This Week in Milford

September 14, 2022

More Pronoun Trouble

Football season! Volleyball season!

Here we go again, but it’s not a dispute as to whether sportsball should take precedence over non-sportsball extracurriculars but the modern problem of remembering what pronouns people choose to identify themselves. Today, Toby née Tabatha identifies as he/him, Keri identifies as they/them, and Gil identifies as coach/Coach.

Now why are these three having this little confab at The Bucket of all places? (And why are they having coffee? Don’t they know there’s a cantina in town for that?) Are they here to pick up them after their postgame dinner? Are they serving as their chaperones for said dinner? Is it time for a jangle-off as Mel and Mimi see who can rattle their jewelry the loudest? Winner gets Gil – if she wants him, that is.

The unspoken tension here is so thick you could cut it with a butter knife, not unlike the one Mimi’s twisting into Mel as she deadnames Toby. Clearly she hasn’t forgotten that Mel wanted to be her at one time. Meanwhile Gil, still aware of that history and that Mimi is unhappy in the marriage, tries to play the supportive husband by throwing out a patronizing “sweetie.” Will Mimi have the divorce papers served publicly to Gil right here in The Bucket, the way Jason Sudeikis had Olivia Wilde served with custody papers while she was presenting at CinemaCon?

One thing is clear: despite Mel’s claim, in Milford, nothing is the same as it was.

edit: Oops! I forgot to identify the players from the Dolphins’ No-name Defense I posted this past Saturday!

Front, reclining: Lloyd Mumphord, CB

Front row, left to right: Bob Matheson, LB; Bill Stanfill, DE; Bob Heinz, DT; Manny Fernandez, DT; Vern Den Herder, DE

Center: Nick Buoniconti, LB

Back row, left to right: Dick Anderson, SS; Curtis Johnson, CB; Mike Kolen, LB; Doug Swift, LB; Tim Foley, CB; Jake Scott, FS

September 13, 2022

It’s Been A Billion + Over 60 Years For The Rest Of Us.

Filed under: Gil Thorp — tdrewhardin @ 1:24 pm

First off, kudos to Henry Barajas for the plotline involving a more mature Keri and the realistic scenario surrounding her. Typical teenager comes to mind.

That said, I think it’s interesting that we’re returning to The Bucket as the Dumping Site du Jour after spending much time drowning our blues away at Milford Lounge or the Generic Possible Valley Conference City Airport Watering Hole or Coffee Cantina. I’m sorry, I just couldn’t see Gil bitching to Mimi over a Cafe Espresso Cashew Nut Flavored Rhubarb Supreme about Corina Karenna spiking using her pinkie at Coffee Cantina, then Luke Loser y su esposa appear out of the cream potato soup bowl and call Gil a $&@#%*+less loser. Then su esposa kiss the waiter. TWIM has its limitations, Thorpiverse.

And is this what’s going to happen here? Keri unwinding and discussing the highs and lows of the aforeplayed match, then Luke Loser’s son approach Keri and Tobias and say “Keri, daughter of that $&@#^*+less loser, tell that $&@#%*+=less loser that I haven’t forgotten our golf date at Milford Country Club. And tell that $&@#%^+*less loser to make sure the golf cart has a good battery in it. I don’t want the tow truck coming out when I’m chipping in on #9. And I ain’t kissing here. I’ll save that for when my wife kisses the golf attendant’s butt when I’m short on the greens fees. Tell your brother I said ‘Hi’. I ain’t kissing him either.”

Then I am bracing myself for Keri’s comment.

“I’m surprised we won.”

Keri, you have a lot to learn. Aside being the answer to what Keri would look like on a milk carton in an age-progressed photo (answered in P3) , she is obviously oblivious to the last 1,000,000,060 (give or take an eon) years. What team from Milford is EVER going to reach Charlie Brown’s All Star status? Yeah, Milford might lose a few but NEVER is it going to leave Lucy in the outfield instead of at point guard for the Lady Mudlarks or Schroeder at catcher rather than shout obscenities and gibberish like Vic Doucette did a while back. Losing might happen but not if it endangers the existence of Milford. The 7 castaways get rescued and get on with their lives? The ratings would plummet. Yeah, Gilligan becomes a male stripper at Milford Girls-a-Go-Go Club and The Skipper becomes a bartender at Milford Lounge. The Professor teaches Algebra at the school Coronavirus is attending. Mr. and Mrs. Howell donate $1,000,000,060 to the Milford Athletic Fund. They name the gym Thurston III and Eunice “Lovey” Howell Memorial Family Life And Convocation Hall. Ginger and Luke Loser run off into another conference because Ginger kisses better and Mary Ann becomes a team leader in the Slaughterhouse Department at the Gil Thorp Pure Pork Sausage plant.

I’m seeing a problem here.

No, Keri, I’m more surprised that Tobias walked in the court on what looked like a match that was just about to finish or had just finished. Then again, maybe not. We’ve had Homo Sapiens taking liberties with game protocols (again, Vic Doucette comes to mind-remember those semi-conversations when Doug “can’t spell NASCAR” Guthrie was playing?) so I really shouldn’t have been shocked when Tobias got dumped by his mom and Tobias had to go SOMEWHERE to barge in, why not a volleyball match? Gil isn’t coaching and it’s Ochoa’s debut. Perfect timing. Now Ochoa may eventually tell Tobias to get off the frickin’ court until the match is over but let’s not rush things. Let’s let Tobias track his muddy shoes on the court, get smacked in the nose by a spike from New Thayer or Goshen, get in the ref’s face over a bad net call, throw popcorn at the Madison server when no one’s looking, then rape Keri in broad daylight, after which Gil and Cami lecture Tobias on proper volleyball fan ethics, sometime in November. It’s not whether you win or lose but how you play the game. Okay, it doesn’t fit but Gil’s had a lot of square-peg-in-round-hole aphorisms before and Cami needs to learn the ropes.

I swear to God, this was on a marquee at some Comfort Inn location

“We are a pet-friendly place. Except for bears. We won’t make that mistake again.”

Today’s Headline in the Milford Enquirer

“Mimi Thorp’s Mother Charged With Misdemeanor At Milford Adult Center-Up North Annex!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Charges will be dropped if promptly attended to. Mimi’s cousin agrees to send his dump truck to haul off damaged contents.”

