Sunday, December 03, 2006

A Funnies Kind of World

A Funnies Kind of World

I know I've been negligent. I am a serial obsessive and my obsessions have been elsewhere. One thing I had to stop obsessing about was Iraq. It was driving me crazy and there's never been anything I could do about it. But, it turns out that the Democrats were really just blowing smoke. When push came to shove, they were unable to unleash the Murthas of the world. It's true that they are congenitally unable to recognize an enemy. Every situation is seen as a simple misunderstanding among reasonable people. But, they are susceptible to persuasion when in a position to make decisions. The Left has been unable to set the agenda.

One thing I have never neglected, however, are the funnies. I read them every day. I can't get enough of them. Sadly, one of my favorites has bit the dust. The Boondocks has been replaced by something dreadful. I don't think I would like most of the people who like The Boondocks, and I suspect I wouldn't get along too well with Aaron McGruder, the creator of this radical strip. But the cartoon itself is (or was) awesome. It's about a truncated family of 10-year old Huey, a budding black radical, his younger brother Riley, a self-styled gangsta, and their beleaguered grandfather, who have moved from the city to the suburbs. The representation of the ensuing culture clash has been perceptive, blunt, honest and constructive, with enough forgiveness and humanity to make it bearable. I think McGruder has done a lot of good with this medicine, and I will miss my daily dose.

Today's funnies had some small consolation in Opus, an oh-so-delicate jab at religious sensitivities, including a pinch on the cheek of Islamic cartoon-o-phobes. (It's not online yet. You gotta buy the paper.) I won't mention the cartoonist's name, since he and Opus may be in the soup. Can't have that.

12/3/2006 11:33 PM

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At Monday, December 04, 2006 9:23:00 AM, Blogger mal said...

good to see you back JJ! You are right, it is easy to get obsessed and then depressed over events you can not immediately control. Iraq is at the top of the list.

Growing up in small towns and the Burbs I do not understand much of the humour in "Boondocks" but they do hit a home run on occasion. Todays shot at Amway is good. You can find them online at

My favorite remains "Dilbert" Scott Adams has a real knack for lampooning corporate America. After spending years working for a Fotune 100 company, I think he under states the foolishness at times

At Thursday, December 07, 2006 10:05:00 AM, Blogger Steve said...

What Mal said, and I hope your computer project went well.

I agree with you about the funnies (and editorial cartoons - lots of overlap there). I've got these in a Firefox bookmark folder. I love that "open in tabs" function. Use it every day.

You've seen "Non Sequitur"? I place it right up there with Dilbert and Doonsbury.

Some of Ted Rall's stuff is brilliant. He can be vicious, but at times it seems well justified.

Foxtrot's Jason character is cool. So is Pre Teena's Teena. Smart kids.

Luann's trials hold my interest over time.

BC Of course.

Jesus and Mo has the two prophets living together in modern times. Probably not for the weak of faith or easily offended (or maybe especially so).

I started reading Nukees when someone on an energy forum recommended it. The strip is about a nuclear engineering graduate student and his adventures. Quirky characters in strange situations.

Wizard of Id
Rose Is Rose

I don't know why Get Fuzzy appeals to me. Didn't at first but it grew on me. I guess I like the insolent cat.

Cheers from Phoenix, where it's payback time weatherwise (and in a big way).

At Friday, December 08, 2006 10:35:00 PM, Blogger jj mollo said...

I get them in the paper for the most part. It's hard to read them online because I love 'em all. I guess I have to upgrade my connection. Maybe the new computer will make a difference. The Comics Curmudgeon reads his online on the Houston Chronicle which he says has the most variety. Dilbert is awesome. He's more than a cartoonist. He's a sociologist! He has all these little insights into how things actually work. I guess most people think bad bosses are humorous, and they are! But it's battlefield humor. Some of his stuff is just too true. I love Doonesbury, but my favorites were Lil' Abner and Pogo and all the others from my childhood. I don't really care if they're stupid as long as they reveal the personality of the creator. I even love Peanuts, though I like Gahan Wilson better.

At Friday, December 08, 2006 11:04:00 PM, Blogger jj mollo said...

Steve, I have gotten my computer working. Hardware is not my talent, but I bumbled through, destroying one processor, but I learned a lot. It works! Now I don't really know what I want to do with it. My wife won't let me give it to one of the kids, which was my original intention, because she doesn't want them hiding in their rooms to play on the Internet ... and we don't agree on which one should get it. So, I'm thinking I might want to upgrade the memory and install a different operating system. You suggested Linix. I used to work on Unix many years ago and loved it. Maybe I can figure it out. Other people have told me to try the new Microsoft Vista. I understand that's pretty much of a dog and my computer is pretty basic.

I've been working with a volunteer group in the church on the hill. We take old donated equipment and refurbish it for various non-profits in the area. So far, most of what I've done is carry stuff around and upgrade Windows 98 to Windows 2000.

At Friday, December 08, 2006 11:53:00 PM, Blogger jj mollo said...

I'm not much for the political cartoons. Take themselves too seriously. Ted Rall is unbearable. I read him sometimes, but OMG.

I like all the non-political ones you listed. Doonesbury is cool too. I especially like Duke. I love Get Fuzzy and Non-Sequitor. The Piranha Club, Heart of the City, Jump Start and Pearls Before Swine are some good ones you didn't mention. But, in a completely different genre, I love Prince Valiant in the Sunday paper.

By the way, I've bookmarked everything in your list. Everytime I read your comments I end up getting involved with something new.

BC is a sad story for me. I used to love it, but it has become very tedious in recent years. You know..?

At Saturday, December 09, 2006 11:53:00 AM, Blogger Steve said...

I'm certainly no power user, but I have gotten to the point where I could abandon Windows entirely and get along fine. I'm sure you'd soon have that sense, too.

If you're like me, you'd find that Linux isn't as polished or as easy as Windows, and it doesn't support as wide a range of hardware as Windows (I've had to remove a NIC and a video card for lack of drivers), and you won't find as wide a variety of commercial software (games, for instance).

Then again, maybe I have not been playing with the best distributions. I've tried Mandrake, Red Hat, Linspire, Ubunto, Kubuntu and Knoppix (the last three being live distributions that run entirely from the CD or DVD but which you can install if you like). I used Red Hat as my primary until they directed their individual users to Fedora while re-orienting Red Hat to the business desktop for more money.

One of the computers here runs on Linspire, which has been OK for me, though their easy software install service, CNR (for click 'n' run), seems a bit slow to adopt the latest updates to software like Open Office or Firefox, and some of the stuff I download simply doesn't work on my machine for some reason.

Linux is just a matter of getting used to something different and dispensing with a bit of the hand-holding. You'll find a lot of similarity with Unix, although you probably didn't have a desktop environment when you used Unix, eh?

As for computers and kids, I agree. Our son has his own computer (bought it with his own money) but we don't allow computers or televisions in the bedroom - only out in the open.



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