This Week in Milford

February 9, 2019

I’m from the psychologist’s office and I’m here to help

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It’s been a very long day for yhs and I have a sneaking suspicion that however I choose to snark today’s strip, it’ll already have been done to death on the Curmudgeon. With that in mind…

Time moves slowly in the Valley. Milford may be 1959 with cell phones, but in Tilden they whip out their 143-year-old campaign posters to decorate the gym.

Wow, will ya look what a little counseling – or just the promise of counseling – will do.  Just like that shortstop-in-waiting Filion has turned into Mr. Helper. Even with Gil having benched the four failed wannabe billboard defacers, the Filion-driven Mudlarks are putting the Tildenites away in short order.

Meanwhile Marty thinks he’s being witty by labeling Marcell Ledbetter Irby the “stovepipe sophomore,” which conjures up imagery of Ralph Sampson, Chuck Nevitt or Manute Bol. His face tells another story, revealing the unfolding, horrifying realization that a winning Gil Thorp-coached team will destroy the Marty n’ B/Robby Show’s raison d’être. Not to fear, o soused sportscaster: Milford only wins when other teams have either thrown in the towel or benched their starters to rest them for the playdowns.

December 26, 2018

Hatters Gonna Hat

Filed under: actual action, basketball, Gil Thorp, metapost, Milford Weirdos — teenchy @ 6:47 am

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Happy Boxing Day, when we return to the current status quo instead of speculating yet again as to how Gil and Mimi’s kids disappeared and how they may be retconned out of or back into the strip.  The Mudlarks hit the road for another non-conference tilt which, if the Thorpiverse’s Milford were still clearly in Connecticut and not implicitly in Michigan, wouldn’t be an unreasonably far trip.  The Danbury Mad Hatters were a minor league hockey team while Danbury High School’s sports teams are simply the Hatters.  The Wikipedia entry for the Mad Hatters hockey team notes that the franchise replaced the Danbury Trashers, which were infamous for having been owned by a trashman with purported mob ties who installed his 17-year-old son as president and general manager. (That last link, aptly described as “The Sopranos meets Slap Shot,” is an entertaining read if you have the time.)

The words and the images in the first two panels of today’s strip don’t seem to align. It looks like the Mudlarks are dressing into their road uniforms in a locker room that doesn’t quite look like Milford’s. Then again, there’s not a great deal of variability in high school locker rooms and it’s been established that Milford teams practice in their game uniforms (occasionally accessorized with pinnies).  They’re wrapping up practice before the road trip to Danbury and Andre is trying to impress upon scrawny Marcell that making That 70’s Show references is Marginal Mike Filion’s schtick even though this is only the second time we’ve seen him do it.

On to the game action, where it looks like the Mad Hatters play underneath the stands at Fenway Park.  No doubt Danbury will bury Milford, which will keep the Mudlarks winless, the billboards fresh, and this plot stumbling forward to an inane resolution.  Here’s hoping you all have awakened from your food comas and are gradually easing yourselves into your post-holiday routines.

metapost: GoComics hasn’t updated its Gil Thorp page since 12/22.  Not sure what’s going on there, but it may mean we’ll be using the color version from elsewhere from now on.

December 19, 2018

Warriors! Come out to play-ay!

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The Arapaho(e) are a Native American tribe of the Great Plains. Arapahoe High School, near Denver, unfortunately made national news almost five years ago to this day for a shooting which left one student dead and the shooter taking his own life.

Well, after that bit of cheer to start off our day, let’s dive in to the traditional Mouseketeer Roll Call of the roster.  This time it’s Marty who’s doing the roll call, as it appears that Marjie whipped out the pepper spray on Gil once he started becoming too much of a close talker.  “Sorry, Mr. Coach Thorp, mediocre may be good enough for Mrs. Coach Thorp, but it’s not good enough for me.”

Marginal Mike Filion and Nosey Parker Andre Ruffin form the backcourt. The starting forwards are seventh-year senior Paul Beaudry and – wait, what?  Is Jorge Padilla still in Milford?  How did Marty pronounce his name? (I’m guessing correctly given Moon’s chastened, pissy look on his face.)  Have the Padillas not moved back to Puerto Rico or at least Georgia?  Rubin dropped the ball bigly on the Padilla story last winter, and I doubt he’ll be picking it up again now.

