Thursday, November 30, 2006

From the size of the bed, I'm guessing Mom is single

Today's strip raises an interesting question: Do moms actually take naps? I don't think my mother ever did. I guess she possibly did when I was a baby, but certainly not when I was old enough to cook for myself. Which isn't to say that no mom does, but...I've just never experience this. I've always assumed that should I ever have kids, I'd have to give up napping.

But really, if this situation happens enough, you just ignore the kids asking questions. When I'm taking a nap, I ignore the phone. I used to get up and answer, but I don't anymore. After the phone stops ringing, I just drift right back off. It's lovely.

On the other hand, judging by the fact that this is TDIET, I'm thinking that Mom should maybe be supervising her kids in the kitchen. I just feel like this is bound to end badly. The mom kind of annoys me in this; it's just how kids are. Like, the way I'd be having problems with my homework and ask my mom come over to help me, but as soon as she got there, I'd realize how to do it. That's just how it works.

I'm happy, though, that at least the food items they yell up are decent.


Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Of course you fell down, maam

There's so much wrong with today's strip. I would certainly hope that Barflow (a name which I assume makes him worse than Barfwell) is concerned about his wife. She just fell down the stairs! Good God! And she's not "speechless," Al, she's injured. I mean, her fall managed to upset the side table at the bottom of the stairs. This wasn't gentle.

Of course, I imagine Barflow would be pretty concerned. Judging from the bottom panel, he probably pushed her. He's so upset that he's actually knocking over the tables on either side of the chair he's in. Not that she looks like a prize herself--that's not just her talking about her day, she's angry. Look at how she's holding her arms. As one of the commenters over at the Comics Curmudgeon noted, the two panels should probably be reversed.

This is not a couple I want to get to know. To the point where I had to create an "abusive husband" tag.

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

"Pompadour" should only be used when referring to Elvis

Today's strip is yet another when my only real response is "No." Nope, I've never noticed that. And no, I don't think it's particularly true. Not that the columnist photos are always particularly new, but I've never seen any horribly out-of-date like that. Not that I see a lot of newspaper columnists around. (Actually, maybe I do. The Metro station I get off at to come to work is the one closest to the Post. Hmm.)

Anyway, what's truly annoying about this strip is the expo box. Really, all it needed was the "And this is himself as he looks today in person." Actually, it could've just had "Rudyard Kipper today" with the arrow. Most of us are astute enough to notice the differences in appearance.

And again with the old office! Another typewriter! Noooo!

Labels: ,

Monday, November 27, 2006

We learn in tomorrow's strip that she died

Ahh, a return to the world of medicine in today's strip. This really doesn't align with any experiences I've had. If I'm calling the doctor for an appointment for, say, a physical, then yeah, I know that appointment won't be for quite some time. But every time I've actually been ill, the doctor has managed to squeeze me in, if not the same day, then the next. I'm fairly sure that the receptionists actually arrange it so there's wiggle room in there. That's probably why you have to wait around forever; the doctor is fitting in someone who needs to be seen soon. (I try to be understanding about that while I'm waiting, but it certainly doesn't always work.) And if, somehow, this situation happened to me and the doctor pulled that "Why did you wait so long?" (particularly after the "Good grief, woman!"), I would've torn him a new one.

Honestly, the woman looks either half-dead or totally hungover in that top panel. And three-quarters dead in the bottom. As in so many others of this strip, she just needs to stand up for herself. I'd say that maybe she was too sick to stand up for herself, but don't most people get cranky when they're ill? Or is that just me?

Also, "phone gal"? I need to find Scaduto so I can smack him around a bit.


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Mmm, cookies

My absolute favorite part of today's strip is that the husband's name is Fignewt. As in the cookie, I suppose, though I don't understand what that might mean about his character. Anyway, I don't remember seeing him before, butI'm tagging this entry with his name in the hope that some day, we will see Fignewt again.

