Short and Sweet and Stupid

I can see why you would feel that way BC, when Robert the Cat is a car sized monstrosity.

Herding Cat.

Thank you to everyone who voted for the next deep dive topic. Everything had some interest. For a while it was hard to tell what the next subject would be. But the winner was there, hiding in plain sight. Looming larger and larger with every passing hour. Haunting me.

So far so good home on the range. Nothing broken and nothing dead. And despite Sorial Promise trying to jinx me, no out of season births.

As promised.


A Delicious Bovine Buffet
Headed to Tyson tomorrow. Unlucky number 7.

Huge Tractors

Found a jogger on my way to the pasture.

Huge Tractor selfies.

Also. Mud.

And hilarious pictures of tiny people driving huge tractors.

super alluring facedox! Not quite a rhinestone cowgirl on a majestic steed.

As for the next deep dive…

As I said, it’s hiding in plain sight. *wink*



Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

55 responses to “Short and Sweet and Stupid

  1. Gerard Plourde

    Is the character running from the tractor like Cary Grant running from the airplane in “North by Northwest” in your fourth picture our next target? He would certainly be fertile ground.

  2. billytheskink

    “Hiding in plain site.”




  3. sorialpromise

    Ooh! Ooh! I got that reference.

    • ComicBookHarriet

      Classic! I too have a cattle call, but it is not nearly so melodious.

      • Epicus Doomus

        My dad’s music LOL. He grew up in Newark, and was never within twenty miles of a cow, ever. Go figure.

        • ComicBookHarriet

          Not my dad’s music. He actually doesn’t like twangy pre 80’s country as much as I do. I’ve been known to jam out to Ghost Riders in the Sky and Uncle Pen.

          But I have always loved the Cattle Call song, because it makes that ancient connection between yodeling and animal herding. Singing styles and techniques evolved from calling animals are all over the world. In central Asia traditional yak herders constantly sing to their animals, they have different songs for herding, calling, milking.

          My dad’s cattle call is this braying brassy S’Bawwwws Whoooohuh cry he learned from his dad. It sounds quite a bit like a cow moo. Variations of ‘Come Boss! and ‘Hey Boss’ are popular in the midwest. But dad never made the connection that the ‘Boss’ was actually ‘Bos’ as in the greek/latin word for cattle until I told him.

          Thus ends your dumb CBH tangent.

          • Epicus Doomus

            LOL your tangents are kind of holding the site together right now, so please, tange away. My dad’s country was everything up to and including “Hee Haw”. Old school country. My very first concert of any kind was when dad took us to Great Adventure (aka Six Flags) to see Johnny Cash, in 1978 I believe.

            He liked polka music too, but only on Sundays. There was a local radio station that played polka music every Sunday, and every Sunday he turned it on, much to my consternation. The country music I understood, but the polka thing always baffled me.

  4. He’s bigger than that, now. God help us all, in the future.

  5. Green Luthor

    Hm, something about the next deep dive reminds me of a Loudon Wainwright song for some reason… 😛

  6. Bill the Splut

    Today’s CS:
    Tom is aware that the year 1995 happened, with a mild half-smirk. That is all.

    Is that one of the twins? Who were back to being children the last time we saw them? Is remembering ages this hard for him, or the artist? (I think the artist has ceased to care, so CS may not exist much longer than end-times FW)

    • Bill the Splut

      Yes, I am commenting on my own comment.
      I thought this would be Week 3 of the snowstorm. But it’s gonna be at least a week of 1995-era html.
      What is Lillian’s setup here? We’ve got a laptop (with a pineapple on it, haha that’s still funny Tommy; throw a Fleabay in there), and on the right a dead monitor, and…a blue thing? Not connected to anything? A keyboard, I guess? Is it…a PROTO-ROBBIE?! And a full coffee pot for a store that an inch from reality would have maybe one customer a day. Maybe it’s full of Lillian’s daily meth.
      “Your book themed mystery books would sell more books in your store of books of mystery you sell”! Yes, Teebs, we know the opinion you have of your readers’ memories, because why would they remember things you can’t? Is…that one of the twins? Who knows? Maybe a calving cow, seriously, I would accept that now.
      OK, website, I guess Geocities and AngelFire are gone, but you could…I don’t even know what ancient ref I can make here. Umm…”That new show Dragon Ball Z, where they scream like they’re super-constipated”? Tom would read that and go “What’s a Dragging Ball? Is Kramer in it? I love the Kramer!”

