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>Shoe Art

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(Click this image to enlargerate.)

As I mentioned in a previous blog, I’d love to start a blog that just comments on the art of other cartoons every day. I don’t have time to do it regularly, but here is a perfect example of what I mean.

Shoe’s left arm does not match the rest of his body. The line weight is heavier and it is wearing a suit jacket sleeve, while the rest of him is all Casual Friday with a golf shirt, or whatever you call those things. Jim MacNelly, who created this strip and was a very talented artist, writer and editorial cartoonist, is rolling over in his grave. (I don’t know why they “roll,” I don’t invent the activities of the dead, I just report them.) Somebody hires TWO people to take over his strip and neither of them can be bothered to draw an arm to match the body, or at least steal one that is wearing the correct clothing.

I don’t know either of the people who work on this strip now, but it sort of makes me wonder if all of the pictures are stolen from old art and pieced back together.

Oops. I just noticed that his hand is coming out from behind a menu. Never mind.

>TV Twittering

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(Click the jewel on the genie’s turban to get a moderate surprise!)

Bizarro is brought to you today by the Witness Protection Program.

I’ve harped many times on this blog about reality shows like American Idol and how I can’t understand why people watch them. But it has a massive audience, so I guess I’m in the minority.

Last night, I saw a couple of minutes of a poker show. Apparently, people will now watch people play cards on television. This astounds me. Are there people so lazy that they are not willing to move their own wrists and play cards themselves, preferring instead to watch strangers do it? And they’re not even dogs.

I understand why these shows appeal to producers; there are no production costs other than the equipment they shoot with. No writers, no actors, no sound effects or even editing to speak of, just a pack of cards and a TV studio. Half of Hollywood’s on- and off-screen talent is out of work because of this kind of programming. And the vast majority of them aren’t wealthy stars, but just working stiffs like you and me.

Those of you who enjoy this kind of show are perhaps saying that if I really enjoyed playing poker I’d find it fun to watch others do so. Perhaps, but I enjoy lots of things – eating, riding a bike, reading – but I can’t see myself watching others do these things on TV. Even when you make a game of it, like those wretched eating contests, I am nonplussed. I’d almost rather be waterboarded than forced to watch gluttonous twits cramming hot dogs down their throats.

Which reminds me – I’m “tweeting” now, I’m a twit, you can twizzle me or whatever. PiraroBizarro is my Twitter name.

>Frozen Heebies, Jeebies on a Stick

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Today’s Bizarro is brought to you by Summer.

Not much to say about this cartoon. It’s a pun with a fun image. I enjoyed drawing the creepy treats on the side. I came up with a couple more for the strip version, seen below. Click it to big it.

A reader emailed a story to me about an ice cream truck driver abducting a child, the mom saw it happen, jumped in her car and gave chase. A few other moms joined, they caught the guy, rescued the kid and the driver was arrested. Don’t know how true, but it’s a good story.

You gotta love vigilante moms, as long as they’re after serious stuff like pedophiles and drunk drivers, and not just smokers or people with tattoos. I’ve seen moms push their kid’s stroller out into the street to keep their precious offspring away from the nasty man with the cigar (me). Because every good parent knows, a single breath of residual tobacco smoke wafting in the breeze is far more dangerous than traffic.

In summary, I love ice cream trucks but cannot tolerate the music they produce, I love cigars but am annoyed by the bad rap they get because of anti-cigarette propaganda, I love kids but think their parents can be obnoxious.

I think we’re done here.

>Rats!

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Bizarro is brought to you today by Dangerous Rodents.

I went to the DMV today because I wanted to waste a couple of hours, be amazed by the idiocy of human bureaucracy, and register a motorcycle I bought recently. I accomplished two of my three goals – the wasting time and idiocy amazement – but I did not get a plate for the bike. I am not surprised, it was only my first visit for this particular undertaking and one can never acheive anything at a New York City DMV in less than two trips. In fact, the sign posted at the waiting area clearly states:

TO REGISTER YOUR VEHICLE YOU WILL NEED:
1. A notarized title
1. Proof of insurance
3. Completed forms DTF-802 and MV-82
4. Two forms of current picture I.D.
5. Something you did not bring

Of course, I forgot to bring number 5. I’ll try again tomorrow.

>Happy and Erect Fourth!

>Bizarro is brought to you today by the Phallic Police.

I’m not a doctor, but I saw one on TV. So I feel fully qualified to say that I’ll bet 90% of so-called “erectile dysfunction” is caused by poor blood circulation brought on by fat in the viens caused by a crappy diet. We eat garbage and too much of it, then complain because it ruins our bodies, then drug companies design a work-around so you can have your chili cheese fries and boner, too. Until you drop dead, of course.