I can't imagine that Pestina and Fig made it to marriage before discussing previous relationships. Isn't that the sort of thing that starts to come out when people are dating? Not necessarily in depth, of course, but most people would at least mention an ex or two. Those relationships help shape future relationships. It is fantastic how she seems to be asking him in passing, as she wanders through the room.

What's not plausible is that he's all, "Oh, I don't remember." Suuure, Fig. I can understand not really wanting to talk about it (and being confused as to why Pestina is asking now). The correct thing to do here is to say, "Only a couple, honey, and they were nothing compared to you." Then go back to watching your commercials in peace.

And why does the expo box assume that Lula Patoot is an old flame? Fig only mentions her name. Pestina's reaction is obviously over-the-top, but I probably wouldn't be too pleased if my husband had been that evasive after I asked about his old girlfriends.

Also of note is the fact that either the chair is a swivel chair, or Fig and Pestina got matching chairs for all the televisions in the house.

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

An argument for ordering take-out

Strangely enough, I actually let out a "Heh" in reaction to today's strip. Although, looking at it now, I'm not sure why. (Maybe I'm just easily amused when I first get to work.)

The thing here is that neither of the players in this strip--the father or the phone lady--is right. The dad needs to get his kids in check (and not be such a jerk to the phone lady), but just because you have a couple of obnoxious kids at the next table doesn't make it acceptable to talk on a cell phone in a restaurant. (If you have to take a call, excuse yourself and go to the lobby.) Two wrongs do not make a right.

What really intrigues me here is the obnoxious son. Look at his hair! That is the hair of a Bad Kid. Now Al needs to figure out a way to give little girls Bad Kid hair. And, you know, not have their faces be identical to adults' faces.

I'd also like everyone to check out the cell phone the Phone Lady has. It's the size of her head. Not quite a Zack Morris phone, but it's pretty big.

Labels: , ,

Monday, November 20, 2006

Hey, at least she's happy now

I cannot tell you how happy I am to see Mama Migraina in today's strip. Is she the mother of Migraina? If so, then I guess this guy is Migraina's (no-name) brother. Or is she Migraina as a grandmother?

When I saw "The gravy is done" followed by "so is the pasta," I got excited, because I just found out that some people refer to the tomato sauce on puts on pasta as "gravy." Which I find weird, but whatever. So anyway, I was happy, because it ties in perfectly with some newly acquired linguistic trivia. Too bad that the gravy could be your normal meat gravy, to go on the roast. So now I'm trying to figure out if it's pasta, like, the flavored noodles that I frequently eat as meals? That makes more sense, because initially I was picture a plate with roast and spaghetti on it.

And wow, there's a legitimate grammatical error here: "I've get the table--all set to eat"? What? I assume he meant to write "I've got," but nobody picked up on it. That's just a blatant proofreading overlook. (See! Barb am good with grammar, too!)

The baby is scary. I guess it's supposed to be hair, but that looks like a horn sticking out of his head. I do love how the family is looking on in horror. Which is understandable, because Mama Migraina there is manic. Like, unhealthily so. If I were them, I'd take her to a doctor.

Or not. Because that would just lead to more medical-themed strips.

Labels: , ,

Sunday, November 19, 2006

No content involved

Honestly, I wasn't going to comment on today's strip, but I decided to take a gander. And while the content of the strip is too stupid to even think about (seriously, if there's anyone out there who actually thinks like this, we need to hunt them down and sterilize them), something in the strip blew me away. I imagine that the woman in the strip is supposed to be the wife of the idiot man, but look at her in the bottom panel. Al actually drew someone who looks like she's not old. That woman could be in her 20s--at least, her face is fairly young-looking. In the top panel she doesn't, and her clothes signify age, so I'm assuming this was accidental. But still. Al--that's what a young face looks like! (The kid next to her has a much older face.) I'm completely blown away. Seriously.

Labels: , ,

Friday, November 17, 2006

Ah, Palm City, that popular choice for retirees

The impressive thing about today's strip is that the idea was sent in by two different people; quite possibly independent of each other. People who don't live in specific towns or have last names. Fishy, that.