What is it with the artwork? Okay, we can get adjusted to Keri as a teenager and Jami as in his pre-Clearisil years but no way can I get adjusted to Keri looking like Bazooka Joe chopped up Mort with a machete and Mort telling Bazooka Joe what a cut-up he is. The joke is not only not worth the bubble gum wrapper they printed it on but the violence is a bit out of place, kinda like Tobias dropping in and throwing a chair like Knight did in the Purdue game. Whoa, look out for that office seat whizzing by you, Keri. BTW, wanna go to The Bucket? My treat.
Then has Death made its presence known in P1? Or are they using The Bucket for Pet Shop Boys’ “It’s a Sin” video? I don’t THINK that’s Central’s Volleyball coach. Everybody else looks as if they belong to the Human Race, a bit debatable for a person or two but willing to give the benefit of the doubt if we’re going the Featherless Biped route. I can safely say that that’s a car parked in the parking lot. Mr. Death may need a jump if that’s his car so I left the cables in the trunk.

And I’ll go out on a limb here. That is not The Tennis Racket. Keri, Mr. Death, Tobias the Chair Thrower, et al are at The Bucket. With a capital B.

Special Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“O.J. Avoids Eviction From Milford Luxury Condo Suites!!!!!!!!!! Agrees To Order By Condo Manager!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“He will ship pet bear via Milford Delivery Express to Milford Petting Zoo today.”

In Dr. Pearl’s office, with John Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme” out of her lava lamp on the desk

“I checked with the Valley Conference Commisioner. He said he has no problem with Tobias tripping the Tilden server. It was judged an accident when he dropped the drumstick.”

“I need a report on the findings by this afternoon, Coach Thorp. Make sure it’s notarized.”

And of course, Keri, like the rest of the family gets dubious credit for winning the match. True she made a kill that sealed the match but I’ll need more evidence before we start throwing around MVP effort. But ain’t it like Thorpiverse to watch the slaves pick all the cotton and the plantation owner get Milford Businessman of the Year when he or she was playing golf on the Milford Country Club grounds 99% of the time. Oh, I’ll give them a couple of cotton T-shirts at Christmas to shut ‘em up.
I have no doubt that Keri had something to do with the victory. But I’m not giving her game ball yet.

Besides, what is this with “Sis”? I suppose they’re teammates and teammates support each other but I don’t reckon this particular female will not be sharing bunks in Keri’s bedroom tonight. I realize that the more you hang out with each other, the closer you get and become that much more of a team. I just really don’t think this female will be using Keri’s toothbrush tomorrow or drinking out of Gil’s shot glasses from the Jack in his liquor cabinet. Coach Mimi, can I keep this post card of your mother when she was in a one piece down at Naples Beach in 1896? I think we should take this one slow.

The comedy keeps coming. In my checking out of Roger Miller (“King of the Road-REM did a rendition of that on “Dead Letter Office”) on the Internet, I saw where you could refine your search to “How tall was Roger Miller?”. I have lost valuable sleep over that one. I also refined searches for “What laxative did Ray Price use when he was constipated on tour?” and “What kind of wood was Bill Monroe’s garage made out of?”. Shoot, I’m still waiting for the answer to “Did Coach Thorp date Minnie Pearl before he shipped off to the Marines?” Anyway

Late Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“Roger Miller To Appear For One Night At Milford Outdoor Amphitheater On His ‘Dang Me They Ought To Get A Rope And Hang Me For Showing My Face In Mudlarkland’ Tour!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Questions at press conference about his sexual preferences were deferred through his agent.”

The artwork continues to disappoint in P2. No way can you draw Keri as if she were one of Captain Kirk’s enemies on a Star Trek episode. Well, gotta run, I need to go antagonize Dr. Spock and Dr. McCoy some more. Maybe they can remove this tumor on my head.

Really, she could be growing sweet potatoes out of her left ear and I doubt she would notice, given her rapt attention to her Bucket Shake with a straw only a stick figure would slurp out of plus her friend who used the mop head from the janitor’s room to cover the zits on her scalp. I mean, if I wanted to watch Shrek 5: His Marriage With A Bucket Car Hop, I’d have bought the video.

I am going to go out on a limb and say that that’s a Bucket waitress to the left in P2. Not too many volleyball players or conventioneers would wear a back brace when they were ordering Bucket Cole Slaw. I think I’m safe in my prognostication for now. I’m pretty sure Dr. Pearl doesn’t use when she bends down to get to the lower shelves of the file cabinet. I can soldier on.
But dang, those pants are a little high. Is there a flood anywhere? We might have to use Keri’s friend’s mop top to absorb the moisture if it gets down to cases. Drain any excess in Mop Head Girl’s Janitor in a Drum cup. Talk about a tall one. You could stick a whole six-pack in that container.

“…you can’t roller skate in a buffalo herd, but you can show at our match if you put your mind to it…”

“I have a tele-conference meeting with all the Valley Conference principals this afternoon.”

Afternoon Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“Coach Shaw Turned Down As Rhythm Guitarist At Upcoming Roger Miller Concert!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“He had trouble whistling on ‘England Swings’. It might have been the Chic-Lets.”

The close-up in P3 is not much of an improvement. I have dispelled the notion that Keri is a distant cousin to Shrek or Frankenstein (the monster, not the doctor) but still am less and less impressed with the art. I really don’t think it’s a good idea to dump peat moss and/or fertilizer on Tobias or Keri and call that a hairstyle. You’ll be having to pull weeds out of Keri’s hair if this trend continues. At this point, Keri and Tobias are the only humans to hit the Lawn and Gardening Department at Wal-Mart for all their shampoo needs. Forget Head & Shoulders. More like Humus & Compost.
The freak hands make their presence known for the umpteenth time. Keri, if you need a file to eliminate the wrinkles, I heard True Value Hardware was running a sale. The saving grace is the earrings. I think we do have a matching number if you assume the object on her right ear could be a fly that was buzzing around. Then I believe we can call it even.
But what is “heh”. Oh, the joke bombed but Mommy and Daddy told me to fake laughing even if the person’s humor rivaled Dr. Pearl’s opening anecdotes at the Valley Conference Football Media Day. Roll over in laughter and you might even make the varsity.

