Echoes of a Summer

California! Home of palm trees, bicycles and bottled water. Cindy has picked up and relocated here, in a desperate bid to be near her younger, movie star boyfriend, but also having accepted a vaguely defined job with an undetermined salary from an internet startup who hired her because she was affordable. And not until she arrives on her first day does she meet, and proceed to dismiss, her new boss, who resembles a catatonic and even more androgynous Summer.


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

24 responses to “Echoes of a Summer

  1. So, instead of a “Pleased to meet you,” Cindy disses her boss. Why do I get the feeling she won’t be at this job long?

  2. Epicus Doomus

    It’s funny, but prior to this Buddyblog thing I never really found Cindy to be an especially objectionable or particularly annoying character (comparatively speaking, natch). But since the BB arc began, wow, what a bitch. Always with the stupid self-deprecating “gee I am so old” gags and the cynical sarcasm about pretty much everything. Way to win over the new boss there, jackass.

    And of course the idiotically-named “Echo Chambers” (der) is one of “those kids today” which means she lacks the wisdom and common sense of an old milk cow like Cindy, who’s “seen it all” in “her day”. I’m expecting Echo to begin jabbering about “dynamic content” and “page hits” and so on, as Cindy looks on with disgust and confusion, which is an interesting approach considering that BB was the only job offer she received. Not to mention that she needs the gig in order to have an excuse to stay close to Mason Jarr. Or so I am assuming, as the story thus far is fairly incomprehensible.

  3. SpacemanSpiff85

    Gosh, it’s almost like whoever wrote this has no clue what it’s like to have to get along with your coworkers. Or other human beings for that matter. That explains 99% of the “humor” content of Crankshaft.

  4. A simple google search reveals that TB’s hilarious punch line “I have shoes older than you” has been used numerous times. The first actual appearance of the line can be attributed to William Gibson in his book “Burning Chrome”, published in 1987. So Cindy is not only greeting her new boss with a condescending remark, but it’s a remark that is not particularly original. Nothing like making that all-important first impression.
    I’m guessing that this week’s arc is going downhill from here.

  5. Guest Page Turner Author

    So she dismissed her boss a while back by asking if she was supposed to be meeting with his father. . .And she dismisses her newer boss by telling her that she is old (Cindy, not the newest boss )

    Uggh, Battic! Get over it all! There are people younger than us, running things. And they likely do a good job at it!

    I have so much animosity toward people that can’t accept that younger folks than them are in at positions.

    And I just told everyone that, rather than showing. Which is Baby Boomer Battic’s trademark.

    Again, Uggh!

  6. Epicus Doomus

    Remember back when Act III began and it appeared that it’d center mostly around Lisa’s magical daughter Summer? Now eight years later FW has become Crankshaft Jr., just packed with hilarious gags about broken hips, falling down and how young “these kids today” are getting.

  7. SpacemanSpiff85

    @Epicus Doomus:
    What’s also funny is that Crankshaft actually seems to have more of a coherent plot these days, with the whole “Ed’s friend runs for mayor” storyline. It’s not exactly funny or compelling, but it makes more sense than anything that’s happened in FW in years, and actually has stakes.

  8. Epicus Doomus

    So Cindy, who’s suffered through TWO instances of job-related age discrimination, sees nothing wrong with judging someone she just met solely on age and appearance. AND she’s dating a much younger man to boot! When it comes to female characters, Batiuk really ought to stick to obese middle aged comic foils, good-natured doormat second wives and saintly virtuous dead women. Those he’s fully mastered.

  9. JerrytheMacGuy

    Uh Cindy, you probably have shoes that are older than your boy toy, Mason.

  10. I hate to beat a dead horse on this one but I can’t help but think that this catty, high-school meanness is just another step on her journey to ending up living in an alleyway lamenting ever having tried to unman Funky or treating Saint Les The Fist-Magnet like dirt. Batiuk can’t only not get over the fact that a new generation is replacing obsolete people like himself, he can’t get over high school.

  11. Gyre

    Note that the name of the company is on the front of that building. That seems to suggest that they don’t just have an office there, they own the whole place. A multi-story building. And they’re planning on paying her with a kickstarter.

    I wouldn’t even focus on that if it weren’t for the fact that the idea is just so dumb that I can’t understand why Tom Batiuk would have about a week of her making it clear this is crazy, only to have her decide to take the job.

  12. Rusty Shackleford


    Batom cannot accept that his generation is the new establishment, and that kids today couldn’t care less about what he says. He likes to think that we he does is relevant to the younger generation, but it is not.

    I also like how he implies that all of these Internet startups are fake businesses. The news on the Internet, shudder, the news is only real when it is done by professionals on TV or writing for newspapers.

  13. bad wolf

    Maybe Cindy just sized up her new boss as a “Summer”-type and is trying to head her off from hitting on her.

  14. Rusty

    Cindy is drawn in full matronly mode today, after passing for a younger person back in Westview.


    I actually have a shirt in my closet older than my teenage son. I also have an old Jack in the Box soda cup I never threw out that’s also older This becomes less a point about how old I am and more I should really throw shit out every once in a while.

  16. There’s a storytelling device known as a “thought balloon” which allows a writer to present a punchline without raising the issue of the consequences of verbalizing said punchline to another human being.

  17. Cindy’s just trying to get fired so she can go back to Westview and complain about how everything is unfair to old people, right?

  18. billytheskink


    TB: Hello?
    JK: Tom! How’s it going? Jeff Keane.
    TB: Jeff? OK, yes, good to hear from you.
    JK: I’m excited about this crossover idea of yours. It’s nice to get a request from someone other than Pastis, you know?
    TB: I hear that. He calls me, like, five times a day. Sometimes six.
    JK: Right. So what’s the pitch for this crossover?
    TB: OK, so Cindy starts her job at this fly-by-night “internet” news thing and her news director, “Echo Chambers”, is actually Thel. Cindy makes a joke about having shoes older than her, which is funny because Thel is actually really old, like old enough to be your mother.
    JK: I… wait, what?

  19. Saying “I have shoes older than you” is a pretty bad line to introduce yourself to your new boss with, but when said boss is a mannequin from Old Navy, you’ll probably get away with it.

  20. @Rusty Shackleford: It’s not just that he can’t accept a new technological order he doesn’t care to understand; I don’t think he ever really understood his place in the old order. We’re looking at the tail that wants to wag the dog.

  21. Epicus Doomus

    Erich: Absolutely, I was wondering about that myself. It also seems hard to believe that she hasn’t been in contact with the BB people until now, especially considering they’re a “technology” company and how Westviewians love their video chatting.

  22. John

    Echo smiled as she approached the Buddyblog Western Palace. Out of all their mansions, this one was her favorite. The palm trees, the drinking fountains that could be switched to melted chocolate, the way they let you park your bicycle -inside- the third-floor office? So awesome.

    Then Mike introduced her to her new employee, Cindy.

    Cindy didn’t look her in the eye. She just glanced at her sidelong, muttered and mumbled something about shoes, then offered a limp, cold fish-hand for her to shake.

    Suddenly, a void, a singularity seemed to open up. All light, all joy, all life and fun vanished into the snarling, bitter hag before her…

  23. I have antiques that are younger than Tom Batiuk.

    Oh, no! Did I say that out loud?

  24. Jimmy

    I have a feeling the reason this Echo Chambers has no detail is because she won’t be around longer than a day or so. Or, maybe billytheskink’s crossover theory is right. It would be more interesting.