I do somewhat agree with the sentiment of the strip; there comes a time when the kids start giving the parents advice. Of course, some parents (and grandparents) ask for advice. I don't see how this is "living on the edge" at all. Oh no! Our kids want what's best for us! Let's smack 'em around! (Again, I maintain that "living on the edge"--which really should be "livin' on the edge"--is appropriate only between a husband and wife, when the wife is about to clock the husband for some bonehead maneuver.) Except for the fact that it looks like the kids sat the parents down and started lecturing them, what they're saying isn't that bad, if a somewhat condescending (the advice on hobbies in particular).

What really gets me is the illustrations of the "kids." How old are these people supposed to be? In their 30s? 40s? You can tell the girl is supposed to be young because she's somewhat slender; the guy on the end has a recending hairline and glasses, so I peg him as quite a bit older. The big problem here is that Scaduto doesn't know how to draw faces that look young. Bushy hair does not equal a 20-something, Al.

And while this strip doesn't explicitly mention retirement, I get the feeling that the dad might've just retired--the impetus for the meeting.

Labels: , ,

Thursday, November 16, 2006

A dinner dance doesn't seem like a formal affair to me

One of the most interesting things (OK, the most interesting thing) about today's strip is that the submitter's female. Is this something that she does herself and knows that it annoys her husband, or is this something she sees her friends do? Or...maybe she's gay and her girlfriend/wife/life partner does this! That would be awesome, because I somehow doubt that Al's too fond of homosexuality.

Anyway. I'm having mixed feelings about the top panel. On the one hand, with certain people--particularly people in the land of TDIET--it's probably a good idea to get a second opinion an on outfit, and I think most women wouldn't mind their husbands asking for an opinion about a tie. On the other hand, if he always asks for her approval, that is annoying. Asking about which tie to wear is one thing; constantly seeking validation is quite another.

And the bottom panel. I...don't know. I can't get upset about it. It seems like she's asking about a specific event (the "club dinner dance"), and part of her questioning is logical; is it an event for some sort of formal gown, or a regular dress? Plus, and I hate to stereotype, but a lot of times, it is easier for guys to figure out what to wear. As long as Migraina doesn't call Elpie for fashion tips every day, I don't thing there's a huge problem.

My big question here is, why is the husband named Anvil?

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Maybe the the one flight of stairs is really four stories long

Well, if today's strip has to be about someone who's sick, at least it doesn't take place in a hospital. Although I will point out that it's basically the same strip as these two, which appeared in July. At least he put a few months in between, as opposed to the eight days between those two strips.

The big question here is what the heck happened to Mrs. Lugbutt when she went downstairs and made some tea? Because there's no way she should look that disheveled after merely climbing a flight of stairs. Good Lord. She goes up and down those stairs every day! They shouldn't be such an incredible hardship. Geez.

I guess I should be more ticked off at Lugbutt, but I can't, because he's sick. First of all, she should know how he likes his tea. If he's asking for it, he probably drinks it on occasion. Presumably they've been married for a while and she's seen him sick before, so even if tea is something he drinks only when sick, she should probably know he likes it with sugar and lemon. (And yes, I'd say the same thing if I were talking about a husband caring for a sick wife.) But yes, it is annoying that he didn't ask for the eggs and toast earlier. (And what they heck does he have if he's asking for eggs? When I'm sick, the thought of anything other than toast or crackers or soup usually involves retching.) And would someone ask for "pan-fried" eggs? Wouldn't you just say "fried"?

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I'd pack it in at 30 if that were an option

Are you kidding me? Today's strip is another about retirement. It we see three more of these, I'm going to get annoyed that he didn't just run them Monday through Friday and make it retirement week.

The most remarkable thing about this strip--which has the same physical configuration of an office as a much earlier strip that I am far too lazy to track down at the moment--is the office it's set in. The woman in the back has a typewriter on her desk. A typewriter. Al, I thought we had moved beyond this. You started to acknowledge things like HDTV and cell phones. There was progress. OK, I'll give you a tip: Nobody has a typewriter on their desk at work. I'm not saying that nobody uses a typewriter. But nowadays, we all have these wacky computer things and if you work in an office, you have one on your desk. I want to say that we have seen computers in this strip, but I'm not 100% sure of that.