Gang, these ED commercials keep coming and I keep laughing. Now one place has a urology facility within the ED clinic. Oh joy oh joy, I’m not having sex properly because I can’t urinate straight. I was wondering why I didn’t have any emergency trips to the bathroom when I was munching on a Totino’s Pepperoni. With that in mind

At a Milford Fish & Wildlife Area outhouse

“That’s the tenth cup of water I had!!!!!!!! I oughta be peeing any minute now!!!!!!! I’ll be hornier than the loblolly pines around the entrance!!!!!!!!”

“Honnnnneeeyyyyyyy, I’m horrrnnnnnnyyyyyy!!!!!!!!!!! Open the door and let my love groooowwwwwwwwww!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

“I’ve got this door dead-bolted, Mrs. Shaw!!!!!!! I won’t let a chipmunk come in here and watch a man do what he’s got to do!!!!!!!”

“Honey, I know you’re having problems with hardness of the situation but why are you at an outhouse where all the mosquitos are buzzing on the screen?”

“Woman, you are WRONG!!!!!!!!!!! I do not have ANY problems with my best friend rising to the occasion!!!!!!!!! All it needs is TLC like you do when you water your plants and talk to them.”

“Darling, except I don’t think it’s a good idea to talk to your wee wee or feed it plant food.”

“But if I eat eight bowls of chili and some cinnamon pancakes and a dab of Frank’s Hot Sauce and wash it down with a ton of water, I’ll be crying me a river and driving home the point, all under the sheets!!!!!!!”

“I was wondering why there were Dasani bottles all around the outhouse.”

“By gum, Mrs. Shaw after I devour this take-out order from The Diner of Meat Loaf Au Jus w/ Mashed Potatoes Smothered In Gravy & Mayonnaise plus some Rhubarb Cobbler a la Mode, I’ll be stinkin’ up the outhouse with poop and thereby freeing my urinary tract and I’ll be on my way to Sexual Nirvana. I understand it’s how the Hindu religion gets released from that merry-go-round they’ve been ridin’ on since the Holy Wars. If the facility reeks, it’s a good sign my best friend has been liberated.”

“Wheeeewwwww!!!!!!!!! I think he got set free twenty minutes ago.”

“Ya see???? It works!!!!!!!! Give me another hour and you can do log roll contests on my best friend. I still have a Cheese Hamburger Helper plate to finish up so I can nuke the wildlife area with my flatulations.”

“They may cause some animals to go extinct.”

“Oh well, I was going to hunt ‘em anyway. Now clear out so I can swallow this turnip salad and continue my quest for conquests.”

“Wheewwwwwww!!!!!!!!! I shall not argue. BTW, the Park Ranger is closing the gates in ten minutes.”

“What could I do? I dumped the turnip salad down the well, zipped my pants, and headed out before I got trapped with the rest of the coyotes. But I still had a problem. Milford Men’s Clinic showed me how to overcome my problems without having to eat the Blue Plate Special at K-Mart. With proven treatments by competent staff members, isn’t it time you skipped the cafeteria line and got your butt down to The Clinic. Get your best friend working for you with having to take Rolaids, only at Milford Men’s Clinic.”

That’s the 1,000,000,001th time I have had to tell you, Keri doesn’t look like Pat Benatar. Keri may join a band one day but one volleyball match at a time.

But God bless you, Gang.

Late Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“Milford City Ordinance Enforces Code At Thorp Household!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“The bear feces in the front yard were getting harder not to notice.”

At Milford Nudist Colony

“Mommy, why is Dr.Pearl wearing roller skates and dancing with Daddy? And who’s Roger Miller?”

“Uhhhhhh, here Keri, here’s a volleyball. Go practice your digs some more on the wall out back.”

September 12, 2022

Hitting The Bucket

Filed under: Colorist Error, Keri Thorp, The Bucket, Volleyball — nedryerson @ 6:28 am

The Central Bobcats drop the volleyball match to Milford. The Bobcat who showed up in the wrong uniform couldn’t dig out the ball, so the let’s begin the celebration. (Yes, the colorists are still not getting the notes. Maybe a new crew of colorists checks in every week. I don’t know. It’s boring. The strips are colored by really cheap AI robots. We get it.)

The meat of the strip is an encounter between Keri Thorp and the recently introduced Tobias Gordon. I was confused by the dialog until I realized that Keri was talking to herself, nervously narrating Toby’s approach through the middle of the victory celebration. Is Keri talking to herself because she has a thing for Toby? Has she even met Toby before? Maybe Gil filled Keri in on Toby since Gil has been given the task of “watching over” Toby, by Toby’s mother.

Toby is not nervous though. He strolled right onto the court and asked Keri to The Bucket. Is he emboldened because he’s Gil’s charge? (Did Gil observe this? Did he not tell Toby to move his butt off the court unless he wants to join the team? We’ll have to wait and see what efforts Gil puts into his watching over.)

What say you, Keri? Can Toby take you to The Bucket? Is it okay if Gil watches?

September 10, 2022

The Return of the No-Name Defense…

Filed under: actual action, Central, hands in the air, Keri Thorp, Volleyball — teenchy @ 8:19 pm

… and the No-Name Offense too while we’re at it. Whoever is calling this jayvee volleyball game in front of a packed house of 5 (and since when do jayvee volleyball games merit announcers?) wasn’t given or can’t be bothered to find the Milford or Central rosters. It’s a little refreshing, really, not having to Google which of Neal Rubin’s friends was getting a shout-out by having a players as a namesake. Still if we’re gonna have a narrative about a specific Milford team during a season, we’re gonna need some names before long.

Is this Central the same Central that’s in the Valley Conference? Or, with the nickname “Bobcats,” is it the one in Knoxville, TN? If the latter, then Milford has stolen its team colors. Maybe it’s the one in Phoenix or in San Angelo, TX. Seeing a team in mauve, pink and black is also a little refreshing though I’ve gotta wonder how their boys’ teams pull it off. I don’t know squat about volleyball uniform numbering so I can’t vouch for whether 64 is an appropriate number for a volleyball player. I have a hunch it’s some kind of secret message, kind of like Rubin’s goodbye and Prisoner reference in the July 7 strip. The number 5, of course, refers to the number of people in the stands and the number 17, dunno, maybe the number of people who read Gil Thorp on the regular?

