This Week in Milford

May 13, 2019

This Is Really Happening

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“Molly, do you ever buy bagels from Arjun Khatri on Fridays?” That right there is about the most out of left field thing I’ve ever read in Gil Thorp. As I write these things first thing Monday morning, something like that can really make me question if I’m this is all real or if I’m dreaming.

Now we have school faculty, like Molly Hatcher’s World History teacher, nominating other students to receive the TC challenge coin. Isn’t this grand?

Now that Arjun Khatri has been designated TC for acts of altruism, do we now have to reevaluate those earlier TCFS candidates? Arjun raised $5000 for the food bank, and you have a collection of stuffed hippos? Yeah, look I’ve only got fifty of these and I doubt if I’m going to get the Flirting With Disaster discount again so that’s going to be a hard pass.

Who is Arjun Khatri? The New Jersey high school wrestler? An aspiring Indian filmmaker, or the singer of Poldo Raichha Chhati:

May 6, 2019

I’m Starting To Think There’s Not Enough Too Cool For School To Go Around

Filed under: Chunky Bracelets, huge earrings, Prairie Style Windows — nedryerson @ 2:00 am

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It’s Monday and that means more cafeteria repartee with Molly Hatcher and the girl we think is probably Nancy. What Nancy didn’t reveal before was that high five from the rando hallway Mudlark did something really weird to her hand, turning it into  flipper with a racing strip. Now that’s what I call too cool for school.

Before we get into the meat of the conversation, let’s take a closer look at the foreground student with the lunch tray. Wow, that salad is piled high in a very shallow serving bowl. It’s quite fascinating. I wonder if she assembled that thing herself from a salad bar or if the salads at the MHS are premade. (Is there an actual salad bar in the cafeteria?) Either way, the way that salad is constructed is too cool for school (TCFS).

We discover that the softball team’s TCFS trend has spread to the rest of the student body. Now random students are sharing details about themselves to members of the softball team with the hopes of being granted TCFS status. Case in point, Milo Daley.

Milo, as we learn is husky and he plays the clarinet. I might argue that that’s more than enough for TCFS status, but maybe my radar for this is not attuned like Molly’s. Somehow, Milo has computed that he is the second best bowler at MHS and he wants to know if that makes him TCFS. I would personally like to know how this ranking is established before I would make a designation, but again, I’m clearly in the dark about how this status is conferred.

I think Molly and probably Nancy should start a podcast called Too Cool For School where they ask students to tweet their unique hobbies or accomplishments to the TCFS Twitter account. Each week, Molly and Nancy (and maybe special guests) will ruminate on the submissions and decide definitively who is and who isn’t Too Cool For School. It would get more downloads than Marty Moon’s This Is What I’m Drinking podcast.

April 29, 2019

What’s The Deal With Linda?

Filed under: Boredom in Milford, Fontastic, Just plain sad, Prairie Style Windows — nedryerson @ 6:16 am

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David and Linda started a conversation at The Bucket last week. The conversation continued on the phone over the weekend and now here we are at Milford High School picking up where we left off.

David is summoned via text (he has installed a customized font package on his phone’s messaging app) to meet Linda in the Media Center. I’d like to point out that the Milford High School still has actual books on shelves and subscribes to at least one print periodical. I’m going to assume that the copy of SPIN that Linda is reading is part of the Media Center’s collection. Would anybody buy their own copy of SPIN these days? Can you buy a copy of SPIN these days? (The answer to that question is no. SPIN has been online only since 2012.) Maybe the Milford High School Media Center is as frozen in time as many other aspects of MHS and Linda is currently leafing through the March 1989 of SPIN magazine, which features a cover story on Edie Brickell and New Bohemians.

With all the curious details out of the way, I now barely have the energy to untangle the main point. What is the deal with Linda? She was fired up about her teammates missing the scrimmage because they had other commitments. Her steady beau, David Walter, pointed out her hypocrisy since she has her own other commitments. She rankled at this, but they moved on.

Since then, all of the other commitments her teammates have been put under a microscope and evaluated for their uniqueness, or too cool for schoolness and this somehow led to the introduction of a stuffed rally hippo. This has somehow led Linda to again question her own too cool for schoolness and feel inadequate because her volleyball scholarship doesn’t measure up. She’s wondering if she’s just not that into volleyball anymore. Geez, what a predicament.

