Friday, June 27, 2008

Eat to Kill

(click on image to make it become enbigger)

Today's Bizarro cartoon is brought to you by a grant from the Mixed Messages Institute.

Life is full of mixed messages, not the least of which is our parents' insistence that we treat animals and other weaker creatures with compassion, while serving us the steaming, mutilated remains of a tortured chicken
or pig.

On a less serious note, some of my readers may not know that Bizarro is offered to newspaper clients in two formats: panel and strip. I draw the cartoon in panel form, then convert it to strip on my computer, adding extra drawings on the side, if necessary. Typically, the elements shift around, the caption balloon above the characters moves to the side, and their isn't too awful much more to be drawn. This one, however, had to be finagled in many directions to get it to fit. The booth is wider & shorter, the ducks are bigger, etc. Looks pretty crappy here, you might want to click it for the larger pic.
Almost any time I draw a fair or carnival, I add a redneck shoving wads of food in his mouth, which to me is mostly what these events are about. I found fairs interesting when I was a kid, the annual State Fairs were a big deal in Oklahoma and Texas, but as an adult I can't see past the horror. Nothing says "doomed species" like throngs of overweight humans in airbrushed T-shirts, cramming more calories down their gullets than air, lit by flashing lights against a background of hideous stuffed animals, paying money to be hoisted into the air and jerked around until they get dizzy. (Note how both the OK and TX fair have giant rednecks at the gate. I've always assumed it was bait.)

Am I old enough to be a curmudgeon yet? Is there an age limit?


HollyBerry said...

hey 3Ts.. i worked at king's island for two summers, and that's all i could take because of the exact reason you said you hate carnivals and such. i drew caricatures and worked for a separate company that operated inside the park, so you would think that because i had a different employee, it wouldn't be that bad. no-- IT WAS AWFUL.

the first summer I worked there was my junior year of high school. i ended up so depressed because i couldn't stand the image of obese parents riding their little rental scooters with their fat kids waddling around drinking giant sodas double-fisting hamburgers and funnel cakes.. parents yelling at their kids to settle down while holding them back on their human-leashes... teenagers full of self hate, fucking with me because their season pass had already lost its novelty and they have nothing better to do than harass the employees... i saw one too many rednecks in wife-beaters touting terribly crafted jesus tattoos... and it only got worse two years later when i decided to go back (why did i go back?). it was worse because my mom was just killed a couple months prior and i had to be reminded of all the above stuff PLUS seeing all the families together and hearing all the ungreatful children bitching at their parents about not getting a large order of french fries.. it was awful and depressing.

so, yea. the fact that you make a point of adding rednecks stuffing their faces in your carnival clips is amazing because its OH so true.

Randy said...


Please do not ever change. You are spot on on your observations.


doug nicodemus said...

i have mixed feelings about the illinois state fair here in springfield. i saw the WHO's first tour there when i was 12. the same year i saw iron butterfly at the youth tent. one year i saw stevie ray vaugne. when he started in on texas twister a squall line drifted across the prairie behind him...i must go to see the butter cow every year. (please see to see a picture - heh read some of my bad poetry ther on the blog)I must also have a corn dog, french fries with their skins on with malt, and a lemon shakeup or i my die.

and yet for all the reasons and more 1 day is enough for me. my wife cate must see the flower competition and i do go to the art exhibit, and she bets on the trotters but way to many people, way to many teens out of control, way to much hucksterism and to much trash...i mean they do a good job of picking up and cleaning up but by the 11th day the place is pretty the days after mardi gras in new orleans

Mel2 said...

I love this cartoon because I feel it captures the idiocy of carnivals and fairs in a nice, manageable space. But what I found to be most interesting is the phrase "to stop them crying."

In my south-central part of the U.S., we'd most often hear "to stop them from crying," while other parts of the country might say "to stop their crying."

The first time I ever regularly heard a construction like "to stop them crying" (without the preposition) was in England. I love the way "to stop them crying" sounds and am wondering if it's a regional thing. I know you're in NY, Dan: Does New England still share linguistic patterns with Ye Olde England?

Or was it just a space-management issue?

sara said...

but it's so much fun!

(the fair and being a curmudgeon)

enjoy the blog tons, thanks for keeping it up.

-bizarro fan sara

Piraro said...

Lots of interesting comments here, thanks to everyone.

Shortcake: so sorry to hear of your tribulations. Life can suck, and often does.

Randy: Thanks, I'll try!

Doug: I, too, have fond memories of the fair and have plenty of friends who can't resist going every year. The concerts you saw sound amazing. I used to think the butter cow was cool until I found out how much suffering is involved in the commercial dairy industry.

Melissa: I was raised in Oklahoma. I mostly chose that phrasing to reduce the number of words I had to cram on the sign. In speech, I would have added "from."

Sara: Thanks!

Jeremy said...

Your link for the Mixed Messages sponsor reminds me of a comic you did in th 80s that had a fellow at an intersection stop light, there were signs for No Left Turn and No Right Turn. Straight ahead was a brick wall with No Turn Around. At the corner was an officer waiting for the guy to make his move. Very LOL!

Personally, I would have pulled ahead and parked on the curb and went shopping until the cop left.