An odd week of funny cartoons that hit me for specific, personal reasons, so bear with me. As a reward for your indulgence, I'll start with the most tasteless, from the Barn.
Not that crayons themselves are tasteless, though they're pretty bland. But they also don't digest and the result is not fully technicolor poop but regular poop speckled with color.
Which I know because there was a time I had small children and four dogs, and I couldn't always get the kids to put away their crayons and I also had a problem with housebreaking because it was never clear which dog had broken the rule.
(Our alpha pack leader always looked guilty, but he was the one dog I knew wasn't responsible except for being in charge of the other three. Researchers will assure you dogs are unable to express guilt. They are full of the substance currently under discussion.)
Anyway, I had the brilliant idea of dropping a different colored crayon in each of their food bowls. I don't know why I never did.
Okay, one more before good taste sets in. Speed Bump riffs on a difference between dogs and cats, though I have to admit it's a principle I only know second-hand.
The only cat we ever had was a re-purposed alley cat one of the boys befriended, and he was so pleased to not have to chase every meal that good ol' plain Friskies was just fine. We also gave him canned food, though the smell of that stuff completely counteracts the benefits of a self-cleaning pet.
The other benefit of a cat with a rough past was that I hear of cats bringing their trophies to their owners as gifts, and I wanna tell ya, this guy didn't share a damn thing. If he caught it, he ate it and if you want one, the alley runs right next to the house, pal. Knock yourself out.
Meanwhile, I'm hearing about dogs who won't eat this or can't eat that from people who spend an inordinate amount of effort finding a brand of exotic dog food their pooch will deign to nibble and, of course, while they're telling you this, their dog has discovered a long-deceased fish on the riverbank and scarfed it down.
After rolling on it, comme il faut.
When we had four dogs, the competition was such that we had to serve one of them -- the Instigator -- in a separate room or the event would turn from a meal to a cage match.
Even with him dining on the porch, it was a matter of gobbling your own as quickly as possible and then going to help your neighbors gobble theirs. We could have served them gravel and we'd have ended up with empty bowls.
My current pup has a few things he won't eat -- mostly vegetables -- but he's not picky about dog food. Or much of anything.
Our rule is that I don't care what he eats as long as it stays down, which is a good rule, though hard to enforce.
On a semi-related note, I had someone say "An excellent choice, sir" after I ordered the other day. At the McDonald's drive-thru.
If it was sarcasm, she had the most dead-pan delivery ever.
Maybe she thought people tip there.
And Zits has had a story arc going that starts with this one, in which Jeremy agrees to go to the mall with his mom, for a fee.
Comic strips, by nature, exaggerate reality, though I have known families where it would take a bribe on both sides for them to spend time together.
This particular strip hit, however, because, when my eldest was a sophomore, we would go to the mall Friday evening and I'd give him his allowance for the week, with the additional bribe that, if he ate with me before he took off with his buddies, I'd pay for the meal. Otherwise, he was on his own.
Which was no big deal, since we ate dinner together at home the other six nights of the week, and, as a bonus, his friends would often come sit with us, so I got to know a lot of them.
Younger son was not a mall rat, but I'd come home on Friday night and find a couple of his buds around the kitchen table and they'd end up staying for dinner.
There's probably a connection between the fact that my pets have not been picky about their food and the fact that my kids didn't whinge at the prospect of spending time with the Old Man.
It starts in the first year, with saying "It's time for your nap" instead of asking "Are you ready for your nap?"
Good parents, good pet owners and good attorneys all know never to ask a question to which you do not already know the answer.
And speaking of old bromides we learn the hard way, this Moderately Confused hit just as I was teaching one of my young writers more or less the principle in this gag.
I edit mostly for grammar and clarity, but want the kids to develop their own voice. However, one of them reviewed a book that, in fact, I hadn't thought looked very good, either. She concurred with a fury that forced me to ask her to perhaps dial it back a little, and I suggested that disappointment is more powerful than anger.
She thanked me and agreed it should, as I recommended, have sat 24 hours and been reread and edited at a cooler moment.
At least in olden days, a letter would likely sit waiting until morning to be mailed.
A lesson, I'm sure, learned in starker terms now that media is so immediate.
Castor was pretty hip
Castor Oyl responds to the Sea Hag with a line that would have been instantly recognizable to readers when this Thimble Theater strip first ran, Feb 4, 1935:
Grim humor, sweet voice