Anyhoo, here’s a pic of the original No-Name Defense. See if you can name any of them without Googling. I’ll post the answers on Wednesday.

September 9, 2022

Bonfire? No, volleyball..

Filed under: confusing dialogue, Milford Alumni, Pissy faced minor character, Volleyball — robmize2013 @ 6:03 pm

As we wait anxiously for the annual bonfire to kick off the football season (if there is any) we hone in on a JV volleyball game coached by Cami Ochoa, who was just a student lo a few months ago. Yes all of us go through the thought of someone younger then us in a leader position as we get further away from high school (the school principal at mine is only 2 years older then me, and the football coach is 17 years younger). Its tricky to have respect for someone who used to be your colleague but good coaches and leaders draw the line between friendship and coaching your friends. I never wanted to get too close to any of my bosses or players I coached/managed. And I hope Cami follows that edict. But we’ll see.

Dont know why the team is proud of Cami yet. Unless its for being hired to coach them at such a young age.

Then in P3 we have a suggestion that ‘they’ dont care if its her first game. Who, the other team, or her players that just said they did? Im adding ‘confusing dialogue’ to our list of categories, as this was a staple of the old regime. Say one thing and mean up to 3 different things. Bada bing bada boom. And we’ll see if miss orange hair becomes one of the troublemakers/protaganists for the fall stroyline.

Myself, I’d prefer blocking and tackling. And a bonfire.

September 8, 2022

Serving More Than Aces, That’s The Milford Way.

Filed under: Gil Thorp — tdrewhardin @ 2:20 pm

What is this, I was just making jokes about Divorce Court but it appears as if Thorpiverse is serious to the task.

This is truly reduced to the absurd. We were used to the Thorps living on Penny Lane but Mama Mimi makes it sound like they are destitute with poverty of groceries and/or love. With a smile on her face? More on that later.

To proudly take the baton from Teenchy, we’re apparently taking liberties with “up north”. No, I didn’t think Mimi Senior lived in an assisted care facility just shy of the North Pole but north is north. Say, for argument’s sake, that Milford was based upon the town in Connecticut. Common sense will tell you that Mimi Senior wasn’t living on the Equator nor living in a senior citizen center next to an alligator pit in the Everglades.
But neither did I think Mimi Senior was sharing an apartment north of Nome, Alaska with an Inuit senior citizen. She didn’t go whale-hunting with the rest of the Nome AARP crowd. She didn’t have season tickets for the Iditarod races. No, some halfway house in Vermont where you could see Mt. Mansfield (highest point) out the window when brushing your teeth in the morning or some suburb of Boston where you rode with the rest of the octogenarians on the Underground Metro to the Celtics game and even got an autographed basketball from Larry Bird or Paul Silas, that was the more believable scenario.
But Milford Adult Care Center? What is THAT up north from? What frame of reference? The Adult Care Center is up north from Milford Petting Zoo? Coffee Cantina? The tackling dummies on the practice field gathering rust in the winter? Okay, we’re allowing for leeway but it’s like telling the kids they’re going up north to meet Santa and then hauling them to the Adult Center rec room and where some 97-year-old bachelor dons a Santa outfit he bought at a garage sale, the elves played by the Adult Center cafeteria staff. Kind of a letdown, if you ask me.
I think it’s safe to say nobody from Milford Adult Care will go skinny-dipping at midnight at the same beach where Keri and Jami were frolicking. If you see an Uber at 11:57PM, you know where it’s headed.

This is interesting. I read a notice in a magazine where Volkswagen and Audi were targets of a lawsuit, chiefly because airbags manufactured by Takata Corporation would spray metal bits when the airbags inflated. Customers who bought a VW or Audi between 2016 and 2021 were entitled to a settlement. Volkswagen denied any fault and given their history of excellent customer satisfaction, I could see their point. Be that as it may,

Today’s Headline in the Milford Enquirer

“Coach Mimi Thorp Suing Subaru and Milford Subaru Dealership After Last Trip To Her Mother At Milford Senior Living Solutions, Inc.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I realize my mother drinks a lot to calm her nerves but the martini shouldn’t have been caught in the air bag.”

You almost want to believe that Mimi Senior is sending coal to Mimi NOW to decorate the stocking. You want me to sign here, UPS driver? When I was a girlie-girl, Mama not only put reindeer poop in my stockings, she made me take down the Christmas tree after I opened all my presents. And “presents” was loosely defined. Mommy Dearest gave me toothbrushes made out of the bristles off the Christmas tree and fruit cake shipped from some oven in Siberia. No Raggedy Ann dolls were next to the lumps of coal. Then she made me shovel the snow with her measuring spoons. White Christmas wasn’t any fun.
Geez, no wonder why Mimi has freak hands. All that shoveling.
We’re not getting a good first impression of Mimi Senior, are we?
Phooey on being afraid of Santa. How did Mimi learn to golf growing up with Mommy Dearest? She did knuckle push-ups before putting drills? Licked the dirt off of Mama’s golf cleats after a round on the back nine? Ran laps around the beach? There’s a lot you aren’t telling us, Mimi.

Afternoon Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“O.J. Advised By Judge Ito To Bring More Documentation At Next Court Date; Mercedes-Benz Legal Team To Fax A Rebuttal!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Cochran’ll send the pictures of the dog poop flying’ out of the airbag, by hook or by crook.”

At Milford Adult Center with The Stampeders “Sweet City Woman” blaring at the MAC Bowling Tournament

“Mimi!!!!!! Arch and a spin!!!!!!! You’ll never pick up a spare throwing like a baboon!!!!!!!”

“Mom, What worked shooting free throws won’t work getting a split.”

I am thoroughly confused. When were they UNHAPPY? I have been reading Gil since I was knee-high to Gil’s hair and even before they married, they were on excellent terms. Nothing romantic, you understand, just no more than they would say in the faculty lounge.