Well Linda, if you don’t want to listen to David’s straight advice, take a tip from Edie Brickell (by way of Popeye the Sailor Man): “What I am is what I am, you what you are or what?” That means do volleyball if you want or don’t do it if you don’t. I think, or at least that’s the “talk on the cereal box”.

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Have any members of New Bohemians ever been heard from since then?

Edited to add, in response to Tim, that SPIN featured KISS on their cover several years later (August 1996)…Looks like one of those four covers, collect them all!! type deals.

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April 24, 2019

Why Don’t They Just Turn Their New Hats Inside Out?

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If game days have been declared hat days, then where are the hats? Did they burn them because bad juju?  They could always erect a shrine to Jobu.

It actually worked for the 2016 Indians.  I’m sure Mimi’s got the rum stashed away in a desk drawer, that lush.

For the casual reader, the Rally Monkey is a real thing creature. You can read about its history with the California Anaheim Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim here.

But noooo, we have to have another softball player regale us with another of her extracurricular activities.  This is just getting inane, and Linda (at least I think that’s Linda, as she has been the only sane voice on the team) would seem to agree.  What’s the over/under on Mimi stepping in and telling the girls that these interests are all fine and dandy, but there comes a time to focus on the game itself?  My guess is that it happens once the Lady Mudlarks have reeled off a long enough losing streak to keep them out of the playdowns.

March 28, 2019

I Never Knew “Pictures at an Exhibition” Would Appear In Milford

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IT’S THE BLOB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! EVERYBODY RUN FOR IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Relax. It’s only the students at  one of the picnic tables,  gossiping about Andre Dawson when he was with the Cubs, pretty hot news among teenagers, then the conversation that’s been on the backburner after they got tired of talking about Mike Krukow’s career at Wrigley (“Gnarley, dude, he struggled with that wind blowing out”) has been taken out of the oven FINALLY that of what Molly Hatchet does in its spare time when they’re not touring New Thayer, Oakwood, Madison, Goshen, etc., with Lynyrd Skynyrd and The Charlie Daniels Band. I understand the Marshall Tucker Band practices pirouetting in water polo when they’re not on the road again.

They are so caught up in this fad we call (by their own definition, unfortunately) synchronized skating, they’re oblivious to the girl in the background that got ran over by the waffle iron.

 

Mr. Horse, trying to be a Mudlark Cafeteria Lady, having already passed the Cream Slaw Certification Test

“Nope, I don’t think these linens fit.”

 

 

I’m sorry, Gang, I’m TRYING to be nice but

“Gimme 3 steps, gimme 3 steps, Mister, and you’ll never see me no more…”

“Okay, that’s a rap. You can take your skates off.”

 

Eggo Head is just the start of a bad joke.

Gil catches Dr. Pearl in the hallway before her staff meeting

“DR. PEARL!!!!!!!!! DR. PEARL!!!!!!!!!! You know how Eggo Head burned her hair???????”

“No.”

“She forgot to use Pam while sticking her head on the pancake griddle.”

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Boy, put some Aunt Jemima on them babies.

 

And the artwork coming directly from El Prado. Really, is this truly a comic strip??????? P1 is just classic Cezanne, the missing piece being “Still Life With Apples”, something not shown in P1 because Eggo Head is sitting on them while consuming a Bartlett pear and those same apples would be shown in P2 if The Blob wasn’t chowing down on them while washing it down with leftover Milford students. The Blob resembling The Everly Brothers???? Gil must have been mighty tasty.

Meanwhile, back at the NR Ranch (“non-Reality”) , I mentioned ‘Pictures at an Exhibition” the other day, a concept album based the Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky’s work of the same name, which my favorite group, Emerson, Lake, and Palmer recorded and put their personal stamp to and ran with. Getting mixed reviews because it was slightly controversial, it stood the test of time and came out a cult classic, loved by many critics. I just never thought we’d see a sample of it in today’s strip.

“The Gnome” is P1 and I think “The Great Gates of Kiev” is located somewhere where Eggo Head’s hair is parted.

The Gnome telling a joke to his baby sister, whose in the lower right hand corner. Does she need a high chair, BTW, if her caption is somewhere where Luhm could sweep it up with his janitorial-sized broom?

“Baby sister, do you know why Gil will never be Eggo Head?”