So instead, let’s address Independence Day. I was fortunate to grow up in a less civilized place and time when it was both legal and socially acceptable to hand a grocery bag full of explosives to a child and send him outside to play. My siblings, cousins, friends and I did this each year, blowing up our toys, the local flora, items from the trash, and occasionally each other. Sure, an occasional finger or eye was sacrificed to “independence,” but what good is a democracy without some wounded veterans?

As teens we graduated to bottle rocket fights, which entailed making a “gun” by attaching a handle of some kind to a piece of plastic pipe, loading a bottle rocket into the pipe, lighting it, pointing it at your opponent, and laughing as they ducked the airborne incendiary. Large groups of us would go to an industrial park or gravel pit, divide up into two armies and shoot at each other till we ran out of ammo. Casualties were anonymously deposited on their parents’ front porch and most people just chalked it up to another teen lost to the cause of freedom.

Now, thanks to the godless, homosexual girlyman liberals, there are laws against explosives inside city limits and children are not allowed to leave the house without safety helmets and proof of insurance. I wonder how we expect to defend our way of life in the future if youngsters are not accustomed to working with explosives.

I never thought I’d live to see this day (with my one good eye.)

>One Man’s Pants, Another Man’s Pariah

>Bizarro is brought to you today by Athletes in Love.

I’ve long been amazed by baggy pants fashion. When it first began (back in the early nineties?), I laughed and felt secure in my predictions that it would not last very long. Apparently, I’m no Nostradamus.

As open minded as I like to think I am, I cannot even pretend to understand it. First and foremost, it is uncomfortable to have one’s pants falling down all the time. At the very least, you’ve got to constantly hold them up somehow or you’ll trip over them, and god forbid you should have to take off running. It is the sole reason belts and suspenders were invented, for instance. So you could run away and have both hands free for waiving frantically in the air. I am reminded of a scene from a movie I saw once where an outhouse was set afire while a person was in mid-business. He burst out of the door at top speed but only made it a few feet before his chin hit the ground.

Apart from the inconvenience of having to monitor your pants falling off is the obvious ludicrousness of it being the “style” to show your underwear. What has for centuries been the cliche nightmare of people the night before a public speaking engagement, is suddenly the height of cool. When did this happen, exactly? Was I out of the country?

I’ve done a few cartoons over the years about this topic but I’m still not tired of it. Fifteen years after the trend began, guys are still hobbling around New York City like bowlegged penguins, trying to keep their gigantic pants from falling below their knees, so I’m still drawing cartoons about it. But just when I thought I’d seen the most absurd trend my cockamamie species could possibly concoct, I discovered a behavior even more ridiculous: the passing of laws against it. Apparently, some communities are actually fining and jailing people for a fashion. I won’t argue that baggy pants and exposed underwear is an eyesore, but verboten by law? What part of the world do we live in again?

AUTHOR’S NOTE: I’m not saying I’m a big fan of really tight pants, either, just so you know.

>One Man's Pants, Another Man's Pariah

>Bizarro is brought to you today by Athletes in Love.

I’ve long been amazed by baggy pants fashion. When it first began (back in the early nineties?), I laughed and felt secure in my predictions that it would not last very long. Apparently, I’m no Nostradamus.

As open minded as I like to think I am, I cannot even pretend to understand it. First and foremost, it is uncomfortable to have one’s pants falling down all the time. At the very least, you’ve got to constantly hold them up somehow or you’ll trip over them, and god forbid you should have to take off running. It is the sole reason belts and suspenders were invented, for instance. So you could run away and have both hands free for waiving frantically in the air. I am reminded of a scene from a movie I saw once where an outhouse was set afire while a person was in mid-business. He burst out of the door at top speed but only made it a few feet before his chin hit the ground.

Apart from the inconvenience of having to monitor your pants falling off is the obvious ludicrousness of it being the “style” to show your underwear. What has for centuries been the cliche nightmare of people the night before a public speaking engagement, is suddenly the height of cool. When did this happen, exactly? Was I out of the country?

I’ve done a few cartoons over the years about this topic but I’m still not tired of it. Fifteen years after the trend began, guys are still hobbling around New York City like bowlegged penguins, trying to keep their gigantic pants from falling below their knees, so I’m still drawing cartoons about it. But just when I thought I’d seen the most absurd trend my cockamamie species could possibly concoct, I discovered a behavior even more ridiculous: the passing of laws against it. Apparently, some communities are actually fining and jailing people for a fashion. I won’t argue that baggy pants and exposed underwear is an eyesore, but verboten by law? What part of the world do we live in again?

AUTHOR’S NOTE: I’m not saying I’m a big fan of really tight pants, either, just so you know.

>My Ass and Yours

>Bizarro is brought to you today by Budget Colonoscopy.

