This Week in Milford

November 21, 2020

A Shot in the Dark

Oh geez, here we go again with the volleyball girls who finish each other’s sentences. This schtick is getting old, just like everything else in this fall arc. (Don’t try getting your left hand and wrist that close to your face at that angle like the dark-haired girl in P2. We don’t have any chiropractors on staff here.) So what’s with the tiny crack in Corina’s “What football team? I don’t care about the football team” veneer? Does the idea of guys fighting get her all tingly and stuff?

Now for the mildly interesting cliffhanger that might answer that question. It’s been established that Corinna has zero interest in the quarterback boys. So why the h-e-double-hockey sticks is she inviting Rapp over to her place on a school night? Time for a “shot” to impress mama Karenna by sitting in on a hot game of Uno? Or is mama Karenna off to therapy and Rapp’s “shot” is to steal as many bases as possible off the catcher? Oh, it’s high ribaldry at its best! And it’s about to start – let’s watch!

November 16, 2020

So You’re Saying There’s A Chance?

Filed under: exposition comics, huge earrings, Prairie Style Windows — nedryerson @ 4:44 am

Today we have a conversation between Corina and some of her volleyball teammates. I assumes these are her volleyball teammates. There hasn’t been much done to establish these bit players. There’s one named Becca, I think. But that’s entirely the point of this fall plot. CK is the object of fascination for our two rival QBs and then the volleyball team became a stupid bargaining chip in their game to crack through the CK barrier. So it’s no surprise that the two teammates are sulking about the state of Mudlark football.

Milford has two losses in the Valley Conference. But one of our disposable volleyball players is aware of a scenario for Milford to get the conference title. It’s probably one of those scenarios where two other teams have to tie or something. Now I remember that volleyball player’s name! It’s Becca Exposition!

So CK greets this information with an “Okay.” Is that a drawn out “ooookaay” as in and what am I supposed to do with this or is it really a spark of concern (undercut by the casual application of lipstick). My instincts say CK don’t give a toss because Friday nights are for Crazy Eights with mom.

November 11, 2020

In Which Gil Thorp Finally Acknowledges the Existence of a Virus

No, not that virus, though you gotta admit that social distancing would be a plausible rationale for the seating arrangements in the Milford gym. Today we get a view into the inner workings of the Thorpian Stasi in action.

First, Gil walks in on the aftermath of Kaz shooting up on his desk instead of in what looks to be an Aeron chair but is probably a knockoff. How else do you explain that overdeveloped right arm with veins a-poppin’?

Then we catch Gil repeating the story with his chief informant Mimi. That Gil’s players had begun to show up to support Mimi’s team wasn’t enough for her; in her mind, they should have to do it as a unit. No place for players to sit with their friends on the team and to not sit with guys they wouldn’t hang with outside of football. Gil of course buys into that and decides he needs to get to the heart of the matter. How? Not by actually talking to the two guys who are actually at the heart of the matter, but to put two guys on the hot seat who have been the exact opposite of rivals for the past two seasons.

Finally we find out how Gil “squeezed” the intel out of Macy and Roh: via ungloved prostate exams with zero lube. Why is Gil so angry at these two? Did they not drop trou fast enough for him? Chance and Charlie aren’t the droids you’re looking for, Gilberto, and they’re not the ones who are taking sides in this controversy. EDIT: Alert TWIMer Downpuppy has pointed out that the pair getting reamed out by Gil in P3 are in fact the dueling quarterbacks Rappson and Thayer. Once Gil is finished with his unlubed prostate exams, these two will be singing Kumbayah (h/t hitorque) and playing rock paper scissors for first crack at Corinna. Does Gil know that these two have been actively recruiting teammates to take sides against each other? If not, this is Gil’s problem to solve, not the QBs. By calling them out of class and raking them over the coals, Gil will have sown fear, uncertainty and doubt among every Mudlark football player. That won’t win the Valley but it’ll keep the proles in line and, after all, that’s what the Thorps are all about.

November 9, 2020

Hip Dysplasia, Something Terrible

Today we get just a tiny glimpse at Mimi’s approach to coaching volleyball. She’s very focused on the arrangement of spectators and prefers all twelve people at the game to sit in a tight group. Beyond that, we’re all still in the dark.

It’s a good thing Gil has sway over everything that everyone at Milford High does and that Mimi can feed him chocolate ice cream and engage him in her seating arrangement dilemma. Of course ol’ Gil’s gonna do something about it. Umm, what the hell is up with Gil and Mimi’s legs in panel one? Their position relative to their respective torsos is insane.

I don’t know who the students in panel 3 are. I don’t know what gender they are. A day in Milford doesn’t go by without somebody doing something terrible. This is probably about seating in the gym, but what do these randos have to do with it?

November 7, 2020

Going Dutch? No, Going Swiss.

I have tried to keep politics out of my posts here for the most part, with the notable exception of the Padilla siblings basketball arc when I echoed timbuys’ sentiment about the treatment of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Irma. Yet not until robmize’s* post yesterday did it dawn on me that the quarterback controversy aspect of this fall arc could be seen as an allegory of the 2020 US presidential campaign. The Mudlark gridders are roughly split between the steady, unflashy game manager who plays the cards he’s dealt with and the mouthy loose cannon who calls his own shots and comes up bigly as often as not. But enough of that analogy.

How is a high school student like Switzerland? Does he hold on to the lunch money bullies steal from other kids for safekeeping? Does he sell nice watches at recess? Oh, I get it, he’s neutral, as in he sits in his own little clique separate from the quarterback cliques.