I remember when Gil thought some other gentleman was making a move on Mimi right under Gil’s nose and it just tore at Gil. It was affecting how he was coaching (basketball, in this case) and it finally took Tod Andrews when he was still Gil’s assistant to tell Gil to get his head out of his butt. But that’s the extent of the prolonged discontent that I recall.
It’s interesting to observe Gil and Mimi at The Bucket (I’m confident this photo was not taken at The Olive Garden) or Mimi and Keri with Gil (maybe) disguised as Santa. Okay, things were okee-dokee when Santa gave Jami a train set and Keri a Barbie Doll set. And maybe even better when Santa asked Mimi for a quickie before Mimi put the turkey in the oven, although it was probably best not to announce that in front of the kids.
So what happened? Gil and Mimi engaged in a cat fight at Milford Adult Center? For what purpose? Because Gil spends more time with his football team than Mama Mimi’s shuffleboard team? It looks like we’re grasping at straws for drama. Why does the word “divorce” appear more than the word “football”? I mean, you want a soap opera where the night judge appears more than the children, check out Apartment 3-G. This is sports, y’all. I’ll even take Mama Mimi seeded #14 in the Checkers Tournament before I am forced to listen to Mimi singing karaoke “Stand By Your Man” at Milford Lounge.
This is gonna get ugly and we didn’t see it coming because it never came in the past. But maybe Roy Gillen stole Gil’s hub caps and Gil cussed out Mimi at dinner in frustration. I might have been in the hospital at the time.

Special Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“Coach Thorp To Reach Out-Of-Court Settlement With BMW To Avoid Court Costs!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I still think they need to replace the stereo speakers. I about ruined my eardrums when I was playing ‘Kaw-Liga’ by Hank Williams.”

At the Milford Gym

“Coach Ochoa, did you apply yet for an IRA at a Milford Federal?”

“Mimi, this is my first year and your mom is still alive in Labrador.”

Half-joking, my left toe, Mama Mimi. Don’t start raising a stink where there was really never any poop. Oh, there’s reindeer droppings in the carpet. Would you go get some Renuzit Fresh Cinnamon and some Kaboom! Carpet Cleaner? And a spade shovel because my dust pan got accidentally pitched down the trash compactor? Oh, Mimi, girl, you know I’m only half-joking.

And while we’re at it, Mama Mimi, don’t start reindeer poop when we’re not sure there is any in the ash tray. It’s like the story about Mimi being half-pregnant. That’s right, Gil, I’m half-expecting Keri to be born any day. If not, I’ll call Corina Karenna for any ideas for a replacement. Or ask Coach Ochoa after her DUI court appearance.
C’mon, Mama Mimi, nobody gets half-divorced. Like what’s going to happen, Gil get served the papers on half an 8 x 11 & 1/2 memo? Explain that one to the judge. Sorry, Your Honor, only half the copier was running today. I’ll call the Ricoh man tomorrow. Mama Mimi, you’re raising a stink when there appears to be only half the reindeer poop in the ash tray. Shoot, just dump the contents in the garbage bag, throw the bag in the trash for pickup up front and get on with it. And don’t forget to get half those case briefs to Cochran. You’re getting Alzheimer’s in your advanced years.

If yore 4-wheel drive spews out buck shot from the air bag cuz ya forgot ta vacuum the front landing area when ya ran tha coin vacuum cleaner at Milford Car Wash, ya might be a redneck.

Late Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“O.J. Rejects Latest Settlement With Mercedes-Benz!!!!!!!!!! He And Cochran Plan To Pursue The Case!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“That dog poop didn’t halfway spit out of the glove compartment. Not when I got it all over my jogging suit.”

Is it me or does Mama Mimi look like Barney Rubble’s mom in another life? She must have been the middle linebacker for the Mudlarks when the Allies forced the Nazis to surrender. And damn, them hands. I keep saying it, is this the sequel to “Tarantula!!!!!!”? Oh look, it’s halfway eating Mimi because it didn’t get enough crickets in its diet.

And serving the papers? Barney’s mom, I realize Mimi was thinking about going pro on the LPGA circuit but that’s no reason for Mimi to go up north to the Milford Adult Center and ask who’d be a good divorce attorney to call. It looks like we’re jumping from Brisbane to Brasilia. Like have you been entertaining these notions while working on your backhand in shuffleboard? Damn, Barney’s mom, you definitely need to get out more. What’s the phone conversation going to entail? Mimi, would you like to come up north today? I need to go to the grocery store, get my nails done, walk the dog, and talk to Joe Sharkey about your subpoena. Be sure to brake for the Iditarod sledders on the way up. And eat all your vegetables. You’ll be stronger that way when you tee off.

“We’re about to get the first serve underway. We’ll be back to see if Gil shouldn’t quit his day job because he bombed at this day job after these messages. I’d bet money that Coach Ochoa may be the last person standing. This is Marty Moon and you’re listening to WDIG, a division of Learfield Sports.”

“Oh, that Marty is a comedian. He shouldn’t quit HIS day job because I was volleyball captain for 23rd Battalion Regiment 342 Platoon 15 Troop 97 Section 607 when I was stationed at Iwo Jima. We were whuppin’ butt when we weren’t blasting the enemy in the Pacific Theater. We needed a break from the war every now and then.

