the forelock, too.

Potential cliff-hanger/hook into the next arc with Keri hanging with/onto Pedro Martinez, who’s cheering on the Mudlarks while wearing a Milford jacket. How pissed will Luke be about all of this? Pissed enough to trot him out on the mound during baseball season and try to force him to go headhunting Mudlarks? Whatever happens there’ll be plenty of opportunity for Don Zimmer jokes, no doubt.

March 25, 2023

Not the Automotive Metaphor We Were Expecting

The Valley Finals get under way and we’re off to the races! Who’da thunk Luke and Pedro watching stock cars turn right would serve as some kind of foreshadowing?

Either there’s a huge variation in hand sizes among the hoopsters or the ball is magically changing size. The centers look like they’re tipping off a largish grapefruit while Tobias is carrying a medicine ball. Nice no-call BTW, ref! No wonder the Mudlarks are up ten after twelve eight (oops, thanks Rob).

Gotta admit Jefferson’s mint-green gym with white polka dots and stripes is an interesting visual change of pace from the other Valley gyms with rafters barely above the players’ heads. Good thing they got MopMan in to buff the floors beforehand; Tech’s not finding traction while Milford flies past in their new JAMMERS.

Will Apache ball take the Mudlarks to the title or will Luke and his Techies find a way to slow them down? Tune in on Monday…

February 22, 2023

What’s the buzz, tell me what’s a-happening?

When do the Mudlarks ride into Jerusalem?

Not until they’re done in Pueblo.

There are multiple high schools in Pueblo, Colorado, none of which are simply named “Pueblo.” This leads me to believe that Milford is playing at Pueblo High School in Tucson. Nice road trip, and no one suspects Gil scheduled it so he could peel off and pay a surprise visit to Mimi in Scottsdale (not that it’s around the corner but, you know, closer than Milford).

Coaches Ochoa and Tays’ presence (or Gil’s lack of same) could be why the Mudlarks are playing with more urgency; that, or a lack of toilet facilities in the Pueblo visitors’ locker room. That grunt at the buzzer came from more than just the effort to get off the shot, IYKWIMAITYD. Did he get the shot off in time? Not as drawn but scoreboard don’t lie and we don’t review video in high school.

Who’s been narrating all of this? My best guess is the newly reintroduced Heather Burns. Appreciating the exposition and continuity Barajas has been bringing us the past few days; hoping he’ll keep it up and help us understand how Heather and Marjie coexist in the nu-look Thorpiverse given Heather took Marjie’s old job.

Now, to answer the rhetorical question: How long can Milford keep this winning streak going? Until the lid gets blown off Rod and Tobe’s fundraising-via-vapes efforts and they get benched/kicked off the team by Gil.

Reference for today’s post title.

December 17, 2022

A Leap of Faith Is What We Need to Read Gil Thorp These Days

Well, at least someone’s been kicking extra points since my last Saturday post. But not now.

Barajas Thorp must’ve gotten the note from the syndicate that football season has to END. THIS. WEEK. and concluded that going to OT was verboten. That, or he watched the Chargers beat the Cardinals with this balls move a couple of weeks ago, channeled his inner Brandon Staley and grown a pair of his own. I know what you’re thinking and no, I’m not hitching that train of thought to a caboose.

In fact, the only way to read this strip is to suspend all disbelief, lay down all thoughts, surrender to the void… the void in which the teams are playing. Pay no mind that the clock isn’t supposed to run during extra point attempts, that the center snapped the ball with enough force to change the quarterback’s skin tone and knock his helmet sideways, that the quarterback took six seconds to hand the ball off to the running back (probably because he had to look through his ear hole), or that the running back took nine seconds to leap over the VT D-line (a D-line that is just laying down for the running back because the Milford O-line is nowhere to be seen). Don’t even think about VT getting the ball back with enough time to move down the field and score, ’cause we don’t even know if Tobias will land on the ground in 15 seconds. “Math class is tough. Want to go shopping?”

Let’s hope that the game ends with Monday’s strip and the rest of this coming week wraps up the football season. Let’s also hope Barajas has spent more time learning the rules of basketball than he has learning the rules of football. Finally, let’s hope Whigham remembers how to make the artwork match the narration. All of this hope is going to require a leap of… well, you know.

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