Monday, June 28, 2010


Randomly reprinted post (XXIII)

"My name is Url. His name is H.T. Tepee.
Over the past month, besides visits from the usual suspects--Israel, America (particulary Denver[=Eric]) and Portugal (Bernardo, from 'Funchal, Madeira')--this blog has also received hits from Estonia, Indonesia, Chile, Japan, and--gasp!--even Canada. I believe those first three are the first visitors from their countries, and in the past I've had visitors from the UK, Brazil, Germany and other places. Thus my booger-encrusted tentacles spread...
Exit Stage Sinister with a side order of chili and fries.
Orange Country residents are seeing red due to an outbreak of yellow fever that has hospitals filled patients feeling blue and under the weather, although health authorities feel that greener pastures are in sight and do not wish to whitewash anything or put further developments under a blackout, saying that in this case there are no gray areas.
'F' and "S" words are practically the only words still considered unprintable by mainstream comic books; I've seen multiple counts of 'A', 'C', both 'B' and all the variations on the 'D' words. Get with the program, guys, little kids are exposed to these comments!
Teh 'teh'-ness of it all is simply teh awesome.
Rocky Balboa vs. Rocky J. Squirrel in a winner-take-all brawl officiated by Rock Hudson! Come on down!
Another one dites the bust, and another fun whites the crust, and a mother on town, a fishy on th' ground, Carruthers shun fights we must...
Starring Patricia S. Mump as the Hopping Woman.

TODAY'S BOOK: 'The Road to Omaha', by Robert Ludlum ((c) 1993)

TODAY'S WEBSITE: Since writing my 26th post, I have since added a fifth online comic strip site my daily reading: Calvin and Hobbes, widely regarded as a classic of the genre despite running for 'only' 10 years and nearly unique in that its creator (Bill Watterson, who once replied to a letter I sent him--o Snail Mail, wherefore art thou?) both left on his own terms while he was on top and had an almost complete ban on using the strip for merchandising purposes."
--65th post, 7/22/07


Tuesday, June 22, 2010


366th post

This will make absolutely no sense to anyone but myself.

What if our homemade Bat Mitzvah movie (Officially known as "Sibling Wars/Everyone Has a Little Sister", mentioned last month in the 361st post), had a TVTropes entry? Let me find out. You can all ignore this and stare at the lovely nonexistent wallpaper.

TODAY'S BOOK: "Digital Fortress", by Dan Brown ((c) 1998)


Monday, June 14, 2010


Six-Thousand-Hit Blog.

Due to a drastically reduced posting rate, it's taken six months and two weeks to reach this milestone since the five thousandth hit (the first time the length between milestones has gone up), and three years, eight months and nine days overall. This time, the lucky fellow hails from Hollywood, Florida, which sort of disappoints me because over the past week alone people have dropped in from Latvia, Guatemala, Mexico, Romania, Italy (twice!), and even Canada. But USA it is. At least the 4,000th was an Englander...
Even his (her?) entry point is boring: it's the "backstabber" cartoon from the 157th post, currently the most popular one on GBFOS. You may or may not be surprised to learn that it is the 29th result in a Google Images search for that keyword, and even higher (6th!) for "backstabber cartoon". You also may or may not recall that the 5,000th visitor also arrived via that.
Traffic is down to 3 visitors a day. After a record-shattering 361-hit October, the highest monthly total the blog has reached was 211, in March; in fact, excluding this half-done June, the past seven months have seen an average of 152.7 hits, which I would have given my back molars for three years ago, but is now just depressing, particularly since so many of them now come via image searches. That's what my artwork blog is for, darnit!
Not including spam, just ten additional comments were added for an average of one every 4.2 posts, the worst average between milestones ever. Familiar faces Sea-of-Green (4 comments), Khaaan! (1) and me (2) reappeared, and three comic book bloggers (including Shelly, who shortly thereafter became the newest addition to the "Backlinkers" list) added their thoughts to what will probably be my last great post.
Along the way, I had a few political cartoons snatched up by the blogosphere, had my first ever professionally illustrated book published, reached 100 cartoons drawn for The Jerusalem Post, performed at my sister's bat mitzvah, did a siyum shas mishnayot, and remained out of steady work.
On to the next thousand!!!!!!

TODAY'S BOOK: "Curtain", by Agatha Christie ((c) 1975)


Friday, June 04, 2010


"The Running Man"


See the man, running through the maze.


See the helmet. It is yellow, like his suit. It resembles a pizza pie with a slice missing.



The letters stenciled above his tinted visor...



The man runs. He cannot remember why he is here; indeed, he cannot remember if he ever did know. All the PAC Man knows are the maze, the pills...

...He turns a corner and stops dead...

...the pursuit.