“No.”

“He’d have to find a different rake to comb his hair, plus VO5 and Pam are combustible when fried together in the skillet. Try explaining that one to the Milford Fire Marshal.”

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

 

Then P2 definitely has to be “Promenade”.

I mean, The Blob executing a spaziergang (“pleaure walk” to you non-Deutscher whippersnappers) through the cafeteria after a hearty 3-course meal of Alpo, Twinkies, and students is worth the price of admission and going about as slow as this plot. Don’t get no better than that.

“Officer, The Plot’s at the Milford Bowling Alley!!!!!!!!!! It’s eating half the town!!!!!!!!!!! Strip Bowling was tonight!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

 

“The Devil went down to Georgia, he was looking for a soul to steal-”

“NO NO NO That’s not how the tripel axel is done, you have to do this TOGETHER. All right, let’s do it again and SMILE. Let Butch Trucks see those pearly whites.”

 

P3 is interesting. I was tempted to say “The Sage” but what wise man in a lotus position at the peak of Mt. Fuji or Mt. Everest or Mount Washington or Mount Greylock (highest point in Massachusetts, BEAUTIFUL scenery, just threw it in to get a cheap laugh when the audience is getting bored-don’t want to wind up like Gil at the Milford Comedy Club) discusses synchronized bowling????? That one crashed and burned.

So I went with my gut and Ickity Ackity Ooh, uh uh, Ickity Ackity Ooh. ee ee, uh uh, slee, uh uh slut, POOF!!!!!!!!!!! “The Curse of Baba Yaga”. As long as teenagers are going to spend more time fretting over bullfighting and Sammy Sosa’s stats (C,mon, I’ll bet Ron Santo’s contract that the sign said “Bullfighting Ring”, geez Louise) than actual sports, reduced already to an exhibition, pardon the pun, at the Ringling Brothers Circus, we are in for a long Spring and Summer until Gil hitches up with another tag team. Really, I think Gil can teach Jerry Lawler and Jeff Jarrett how to golf. They’ll be sinkin’ those putts at the Mid-South Coliseum by the end of August. The Moon Dogs won’t know what hit’ em. An eagle is more effective than the Sleeper Hold any day.

 

Day 16

Marty is butt naked, confronted with a new challenge. Someone from the Milford Zoological Society, trained in Blobology, managed to direct The Blob towards the Nature Area. Street edges lined with ice, much of it from the ice freezer out front at the Milford 7-11 and the trainer invented a new way for The Blob to stay on the Straight and Narrow. Ingenious way to keep The Blob heading in a certain direction. Can’t eat Gil’s children if his driveway is spayed with permafrost.

Marty has enough problems with the elves from Crackerbox Palace and mosquitos. Now, he and Peaches must run for their lives, knowing The Blob could suck them up in 2 seconds. Can’t go up a redwood like a cat. The Blob can climb also. For the moment, The Blob will be content with a warthog it just steamrolled and call it a night. Marty and Peaches can sleep in their tents and only have to worry about shooing away the moths. And all they have to do is blow out the lantern.

Marty on his walkie-talkie

“It’s by the pond, Marty. It took some Sominex and crashed on a dead poplar.”

“Good. Where’s Peaches?”

“Marty, you know that’s the deal. We’re not allowed to tell. In fact, that’s the first warning AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA, where’s the trainer????????? I didn’t know I was a midnight snaaaaaacccccckkkkkkkk-”

“Joe? Joe?”

 

“We’ll be back after these messages.”

 

Gil, accompanied by “Nut Rocker”

 

“Hi, this is Coach Thorp for Milford Beverage Warehouse. God almighty, wouldn’t want to be in Marty’s shoes right now, would you? Just hope The Blob stays away from the daiquiris.

But if Marty thinks he’s got problems, do I have some news for him.

Did your car get repossessed and now you have to go Milford Transit? Did you get cleaned out at the slot machines like I did because I didn’t know when to say when at the Milford Casino Lodge? How ’bout Milford Credit Union putting an estoppal on your account because you ran up a bill at Milford Plumbing Concepts and now they’re dunning you something fierce????? Shoot, I’d run up a bill too if they took 23 times to unclog that toilet in the pool room in the basement. They used that much Drano to flush out the turds, c’mon.