Has anyone ever used the phrase "until rocks get soft"? Do rocks even get soft? Ever? Don't they just break down and become dust? At least the woman's comment (about the office boy retiring) makes sense.

I will give Mr. Bidworth of Cincinnati this--yes, that would be annoying. You're not wrong. But the fact that this happened makes me think there's a reason good ol' Len isn't retiring. Maybe he can't afford to, I don't know. But I have a feeling there's something here that isn't being said. And I kind of love how the blonde woman is horrified by the fact that he isn't retiring--to the point that she's stuttering.

And you can tell that this is something they'll do "every time" from the guy in the back saying "Here we go again." This is clearly a situation that the office workers have dealt with numerous times.

Labels: ,

Monday, November 13, 2006

Do that many restaurants close between lunch and dinner?

Wow. Today's strip marks the second retirement-focused strip in less than a week. I assume that we're supposed to shake our heads at Barfwell. Always late for dinner! You'd think that after a while, his wife would realize this and perhaps push dinner back. And why not be annoyed with him? It's not like it's his job that provides money to pay for the food. It's not like he can't tell how long his commute will take--because both driving and public transportation are so predictable! The solution would be to do what my dad does; namely, he calls my mom when he's leaving so she has an idea of when he'll be home.

And wow, he got there before the early bird dinner? What time is it--2:30? Maybe he's not going for dinner; maybe it's a late lunch. Mid-afternoon snack? And now he can be early because he doesn't have to work. It sure doesn't look like he was willfully coming home late for dinner, just to spite his wife. Plus, he's saving money! Everyone wins!

Labels: , , ,

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Expo box disconnect

Ah, after a break, we once again see the good ol' " the moon" setup in today's strip (as well as in the strip from a couple of days ago). I guess he realized that he hadn't used it in a while, and is now overcompensating a bit.

Interestingly enough, the protagonist of the strip is the one with the negative name; perhaps because none of the rest of her family is given names. It's not Fussia that's fussy in the strip. I'd say Al dropped the ball.

It seems that the illustrations don't necessarily match what the expo boxes say. I feel like it would be funnier if in the bottom panel, not only did her family all want the same thing, but they'd all want something fancier. In the top panel, they all want pretty basic fare; the same thing is true in the bottom panel. And in the top panel, the problem is that they all want different dishes; it's that they all want something other than what she's prepared. Unless we're supposed to assume that if they all said that they wanted hamburgers, she would've changed dinner--doubtful, seeing how the lamb stew was already prepared. And really, you'd think Fussia would be happy in the bottom panel. At least burgers and fries are cheap.

I don't know what to make of the fact that the "Thanks to" person is in quotes. "Gilferd"? There are some strange people out there.

Labels: , , ,

Friday, November 10, 2006

I'm just dumsquizzled here

Ahh, today's strip is yet another about kids and their messy rooms. I notice that there's no "Thanks," so I guess Al came up with this one on his very own. Good job!

Can anyone figure out who we're supposed to sympathize with in this one--kids or parents? It's hard to tell when Al goes into sarcastic mode. Honestly, I'm kind of baffled. I keep going back to "After all, it's your room." I think that might be the crux of the strip, because while it is the kid's room, the parents are paying for it. I don't know. I certainly didn't keep my room particularly neat when I was a kid, but it never got that bad. Are those dirty dishes in the bottom left corner? I think that's where I draw the line; when there's food sitting in the room, that just leads to badness.

Really, I'm just confused by this. I'm not going to go into my annoyance at the expo box. So any comments would be most welcome.

(Hmm, the "so much character" might be another indicator.)

Labels: , ,

Thursday, November 09, 2006

A somewhat original strip, wot wot

I'll give Al credit for today's strip--at least the idea is somewhat original. And by that, I mean that it doesn't involve the medical profession or a henpecked husband and nagging wife. So, kudos for that.