One of Them is advancing down the path right now. He does not know if they are ghosts, or demons, or some nameless eldritch abomination. The only thing he knows about Them is this:

They must not catch him.

He turns and flees, picking up pills all the way.

He does not know what the pills are for. They are tasteless, scentless, and (as far as he can tell) have no nutritional value. The only sustenance he receives is placed at a certain spot by a person or persons unknown—the ones responsible for his being here? Who knows?—at regular intervals, disappearing as mysteriously as it appears.

The PAC Man runs...

For all his speed and cunning, he would be dead by now were it not for the glowing orbs.

He must have found out about the orbs quite early on, for he can't remember not knowing the effect grabbing one had on Them. He has escaped from more than one jam that way. They turn blue, and flee from him in fear, knowing that now, and only now, are they vulnerable.

He could not deny the sheer pleasure vanishing one of Them gave him, but as time went by they returned to the chase. They always returned.

He hasn't seen a glowing orb for a while.

Sometimes, he is so exhausted from running that he will begin to hallucinate. He imagines he sees a wife, a female doppelganger of himself; or a child; or some sort of teacher or professor.

But they all fade away, and he is once more alone.

Alone but for Them.

He has been running for so very long.

And They have become faster. Smarter.


See the man running, the sound accompanying him, emanating from everywhere and nowhere.


From the left—!

From the right!

They close in on him, two of Them, in a pincer movement. The man stifles an oath, and ducks into the only opening available.

It's a dead end.

He stumbles to a halt a few feet from the wall, two more pills in front of him.

He whips around. The two from before have entered the pathway. A third follows them in.

No escape.

He looks back down at the pills—the last two pills.

He has been running for so very, very long...

The hell with it, he decides.

See the PAC Man, turning and running headlong towards the relentless foe...



TODAY'S BOOK: "Ice Station", by Matt Reilly ((c) 1998)


Wednesday, June 02, 2010


The Comedy for Koby June 2010 Tour

came tonight to Beit Shemesh, led once again by the indefatigable Avi Liberman, this time bringing along Wayne Cotter, Johnny Sanchez and Bob Zany. As usual, most primo lines below.

AL: Israel just got condemned by the UN. Over here, we call that "Wednesday".

WC: Benjamin Franklin discovered electricity by flying a kite into some high voltage wires.

JS: I can't wait to tell my friends "I bombed in Israel".

BZ: A new record, somebody sat on a toilet for four days, beating out Elvis by three. ...I told that joke in Memphis, I got NUTHIN'.

AL: Latinos are a lot like Jews in that they're very possessive at trying to identify fellow members of the tribe. I live in LA, where there's lots of Mexicans, Latinos, and when one of them comes up to me and asks me my name, I say, "Avi". Which sounds kind of like "Javy", short for Javier. So, "Javy?" "No, Avi!" "I think you're Mexican! What's your last name, Javy?" "Liberman." "...Rodriguez?"

WC: They had to replace my dishwasher because they said something in the switch was a fire hazard. How bad a fire hazard can you have in a machine filled with water?

JS: Let's give a big hand for my Latino brother, Javy!

BZ: Can an orphan eat at a family restaurant?

AL: We've added a new venue to our tour--a cruise ship to Turkey.

WC: My wife and I just celebrated our 24th anniversary. An unmarried friend of mine was like, "Huh. Geese mate for life." I looked it up. You know how long geese live? Three years.

JS: Asian people are very agile, but only sideways. You see Jackie Chan, Bruce Lee, they're doing all these cool martial arts moves sideways. Then they start running and they're like, "WHOOAA!"

BZ: I've learned a lot by visiting this country. For instance, I've learned that my Hebrew name is "Get The Hell Away From Me".

AL: How many kids do you have, ma'am--eight? ...Five? Eh, not so frum.

WC: I was a terrible student. Back when I was in third grade I never took Roman numerals seriously.

JS: I'm five [feet]-five [inches]. Which is kind of fitting. Cinco de Mayo.

BZ: I'm self-taught. I went to public school.

AL: I can't bring any more stuff to Israel for people living here from America. On this trip the only stuff of mine I had in my suitcase was a sock and a pair of underwear.

WC: They've finally figured out the technology to put TV screens on shopping carts. Isn't there something else they could focus on first? Like fixing that fourth wheel!?

JS: Israel's a lot like America. You've got the same stars--Lady Gaza?

BZ: Anyone here from Kentucky? Anyone here ever heard of Kentucky?

WC: When you go to a foreign country, you bring along one of those little pocket dictionaries... are those of any use whatsoever?? When I went to France with my wife, I opened the dictionary on the plane, and the first phrase that I saw was, "I can't move my leg." ...When would I use that? When I'm pinned by a collapsed Eiffel Tower? Surrounded by paramedics, all just standing around and saying, "Why does he not love?"

