(To enjoy embiggenation, click on any mammal within an image.)

Bizarro is brought to you today by Cowboy Cartoonist.

We have some friends who live on a ranch outside of our town here in Mexico and they bring us horseback riding from time to time. When I was a little boy, westerns were my favorite kind of TV shows and movies, and when I wasn’t drawing, playing cowboy was my favorite thing to do. And, up until I was probably six years old, the Old West was 90% of what I drew. As I grew up in Oklahoma and got old enough to know some real cowboys, I realized I didn’t fit in to their world very well so I never moved out to the country, raised cattle, or voted Republican, but I still love playing cowboy.

Last weekend we got to ride around the hillsides here again and play cowboy for a day. It was amazing. Following are a few of my favorite shots from last weekend’s jaunt through the Mexican hills. 

Here I am preparing to mount Speedy. It has been my experience that the horse named “Speedy” is often the slowest horse in a given stable. I’d ridden him before and found that Speedy can seem pretty chill unless you gallop him and then he earns his name.

I love this shot of my favorite cowgirl in the whole Wild West, Olive Oyl. She is sitting astride Dorado, whose color sets off the highlights in Olive’s hair, but that’s not the only reason she likes him. Dorado did some galloping, too, and Olive hung on just like the vaquera she is.

I’m not above posing dramatically for a photo but in this case, I wasn’t. I climbed up on a rock to see if the posse that was on our trail was still following us and Olive snapped this lovely shot without my knowledge. As it turned out, they were still following us and we had to hightail it into the hills and hide out for the night.

O2 and our good buddy and trail guide, Luis. It’s his uncle’s ranch that we ride from and that’s Luis’s own horse whose name escapes me at the moment. Is it “Skywalker” or “Coco Puffs” or “Debby”? I remember it was something with vowels and consonants.

This is our friend, Frank, who is a successful painter (of fine art, not houses) and fellow local resident.  Unfortunately, we were riding through a blurry area when I snapped this shot.

Here’s Frank at his property in the hills. He’s built a small bunkhouse with an outdoor kitchen area and is currently working on an art studio. I’m so jealous of this property and his fine art career that it makes me hate him quite a lot. But it doesn’t affect our friendship as much as it might because I like him more than I hate him.

Here’s one last shot of me enjoying the cowboy life, then we’ll move on to cartoons.

I’ve not seen his camo pants, either, and I hope I don’t. I generally steer clear of people who wear camouflage when they aren’t actually trying to hide from an adversary. I suspect they may have a heightened fascination for machismo.

This cartoon raises the question are seven beer bellies funny or gross? You be the judge.

You see, he changed his baby into a dog. I can’t blame him because dogs are SO much easier to take care of than babies. Cheaper to educate, too.

I don’t know if villains do this anymore, but in those old westerns I loved as a kid, there would sometimes be a person who used a bullwhip as a weapon. If you aren’t tied to something, you can stop them by walking up to them. I always thought that was kind of funny.

Somebody wrote to me to protest my use of blind people in this cartoon. This is one of my pet peeves that happens every time I do a cartoon featuring people who are routinely discriminated against: the misguided notion that mentioning a person who is in a comparatively weak position in society is tantamount to adding to their problems. This is a clear case of misplaced victimhood. If this cartoon made fun of blind people (or any other racial, religious, or social minority group) I would not have written, drawn, or published it. But it does not. It clearly makes fun of the man who is attempting to explain a mime to a group of people who cannot see him, as though he were translating speech for the deaf. He, and possibly the mime, are the butts of this joke and that makes it ethically neutral, in my opinion.


I’m a sports fan but have never liked basketball because as a short person, I can’t relate to the version that is played professionally unless I play on a smaller court with shorter goals and a smaller ball. It would be like watching a race run by people with four legs instead of two. Like the rest of this blog, that’s just my own personal, worthless opinion, of course.

Thanks for hanging out with me, Jazz Pickles. I enjoy this weekly imaginary play date more than you know. If you enjoy my work online, please have a look at the following hand-crafted messages!






31 thoughts on “Giddyup

  1. Lovely pictures! That experience – just once – should be on my bucket list. I haven’t even ridden a horse, but now I think I have to.
    – Oh! And there were funny comics too! As always!

  2. I liked your comment about riding thru a “blurry area” when you took the picture, made me laugh, thank you!!

  3. An armadillo with a saddle!!! TOOOOOOO funny. And I do like the baby-changing station; there are some babies I would like to send there, too. Thanks for the laugh and the wonderful pix of Speedy, who looks like he could actually *be* speedy. You just perk up our weeks!

  4. “I can’t relate to the version that is played professionally unless I play on a smaller court with shorter goals and a smaller ball.”

    This is a winner. Scale it down for the average Joe. Oh, the possibilities! Not just basketball for short people, any sport!

    -Couch potato tennis, doubles. Two beer belly buddies or a common overweight couple, one on each end of a sofa past the foul line with a racket each. Whatever is out of reach to the sides or over their heads is out of bounds. This is a good one.