The point is, you shouldn’t let The Good Life get estopped because banks, credit unions, and the loan shark at the poker table isn’t bargaining in good faith. That’s why I’m proud to announce that The Warehouse and Milford Cash Advance have teamed up to help you get your favorite liquors without having to worry about Sonny Corleone knocking on your door about that overdue note.

Just give them your driver’s license, your Social, and 2 recent check stubs, yes, chain gang work release stubs are honored, and you can shop for Buds and Michs with peace of mind. Durn tootin’, Milford Cash Advance will hand you $250.00 cash with interest rates that’ll be as low as the packages of Slim Jims on the impulse-buying rack by the register. Doggone, I know I’ve got MY $250.00 in by wallet so I’m gonna go get a shopping cart by the Bud Man display up front and stock up on all the sinful stuff.

And I’ve got some Chauvignon Berry Surprise, something I’m going to keep a secret for my wife, I’ll just put in one of the gutters on my roof, to celebrate our 35th, 38th, Hell, I can’t remember, we’ve been married so long and spent a lot of time pretending to be coaches. Then I got some Sterling Classic Roast Fire Brand, guaranteed to satisfy your taste buds and burn a hole in your belly, a problem if you have ulcers, but if you’re drunk on the couch, you won’t feel a thing. And you might have to hit the bathroom stalls a lot but as long as Pee Wee Herman isn’t in there, it shouldn’t be a problem. And when the bank imposed a lien on my house after my Big Adventure at the Casinos, I snatched that 750 ml bottle of Jameson Irish Whiskey right off the 3rd shelf. Ummm, ummmmm, I can drink my blues away tonight and puke in the bed if need be cuz Mimi went to her mom’s place with the kids over the weekend. They’ll be visiting Principal Ek’s boyhood home, a historical marker, “The Hut of Baba Yaga”, so I can splay on the Serta mattress like Foster Brooks.

And because The Bucket is bogged down in a legal battle with the Milford Beverage Commission over the liquor license, The Warehouse wants to kick ’em while they’re down by this great offer: Right now, until the end of the month, if you’ll buy 2 bottles of 1.75 Bacardi Superior Rum, The Warehouse will pay your March Milford Gas & Electric bill. No sense in having no lights just because Milford Interiors repossessed the divan. You shouldn’t have to use your neighbor’s water in a bucket just because there’s no electricity for the shower. Yup, they’ll help lighten the load on your bills when the deputy sheriff sends a bench warrant on your motorcycle, even if it’s your only mode of transportation to Milford Foundry. The Warehouse would rather you not pay late fees for the motorbike.

Yeah, Mr. Owner of The Bucket, when you come out of your chateau in Switzerland, wake up and smell the Apothic Red. Because your chances of selling Cook’s Brut Champagne along with a Bucket Double Cheeseburger and Fries as my recouping my losses at the roulette wheel at Milford Casino. At least I have better luck.

Come in and check out our specials and get a bill paid to boot. At Milford Beverage Warehouse, we take the load off, Fanny, and dump it on the car hops at The Bucket.”

 

 

Today’s Women’s History Month entry goes to Mary Ludwig Hays McCauley, affectionately known as Molly Piutcher. Originally a gofer, like several women in the battles during the Revolutionary War, especially for water, the nickname came about when soldiers would shout “Molly!!!!Pitcher!!!!!!”, a nickname that somewhat unfortunately carried a slightly negative tag.

But Mary stepped in during the Battle of Monmouth to stoke the cannon after her husband was hit by a bullet (but survived, thankfully) and immediately boosted soldier morale with her courage in the line of fire. Serving perhaps as a good luck charm, the British retreated and really weren’t a factor for quite soem time. George Washington was so impressed (and he didn’t impress easily) that he awarded her a non-commision and was thereafter addressed as “Sergeant Hays.” Still strongly holding to her femininity, she proved a worthy soldier that helped the Continental Army win a HUGE battle when they were at a crossroads. The momentum swung in the Continentals direction, Mary palying a big part. Please join me in saluting a woman who proved that a woman could more than hold her own on the battlefield.

 

 

 

Comment away, Gang. I’m going to sneak out the back door before Robmize reads all my Cub jokes. Can someone suggest a nice apartment to hide in on Waveland Avenue?

 

Mr. Horse watching “The Blob”.

