42 responses to “A Dressing Down.

  1. Epicus Doomus

    “Montoni’s Salad Dressing”…the woeful tears of the downtrodden, flop sweat and freezer-burned mozzarella…the three great tastes that put Westview on the map, together at last! And now, a recipe for all you gourmands out there.

    Westview Autumnal Salad

    One bowl leaves, freshly fallen
    Montoni’s salad dressing
    One whole pepperoni pizza
    Comic book, Silver Age

    Place freshly fallen leaves in large bowl. Throw pizza slices in there. Top with salad dressing. Serve with comic book placemat. Serves one.

    It’s always so weird when Crazy reappears. He used to be a major character, you know. And furthermore, he was almost sort of likeable. But alas, times change.

  2. Banana Jr. 6000

    I found a video about the place:

    • Mr. A

      Now I’m hungry.

      This seems like a good place to link the research I did the other night on Luigi’s physical location. I think that in the video, when the owner talks about “when…access got a little difficult”, he might be talking about when the SR 59 highway was built. I’m not sure.

      • Rusty Shackleford

        The section of street where Luigi’s is was cut off when the Y- bridge was built and so you have to cut through a side street to get there and if you don’t know where you are going you would think that there is no way a pizza place nearby.

        I noticed the green pitcher on the counter! But notice their counter is used as a bar for beer and wine, not coffee.

        Definitely a step back in time, but the food is not worth the wait.

        • Mr. A

          Ah, local knowledge! So what did the landscape look like before that bridge was built?

          Also, I don’t know how to feel about the fact that the bridge right next to the inspiration for Montoni’s is a famous spot for suicides.

          • Rusty Shackleford

            That was before my time, but essentially North Main Street continued north up the steep hill to the “North Hill” area of Akron. The bridge was built over the Cuyahoga Valley to eliminate the steep grade and this cut off a portion of the old Main Street.

            And yes, the bridge had enhanced fencing added some time ago to prevent suicides. The bridge is also famous for wrong way drunk drivers going on the opposite side against traffic.

            Back in the day the North Hill neighborhood was a predominantly Italian neighborhood and much better pizza and restaurants could be found there. Luigi’s is neat if you are into nostalgia, but the food is nothing to rave about.

          • Rusty Shackleford

            Also, the area around Luigi’s is much different than it was back when I lived in Akron. Batty must surely have shed a tear when the hipster Northside Lofts went in just around the corner from Luigi’s. Rumor has it that Chrissie Hynde has a pad there for when she is in town visiting family.

    • gleeb

      Wow, does that man sound sad. He’s riding a tiger called Luigi’s.

  3. William Thompson

    See what? The plastic barf bag? The wall of photos? The black Christmas wreath? The Santa who looks like Ed Crankshaft? Oh, the puke-green pitcher. Of course.

  4. Yeah, it’s the green beverage thing.

    Many kudos for doing such yeoman work. We should all wear hazmat suits.

    • Epicus Doomus

      The green pitcher, the jukebox, the band box…the Holy Trinity of Montoni’s. It must be really weird for the real Luigi’s, I mean they know Montoni’s is based on them yet they’re really the only ones (other than us) who know that, so when you think about it what good is it? They’re the basis for almost five decades of running gags yet they get no publicity at all out of it. It almost makes me want to go to the real Luigi’s, just out of sympathy. But then again there are like eleven pizzerias within ten minutes of here so f*ck it.

  5. William Thompson

    I could almost imagine Crazy Harry saying that he wished to treat Donna to a night of well-lubricated depravity, but, well, the Funkyverse.

  6. Epicus Doomus

    Fantastic research today, CBH. Gold star with pepperoni clusters for you. I come for the snark but I stay for the incredibly obscure and arcane knowledge.

    “Not accepting credit cards”…LOL, oh man, that’s just so Batiukian. “We don’t serve your kind here, with your technological plastic card chips and whatnot, so why don’t you take your fancy “debit card” back to your highfalutin big city pizzeria, techno-boy”.

    • J.J. O'Malley

      My neighborhood cheesesteak restaurant in the northwest corner of Philly–recognized as one of the city’s best–likewise refuses to accept credit cards and has an outside ATM (or did. It was blown up last month during some protests/riots and may not have been replaced yet). It seems counter-productive, but for a lot of one-or-two spot local eateries “Cash Only” is more efficient and cost-effective that taking plastic and paying fees.

      That being said…it amazes me how Battyuk cuts the legs out from under his own half-arsed punchline today. As if we couldn’t get from Funky’s droopy-eyed scowl that he thinks Harry is a demented cheapskate (I wonder what he thought of Wally and Rachel having a “date night” at Montoni’s?), TB had to have him state the obvious in the last panel. Just let Harry say his piece with an incredulous Funky looking on. It’s like Billy, Dolly and Jeffy saying “Ida Know” who spilled grape juice on the sofa, only to have Thel go “Oh, you all know. You’re just saying that as an excuse so I don’t punish you.”