Personally, I hate mirrors in restaurants. At least, huge mirrors. I do not want to watch myself as I eat. Ew. I once had an apartment with a huge mirror in the dining room. It was horrible. I always positioned myself so I never had to look at it. Really, the way Dimdome has it set up in the bottom panel is ideal; you can still catch glimpses of your reflection, but not too much. Perfect!

I'm guessing that the customer in the bottom panel is the mirror installer from the top panel; otherwise, why would he care about whether the mirror is covered? Really, even if he is the mirror installer, why would he care? He got his money.

And what kind of place is this? I'm guessing it's a diner, but what a strange combination of food--goulash (today only!), beef stew, pea soup,

Note to Al: If you're going to actually illustrate what's on the counter, then you don't need to list it for us in the expo box. Really. The "and whatever" was particularly helpful. Also? Unless you're writing for a Brit, don't use "wot." Ever. Full stop.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Leadbutt's retirement plan sounds good to me

I totally have Leadbutt's back in today's strip. When I retired, darn tootin' I just want to sit around all day and watch tv. That sounds awesome. But look at the devil eyes his wife is giving him! I mean, I can understand how it'd be annoying, but that's not just annoyance or even disgust--that's full-out loathing.

And really, I'm with him in the bottom panel, too. I might not go on and on about my plans, but I'd probably say something other than, "Great! I sit around all day and do nothing, kids. It's awesome." And notice that Leadbutt never actually says that he's keeping busy with travel and hobbies and bowling; he just says that it's the key to a happy retirement. It's classic. It sounds like you're talking about yourself, but you're technically not. And perhaps someday he will do those things; if he's recently retired, maybe he just wants to relax for a while before formulating any big plans.

So, basically, shut up, Mrs. Leadbutt. (And your shirt in the bottom panel is awful.)

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Nice slang, "dude"

I'll give Al some credit for today's strip, as this is a situation that pretty much most people have had to deal with, maybe even going so far as to say every time they attend a family gathering. Why Al seems to think this is only something boys have to deal with is beyond me, as it's not at all related to gender--merely age.

I'm also not sure why Aunt Rotunda (...) has to be big. The usual scenario is just some older relative who insists on giving big hugs and kisses to the numerous kids of the family. And usually winds up with the kid having lipstick smeared across his or her cheek. Again, I usually see this not as an issue of weight, but as one of age.

And most kids manage to not look quite so horrified. At least by the time they've reached the age the boys in the strip have. Did their parents never teach them manners?

So while Scaduto kind of gets it right this time (which is shocking and commendable), he also gets it wrong. But it's progress!

Labels: , , ,

Monday, November 06, 2006

What is that tree thing the nurse is playing with?

I'm guessing that Al ran out of ideas when trying to think of something for today's strip, so he decided to just go ahead and use the one from September 30. Only I guess that in today's strip, we're supposed to sympathize with the patient, not the visitors.

How awesome is it that the doctor in the bottom panel is wearing one of those headbands with the mirror (?) on it? It's like Scaduto felt the need to include a doctor in the strip, but couldn't figure out how else to signify that someone's a doctor.

Points to Scaduto for finally having a patient in the hospital not show any outward signs of what's wrong with him--no bandages, no casts. Ironically, this is the one time it's appropriate, since he's getting x-rays in the bottom panel. Al, this is the time you want to show a guy with a cast!

He gets points deducted for the use of cobwebs. Cobwebs don't show that he hasn't been visited; cobwebs show that either Noluk hasn't moved for a long time, or that there are some very industrious spiders in his room. Simply showing him alone, sighing, would do the job.

It seems a bit freaky that everyone would show up at once. Did they arrange it? I'd assume not, but really, otherwise it's a pretty big coincidence. And is anyone else freaked out by how the group is chanting for him in unison? Like zombies, they are.

I admit that when I read the name "Noluk," I did let an an, "Aww, poor guy." I'm such a sap.

Labels: , ,

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Television trumps a leaky faucet. Duh.