“Nope, ‘Lawrence of Arabia was much better than this B movie. Doesn’t even have Ronald Reagan when he was 80 years old to rescue the kids. I don’t think I li-AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA, IT’S GOT ME, WHERE’S REN AND STIMPY???????? STIMPY’S GOT AN ICEBERG STUCK UP HIS BUTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

“I’m as free as a bird now, and this bird you’ll never changgggeeeee.”

I can see Peggy Fleming and her partner with the American flag draped around them in Sochi after that Gold Medal performance.

March 27, 2019

“And we care because?” could be this blog’s motto

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Well, that explains everything, doesn’t it?  The big “RIN” in the sign behind Andre’s head yesterday was short for “RINK,” which Milford has one of, apparently.  (Of course it does. How else could kids practice for skating at the Winter Blast in Central City? And why hasn’t ice hockey ever been a thing in Milford?)  Andre watched his little sister – odd hand gesture meant to signify “little” – skate and saw a group of synchronized skaters perform*. On his way home he got his cheek pierced and had that shark tooth he found at the beach on summer vacation mounted on a stud.

Oh, yeah, one of the synchronized skaters is also one of Mimi’s softball players.  Heaven forbid she prioritize something else over Milford High sportsball!  Prepare for multiple strips shaming poor Molly Hatchet off the ice and onto the diamond.

*I’m sorry, but every time I read “synchronized skating” I thought “synchronized swimming” and could only picture Harry Shearer and Martin Short in that old SNL skit.  Skate away, that’s all.

March 25, 2019

A Frolic Of (Her) Own

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Where are we going with this softball scrimmage situation? What bearing could this possibly have on a season that is going to start no matter what, whether they can get enough players to participate or not? We’re not even really sure why Mimi suddenly decided a scrimmage was required. She had some impressive infielders and a catcher that was struggling to handle a gimmicky pitch. Big whoop. Tell the pitcher to stay away from the pitch in game action and work it out in practice. Next time Mimi, put the scrimmage on the schedule in advance. Your kids are over-scheduled and can’t be available on short notice when you cook up something on the couch during cocktail hour.

Surely the idea that many kids have something scheduled on a Saturday can’t be an actual plot point, right? A thought emerged while I was trying to recall who everybody is. Is this just an expository exercise to further introduce us to the team? We’re seeing Jocelynn Brown again (reminder, she’s our catcher) and now we know another infielder, Nancy Kaffer. It sure is a complicated way to do this. It reminded me reading novels by William Gaddis. It could make you crazy reading passages that detail conversations between multiple characters with no attributions or helpful exposition about who the hell they are talking about or to.

Sorry, for the highfalutin literary reference which may or may not even be apropos. The bottom line is Mimi’s last minute scrimmage was a bad idea and the scheduling conflicts that high school kids might have on a Saturday are pretty weak sauce as far as plot goes.

February 18, 2019

Badger Redux

Filed under: Gil Thorp, Prairie Style Windows — nedryerson @ 10:26 am

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This strip starts off pretty cool with Gil dramatically framed by the doorway and Max Bacon stepping out of a shadow with heavy words: I want to tell everyone why they can’t trust Bobby Howry.

So yeah, Max was manipulated by Bobby as an experiment and then to impress a girl. (Those were Gil’s words.) You don’t want to trust a guy like that. But Max badgered Bobby for the fake adderall! He got dismissed from the team! Let’s relive the drama, we’ve got nothing else going on here.

I had forgotten about the Leisl aspect of the Bobby Howry story. Leisl thought Bobby was boring because he was so “mono-focused” on basketball. So Bobby thought he could impress Lesil by being able to predict how well Max was going to perform on the court. Well, Leisl was all ears! She even reported to her own basketball teammates that Bobby could predict how well Max was going to play. The word got around on the girls team and Mimi even caught wind of this new dimension to Bobby Howry. Bobby was a hot topic! Then Mimi clued Gil in on the happenings on his team. That’s classic Gil Thorp, friends.

So, Max is back. At first he didn’t seem to care and Gil told him to go check  out the Robby billboards, but don’t do anything! This installment shows Max coming in a little hotter in that moody opening panel. But ultimately, Gil’s wise counsel is to leave it alone. Everything works out here. It always does. Back to State U with you, Maxwell Bacon and get crackin’ on those résumés.

 

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