But I’m not here to talk about Marty when he went Benedict Arnold on us and become a field commander at some army depot in Osaka. Milford Beverage Warehouse is feeling the heat after terrifying news that many of our customers drive Nissans, Toyotas, Saabs, Peugeots, Triumphs, well, I think you get the picture. I’m not going to list all the models and makes here in the phone book. And this coach, Coach Thorp, just couldn’t stand idly by while some schmuck got hit with candy bar bits when his air bag was engaged and he had to be carried off in an ambulance after purchasing some Jack and Lay’s Sour Cream at The Warehouse. What a waste of Milford Beverage Warehouse Visa Platinum.
That’s why I am proud to announce that the ownership at Milford Beverage Warehouse share my deep concerns and are engaging in a new promotion “Save Before You Sue” campaign. No sense in calling Joe Sharkey or any other defense attorney off the bulletin board here at The Warehouse before you could have bought Michelob Ultra and Milford Vending Cheese-Enriched Pork Rinds at a discount. It’s no fun walking into court with that on your conscience.
Wherefore, the next time you purchase Jim Beam Kentucky Straight Lime Flavored Bourbon Whiskey at the ridiculous $23.99, you will not only get a free can of Le Sueur Peas w/Onion Balls out of the grocery section, you will be given a voucher for a visit to your local attorney should your trunk explode when you open it to put away the hard-earned merchandise at The Warehouse. Just make sure your writing hand doesn’t get blown off so you can dial the numbers but we’ll have EMT’s on call for any problems.
And we have heard the stories about Dodge Rams pissing up a storm when the driver slammed on the brakes and the air bag billowed out. Let me tell you, I wouldn’t want the steering wheel spraying urine on me when I got done buying a 15-Pak 12-Ounce Braxton Garage Beer and some mints because Milford Motel 6 didn’t have any in the lobby. I have peace of mind self-assured with this written affidavit in my hand with every purchase of Braxton Garage Beer or Coors Light. Shoot, I’ll show ol’ Shark the evidence and the affidavit and he best be calling the insurance company for Dodge. If the Coors Light on the coffee table in the lobby of his office isn’t enough to convince him that I mean business, buying the Armour Hot Dogs I bought along with my Coors and placed on the National Geographic rack won’t help. I’ll get a notary to seal the deal.
And that lawsuit from the Saab drivers that occurred recently over in Luke Loser’s neck of the woods? If they had known about the purchase of Sauvignon Blanc du Jour de l’Annee 1869 dans la Citte du Paris avec la Moutarde Plongee dans l’Eau de les Toillettes at a rock-bottom $15.29, they would have been informed that they can get free legal advice from a pamphlet about car defects that accompanied their purchase. Don’t get caught with your pants down literally when your Maserati blows a tire because the assembly line at the Maserati plant got their tires mixed up with Schwinn. Nobody wants to be in an ambulance after the car smashed into a utility pole and an ambulance-chasing lawyer is handing his business card to the paramedic to give to you. Go home with your wine and legal ammunition and head to Milford Firestone when you get the chance.

Folks, The Warehouse can’t make it any easier. Get your booze and chips and drive knowing there’s a team behind you and I don’t mean those pack of mules that graze in Marty Moon’s neighbor’s yard and tell ‘em Coach Thorp sent ya.”

No, Gang, Mama Mimi doesn’t remind me of Rodney Dangerfield’s mom. She’s wearing glasses.
But God bless you anyway.

At Milford Adult Center

“Mommy, Grandma said some old man who lives here wants to share his Jack Daniels with her. Who’s Jack?”

“Uhhhhhhhh, here, Keri, here’s plenty of quarters. Go get you some Cokes in the Adult Center break room.”

At Milford Superior Court

“Judge Ito, the steering wheel was spouting a liberal amount of cow urine. It’s a wonder Mr. Simpson didn’t call Milford Health Department.”

September 7, 2022

What is this, effing ponderous, man. Ponderous, effing ponderous.

“I want a concerted effort to come out of a strip that isn’t an up-tempo strip about fapping into a damned death dedication!” Here I am set up to spike some snark after Gil played setter yesterday and all I can think of after reading today’s installment is Casey Kasem’s infamous ranting outtake.

Well that puts a damper on my catty remarks about how sick Mimi’s mother really was, how far away (and how close to a beach) from Milford she was living, and how old Cami Ochoa is.* It’s taken me the better part of today to decide which is the bigger bombshell: that Mimi’s mother is terminally ill or that Mimi had an aspiring professional golf career we hadn’t heard about until today.

Let’s start with the first one. When Mimi took the Thorplets to the beach and/or to see her mother, we were under the impression that Grandma Clover didn’t exactly live around the corner. Now we’re told Mimi’s gone “to take care of her mom up north” only to find them at Milford Adult Care LLC? Either Milford is about the size of Sitka, Alaska, or Mimi went up north and brought her mom closer, well, to die.

A slightly meta digression is in order. In the time that I’ve been part of the TWIM rotation, I’ve lost both my parents: father of teenchy in July 2014 and mother of teenchy in November 2016. When my father died, I don’t think I missed a regularly scheduled post; however when my mother died I took a leave of absence from TWIM that lasted until late January 2017. In hindsight I think the main difference was that my mother died very suddenly and somewhat unexpectedly, whereas my father had been terminally ill for over a year and his passing was not so much a matter of if, but when. It also didn’t help matters that I became the sole surviving member of my family after my mother passed and had to deal with the material consequences of that. That’s also why I spent a fair part of 2017 in Bakst country.

What’s my point? My point is that when you know with some certainty that a loved one has a limited time remaining, you are allowed an opportunity to prepare for that eventuality. In Mimi’s case, it appears that includes not only bringing her mom closer to her for the time she has left** but also preparing to pursue a golf dream that’s been on hold for as long as I’ve been reading this strip if not longer. I suppose next we’ll find out that Kaz has gone off on a spiritual trek to Nepal and Silent John Pascoe has returned to help Gil coach the football team.

*How many years of a time jump did Barajas make when he took the super soph from six months ago and made her a high school sports coach? Is there a fountain of youth in Casa Thorp that kept Keri and Jami from aging while Cami did the reverse Benjamin Button? If so, maybe they better give a glass or two to Mimi’s mom. Just sayin’.

**Not sure how Mimi’s mom can say with such certainty that she’s dying in six months and not tonight. Does she have a physician-assisted suicide penciled into her calendar for that date? Does she know that Mimi’s going to carefully wheel her into Milford Adult Care LLC and not do something else with her? There’s a string of morbid jokes as long as my arm I could roll out here but good taste (and maybe my earlier aside) won’t let me do that. Instead I’ll refrain and leave that for the commenters.

September 6, 2022

I Double-Checked The Milford Enquirer Sports Briefs Section To Make Sure She Graduated.