Nope, my guess is that when we’re not delving into the mystery of Two Billboards Outside Milford or watching Filion having me time in his bedroom, we’ll get some minor focus on “scrawny,” “lanky” center Marcell Irby (thanks to whom I can’t stop thinking of Jerry Clower, which probably says more about me than Rubin) and his struggles in the paint.  Burly Rick Soto will probably sub for Marcell after he gets banged around and Milford will lose any height advantage it may have had.

Arapahoe’s sports teams* are called the Warriors, a perfect setup for Milford’s nerdy cutesy snarky student body.  Maybe Ernie from My Three Sons and the Milford Pirate Network can lead the fans in the chant.

 

 

 

 

*Colorado high school basketball teams participate in playoffs, not playdowns.

December 15, 2018

Burly Mediocre Perfection

Filed under: ?, Fontastic, freak hands, Milford Idiots, Milford Weirdos, premature baldness — timbuys @ 10:22 am

12/14/18

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While we wait for teenchy to post, please allow me to fill in for Rob’s Friday post.

I would say, based on the alignment of the text to the billboard, that, yes, mediocre is more than good enough. We’ve speculated a bit about how much this is running him. Whatever it costs, this guy is clearly getting his money’s worth. I’m a pretty happy guy and I’ve pulled off a thing or two over the years, but I can’t remember the last time I was so ecstatic that I lifted my arms up to bask in elation at what I had wrought.

Bonus Points:

So, I guess we’re setting up for some sort of Rick (Ricardo?) Soto binge eating PSA. Maybe we could get a very special Gil Thorp on the perils of trying to ingest a whole bottle of cinnamon.

Ricky Soto’s ring finger scares me and if I were Marcell I would be legit freaked out to have that meathook draped over my shoulder.

I’m loving the detail given to the collar of our simply mysterious billboard renter.

December 13, 2018

Hey, I Say, Hey, There’s No 360 Windmill Jams When I’m Makin’ A Funny

Filed under: ?, basketball, freak hands, Milford Weirdos, What the hell is going on here? — tdrewhardin @ 3:29 pm

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…and 99 other pithy maxims I said when I was on the basketball team that I will tell my grandkids and collect to publish a book. Surely there’s a market for “Inane Commentary to Stall the Plot That I Think Is Funny and Will Be Referenced By The After-Dinner Speaker at the Monthly Milford Kiwanis Club Meeting”. Just stick it next to the Wall Street Journal at Borders and VOILA, instant New York Times Bestseller.

“Get off your butt, Marcell, you wussy. And did you hear the one about the traveling salesman and the point guard on their way to the game?” Six figure sales on that daddy of a witticism.

 

 

Shout-out to Stanley Clark of Louisville, Kentucky. He fights for his life EVERY DAY and winds up winning in resounding fashion. He goes to his rehab clinic with his best face forward and has chosen to Do The Right Thing as a result. He is hoping to walk one day and if he keeps working his butt off at the clinic and gets out and about in general, I have no doubt in my mind that that dream will be a reality. Rootin’ for ya, Big Guy. You got my blessing and my respect to press on. I believe you will.

 

Gang, I don’t know aboutchoo but the basketball plot is already a flat tire. Hoo boy, does this mangled Michelin need a visit to the Milford Men’s Clinic to pump things up, errrrrrr, never mind.

So far, all we have seen are Mudlarks in their gym clothes practically playing Cooties with each other, one Mudlark in his night gown because he forgot his gym bag, and basketballs. THE COACHES HAVEN’T EVEN SHOWN UP!!!!!!!!!!!! WHERE ARE THEY?????????? I follow a lot of college basketball and I have a ton of respect for University of Kentucky Men’s Basketball and their fans and one of the reasons is Midnight Madness is a HUGE deal and you’ll see guys practicing basketball at GOALS and the scoreboard is THERE and RUNNING and there will be REFEREES there to call the game, the players and the referees will not be acting like the kids on Romper Room like we’ve seen in the Mudlark Fellowship Hall, scratch that, Gym. And you can damn well be sure the coaches will not be negotiating the rapids at Mudlark Falls with Marty and Peaches in the Milford Nature Area. There’s a word for that. COACHING.

