Wisdumb in the Funnies: No. 1

Posted by on December 22nd, 2009 at 7:03 AM

 Amazing, sometimes, the insights into our assorted follies and foibles that we can find exposed in the funnies. In Gary Brookins’ Pluggers, for instance, is this: Why do we blow on our food to cool it, and blow on our hands to warm them up?

And in Stephen Bentley’s Herb and Jamaal, a friend of Herb’s is explaining: I had a toothache that reminded me of my last girlfriend. At first, it was a little painful, then it got worse. Finally, the pain got so bad I had to get rid of it. After it as gone, I missed having the tooth … but I felt much better.

Dave Coverly in his panel cartoon, Speed Bump, shows one of his nerdy types muttering to another: I’m the same way—if I get less than 8 hours of sleep, I spend more than 16 hours awake.

On another occasion in the same feature, another nerdy type (couch potato variety) says: Whoa—I just had a near-life experience.

We expect to find wisdumb in Garry Trudeau’s Doonesbury, and Roland Hedley doesn’t disappoint: Twitter is the first rough draft of gossip. (It’s a reference, kimo sabe, to a famous description of newspapers being the first rough draft of history.)

And in Scott Adams’ Dilbert, Dilbert is conducting his usual familiarization tour around a potential girlfriend, following one insult with another: Your home phone is a landline. That must come in handy when someone calls from 1993.

In Tom Batiuk/Chuck Ayers’ Crankshaft we often find word play. Cranky Ed Crankshaft is an expert at malapropism, for instance. In this case, he’s dressed up as Santa, about which an observer says Ed is a “living oxymoron.”

Finally, evidence that Stephan Pastis is in frequent communication with Jeff Corriveau, who produces Deflocked, a strip about a cantankerous sheep living on a farm with some talking dogs and a small boy (who also talks). In one of his frequent fits of temper, the sheep, Mamet, blurts out to a line of persons waiting to see Santa: Okay, anybody moves, and I static-zap the oompa-loompa back to narnia. Oompa loompas again? Only this time, the term seems to refer not to a body part but to a whole being—Santa himself? The earlier reference, possibly to a body part, was Pastis’ in Pearls Before Swine.

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