Bumper Sticker


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Bizarro is brought to you today by Japanese Monster Mask.

I began writing another long political screed for this post this morning but deleted it. I’m just so tired of the Republican insanity in the U.S. and I need a break. I’ll just say that it’s a tough time in America these days and I feel a little more sick than usual about it today after yesterday’s white supremacy rally in Virginia and the pathetic and self-serving response by The Orange Menace. I’m glad I’m in Mexico where I feel safer.

But now, let’s talk about comedy.

I quite enjoyed writing and drawing the primitive bumper sticker gag above. As my regular blog readers know, I’m a big fan of little-known historical facts and this cartoon is based on a pretty amazing one: bullets were invented before guns. Yes. I know. Weird, huh?

But people didn’t just throw them at each other as the clueless cartoon robbers above are doing. Instead, they would hold one between their fingers like when you’re about to put out a cigarette butt, point it at the target, then tap the circle thing on the bottom with a pointy hammer and cause it to fire. In fact, the modern bumper sticker so popular with NRA folks––If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns––actually came from a popular bit of graffiti from the Middle Ages: If hammers are outlawed, only outlaws will have hammers. And carpenters, of course. Carpenters need hammers for perfectly respectable and beneficial tasks and if we outlaw hammers, they’ll have to buy them from criminals on the black market and who wants to put carpenters through that unnecessary risk?

So they kept hammers legal, and bullets, and then people invented guns, and centuries later when most people didn’t need them for everyday things anymore, civilized countries outlawed the ones not designed for hunting food or used in the military. Except for the United States, where people who are worried that the government will force them to be nice to people they don’t trust (like homosexuals or foreigners or people with dark skin or college professors) hoard them and will vote for any despicable moron who promises to keep them legal.

This cartoon also has six secret symbols which can be better seen if you embiggenate the image.

So all the way last Monday I published another cartoon about gun stuff but this one isn’t particularly political. It’s just a funny alternate meaning of “gun show”. Real gun shows take place all over rural America every weekend and are basically big buildings full of two things: 1) machines designed to kill large numbers of people extremely quickly, and 2) people who are obsessed with being able to quickly and effortlessly kill people whom they believe want to do them harm. It is the manifestation of a culture of fear of the government, of criminals, of foreigners, of other religions, of people who don’t celebrate Christmas, etc.  I suspect you’d be hard pressed to find a larger group of scaredy cats than gun fanatics.

I’m not a fisherman but I’ve heard that fly fisherman like to make their own lures, which is something I’d definitely be into if I was a fisherman because I like to make things. The guy in this cartoon gets the ultimate compliment by having created a lure that fooled a real pro like the Creature from the Black Lagoon.

Someday perhaps I’ll draw a cartoon that explains why a giant amphibian-type thing is sexually attracted to human women. I mean, no human man would ever be attracted to a female Black Lagoon creature, would he? Come to think of it, that’s probably already a known sexual fetish, so never mind.

You may well ask why Superman is taking a commercial flight in the first place. It is simply so he can watch a movie while flying across country without worrying about running into anything. By the way, Superman’s favorite movie is The Apple Dumpling Gang.

If you’re not old enough to remember what life was like before smartphones, you may be surprised to learn that people didn’t just walk around staring into mirrors and shouting out their every passing thought or activity to everyone within earshot.

This cartoon ignited another political firestorm on my FB page. Some say the Electoral College did exactly what it was supposed to do by allowing a small minority of uneducated people’s votes to count more than everyone else’s, others say the system was partly designed to do the opposite by allowing a few smart people to deny a smooth-talking crazy person from being elected by idiots. I don’t want to get into that because the subject of politics has already caused my head to explode 17 times just since yesterday, so instead…here’s a little game:

There is a major error in this drawing, which you’ll need to embiggenate to find. You can do that by clicking any of the four buttons on George Washington’s coat. Anyone correctly identifying the error in the comments section of this post will receive a special gift within the following 24 hours. The gift will be invisible but can sometimes be heard, and will have an odor which can vary from mildly to extremely unpleasant.

I’m not kidding, there really is a major error in this drawing. Here’s the answer to what/where it is, but if you click this link you don’t get the special gift.

When I posted this cartoon on social media I included a sarcastic disclaimer about not meaning to offend adult men with high speaking voices. Some folks took me seriously, but one reader added to my satire by suggesting that Barbie was being presumptuous by assuming Ken’s sexual identity in the first place. Thanks for that, you made me laugh.

