The Other Shoe: Part III and the Last

Posted by on August 13th, 2010 at 10:46 AM

Wiley Miller’s Non Sequitur was the other strip that was gnawing its way into some sort of story at the end of June. Danae and the other kids found log blockading a shed shut and called it the “Shed of Doom.” They can’t figure out why it’s blockaded shut, but their imaginations run wild for a few days. Then we get this evocative episode:

Exquisitely wrought third panel. But the next day, the kids’ playful dog chases after a squirrel and inadvertently knocks the log down, freeing the imprisoned—tiny elephant? (If the image is too small to read—which, for most of us, it is—the recommended procedure is to click on the image and it enlarges. For some inexplicable and presumably temporary reason, when you do that here, you and the picture are merely transported to another plane, where the picture resides more-or-less alone; but it you click on it again, there, it’ll get much larger—large enough, usually, to read. Try it: you’ll like it.)

The midget pachyderm, it seems, is an “ekert,” a perhaps mythological creature who feeds on negative attitudes, irrational fears, evil thoughts, greed, discontentment—in short, all sorts of the things that cause human unhappiness.

Exactly the things that corporate America depends upon for its sustenance. And the more the ekert eats, the bigger it gets, which leads us, with comedic inevitability, to the last panel in this strip.

If left to its own devices, the ekert will eat all the causes of unhappiness in the world and it will then be a better place to live, right? Naturally, there are corporate and political forces opposed to this consummation devoutly to be wished. How will they respond? Will happiness ultimately prevail? Or will we be left as miserable as we’ve always been?

And that’s where Wiley left us a week or so ago; but he’s left and returned to this thread at least once before. He’ll be back. Stay ‘tooned.

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