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        I’ll take a stab at it:

        TUESDAY: Generic Blond #18 will inform Lillian about the existence of “NerdPress”, which will function exactly like GeoCities.

        WEDNESDAY: Darren will get involved because Internet stuff, and because it’s an excuse to integrate more FW characters into Crankshaft.

        THURSDAY: Darren will quip about how much easier and less stressful this is than making comic books.

        FRIDAY: Lillian’s custom, public-facing, e-retail bookstore website will be ready.

        SATURDAY: Lillian checks her account balance. It is $49,810,129,348.

        SUNDAY: Lillian tells Ed Crankshaft she’s up for a business award. Also, it’s snowing again after being clear all week. Ed is still carrying around his flamethrower; nobody comments on this.

        NEXT MONDAY: Batton Thomas is running on the Atomik Komix treadmill.

        NEXT WEEK: Darren decides the website needs a clever name. He spends a week arguing it with Pete, Mindy, Flash Freeman, and Phil Holt, while Batton looks on approvingly.

        NEXT SUNDAY: The name is revealed in a comic book cover.

        TWO WEEKS FROM TODAY: Dinkle starts a fundraiser to buy new hymnals.

    • Gerard Plourde

      Although it’s possible that it’s one of the twins, they’re usually depicted as traveling as a unit. I tend to think this is supposed to be a customer.

      I do wonder if this means Darin is going to make an appearance to set up her web site like he did for Montoni’s.

    • Gerard Plourde

      Re today’s Crankshaft: Someone over at Go Comics suggested that the blonde could be Mindy. That’s certainly a possibility and adds to the liklihood of an appearance by members of the Atomik Comix crew.

      • J.J. O'Malley

        I’ll fess up that I’m the GoComics “someone” who holds down the fort commenting on the ‘Shaft. I thought that was one of the Grandy Twins (who were drawn as tweens a month ago) at first too, and assumed the timeloop had caught to them to make them WHS age, but after comparing Generic Blonde hairstyles came to the conclusion that it’s Mindy.
        So, CS readers can look forward to more hilarious “Lillian the Lizard doesn’t understand technology” hi-jinx this week, because Batiuk can’t get enough of making seniors look like hapless fogeys. Lillian writes her novels on a computer, took part in a podcast, yet the idea of setting up a business website is totally foreign to her.
        Also, like Bill the phrase “book-themed mysteries” threw me for a loop, since that could refer to play, movie, and TV scripts, poems, and so on. Batiuk could’ve just had Min-dull call them “books,” but needed that word “mysteries” to set up Lil’s sidesplitting punchline.

        • Banana Jr. 6000

          “Elderly store needs help setting up a business website” is one of the more realistic plots in the Funkyverse.

          It’s just not a story.

          There’s no plot point that’s driving this. Lillian has no problem it needs to solve. There’s no emotional element. Watching one person hire a freelance web designer, and telling them what they want, is about the most boring, visually uninteresting thing I can imagine.

          It’s just going to be another week of Tom Batiuk’s storytelling staples: introducing characters to each other. “Lillian, this is Darrin, he’s a web designer! Darrin, Lillian owns the Village Booksmith!” “Did you print all these books?” (smirk) “Not really.” (smirk) I’m sure that exchange is coming up.

        • ComicBookHarriet

          Yup it’s Mindy. She’s helped Lillian with various tech things at the Booksmith multiple times in the past.

          Also, she’s stolen.

          • ComicBookHarriet

            Mindy helping Lillian set up a blog.

          • Gerard Plourde

            Thanks for posting this. The continuity of her clothing all but seals confirmation of her identity as Mindy. I’m curious whether we’ll ever see Pete. It could be that he’ll be consigned to “the dustbin of history”.

          • be ware of eve hill

            Yeah, I was going to say that is most definitely Mindy. I recognized the hair (oh, how I hate her). Besides, have we ever seen the twins separately?

            It appears “Crankshaft Mindy” won her death match with “Funky Winkerbean Mindy” for the right to survive in Crankshaft. Let’s hope boyfriend/fiancé Mopey Pete was collateral damage and is lying dead in a ditch somewhere.

        • be ware of eve hill

          You don’t have to hold down the Crankshaft fort in GoComics. Crankshaft also appears on the Arcamax site. Some of the old Comics Kingdom Funky Winkerbean gang is over there.