I really don't know why I was surprised when I read today's strip and was all, "Really? Do people actually act like that?" Honestly, I astonish myself sometimes.

OK, I admit that I may have had a bit of a breakdown when I moved and the cable guy came and said that, basically, I wouldn't be able to watch tv for another three days. But in my defense, I was stressed from moving and it meant I was missing a bunch of season and series finales. It was very upsetting!

But honestly, I was also not pleased when I realized that the sink in my bathroom leaked. Sure, I could work around it, but that certainly concerned me more than the tv issue. I don't know that I'd be as unconcerned about the plumber not showing up as the couple in this strip. And honestly, do people get upset when a repairman is a mere 45 minutes late? I'm happy if they show up in the 3-hour block they predict.

I also find it a bit odd that the plumber has a company name, but the tv repair guy doesn't. And do people even go and repair televisions in homes anymore? Everyone I know who's had to have a tv or computer repaired had to bring it to a store.

I do like "That's diffo!" for "That's different!" I really need to add more TDIET lingo to my everyday conversation.

Labels: ,

Friday, November 03, 2006

Questions to ponder

There are, unsurprisingly, a number of questions about today's strip.

Why is Arfly so incredibly flummoxed when his wife starts speaking? Was he in the room, also reading quietly, or did he just walk in? Why does it matter that he kept the volume of the tv low? Why, for the love of all that is holy, did Scaduto include the phrase "turn wifey on, too" followed by an "Oh, yeah-h"? Did he not realize the double entendre there? Why does Arfly need Yakeena to be quiet when a football game is on--does he need the nattering of the sportscasters to understand what's going on? Has he not yet figured out how to tune someone out while watching sports? Why would Yakeena think that wallpaper with polka dots and a striped shag carpet would be a good idea? Why are we subjected to another child with a horrible haircut? Is Arfly wearing a blue shirt under a red shirt under a vest, or is that supposed to be his pants? Is that television from the 1950s? (And if so, why am I surprised by this?) Did Scaduto think this scenario up himself (seeing how there's no "Thanks to")? If so, does this represent a decline in reader ideas? What is that bottle on the table next to the coffee cup? Should I go upstairs and get a tuna melt for lunch, or eat the lunch I brought in?

Oh, whoops. That doesn't relate to TDIET. But it's a lot more pressing than any of those other questions.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Newsflash: Al doesn't like people involved in medicine

Oh, huzzah. Today's strip is yet another about how crappy doctors are. Not just doctors--everything about the medical profession, really. Congrats to Barfwell, though that's quite a gut on a guy who only weighs 183. Unless he's pretty short. Honestly, if he's around average height (which is debatable; he's about the same height as the nurse, which would indicate that either he's a bit short or she's a bit tall, and he just clears the scale--but aren't those pretty tall?), 183 really isn't that bad. Of course, he has chicken legs, so all that weight is in his stomach, so I guess it makes some sense.

A big problem here is that the numbers don't add up. When did he last go see the doctor and weigh in at 183? Or...did Nubbia (really, Al?) ask Barfwell how much he weighed and go from that? I've never had a nurse asked me how much I weighed (I mean, it's on the forms and things). And really, the nurses I've encountered also don't comment on how much I weigh when I weigh in. They just note it, and move on.

Is Barfwell going for a physical or something? Does he have early symptoms of Type 2 diabetes and they're trying to keep it in check? Is this visit to the doctor simply because he's dieting? Do people really do that? The co-pays would kill you, I'd think.

I will give them this, though--there usually is a discrepancy between the scale at home and the one at the doctor's office, and yes, the one at home usually does read lower.

And this strip really doesn't qualify for the "living on the edge" category, which I'd prefer to have just for strips involving married couples. Unless Barfy is about to clobber Nubbia. Which just isn't cool, yo.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Strange things are afoot

For some reason, today's TDIET is refusing to load both on the Seattle Post-Intelligencer site and the Houston Chronicle site. Bizarre! So looks like it's a no-go for today, kids. Sorry!