    I deleted my bad ideas above but I do like this one. I like to make myself laugh, too.
    Thanks, Dan!

  5. I thought maybe the “whippee” was supposed to be Waldo, but then I haven’t seen him for so long, I forgot what he looks like……

  6. Having relatives with horses meant I was bucked off twice, stepped on, bitten and finally kicked (Horse’s name? Good Eye, of course) right below the rib cage and above the private area (It left a horseshoe print for a week and I even showed it at Show & Tell) by the time I was seven (55 years ago) and that is when I gave up on horses. Other people can have them. Wonderful cartoons, as usual. Thanks!

  7. You are wearing one nice cowboy hat! I’ve got two, which I like, but they’re not as pretty as yours is.

  8. Just saw “Raiders of the Lost Ark” again the other day in a cinema–great fun seeing it on a big screen. It’s been years since I’ve seen it. So your cartoon about defending yourself against a whip was particularly timely and useful. I’ve been worried ever since. Whew! (And I especially like the look on the challenger’s face.)
    Love your cartoons!

  9. Excellent post this week, Dan. Glad you enjoyed your trip so much.
    My favorite cartoon was the bullwhip one. Had I been drinking milk, I would have spit it out my nose.

  10. Always great comics.
    Todays (“Spot The Social Problem) however was so spot on, I had to come here and say thanks.

  11. Looks like youse guys are enjoying yourself, the scenery is beautiful as are the horses. Assisted miming is hysterical. And, agreed about people that wear camo everywhere. Here in BFE Michigan, they are everywhere trying to out-macho the next guy. (I have some camo shorts I wear to cut the grass, bought only because they were very inexpensive). Seems the folks who wear camo everywhere, every day are also very likely to have ‘le douche’ haircuts and 20 tats presumably drawn by Stevie Wonder.

  12. ⦿ I feel that the offensive cartoon is oppressive to mimes, but I can’t come out and say that. Rather, I’m gesturing with my arms in the shape of the box that I’m being imprisoned in.

  13. Camo patterns exists for all kinds of environments. Forest, meadow, desert, arctic, water. There’s even patterns for ships and aircraft. I want to see the camo pattern that’s good for hiding in a closet.

  14. Brilliant bull beer bellies and camo thoughts. Now, can you think of something to poke fun of those plastic testicles that swing from trailer hitches? Thanks Dan.

  15. Funny as always! I spent my early childhood in a blurry area, but then I got glasses. ;-)

    Since no-one else has called it out yet, I’ll provide you with your weekly nitpick. ;-) This cartoon begs the question are seven beer bellies funny or gross?

    It’s a common mistake, but “begging the question” is a term of art in rhetoric, it means using an argument that assumes the very thing that you are supposed to be proving. (OK, humor in general kinda does that, but in a way that’s less rhetorical, than experimental and participatory.)

  16. OK, I chuckled when I saw and read the bullwhip cartoon, thinking as you did, if not tied up what a great way to avoid being whipped. Then I read the changing station and had to pause and think about it a second or two and again chucked. But then came your blind mime and the translator and got my first belly laugh of the day! What came first? Did political correctness attract people w/o humor or did they attract political correctness? In my book humor does not need to be and shouldn’t be p/c. On the same page in my book it says humor should not be mean or spiteful. Your cartoons are funny, as they should be, for as long as I’ve been reading them they have never been mean spirited. You have my vote to continue on and as I didn’t vote for The Rump you can trust me. LOL

  17. Dan: FYI. You may already understand the point made here and choose to us the phrase as you did, anyway. The text is an eloquent comment on the “beg the question” page at that I always use, for convenience, when I choose to make an issue of it.

    Begging the question” is a form of logical fallacy in which an argument is assumed to be true without evidence other than the argument itself. When one begs the question, the initial assumption of a statement is treated as already proven without any logic to show why the statement is true in the first place.
    A simple example would be “I think he is unattractive because he is ugly.” The adjective “ugly” does not explain why the subject is “unattractive” — they virtually amount to the same subjective meaning, and the proof is merely a restatement of the premise. The sentence has begged the question.
    To beg the question does not mean “to raise the question.” (e.g. “It begs the question, why is he so dumb?”) This is a common error of usage made by those who mistake the word “question” in the phrase to refer to a literal question. Sadly, the error has grown more and more ubiquitous common with time, such that even journalists, advertisers, and major mass media entities have fallen prey to “BTQ Abuse.”

    While descriptivists and other such laissez-faire linguists are content to allow the misconception to fall into the vernacular, it cannot be denied that logic and philosophy stand to lose an important conceptual label should the meaning of BTQ become diluted to the point that we must constantly distinguish between the traditional usage and the erroneous “modern” usage. This is why we fight.

    • Very informative, Tom, thanks. I confess I have been using that phrase incorrectly for my entire adult life. :^}

  18. I particularly enjoyed chuckling at the appearance of the Inverted Bird secret symbol as a taxidermy object this week.

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