JS: Avi requested that one!! [Said every time a joke bombed]

BZ: They told me I would never play in a community center in Bet Shemesh... I have arrived, bay-bee!

AL: On report cards you've got to find the nuances in what the teachers write. "Your son is full of energy"--he's hyperactive. "He's a real leader among his peers"--he's a bully. "Creative"? Bad at math.

WC: Try going out on a date in a foreign country with that little dictionary. Trying to find the words for "How about we go to your place." What am I gonna say when we get there? "The engine makes a funny noise. ...and I can't move my leg."

JS: Supermarkets, in my neighborhood hire disabled people. Don't get me wrong, that's all very well and good, but they keep putting them in the wrong places. I saw a one armed man--making sandwiches... and a guy with a hook for a hand was bagging my groceries! Why don't they put him in the raw meat section?? I won't even mention what they did with the guy who had Tourette's Syndrome. He belonged in management.

BZ: They told me that for tonight's show I'd have to cut out all the bits that might be inappropriate, off-color or offensive. ...Thank you, you've been a wonderful audience!

WC: Hot dogs come in packages of 12 and buns come in packages of 8. So every time I go to the supermarket, I'm always trying to figure out the lowest common denominator.

JS: Hide and Seek these days... it's all changed. You've got GPS and stuff. Back when we played we didn't even always find all our friends!

BZ: Scientists have determined that dogs can make 100 different facial expressions, beating out Joan Rivers by 99.

WC: I asked a doctor about amniocentesis and he began describing it to me. I asked how long it took. You know what he told me? "14 business days." ...What kind of cells take the weekends off?? "No mitosis on Saturdays"!

JS: Every year, you've got panics about letting children play with certain toys--lead in the paint, choking hazards... Let 'em! It builds character!

Are you always this rude?
BZ: Get out of here!! (I think I handled that well.)

AL: Here's how you play tetherball: you hit a ball on a string until it breaks your face.

WC: I flew in to Paducah, Ohio. Paducah... that's the sound your body makes when it hits the floor.

JS: They're now making motion sensors for flushing toilets. I don't know about you but I never found the handle too hard to use. You can even headbutt it!

BZ: You're 18? Stick around, I've got some Pokemon jokes coming up.

WC: I was reading the manual that came with my HDTV, and do you know what I found on page 2? "How to plug it in." With a little picture and everything. What do they have on page 1? "Turn pages with fingers"?

JS: Car companies are spending millions of dollars in safety tests so that drunk drivers can walk away from accidents.

BZ: In a recent poll, 62% of Americans said we were ready for a woman president. 38% thought we already had one.

WC: On some airplanes they don't have a Row 13. Tell me, am I supposed to be reassured by the fact that my airline is superstitious? Soon I'll be seeing rabbits' feet everywhere... stewardesses throwing salt over their shoulders.

JS: Remember Slip 'n Slides? Begins on plastic, ends on sidewalk.

BZ: What do atheists say when they orgasm? "Oh, Darwin! Oh, Darwin!"? ...I told that joke in Kansas and I got NUTHIN'.

WC: Bringing a hamster to the vet is like taking a disposable lighter in for repairs.

JS: When I get in line at the supermarket, and I've finally picked which line to get in, I'm so pathetic I mark what person I would have been behind in each line... What is this, the Grocery 500?

BZ: The longest recorded flight for a chicken is 13 seconds. Of course, you've got to kick 'em just right...

AL: When you're naming your son, the rabbi always leans over for you to tell him the name you've picked. When that happens I've always wanted to say "Christopher Mohammed".

WC: I bought a new protractor for school every year for 11 years. And I still have no idea what it's for.

JS: As Latinos get older, our bodies change shape--our stomachs get bigger and our arms get shorter. What are we turning into? T-Mex?

BZ: If I marry two midgets, is that big o' me?

AL: What would happen if teachers were more honest on report cards? We'd get comments like "For G-d's sakes!", "The hell were you thinking?"...

WC: I was in a hotel... and they had the remote control bolted to the desk. Doesn't that kind of defeat the purpose?

What is Israel most lacking?
JS: Mexicans.

BZ: What's your name? Elisheva? Oh, that's a beautiful name. I'm Bob.

AL: Elvis Costello just cancelled his concert here... Oh, what a shame. Like being told that Milli Vanilli can't make it.

WC: In a recent Newsweek poll, 1 in 7 Americans could not find the United States on a globe. And some of these people are flying for Delta.

JS: Mexicans, of course, tend to have a hard time keeping certain consonants straight. I go up to somebody and ask, "How are joo? Are joo Yewish?"

BZ: I just saw Land of the Lost. No, not the movie--I made a wrong turn up near Yish'i.