          Grozar, The Real Bill, and last but not least, Paul Jones, who also posts here.

          • be ware of eve hill

            Dreamer posts here occasionally too.

          • J.J. O'Malley

            Thanks for the tip, boeh, but I figure I’m already in GC for “The Fusco Brothers” and an occasional “Calvin & Hobbes” flashback. Besides, I love the reactions from Go’s users over Batiuk-haters invading their domain.

  7. William Epps

    No gonna lie. The possibility of Les being run over by a tractor is positively delicious!

  8. Paul Jones

    This means that Lilian Lizard is a gateway drug to Cancer Cancerbean.

  9. Bill the Splut

    2/21 FunkyShaft:
    Mindy: “…But way more expensive!”
    Lillian: “Will it also make my hands freakishly small?”
    Mindy: “What do you mea–OH MY GOD SHRIIIIEEEK!”

    And yes. The 3 week snowstorm goes on. The Lego people walking up the stairs want food–any food…Even book mystery written by book writer foooood…

    • Paul Jones

      Will her having a crappy website end up being why her store was spared during The Burnings? (or, should I say, the Byrne-ings?)

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      My Lord, this is such a monument to bad writing I don’t even know where to begin.

      1. We’ve joked about this being 1995, but this is a very 1995 attitude on display. “You need a website because you need a website” was very much the mentality then. It was the new hot thing, and you needed to get on board, even if you didn’t have a clear need for one. Which is problem #2:

      2. Saying Lillian needs a “Website” is way too vague for 2023. Should she get an e-commerce website to make more sales? An advertising website to increase awareness? A social media presence, to connect with local customers? And why? Which is problem #3:

      3. There’s nothing driving this. Monday have should been Lillian making an offhand comment about needing to increase sales, to which Mindy could have responded with the website idea. That would set up an actual story – a problem that needs to be solved, and a way to solve it.

      4. “It’s just like having a Facebook page!” Yeah, they both use electricity. What does is this even trying to say? Why should Lillian be familiar with Facebook when you have to explain to her what a website is? You’re using the more obscure term to explain the more obvious one.

      5. “Except way more expensive!” Yes, Mindy, something that costs money is always more expensive than something that’s free. This is a tautology at best, and she’s smirking like she just zinged Lisa Lampanelli at the Comedy Central Roast.

      6. Isn’t Mindy supposed to be dumb? Wasn’t that her whole character for awhile? Is this another one of those lifelong crippling afflictions that just went away, like Dinkle’s deafness and Mort’s dementia?

      7. So now Tweedledum and Tweedledumber are going up the stairs. Are they here just so we can identify Mindy by process of elimination? “Hmm, in yesterday’s strip I thought this was one of the twins, but it must not be. Could still be Jessica, Hannah, Cindy, or Mason Jarre in drag.”

      8. The twins are going to their unpaid volunteer job in the middle of a snowstorm, because of course they are. The Weather Channel predicted snow, and they’re always wrong.

      9. Worst of all is how the characters just go along with every dumb story they’re placed in. It’s like they all know they’re badly-written props and their job is just to say whatever Batiuk puts in their mouth. Since when did Mindy have any interest in technology? Lillian has no reason to want a website, especially when it costs money and has no clear purpose. But she’s just going to stand there silently while it happens around her.

      • Jeff M

        I love that CS is describing Facebook as cutting edge. I’m 54 and I am on FB – and except for my sister, am the youngest person I know who still uses it. And that was true 11 months ago as well.

      • ComicBookHarriet

        An absolutely epic beat down as usual BJ6K.

        The only mild rebuttal I have is on point 9. In Crankshaft Mindy has had numerous plot lines where she’s assisted Lillian, her parents, Cranky, etc in tech support. She helped Lil set up a blog, update her novel presentation from a slide projector to a computer, set up video chats and live streams. This seems more like a ‘all kids these days know this stuff’ than any particular interest.

        So what this is isn’t a out of nowhere character development, it’s an anemic and nonsensical retread. Because you guys are right, ‘You need a website.’ is sooo 1998. Small businesses these days just piggy back on existing social media. She needs a business Facebook, a business Instagram, a business Twitter, and an Ebay/Etsy/Amazon account to buy and sell books and other stock.