Filed under: Gil Thorp — tdrewhardin @ 1:13 pm

I thought I was getting senile. When I saw Cami Ochoa’s name, I knew I had seen it before. When I did some amateur research, I suddenly remembered that for this past Girls Basketball season, she was promoted to varsity from the JV on the Mudlark Girls Basketball team. In fact, she eventually wound up bunking Hollis Talley for PT, the so-called captain of the Girls team. Look, SOMEBODY needed to pick up the slack in the home stretch of the 5-game season and take charge ON THE COURT and Ochoa clearly matched that description. Oh, eventually, Hollis did some bunking herself, wrenching Cathy Sasaki’s job at guard to save face when Cami was figuratively dunking on Hollis’ face as well as on the faces of the opposition. But that’s akin to Gil bunking Mimi today only because she is (supposedly-didn’t see any suitcases in the front yard) visiting her mother. Gil has no business coaching a sport for which he has nada experience but like Hollis, just blow the whistle and point fingers at a few people and hope to God nobody notices you have no clue what the heck you’re talking about.
Anyway, when I saw Cami’s name and saw “Coach” appended to it, I’ll admit I was stupefied. I knew Gil and Mimi always had somebody available when both were persona non grata and down at the links telling Luke Loser to stick it where somebody shanks it in the rough but NEVER did I think they would call their replacement “Coach”. And still in high school? Yes, the convicts have been running the prison for God-knows-how-long but nobody ever called The Joker “Warden”.
But then I remembered, we are in a time warp and Gil and Mimi are now 254 years old and the kids have grown. I used deductive logic plus I remembered from algebra that equals added to equals were equal themselves. So if 194 was added to 60 to get to the aforementioned 254, I had to add 194 to Cami’s 16 years of existence (normal age of a sophomore) to get 210 years of age. I’m pretty sure that’s a record for oldest coach in the Valley Conference in any sport. Gil still holds the record for Valley Conference’s oldest most incompetent coach. Well, scratch that, he may break that record this year in Volleyball. Heck, Cami may bunk Gil. I mean, in ANY sport. Time will tell.
Therefore, I can say with an air of confidence that Cami has graduated, Hollis is running suicide missions for the Air Force, occasionally chewing out the pilots for spiking the punch at the USAF Christmas Banquet, and Cathy is the field supervisor at the Milford Valley vineyards. I don’t know what happened to Pranit Smith. Last I heard, he and Carson Hendry were on the Milford Municipal Lottery Commision.

Today’s Headline in the Milford Enquirer

“Pranit Smith Filing Discrimination Suit Against Milford Lounge!!!!!!!! Joe Sharkey To Take The Case!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I don’t know why the bartender keeps carding me. Don’t I look 235???? At least in the face????”

It may be Volleyball but the scenery discrepancies never leave the planet. It’s great that the Tall Girl can block in P1 but she is nowhere near the person about to return the volley with her set shot. Man, didn’t they have a clinic for this? Somebody is that out of line with the return shot and nobody noticed that over the summer? Is she related to Gregg Hamm? She has to have her seeing-eye dog with her when she’s blocking a spike? And again, the spiker must also be related to The Hamster because, though she has found a hole in the defense, it’s by default. You don’t spike 3-pointers towards Coach Ochoa’s head. We don’t have any documented evidence that Coach Ochoa played volleyball for the Mudlarks but let’s not bury this one with an errant shot with Ochoa cold on the floor. Gil take over the JV’s? We still are in the dark on Ochoa’s high school volleyball career? Too many questions and no coaching. Recipe for disaster, if you ask me.
And I will laugh if Gil requests that the other Valley Volleyball team take it easy on them. Dammit, Goshen, extend the Mercy Rule to this 254-year-old man. And don’t aim at Gregg’s glasses when you’re spiking.

Afternoon Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“Coach Thorp Anticipates Smooth Transition When Coaching Daughter In Mudlark Volleyball !!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I won’t cut off her allowance yet if she misses a dig. I’ll keep Coach Ochoa late for Bomb-and-Recover drills. I gave Coach my spare key.”

BAM!!!!!!!! WHAP!!!!!!!!!! SPLAT!!!!!!!!

“HAMM!!!!!!!!!! That’s not how you execute a kill!!!!!!!!! At least quit spiking towards the drinking fountain!!!!!! How we gonna take water breaks????”

Us Thorp fans knew it was just a matter of time before Gil was going to coach one of his own. Sam Alford coached Steve at New Castle, Indiana (made it to the State Semi-Finals under the one-class system) , Bob Knight coached Patrick at Indiana, face it, it happens. And having experienced it a little myself, any familial feelings you have gets exorcised by an intense desire to win. I made my nephew aware of that, anyway. He was just another player to me when we stepped between the lines and was well aware he had better bring his game. A coach is a fool to think otherwise and soon to lose his job.

But if anybody had told me that this would be the path pursued to broach the Coach-Daughter connection, I would have said you have been snorting too many volleyballs. Coach Thorp takes over because Mimi is taking a sabbatical to Mama and Coach Ochoa becomes an assistant after majoring in the sport for 83 years (you do the math, I get all confused on these age progressions) ? There’s a lot you can learn from an 157-year-old coach, Keri. I’ve been at this sport for 101 years. Let me show you the ropes.
Mopman brings up an excellent point in that shuffling I’m sure is a common piece of terminology in volleyball much like “sprint and recover” is many times used in cross country. I also see Frank’s point, Gil throwing around terminology like he used to spike the ball down those Commies’ throats when he was in the Marine Corps is a bit laughable. What’s he going to tell Tall Girl if she shoots a spike into the azaleas out back? Sprint and recover? Keri blows a dig and the whole crowd boos her mercilessly, is Gil going to tell her “two hands and squeeze”? “Look it all the way into the tuck”? Heck, Gil couldn’t even tell Gregg that last one, what makes Gil think he’ll be more successful throwing around cliches in a sport he has two left brains for? Come on, Gregg, two eyes and squeeze.

That’s right, Keri, the Viet Cong had us on the ropes at Da Nang. Then I aced the serve by putting a little twist on the ball and those VC terrorists ran for cover. The Tet Offensive was complete. What happens when you aim for the glove.

At the Battle of Gettysburg just before Pickett’s Charge

“Let’s establish our perimeter game and spread out the defense.”

“What if they still pack it in low?”

“Sprint and recover. Don’t forget your canteen.”

Special Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“O.J. To Take Over Reins As Coach For Milford Elementary Girls Track!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“I knew how to run when I was at USC. Shoot, I can point them 3rd-graders to the end zone and all they have to do is keep your hands on the luggage.”

FWEET is somewhat believable, given that many whistles tweet that way. It’s just a strange bedfellow arrangement whenever Gil is blowing the whistle in uncharted territory. He might as well be FWEETing for Milford Go-Kart Racing Squad. What’s he going to do when the pit crew forgot to change a tire, FWEET the play dead and start over? Have Coach Cami come on and show Doug the NASCAR Dude the proper way to jack up a tire? Teach Jami to watch the distributor all the way to the bat? FWEET!!!!!!! Dang it, Jami, if the clutch plate is close, you swing!!!!!!!