Gil, truncate this tomfoolery we’ve witnessed the last few days in the playground you call a gymnasium or hand in your whistle.

The consolation prize is that TA-DAAAAAAAAAAAA, WE NOW HAVE COURT DIMENSIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!! But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. I said we have lines on the basketball court, I didn’t say they were legal, accurate, or even fit to line up and chalk down like the Milford Playground Courts. In fact, the Mudlarks may as well play there because I am totally confused on the dimensions in P3. I thought at first the arcs formed part of the jump circle but unless we are expecting King Kong and Godzilla at tip-off, really no way we should justify that appellation and maintain a straight face. Look, I wouldn’t want to be the one throwing the ball in the air. I’d be crushed by Godzilla when he’s tapping it to a teammate for an easy 2.

Soooooooooooooo, is that part of the 3-point arc? Maybe. Big maybe. Trouble is they are circling around and for all intents and purposes intersecting each other. Also, the arcs are facing AWAY from their respective buckets so unless you’re Curly Neal and you plan on keeping sharp with the Globetrotters with your 47-foot heaves, it’s best to shelve THAT notion and pretend the soccer team uses the court when the basketball team isn’t playing or practicing.

Actually, the b-ball team is just doing a bad imitation of Joey Bishop so expect DC United and the Mudlark soccer team any minute for their annual exhibition match.

“GOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Lionel Messi has put Italy up, 1-0, over Uruguay as the match has reached the 63 minute-”

“Filion!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Give me 50 on the ground. If you don’t want to do the rebound drill, hit the showers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

And for the life of me, I am trying to figure out the line which I will assume for the moment ( I said for the moment) surrounding the, for lack of a better word, jump circle. If that line is running east-west (using your compass included in the Go Comics travel kit) , where is that other Line going beyond the, crossing my fingers, out-of-bounds line???????? Is that Yellow Brick Road leading to Oz? I guess we’ll know after Filion is done with his poor excuse for stand-up when Dorothy, the Scarecrow and the Cowardly Lion appear on the court. Really no way the Tin Man could be taking a shower after playing one of those “O-WEE-O” monkeys on the racquetball courts. Must be wiping his butt with his oil can in one of the stalls.

And I PRAY that same line is not north-south unless that line is the half-court line. Otherwise, the gym displays a very short stage for Filion’s “Bert and Ernie” material. We’ll probably never know because nobody’s playing ANY basketball, including Mike “Take my wife, please” Filion.

And WHERE IS Coach Thorp? In his office listening to The Clash’s “Rock the Casbah”? If I see an armadillo running across one of those Etch-a-Sketch lines, I’ll have my answer.

 

Unclear as to why we need models on the back of a Healthy Choice Smoked Turkey Breast, replete with mashed potatoes and refried okra other than for image and image sells (which I understand) , but willing to run with it

“Try our Milford Slaughter House’s Finest Whole Hog Sausage, now in Hot and also Mild. Whether you’re ordering a sausage biscuit off the dollar menu in The Bucket drive-thru or you’re planning a Baptist Men’s Breakfast at Milford Baptist Church, Milford Slaughter House’s Finest is your sausage of choice.”

Cut to Marty moon on the back of a package posing in his Armani Double-Knit suit and Gucci Shoes (The Sopranos couldn’t be prouder, observing their sartorial personality on display in a pig sty) with a 5-ton Yorkshire. Only John Lennon did it better with his porker on his album. Image is everything, Folks.

“Marty, where the Hell you been? You got mud all over you!!!!!!!!!”

“Just doing a little modeling and earning some extra cash.”

“Well, thank God you’re in the studio reading the Milford Community Calendar. They won’t see you.”

 

Big shout-out to Mike Flanders of Middletown, Kentucky. Though essentially confined to a wheelchair, you would never know it by his hilarious sense of humor. The dude had  me rollin’ the entire time I was with him (“That’s not my cane, that’s my Abel” GOOD ONE, Big Guy) . And he is very close to his cats, Wilson and Nemo. The latter was called that after the cat ran away for a while, Mike getting Wilson in the interim, BUT Nemo returning, earning the name. Mike, you got it, My Man. I admire his courage and humor which gives us all hope that you just never give up as he can attest and confirm. Got my respect, Mike.