Now that I’m 50, I’m supposed to periodically pay a stranger to probe my rectum with a garden hose. I’m referring to what the strangers in this business call a “colonoscopy,” of course. Yes, it can save your life, but yes, it can also give you nightmares for years. Plus, it is expensive.

It would be hard enough to force myself to make this appointment and do all the revolting things necessary to achieve the “end” result, if it were free. (Like eating nothing the day before, drinking sludge to make you poop like a rabid camel for 24 hours, jet propulsion-strength farting and pooping after the garden hose is removed, etc.) But on top of the insult and injury involved, they also insist you pay them large quantities of money.

Since I’m self employed, I have no discount health insurance plan through work, so I’m forced to pay these things out of my own pocket at insurance-company prices, or pay the equivalent of a luxury car payment to an insurance company every month just in case I one day need it. It’s legalized extortion.

I’m rooting for Obama’s universal health care thingy, but I’m not holding my breath over it. That activity is reserved for hoping I don’t have butt cancer. Lifelong vegans virtually never get colon cancer, but I’ve only been eating that way since 2002. Apparently all the carcasses I consumed for the previous 40+ years can have a residual effect and literally come back to bite me on the ass.

Since this was a fairly dark posting, here is a funny picture to pick you up.

>Pedestrians of Note

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(For the making of a larger cartoon with the easier reading, click the third toe of the fourth foot from the left.)

Today’s Bizarro cartoon is sponsored by Baby Man.

This cartoon was inspired by the ugly building that is going up across the street from Bizarro International Headquarters here in Brooklyn. There used to be a charming, old, three-story red brick warehouse from the late 19th century, but the owner tore it down and is erecting a hideous condo building. If the architecture were at least interesting or tasteful I would not mind so much, but the monstrosity he is erecting will be twice as tall as the old building and utterly odious. A couple of floors are finished, and now that I can see the “style” of the building, I pray for the 50-foot woman to stomp it into dust. Or Godzilla, though he does not have a skirt up which I could look from my vantage point across the street. (Of course, a 50-foot woman probably has an 8-foot “schnootzer,” and that might be even more frightening than Godzilla.)

I know the man who owns the land and he is a nice enough guy. But he’s one of these people who hasn’t an ounce of interest in asthetics. To him, “a building’s a building.” When a person doesn’t even recognize the difference between an ugly building and a beautiful one when it is pointed out and explained, as I once did for him, you don’t have much of a chance.

Of course, at this very moment, he may be writing on his blog that he knows a guy who doesn’t recognize a huge profit margin even when it is pointed out and explained, and that my investment portfolio is odious.

The obvious difference is that I am not erecting a six-story reminder of my lack of financial skills across the street from his home.

>Pursuit of Paradise

>Bizarro is brought to you today by Parenting Made Simple.

Yes, it is a political cartoon I have posted here.
No, I do not feel like getting all political today.

Instead, let’s talk about the weather. Here at Bizarro International Headquarters in New York City, it has been raining most of the time for weeks. The entire month of June was shot to hell by rain and colder-than-average temperatures. I feel like I’m trapped in Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude. I really must move to the tropics somewhere. Problem is, they don’t have a New York City anywhere down there.

I have tried wishing that the Dutch had built NYC somewhere in the Caribbean, but it doesn’t change history and I’m still stuck in colder climes. In the end, it comes down to my deciding what is more important to me: culture or climate?

I lived and traveled in the south for several decades before I moved to NYC, so I have plenty of experience from which to make my decision. Even with the hot, sunny weather I crave, the general cultural and political attitudes of the southern U.S. do not suit me. In fact, at times they depress me as much as the weather in NY, especially now that I have known what it is like to live here, in a liberal, creative, open-minded, international community. And though I adore more exotic places like Central America and the Caribbean, they are too small and rural to quench my desire for the big city.

This makes it an easy decision. Culture is more important than weather, the way personality is more important than looks when choosing a spouse. Though both must be in the right ballpark, a great personality and average looks go much further in a relationship than a beautiful exterior wrapped around a sock puppet. If you can find both, as I have in CHNW, you are doubly blessed. (Just checking to see if she is reading my blogs. I’ll let you know in a few days.)

There are two answers to my pathetic, meaningless, spoiled white-collar dilemma: become wealthy enough to have another home in a warmer place where I can spend the winters, find a way to embrace the weather in NYC and stop being a whiny brat.

I think we all know which of those choices is available to me.

FURTHER: I left the West Coast out of this mix because although I like San Francisco as much as NYC, it tends not to be any hotter or sunnier in most ways. I love the weather in L.A., but not the city. San Diego is too conservative, and that’s pretty much all the big cities to choose from. Seattle and Vancouver seem cool, but the same weather problems. Such a whiner.

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