        • Gerard Plourde

          I’m actually surprised that an Amazon stand in hasn’t already made its appearance. Although coming up with a recognizable analogue is challenging. (“Fleabay” is easy. Riffing on Amazon really takes work.)

          • There won’t be an Amazon stand in, because Amazon is where you can buy his books. Just like every single award is given its full and proper name. Those entities which benefit Tom Batiuk are to be given respect. Those which do not benefit Tom Batiuk? Well…

            “Fleabay”? Where ingrates sell their precious Batiuk books. “McArnolds”? Wouldn’t give Batiuk a free Filet-O-Fish when he told them his name. “Sprawl Mart”? Does not carry Batiuk merchandise.

          • Gerard Plourde


            Your encyclopedic command of the Winkerbean canon never ceases to amaze me! I’m beginning to think that this group is beginning to resemble the Baker Street Irregulars (the American offshoot of the Sherlock Holmes Society), only dedicated to the study of Winkerbean rather than the Great Detective.

            Could Les be the Moriarty analogue? Death and misfortune do follow in his wake.

          • Banana Jr. 6000

            @CBH: Fair rebuttal. I never paid much attention to Crankshaft so I’m not informed on any character nuances that may exist.

            @GP: My theory is that Batiuk had a dispute with eBay over some comic book he bought, and the dispute department sided with the seller. Because who on earth hates eBay? It’s one of the most useful, positive, places on the Internet. Batiuk’s unexplained contempt for it is revealing.

        • Bill the Splut

          Oh so 1998!
          At the family-owned business I worked at then, I told the owners to get a website. A free one, just a single page that had basic details about their business, like directions to there. And they said the most 1998 thing they could:
          “The internet? It’s just a fad!”
          Of course, their “tech” was a guy in his late 50s who set it up in like 2000. He then tried to update a balky computer while it was still turned on. He dropped one screw, and he fried the motherboard. Lucky he wasn’t fried.

          To be fair: I tried a free trial of Compuserve in 95, and quit after a month. I said “I’ve already read everything there is from the internet.” (Picard facepalm)

      • Y. Knott

        Batuik’s own website is a monument to having the feeling (or more likely being told) he needs a website, and subsequently building one without having the slightest clue why.

        • Banana Jr. 6000

          And it uses Comic Sans. It uses Comic friggin’ Sans. With complete sincerity. (Or a font that’s almost identical to it.)

  10. be ware of eve hill

    For you, @Epicus Doomus. Last week, you commented on the lack of snow in New Jersey.

    I saw today’s Lio comic and thought of you. Don’t know if you’re “South Jersey”.

  11. b

    CS, 2/22:
    Well, whoever had “The most boring storyline ever!” in the betting pool has lost.
    This is even worse.
    And Genius Boy wonders why he didn’t get the Pulitzer in Who Even Cares.
    Tom Tom makes me think of those people who say “To make a long story short” 10 minutes into their epic tale of them returning a library book.”It was Wednesday–no, that’s when I do my grocery shopping, so it must’ve been Tuesday–oh wait, it rained that day, so maybe it was–”

    • Bill the Splut

      The entire next week of strips will be the Shining Twins talking about how they once dropped a McArnold’s french fry on the floor, and the dog ate it.

    • Gerard Plourde

      And magically, the twins have reverted to their Centerville age and are offering to set up Lillian’s web site.

      Wasn’t it around this time last year that he was migrating to the new eponymous web site? Art imitates life! If the “year in advance rule” holds for Crankshaft, it may be a while before we see the next incursion of FW refugees.

      • Bill the Splut

        I think it’ll come sooner. I think we’ll find out maybe this week, if Mindy’s friends turn up.
        Twin One: “It was YOUR french fry that the dog ate!”
        Other Twin: “NO, it was–”
        (they stop and stare to the west, eyes glowing pale as no eyes have ever done. Lillian is clearly frightened)
        One, visibly shaking: ““And what rough beast, its hour come round at last–”
        Other: “–Slouches towards Centerville to be born?”
        (both shrieking) “IT COMES! COMES…IT! IIIIT!!!” (the door bursts open)
        Les: “You sell Flash comps?”

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        Wow, this story is even more insulting than I predicted: the friggin’ 8-year-old clones are going to make the website. I wonder what server-side language they intend to use (Python, I assume). How will two underage children get an API key? How do they plan to comply with PCI and data security standards? What is their plan to prevent SQL injection attacks?