 

I normally try to work across the panels (i.e., start with P1) , but P3 was just full of leaving-themselves-wide-open chutzpah that I had to crucify that first.

But make no mistake, P1 and P2 are hanging high and dry as well. Why do we have to include a member of SPECTRE who is threatening to take over Milford??????? Is 007 in New Thayer chasing down those hoods? And I guess if you take over Milford with shrewd advertising and H-bombs (Y’know, the ones stored in a closet somewhere in Dr. No’s or Goldfinger’s cave) , you’ll take over the world. What strategy. Really, Hitler should have taken a detour to Mudlarkland before he reached Sudetenland. Would have saved him a lot of trouble plus the world would have been served on a platter for him. Napoleon? Why go through that enormous expanse called Russia when Milford was on the way? He might have avoided Waterloo.

So as this part of the plot unfolds (ready to hold my nose) , it should be interesting if Dr. No’s second cousin twice-removed is able to conquer the globe, separating the wheat from the chaff, champs from the chumps in the bargain. Gil, you are nothing but a stupid high school basketball coach whose luck has run out.

Oh brother, Dr. No, we’ve been onto that for 60 years. Tell us something we don’t know.

 

Day 9

Peaches narrowly avoids a zebra in estrus while she is foraging for mulberries which are reputedly in abundance on the Chisholm Trail which ran straight through the area before they made this Milford Nature Area. There are traces of cattle drives but Peaches is in no mood to chew on a longhorn skull in her birthday suit no matter how desperate she is for food. She can wait until the next mulberry bush. Spotting a baby giraffe, she may have hit paydirt. Since Giraffes are by nature herbivores, you won’t catch too many in the parking lot at Outback Steak House. She waits until the mini-speciman has had its fill, then retrieves her KFC Fill-Up  Bucket and piles it in the container. It’s a shame that Milford Bakery Outlet is nowhere near or she could chow down on mulberry shortcake and whipped cream. Well, this is the outdoors, you understand.

Marty, meanwhile, is a little delirious, not surprising if you have confronted Mother Nature face-to-face for several days. He staggers along the woods, desperate for any hope.

And it’s 50 feet in front of him. An old house, perhaps owned by the man overtaken by Frogs(Is the record player still playing? I swear, that bullfrog CRUSHED that Petula Clark record he was spinning), Marty joyously walks up the stairs into the house.

He finds the living room. It’s dark but there’s a La-Z-Boy recliner with his name on it. He plops down, careful not to get his butt stains all over the serge fabric. Man, that stuff don’t come off in the wild. He lays down one of his Hanes towels. That 100% cotton’ll steer those butt marks clear over into the next Nature episode. He lies down and takes a much-needed cat-nap. After realizing that his dream of Gil at Golgotha was over, he gets up and heads to the kitchen. He manages to locate the refrigerator, surprisingly still functioning. Unless squirrels are storing acorns in the Fresh box or raccoons are using the tap water, Marty finds no condiments of any kind, freezer included. Then he notices a Post-it note on the fridge door as he shuts it.

“I killed Coach Shaw.”

Marty, a bit unnerved, heads to the other parts of the house. He notices a sculpture of a Mudlark in one of the bedrooms and is intrigued by the objet d’art. He notices a tag on it. Unable to read it, Marty gets out his flashlight and shines a light on the writing.

“This Milford Mudlark was created by the Blair Witch Project.”

In a moment, we’ll see if Marty goes the chickenshit route and runs out the service entrance of the Milford Nature Area or if he opts to stick around and watch the satanic cult sacrifice an oranguatang in the den while ESPN Sportscenter is on, both for the glory of Lucifer.

 

“Hi, this is Coach Gil Thorp. Boy, what a pickle Marty got into. I dunno, I was desperate but I wouldn’t want any members of the Blair Witches kicking for me, not even Sabrina’s witches, so I’d be running more than the 50-yard dash outta that place. But what’s scarier is when your sex life is on the rocks and you can’t get Samantha Stephens to wiggle her lips to get you erect. Why call Darrin Stephens and enlist the aid of his wife when Nirvana is simply a visit to the Milford Mall away? That’s right, there are no magic wands, no magic potion like the stepmother gave Cinderella, no antidote for the vapor lock on your significant other that Dr. Bombay could hope to prescribe. The Prince will not be at The Clinic to arouse Cinderella or anything else in the office.