As the father of two daughters, I’ve seen both Barbie and Ken naked on numerous occasions and I can tell you that if either of them has any sexual identity at all, it’s pretty inscrutable. Ken and Barbie, that is. Not my daughters.

I’ve got to run Jazz Pickles, but thanks for coming along with me on this thing I do every week. Until next time, be happy, be smart, be nice. 


57 thoughts on “Bumper Sticker

    • You’re almost right. That’s the guy who has something very wrong but it hadn’t occurred to me that he looks as though he might be sitting. Truth is, he is standing with one leg up on the stairs but his back leg is missing entirely.

    • You’re almost right. That’s the guy who has something very wrong but it hadn’t occurred to me that he looks as though he might be sitting. Truth is, he is standing with one leg up on the stairs but his back leg is missing entirely.

  1. Jefferson (I assume that’s who it is – looks Like him), is sitting, but has no chair. Either that, or he’s doing the Funcky Chicken.

  2. Same answer as two of the above — the man on the left seems to be oddly squatting without benefit of chair, until you realize the leg in back isn’t his and belongs to someone else!

  3. The cartoon with the guy throwing bullets has six secret symbols in it, but the number over your signature is a 7. So do I get a special gift that’s better than a fart?

    • I noticed that as well – and spent far, far too much time searching for the 7th before seeing another version of the same comic that had a “6” on it.

        • I use that same line when someone comes into my emergency department surprised that they’ve had an unusual reaction to the drug they thought they had bought: “The Quality Control department in the illegal drug industry leaves a lot to be desired.”

  4. ARGH! I looked for “7” secret symbols on the first cartoon, mostly because the “7” over your tag looks like a “7” to me. Found six, got frustrated and started reading your blog, where you mention there are “6” symbols on that image… Should I get new glasses?

    • I put 7 on the original drawing because I’m no good at math, then later corrected it to 6, which is the correct number and the version that King Features published and posted on my site. Then I posted on my blog this morning an earlier, incorrect version. I just fired the entire quality control division at Rancho Bizarro Industries, so this will never happen again.

  5. When my son was little, he pronounced Creature from the Lagoon, as “MAgoon”. It was so cute I never corrected him.

  6. I initially thought it was that guy’s right leg BUT, as I wear glasses and have further compromised (ruined) my vision by spending far too much time on the internet, I thought…..noooooo, his leg IS there; it’s just the greyish bit of his stocking.
    That’s what I get for the usual ignoring of first guess/ hunch!
    Happy to be out of the running for the invisible odoriferous “prize”. I have a husband and several cats all too willing and able to offer similar. And when I go Stateside to visit family, well, just let me say, I have siblings who can peel paint at 50 paces.
    Hasta luego!

  7. Rabbits are herbivores.

    Should that be a masked person, I know about some people’s disgusting meat consumption habit, but doubt someone might engage in cannibalism in the USA in plain view

  8. Is it not amazing that before guns people still found a way to kill each other. You did not make a good point!

    Be a Sunday comic and forget about politics!

  9. If the truth be told, guns don’t kill people; bullets do. However, as you have pointed out, throwing bullets isn’t particularly deadly, so guns play a part in the carnage… as do those little pointy hammers, ergo all should be restricted by law. And common sense.

    About the time traveler errors, I have read George Washington was left handed. I don’t believe the gold bathroom faucet by Moen on the desk was present at the signing and the American flag looks like either Superman was doing a flyby or someone mounted fabric that was vomited upon by Walt Disney.

    Regarding the man without the leg: he could have lost it in the War of 1812, travelled into the future for an implantable anti-grav prosthetic and backwards to 1776 where he stood, perfectly balanced, during the signing of our glorious Constitution on September 17, 1787.

    Finally, it’s clear that human men are sexually attracted to female creatures of the Black Lagoon; I mean, hey, check out that action figure! Hubba-hubba!

  10. I have never really thought about what would happen when Clark Kent needs to travel across the country or to a different one. He could fly, of course, but traveling at supersonic speeds out in the open air might be hard on his business suit. His Superman clothes are presumably immune to that, but he can’t very well arrive in them at the journalists’ conference he is going to attend in Vancouver or Sydney.