Mimi allegedly coaches the Lady Mudlark volleyball team. Have we ever seen her coach them? Not really, but that’s par for the course. It should come as no surprise, then, that she spends as much time scanning the stands to see who’s watching her team as she does actually coaching that team. Watch for Gil to preach unity, not division, in the locker room next week after Mimi rats out his players for sitting in bunches and not in a group. Come to think of it, that’s kind of an allegory for what we saw in US politics tonight.

*Again, I think it’s appropriate to tip our collective hats to robmize for the work he does. We who have no view into the inner workings of the USPS have no idea of the forces that have influenced his ability to do his job. That he’s still able to do it is a testament to him and his fellow postal workers. Thank you, Rob.

November 2, 2020

Advantage, Dallas?

Filed under: Chunky Bracelets, Milford Idiots, Prairie Style Windows, Volleyball — nedryerson @ 4:17 am

Rapson is rounding up a volleyball posse so CK will talk to him. That sounds like another hairbrained scheme. Why bring other guys? Is Rap afraid of being seen by himself at a volleyball game?

What’s the story with Dallas? Is he part of the Rapson crew or was he already a volleyball stalwart? Maybe Dallas has been stalking CK at the volleyball games all along after he clocked her in her catching gear after he delivered pizza to that famous baseball game. I’ll definitely root for Dallas to win the CK sweepstakes, even if the prize is ambiguous at this point. Maybe if someone plays their cards right, they will get an invite to a Friday night game of canasta. Oh, but what about those pesky football games? Score one for Dallas (if he’s not on the football team.)

October 12, 2020

Delaware Wing-T Time!

OMG! Gil has been toying with the Wing-T again, and not just any Wing-T, but the Delaware Wing-T! That’s a four back formation! But wait Gil, how could Terry improvise a radically different formation? The point is, he isn’t going to have the chance! Rapson is emergency-only, like that bottle of Rebel Yell Gil keeps in the bottom drawer of the filing cabinet.

Terry seems determined to push the limit with Gil. Will Thayer’s star will rise and he’ll make everyone go to volleyball games.

October 10, 2020

Oh.

Time for everybody’s favorite game, Monday Morning Saturday Night Quarterback.

Previously on TWIM, the consensus was that Gil was completely in the right for punishing Rapson for ignoring his play calls not once, but twice. In fact, many TWIMers thought that this punishment is too light – that Rapson should see the bench permanently if not be kicked off the team altogether. Instead, Gil’s just giving him a bit more in the way of conditioning.

Gil’s laid out his reasons and they’re sound ones, but let’s play Marty Moon for a minute, though, and poke some holes in that Thorpian logic.

Going back to Tuesday, there was 2:49 left (very precise of Rubin, no?) in the fourth quarter after Rapp’s TD pass put the Mudlarks up 28-13. Thursday before last they were up 21-6 when Thayer muffed the exchange. The Ballard Bruins marched right down the field to make it an eight-point game, 21-13, sometime in the fourth. How much time was left in the game when Ballard scored? There must have been enough for them to believe they’d get the ball back at least once, hence not going for two.

The Milford offense goes back on the field with Rapson under center and directions to get “a couple of first downs, and then… head to The Bucket.” Why did Gil yank his starting QB with his team only up by one score? Nice vote of confidence there, Gildeaux; one miscue and you’re on the bench. As for the “ball security” angle, if you’ve been doing nothing but running the ball all night, doesn’t that make your offense extremely predictable? The Bruins could load up the box, stuff the run, get the ball back and march down the field on the Mudlark defense once again. We didn’t hear anything about that sieve.

First play, Rapson calls his audible and Dallas George’s number on an end-around (which is NOT the same thing as a reverse, Gil!). If Gil’s so quick on the trigger with his signal callers, why didn’t he bench Rapp right then and there? I get that you want to keep things vanilla in the non-conference part of your schedule, but does Gil really have only one trick play? The excuse that you’re saving your trick play for a conference game makes about as much sense as not putting miles on your car so you’ll get more money when it comes time to trade it in, or as not having sex with your wife so that there aren’t as many miles on her for her next husband. Did it ever dawn on him that he could still use that play as a decoy later in the season, for example faking the end-around and running a draw or play-action pass?

Let’s move on to the next play. The Mudlarks picked up a first down and ran some time off the clock. We only know in hindsight that there were probably more than three minutes left in the game. We have no idea where the line of scrimmage was when Rapson threw the pass, nor do we know how many timeouts each team had. Giving Gil a little credit for restating the obvious, Curtis Charles scores the touchdown because the Bruin defender slipped (and Curtis danced a little jig over his body). Why does Gil assume that the pass would’ve been incomplete or picked off if the defender hadn’t slipped? Look at P1 in that last linked strip. Charles is bigger and taller than the Ballard player and has gotten inside of him. Who’s to say Charles doesn’t make the catch and bull over the Bruin into the end zone? Even if he makes the catch and gets tackled immediately, it’s still another first down and time to start taking knees. Who’s to say if Charlie Roh had run it up the gut again, he wouldn’t have gotten stuffed or stripped of the ball? The play worked, but it might not have, and if my aunt had balls she’d be my uncle.

So have at it in the comments, TWIMers. Let’s enjoy the pissiest of pissy Gil faces we’ve seen in some time and hope that smug look on his face doesn’t cause him to trip over that coffee mug he set down behind himself. Gil has made it clear he calls the shots, but what he doesn’t do is instill confidence in his players.

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