      Oh, and maybe there’s a line at the real-world Luigi’s, but notice once again how they couldn’t be bothered at just draw a customer head or two to imply that somebody other than strip regulars ever eats at Montoni’s (why not have a cameo by the ICE agents?).

    • Rusty Shackleford

      My local pizza place is cash only, but like Luigi’s, they have a steady stream of customers and so they could easily absorb the credit card fees because taking cards means more wine and beer consumption. It’s really an inconvenience to the customers.

      Now at my friend’s donut shop he only took cash, but the average check was around $4 and so that makes sense. But he also took personal checks and interestingly enough, in 25 years of business, he never got a bad check.

  7. billytheskink

    The green pitcher has been my favorite character in this strip for years, but I rather feel bad for the real one. No one deserves depiction in this comic hellscape.

    • Epicus Doomus

      None of the most beloved characters in the strip are human. The green pitcher, Buddy, Zanzibar, the polonium, the pinned-up sleeve…see?

  8. Mr. A

    Haiku of the Day

    Harry is lucky
    He can’t understand this tongue
    Dripping joyless words

  9. Gerard Plourde

    I wonder what led TomBa to do this strip. Other than Les promising Cayla the as-yet still pending trip to Hong Kong I can’t think of another instance when a wedding anniversary was recognized. And I’m sure Funky gets Holly comic books for their anniversary.

  10. Banana Jr. 6000

    I like how the artwork shows him paying with the only dollar bill he has.

    • Gerard Plourde

      That’s a good point about Harry’s last dollar. According to TomBa, Harry and Donna have four kids, with Maddie being the oldest. Harry was laid off from a good paying job at the post office and is working at DSH’s comics store, which can’t possibly pay him anywhere near what he was making. So Funky’s Crankshaft-like judgmental remark is really uncalled for.

      I guess it was too much to hope that he’d spare Funky from becoming a jerk.

      • gleeb

        Harry is the worst shithead father anyone ever had.

        • Banana Jr. 6000

          And like a lot of shithead fathers, he thinks he’s a lot funnier than he really is. His every facial expression just screams “Look at me! I’m so wacky! I have a long beard and buy unorthodox gifts for my loved ones! Don’t get too close, I might squirt you with my squirting flower!” Then he gives you a $5 gift card and drinks $20 worth of booze.

  11. Tom Hackett

    The guy who blew his kids’ college funds on Tarzan comics (with the Jungle Jim toppers) gets his wife a bottle of salad dressing for their anniversary. Sounds about right.

  12. Gerard Plourde

    I’ve wondered how TomBa came up with the name Montoni’s for his pizza place. An Answer may be found in this ad from the Daily Kent Stater from September 27, 1968.

    “Young men with cars for delivery. Apply in person Montoni’s Pizza 108 W . Main.” – Page 11 Advertisements Column 3


  13. gleeb

    “an ATM in the back that doesn’t print out cash, but prints out a receipt to use up front.” That’s gotta be some kind of scam.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      Scrip is legal. Gift cards are basically the same concept. Casinos run on scrip now; you only handle money at the cashier’s window. Even some communities, like Ithaca, New York, issue their own scrip that many local businesses will accept.

      My guess is that Luigi’s aim is to (1) save money on credit card/ATM fees, (2) stick people with money they can only spend at Luigi’s, and (3) be quirky. I guess they’re enough of a local institution they can get away with it.

      • Don

        It reminded me of what a local Popeye’s used to do; it charged a “service fee” of 75 cents, but then gave a “convenience discount” of 75 cents for paying with cash or credit card – i.e. there was a 75-cent fee for using a debit card, presumably to cover the fee the restaurant had for debit card transactions (and equally as presumably, debit card surcharges for the customers were illegal).

      • Rusty Shackleford

        Yeah, they are just being jerks. They have enough business to accept credit cards.

  14. Gerard Plourde

    That is weird. And a web search doesn’t bring up anything matching that description.

  15. LTPFTR

    $7.50 for a cup and a half of piss-colored salad dressing with smattering of seasoning (probably all parsley)? It better come with a chaser of magic beans!

    • Rusty Shackleford

      We used to call their salad a “cheese salad” as all you could taste was the salty cheese on top.

      Italian dressing is so easy to make, my Italian Grandmother would whip up a batch in a few minutes. Fun fact, my grandma came from a region in Italy where they always made their pizza with pecorino romano cheese instead of mozzarella. It was like a tomatoey focaccia bread…delicious! Even better was her garlic pizza with olive oil and artichoke….

  16. newagepalimpsest

    1) Wow, Crazy Harry ordered something other than a coffee for once.
    2) “Well Funky, it’s not as if Montoni’s has a house wine or an anniversary special or anything other than the coffee mugs I’ve been sneaking home for years.”
    3) Luigi’s looks like an alright kind of local place, but do THEY have Snidley Whiplash and Bill Clinton on their celebrity wall?

  17. Westview Radiology

    Is that an aquarium there in panel 3? If so then we know where Montoni’s gets their anchovies from.