This is getting more inane by the panel. There’s a term in logic called Reductio ad Absurdum. You guessed it, reduced to the absurd. It’s a way to win an argument by exposing a blatant contradiction in your opponent’s argument. I couldn’t think of a better way of reducing this to the ridiculous and exposing a contradiction than for Gil to be announced as the volleyball coach at the Valley Conference opener.
I’ll FWEET to that.

At the archeological excavation site adjoining the Gil Thorp Pure Pork Sausage Industries property

“Professor!!!!!!!! We turned up a valuable find!!!!!!! And Smithsonian Institution called begging for the rights of ownership!!!!!!!”

“The Leakey Foundation will be pleased to know. What is it?”

“Coach Thorp’s jock strap!!!!!!! It was carbon-dated to 1961.”

If ya dig in yore back yard and turn up that knife ya buried from yore friends back when ya wuz a young ‘un ta keep ‘em from rattin’ on ya when ya tore up ol’ Suzie’s skirt as a prank, ya might be a redneck.

Coach Ochoa (I think I’m safe to call her that after a background check) , you ought to know by now that asking questions like the one you posed is pretty frickin’ stupid. After 313 years and that’s not in dog years, did you really expect Mimi, or Gil for that matter, to hit the ground running at the beginning of the season and TAKE CHARGE???? Throwing around Volleyball lingo you read on p.54 in Volleyball For Dummies and FAPPING your whistle doesn’t count. I could FAP when I take my Ford pick-up to the car wash.
And what does Gil mean by “up north”? Is Mama Mimi sharing an apartment with Coronavirus and keeping it tidy while C-Virus is at softball practice? They split 50-50 on the rent? Does Mimi Senior own a condo in Chicoutimi, Quebec? Mimi Junior better bring along a French dictionary. Shopping at a Wal-Mart and hearing about Rollback Specials on a DVD player or women’s lingerie in French or long john doughnuts in the Bakery Department can be a challenge (trust me, I speak from experience) . If Mimi Senior was able to get Folgers at the Wal-Mart price, it’s because she guarded that Langenscheidt French Dictionary in her shopping cart with her life.
Maybe Gil meant the North Pole. Mimi Senior lives in an igloo on a time-share lease. There was a similar program on Melville Island but the bank didn’t approve the collateral.
Who in the world FAPs? Only inexperienced coaches who really need to get their butts out to the football field and leave the actual volleyball coaching to I Once Knocked Tattletale Talley Out Of A Job. When your tire blows, it doesn’t FAP. When Mimi Senior has eaten too many Spaghetti O’s from the Chicoutimi Wal-Mart Rollback Special on Franco American products and thereby contracts a lot of gas in her abdomen, she doesn’t release it by taking lots of Alka-Seltzer and FAPPING. A bear doesn’t FAP in the woods. Let’s cease this Concoct Noises When We’ve Run Out Of BAM or WHACK Or The Other Sound Effects When Batman Is Kicking The Joker’s Butt concept and devise some more realistic. Nobody FAPS when they open their mail.

And when is Mimi going to return, like FAPmeister had a legitimate answer. Heck, he about lost his whole family when Gil wasn’t FAPPING enough in bed. Geez, no wonder why his sex life sucks.

“We’ll return after these messages to see if Mimi comes home or opts to stay and help her mom wash Laplander clothes after a reindeer hunt for a living after these messages. You’re watching WDIG-TV.”

“I’m sorry, Dr. Pearl, your vehicle loan fell through. You were deemed incapable of making payments due to your advanced age.”

“WHAT???? I am only 23 centuries old. I just went skinny-dipping in Mudlark Lake with my husband and the great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandkids.”

Heard somewhere in the bank

“I’d call The Shark!!!!!!! My husband sued Milford Foundry when they said he was too old to drive a forklift. The Shark fought mandatory retirement and my husband is back on his job with his back pay and a new assignment to haul rocket parts to Cape Canaveral.”

“The lengths some financial institutions will go to deny what another human being is legally entitled to by law. Just because my client was a guppy out of water when she witnessed Joan of Arc crossing the Alps to defeat Hannibal and the rest of his elephants does not mean she was too old to keep up payments on an SUV. I fought to get her the money she deserved even if I had to resort to exposing some unethical sexual practices of some of the jury members. Who cares if they occurred when they were a junior in high school after final exams? I kept my ethics and wore a chastity belt when I took my SAT’s. Fair is fair.”

“I received $682,056,175 from Milford Teachers Federal Credit Union and I took some of that money to make payments on a Ford F-150 and establish credit. I drive it to work and Mr. Dr. Pearl uses it to drive the grandkids to events like Easter egg hunts and sack races at Milford Senior Citizen Center socials. The kids put the potato bags in the truck bed and listen to Grateful Dead on the way to Dairy Queen Peanut Buster Parfait Mix and Match Specials. I could have used this mode of transportation at Antietam. No matter. Thank you very much, Mr. Shark.”

“You heard the venerable Dr. Pearl. If she can fight age discrimination and still be able to attend the William McKinley Presidential Convention, you can too. But don’t wait. Make your claim today. Don’t miss the deadline because it’s against your religion to turn in notarized statements after 6:00AM on Sunday to Milford Municipal Clerk’s Office. I guarantee you, places like Milford Foundry and Milford Federal coerce some struggling law school student to prepare a brief as part of his or her doctorate’s thesis. Don’t get your hand caught in the FedEx dispenser at the Milford Wal-Mart right beside the Salvation Army drop box. Call Joe Sharkey at 1-FON-THE-JAWS. One call, that’s all.”

Gang, a zebra does too FAP in the woods. How do you think it got it’s stripes? Don’t you read Childcraft?

But God bless you anyway.

At the Milford gym at volleyball practice with Grateful Dead’s “Sugar Magnolia” playing over the intercom

“Keri, dammit, don’t serve underhanded. That’s the 5th one that got caught in the rafters. Right through the tire. Let’s try again.”

Late one night at the Pearl residence



“Hello? I’m sorry, she’s in the shower. No problem, I’ll have her call you. Henry Cabot Lodge? Is that with two T’s?”

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