AL: How did the different Sabbaths get started? I'd imagine for the early Christians, on Sunday, you'd have eight or nine guys showing up in shul--"Wait, we're one day late? Eh, let's just run with it." And the Muslims are all: "Friday! Ours is first! We were here first!"

WC: My dad wasn't big on questions. We'd be walking--"Dad, why's the sky blue?" "Because the trees are green. It offsets them nicely."

JS: Children on planes... I was on a plane ride once, and in the middle of the flight, dead of night, somebody keeps hitting the back of my chair. I'm the only one up--my and the person in back of me. I turn around, and see a little girl sucking on a Pixy Stix the size of a pole vault.

BZ: I was filling out a form and decided to have some fun. When they wrote "Are you hard of hearing?", I put down, "What?"... "Are you an American citizen?" "Si."

AL: They ask you to bring from America a Kiddush cup. Yeah, 'cause that's so unavailable here.

WC: Let me tell you all a story: I was in a restaurant in New Jersey... and at one point the owner comes up to my table and asks me, "Sir, does that soup taste soapy or rancid to you?" I said, "No, why??" "Never mind." And he turned around and left. ...I am not good enough to make this up.

JS: Let me tell you, they should make it a law that before a flight the only two things you're allowed to feed your children are Ambien and Lunesca.

BZ: I was once driving to Kentucky, got out in the middle of nowhere, to the point where my GPS said, "Screw it."

AL: What do they say? "Every child is like a gift"? Haven't you every had crappy gifts before?

WC: I'd be with my dad in a restaurant, trying to read the labels on the bottles... He'd tell the waiter, "A bottle of witt'e, please." "That's 'white', sir."

JS: There's a lot of Iranians in my neighborhood, but they all refer to themselves as "Persians". "You're from Iran?" "Yes." "So, you're Iranian?" "No, no, I'm a Persian!" That's like walking up to someone and asking them, "Where are you from?" "Mexico." "So you're a Mexican?" "No--Aztec."

BZ: Dateline, Los Angeles: the city has outlawed urination and defecation in public. Police say it's been their number one and number two priorities.

AL: What would the updated version of the Four Sons be like? Gifted, behaviorally challenged, special ed, mentally impaired.

WC: There are satellites now that they say can take accurate pictures of people on the ground from 250 miles in the air. These are made by the same government that takes my picture from 3 feet away and makes me look like a Klingon.

BZ: You know what I've found in supermarkets here? Whole Wheat Knockers. These should be imported to Los Angeles for vegans who want breast implants.

AL: And the Four Questions--what would they be like if girls said them? "Why on all other nights do I eat so few carbs, but tonight I have to eat so many...? Do you know what this is doing to my figure??"

JS: Get this: it's the 21st century, and they're still using crash test dummies to test our cars' safety. Those things don't tense before impact, you know.

WC: You know why they have all these bizarre warnings in the oiperating manuals? It's become some idiot's actually done them, and then sued them for 8 million dollars. I figure if you're awarded 8 million dollars for sticking your tongue in the electric prong, you should also be forced to sign away the right to have your name and picture printed in the manual. "This is the guy who stuck his tongue in the electric prong!"

BZ: You heard of the guy [Aron Ralston] who got his arm stuck between two rocks and had to cut it off? When asked if he would do it again, he said, "Sure, but only one more time."

AL: Your name's Paula? Ba'alat t'shuva, right?

WC: 43% of Americans, when asked how long it takes for the Earth to go around the Sun, say it takes one day. There go the seasons! Coat--T shirt--coat--T shirt...

BZ: I was once working in a department store, and one day I learned about suggestive selling. Here's how it went: a customer came in, he wanted some grass seed. My boss asked him, "You want to buy a lawnmower with that?" He asked, "What for?" "We'll, you're gonna plant this grass, and it's gonna grow, and you're gonna need a lawnmower to cut it." "Hey, yeah, that makes sense! I'll buy it!" So the next customer comes in, and he asks me for a package of tampons. I said, "Yes, sir, you want a lawnmower with that?" ..."What do I want a lawnmower for?" "Well, your weekend's shot, you might as well mow the lawn!"

JS: We went to the Baha'i Gardens... That's the first garden I've been to that didn't have any Mexicans working in it.

WC: I was in Phoenix when I got into a car accident... So I'm in the hospital, and I'm in the room--and then the doctor turns the pulse oxometer towards me and asks, "Could you keep an eye on this? We're a little understaffed." Tell me, what do you think happened to my pulse after that??

BZ: I was doing a show in Shreveport, Louisiana. Somebody in the crowd got up and asked, "Are you a Yankee?" I'm from Los Angeles, California. I said, "I guess I'm a Mexican."

Do you get upset when your jokes don't work?
WC: Did I tell any jokes that didn't work?

TODAY'S BOOK: "The Prime Ministers", by Yehuda Avner ((c) 2010)


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