    So one would be treated to the sight of Superman flying along, carrying a suitcase with Clark Kent’s street clothes. When he gets there, he finds himself a suitable phone booth to change outfits. Not that such things as phone booths exist anymore; I wonder what he does nowadays when Clark has to rapidly change into Superman.

    In fact, there might be a cartoon in there somewhere…

    • Dude, you can’t fire a cat, they’ll just sneak back in when your back is turned. ;-)

      PS: I live in Charlottesville, most of us here are not at all happy about that invasion of thugs.

  11. I thought too that it was the left handed G Washington, but then i read down…Anyway Dan, are you in Mex temp or less temp ??? I’m in the Philippines, but also inundated with stories of the fat orange monster, mostly on farcebook.. Moved here a year ago, big regret is when de-accessing 95% of my stuff, including all the art, your 3 cells had to find a new home. But still kept the wording on the mosquito story from “…among the savages.”
    Take care, stay well…

    • Great to hear from you, Ed. We’re in MX permanently with no intention of moving back. Anything can happen, of course, so I’ve no idea what the future brings for us but we’re happy where we are. We were just tired of the materialism of the U.S., the absurd real estate prices, the acrimonious political climate, etc. I’m sure you get it. Moving here was a monumental challenge, I can only imagine what moving across the Pacific must have been like. Quite an undertaking, I’m sure. Hope you’re loving it!

  12. Not sure why you are picking on rural America for gun shows unless you consider Atlanta and San Francisco rural. Reason 3) to own a gun, to shoot colleagues and managers that have disagreed with you or fired you; Actually, anyone that just ticks you off. I agree with you that this gun thing is out of control.

    Sorry that you do not like the electoral college. Perhaps you could introduce an amendment to the Constitution, then New York and California could dictate what President we will have. And no, I did not support or vote for Trump. I think I and many Republicans hoped for a better GOP candidate.

    One last thing, I know you and others cannot fathom why Trump one, so you blame it on uneducated voters. I do not fully understand it myself, but there are a lot of educated people who supported and voted for him. I do know that a lot of people despise the Clintons in general and Hillary in particular, and many of them are women, so one cannot blame it on misogynists as Hillary did. Also, I live in an area with many military bases, and troops and veterans here strongly support Trump.

    Love your disses about social media. I consider social media an excellent way to publicly humiliate oneself.

    • Re. “then New York and California could dictate what President we will have.” I’ve heard the same concern expressed here in Canada, basically why should people in population-dense areas get to decide for everyone?

      The answer is straightforward. Because there’s more of them, that’s why. To do it otherwise would harm the principle of one person, one vote.

  13. It takes weird definitions to claim that bullets predated guns.

    Hand cannons were around before 1300 AD. They could reasonably be called early guns. They initially projected rocks, not bullets.

      • There was an old western movie in which Richard Widmark (I think) is trapped in a barn by a bad guy and has only a bullet. He sticks it into a hole in the door and hits the back of it with a rock or hammer or something and shoots the bad guy standing outside the door. I always thought that was brilliant. McGyver of the old West!

    • Oddly enough, there is something called a “sling bullet”. This is when you get tired of trying to find rocks of just the right size and shape, so you chip and smooth the rocks you actually have, or even cast a piece of metal, to make the perfect ammo for your sling.

  14. The guy in the purplish coat has only one leg. I quickly scrolled down here to write that, and noticed that a lot of people had seen that and that it was the correct answer – dang. So I’m late to the party but I’m glad I spotted his invisible leg before going over to google to ask if Washington was left handed.
    A Republican friend of mine commented when I shared this cartoon, “Yet another person who does not understand the Electoral College.” I don’t understand it either, apparently, and didn’t want to get into it with her, so did not rise to the bait. All I know is that we are in durance vile. I sympathize with your exploding head. I have the same problem. Blessings there. Keep up the good work.

  15. You are correct with the ” eletcoral” college and a so called president with his “tweets”. The electoral college is from horse and buggy days when not everyone could vote and should be done away with! Who ever gets the most votes wins, just like every other office that is voted for!

  16. Your art work is fascinating. Details like the shoe on the horse, the patches on the ragamuffins and the finials on the carriage make your cartoons the greatest on earth. (and beyond…)

  17. “people didn’t just walk around […] shouting out their every passing thought or activity to everyone within earshot.”
    Well, they were, but they were rare, and seen as lunatics…

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