What you WILL get is expert advice and top-notch medications designed to enhance your manliness including a 12-unit supply of pleasure shots, free and easy to use, just put that needle right on your pecker and it’s as if you are receiving oral, well, you men know what I’m taking about.  And if you were a kid, you enjoyed the Balloon Man filling up those balloons at the carnival. Think of yourself as the Balloon Man, filling up your own balloons. Trust me, I am not waiting for my wife to kiss my significant other and wake it up after being dead a thousand years. She can be Prince Charming in bed, not at The Clinic.

Come to the Milford Men’s Clinic today and start your own fairy tale. Just because Endora changed your significant other into a celery stalk doesn’t mean The Milford Men’s Clinic doesn’t have magic of its own to enhance your sex life. Experience the pleasure today. And send the Wicked Witch of the West back to the slums of Oz.”

 

All right gang, it’s your turn. You got the floor and anything you say can and will be held against you in a Court of Law-

SHAREEF, HE DON’T LIKE IT

BOOM BAH DEE BOOM BOOM

ROCK THE CASBAH

ROCK THE CASBAH

“Kaz, dammit, did you open the cage again?????????”

“Well, you wanted me to feed him Ken’l Ration Healthy Choices for a Fine Coat. Did you want me to dump the can on top of the cage?????????”

 

“My name’s Bond. James Bond.”

“Look, shitface, we don’t care if your name is SpongeBob SquarePants, you’re a prick and we’re gonna kick your ass and egg your Aston Martin DB5. C’mon, dudes, let’s waste this asshole.”

BLAM!!!!!!!! BLAM!!!!!!!!!!!!! BLAMBLAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BLAMMO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

As the Duane Eddy guitar is playing, we hear a voice all over New Thayer

BOND IS BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

December 12, 2018

In Milford, Some of Us All Look Alike

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Wow, feels nice to free myself from the constraints of the haiku form.  Wish I had more to say today.  Bet it would feel nice for Whigham to free himself from the constraints of using the same facial features and hairstyles for all of his Mudlarks.  Let’s take a closer look at that first panel, shall we?

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Do these two not have identical noses?  I leave it to you, gentle readers, to draw your own conclusions.  Guessing Marcell doesn’t use his first name, Duwan.

I reckon after multiple seasons Rubin has decided to imbue Man of a Thousand Faces and Hairstyles “Marginal” Mike Filion with a personality and backstory.  He’s been quiet ever since we’ve been introduced to him, speaking only when spoken to by Gil or Kaz.  But Neal needs another extroverted look-at-me guy to make his plots go, so Filion it is.

Meanwhile Bobby Howry plots his revenge via billboard…

May 22, 2008

When being right is wrong

Filed under: baseball, Boredom in Milford, Milford Weirdos — jasbeattie @ 9:52 am

“Um Mrs. Marcell? was your intention to insult Elmer while he’s still within earshot?”
“Certainly! Now let’s all point at him and laugh as he walks away.”
“Um, OK. But really, I can’t blame Elmer for goofing off in here. It’s hard to take your class seriously when you’ve written “Juan Milton: Paradiso Losto” at the top of your board.”
“Well, young lady it’s hard to take you seriously with all those cold sores on your face!”
“Those aren’t cold sores. I was practicing my kissing with Mr. Whiskers. And I had this second set of eyebrows installed to be more like you!”
“My, isn’t that sweet. Now run along, Branden. You don’t want to be late getting to a gapper!”

I would give points to Josh for correctly predicting yesterday that Elmer was getting Spanish lessons, but at This Week in Milford, being correct is far to close to “making sense” and we definitely can’t have that here. So -10 points to Josh! As punishment, please go read Paradiso Losto (you know, the Spanish comic novella) and then write a bunch of snarky criticism about it.

So what’s more interesting than Spanish lessons? (Besides “pretty much everything”?) Well for one, a baseball launching through Branden’s kneecap! That’s gotta hurt as least as much as french kissing your cat. (But on the plus side, at least she doesn’t have to wear a mitt to play softball.)

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