It’s The Little Differences

Link To Today’s Fascinating Installment

Good ol’ McArnolds, known for Arnold McArnold, the Beef Thief, Mayor O’ Patty and of course Sneer, the big purple one. “I will have a One-Fourther with cheese, a Sea-O-Sandwich, some Belgian fries and a box of McArnoldland cookies, please”. Over ten billion bored witless. The “soda” vs. “pop” gag was pretty funny the first ten thousand times I heard it so the impact is somewhat dulled here for me, although it’ll surely resonate with the new (guffaw) generation of FW readers who didn’t read “Archie” back in the early 1970s like I did.

Wouldn’t it be nice to be as easily amused as Holly is? “WOW, the f*cking fire hydrants are painted YELLOW here!”…”The power lines are…are…they’re UNDERGROUND, man!”…”I can’t BELIEVE that place just sold me three handguns!!”…but alas, I’m from New Jersey thus way too cynical and jaded to be impressed by these trivial cultural differences. Just wait until they arrive in Florida and order themselves a cup of brown sugar bubble water with frozen water chunks and a sipping tube.


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

34 responses to “It’s The Little Differences

  1. billytheskink

    South Carolina is in “Coke” country. I mean, I guess TB didn’t want to get a cease and desist letter with an Atlanta return address, but he still could have chosen a state that actually calls soft drinks “Soda” in overwhelming numbers (he could have waited until they got to South Florida, for example). There are 1,000,001 maps of the Soda/Pop/Coke divide available on the internet, not to mention a Wikipedia page. There is no excuse for this laziness.

    • spacemanspiff85

      I was just about to post that. 😛 It’s amazing that you can do a strip about how some places it’s called pop and some places it’s called soda, and not get it right at all.

      • comicbookharriet

        Isn’t ‘Coke’ generic enough? And the better punchline would be, “Except this root beer I’m drinking is apparently ‘coke'” But then it sounds like she’s drinking a tall glass of opioids.

    • gleeb

      That map shows Beaufort County, SC as being about split between “Coke” and “Soda”. SC 462 runs through neighboring Jasper County, but the map only has one data point from Jasper. Not to defend such a dull strip, but they may well be drinking soda. Knowing how Batiuk’s characters treat menials behind counters, they’re certainly drinking spit.

      • timbuys

        In New Orleans, it was ‘Cokes’ all the way. Except with reference to root beer, in which case Barq’s was served. In which case, Cokes, even if it was Pepsi, was preferable.

  2. spacemanspiff85

    Um, what would the difference between “pop” and “soda” even matter here? They have more than one soft drink option, I’d imagine, so I’m pretty sure you’d have to specify which one you wanted.

  3. spacemanspiff85

    Also, that sign has me really weirded out. I actually do live in SC. I assumed at first it was supposed to be a highway sign, like Highway 62. Except U.S. 62 doesn’t do anywhere near SC. There is an I-26 that goes through SC, though, so maybe Batiuk just got that backwards. Or maybe it’s supposed to be an exit number sign. Either way it seems super unlikely to have that kind of sign essentially in a McArnold’s parking lot.
    We also don’t have McArnold’s in SC.

    • The Nelson Puppet

      You live in Sakerlina?

    • The Nelson Puppet

      I’m pretty sure Batiuk just Googled “South Carolina State Highway sign” because my GIS brought this up first:

      • Gerard Plourde

        I see he (or Akers) got “creative” with the colors, though.

      • spacemanspiff85

        If that’s what he did, I’m amazed at the amount of research he did for this. Far, far more than he did for “kill fee”.

    • bobanero

      If they’re driving to Florida from Ohio, they’re probably taking I-77 down either all the way to Columbia, then taking I-26 to I-95 south (best route for going to the Atlantic coast), or taking I-85 from Charlotte towards Atlanta, and getting on I-75 south (best route for the Gulf coast). It looks like SC-462 does intersect with I-95 at Coosawatchie, but I only see an Exxon and a General Store. No fast food joints for miles around the exit.

      Anyway, enough of my beady-eyed nitpicking, except that I lived in South Carolina for 5 years and never once heard it referred to as “soda” until I moved to New York.

  4. You forgot the McBeefBurglar, with his eternal cry of “Pulitzer nominee! Pulitzer nominee!” as he swept “regular” burgers into his swag bag.

  5. Jimmy

    As a South Carolina native, calling Coke “soda” just pissed me off, even more than the lame MacArnold’s.

  6. ian'sdrunkenbeard

    Homer Simpson said it better:
    “Come on, Marge, I want to shake off the dust of this one-horse town. I want to explore the world. I want to watch TV in a different time zone. I want to visit strange, exotic malls. I’m sick of eating hoagies. I want a grinder, a sub, a foot-long hero…I want to live, Marge! Won’t you let me live? Won’t you please?! “

  7. I wonder what tedious (and inaccurate) observation will be made next. I also wonder how impressive said banality will be touted as being.

  8. comicbookharriet

    Holly’s face in panel three… tiny offset, offkilter eyes, micro mouth, double eyebrows, all on a huge monochromatic fleshy expanse….one hundred times scarier than the entire Slenderman film.

  9. Gerard Plourde

    If memory serves, South Carolina is home to two distinct and excellent styles of barbecue and these doofuses who prepare food for a living are extolling the fact that they can eat the same bland fast food they get in Westview.

  10. sgtsaunders

    That ish might also be called a “coke” in South Carolina – no matter the actual brand.

  11. Professor Fate

    He should have Les go over to England to promote his book there – there are ever so many differences between America and British usage – like we say elevator they say lift. It would be good for weeks worth of wry commentary And the accents? Hilarity ensues.

    • countoftowergrove

      Tube for subway, zebra for crosswalk, telly for TV, loo for john, wireless for radio, oh the list goes on!

      • timbuys

        A colleague once related to me a tale of getting her slacks damp in the rain and, inadvertently causing a great degree of ribald hilarity when she lamented that she’d gotten her pants all wet.

      • He could get a job as a dustman, only he wouldn’t know that the place for putting petrol in his lorry is in the boot.

  12. Fans of Becky’s pinned-up sleeve will appreciate the latest post to the official FW blog. Batiuk periodically posts (without any commentary) the artwork he does for the Ohio Music Educators Association annual CD collection. Clearly he didn’t give enough thought to the layout: when the cover artwork is transferred to the disc, the hole in the center obscures Becky’s most distinctive feature.

    • Buckeye Feculence

      I’m thinking any Ohio music educator who doesn’t have a clue about FW is going to look at this and wonder why they used a cover image of a disfigured conductor.

      (Then again, maybe knowledge of the history of Dinkle, Becky, etc. are requisite knowledge to be an Ohio music educator.)

    • spacemanspiff85

      I’ve got to imagine that’s the kind of deal where Batiuk pays them to use his art, instead of the other way around, the more normal way.

    • The Nelson Puppet

      “Uh…sorry, Becky!”

  13. Le Chat Bleu

    Do these bland cyphers have any personality traits at all all?