Ha! The chickens come home to roost!

Consequences!  I love it!  Eat that, Mark!!  Mark is absolutely incredulous in panel two… and the pile of paperwork I had earlier supposed and the burden it has placed on the Magazine (and not to mention our usually game editor) are also true…

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So dig into your own wallet, Mark, if you can find it…  or get creative, at least.  You can get to the island… Just find a local charter and pay the freight, if this is so important for you… Your days of just picking up the phone, calling the Magazine and getting what you want are over.  Join the 21st century where expenses are tight and boondoggles, especially ones that possibly end in large insurance claims, are frowned upon…

Wait for it… Wait…

This is actually kind of funny.  Tune in tomorrow, gang, when Editor Bill Ellis suffers an aneurysm…  Or perhaps, like Inspector Clouseau’s superior, Chief Inspector Charles Dreyfus, he will develop a permanent nervous tic based on all the mayhem Mark creates…

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Note the many things going on here… and not…  Editor Bill Ellis is out on the veranda again, when the building clearly has no verandas…  Note that Mark is saying “I” and not “We” when he talks about meeting up with Abbey… sorry, Cherry.  And unless you count female graduates from Ohio Wesleyan University, there tends to be -0- diversity in this strip. I was just struck by the whiteness of the pallet in today’s  offering.

I also ask, where is the evil?  Where is the poaching and the looting and the cheating?  Who is Mark going to get to punch?  A couple of skeletons formerly known to us as “Honey and Darling?”  We saw where White Nose Syndrome took us… on an interminable stretch underground.  Right now I don’t have high hopes for this story line either…

Leaning Tower of Hearst?

Maybe it’s just the hour of the day and I haven’t quite woken up yet, but it seems like the Hearst Tower in the second panel is a bit off kilter…  hmmm, ever thought of the word kilter? Whether one could use it alone, without the modifier ‘off’ or ‘out of?’  Well it turns out (according to The Google Machine) that the very definition of the word means to be out of balance or harmony…

kilter

so to say that one is off or out of kilter suggests a double negative (always dangerous) and therefore “in” kilter?  Or simply kilter or kiltered?  hmmm spell check doesn’t like that last one…

kilters

But the Merriam Webster Official Scrabble Dictionary gives it 10 points, suggests it means “good condition,” and can be plural.  Good to know…

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Anyway, as Mark regales Editor Bill Ellis with tales of Stories Written in the Past and current whereabouts, a Snowy Owl makes its appearance in the big apple.  Seems a bit out of kilter, there as well…  Peregrine Falcons have been know to take up housekeeping in our larger cities, but owls?  And aren’t they by nature nocturnal?  Hmmm… something is certainly amiss here…  And there’s that mouthful again- the IUFCNWCC…which we have established as being real, but is in serious need of re-branding.

Mark has never looked happier

Look at him!  He is positively beaming talking to Editor Bill Ellis… and about invasive species.  And by the way- is it Spee-sees, or is it Spe-shees?  Sort of like Grocer or Grosher, as is Grocery (Groshery?) store where one buys food.  But I digress…

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And speaking of invasive species, look at what the Falcon picked up!  A mouse or a rat or something… even though pigeons and other fowl are an urban Falcon’s more natural prey…

falcon diet

…and thanks to ecully773 who pointed out that the building is question, the home of Woods and Wildlife magazine, is the Hearst Tower in Midtown Manhattan…

I also continue t wonder if Abbey Powell gets anything out of this other than growing name recognition… If I were her I would be!  it was cute and fun to start with, but now it could become a professional liability, especially if she ever wanted to leave the USDA… but of course why would she want to do that?  Wheat with it bringing her fame and (perhaps) fortune and all…

Casual Mondays??

If ever there’s a throw-back element to the Trail-verse, it is Bill Ellis… count among them the fact that he is always dressed in a suit and tie, that the Magazine offices are ensconced in a Manhattan skyscraper (read Time-Life Building…) and that the Magazine appears to be thriving are things that we just don’t see anymore in Magazine-dom…   But today we see Editor Bill Ellis really dressed down… In fact I don’t know whether we have ever seen his neck like this- kind of creepy- unless of course we go way back to a time when he and mark were on a fishing trip aboard the rich publisher’s yacht down in Florida and were mistaken for two rich, ransom-worthy fellows… and were subsequently kidnapped.  But that predates my efforts here on these pages, so I might be a little hard-pressed to link us there…  but here it is!  Thanks Josh at Comics Curmudgeon!

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But when exactly did Mark have time to write his 20,000 word expose on white nose syndrome?  No sooner did he make it from the Rio Grande to Lost Forest and they were jetting to Hawaii! Oh well, we shouldn’t dwell on such timeline inconsistencies…  we have to maintain appearances…

In an unrelated vein, I sent the following to my local newspaper opinion page…  I know that there are more needlesome issues at play in the word, but since they are not likely to print it, I wanted to share:

I v. me

I’ve been told that it’s a heavy burden I carry.  Proper usage of  the English language-  and bristling and recoiling when I hear or read passages that are not properly constructed.  The sad thing is that I see it everywhere, perpetrated by people who ought to know better, people who are paid a salary to write and speak properly.  No greater offense exists than when the first person singular pronoun ‘I’ is used in place of ‘me.’  A subjective pronoun acts as the subject of a sentence—it performs the action of the verb. The subjective pronouns are he, I, it, she, they, we, and you. An object pronoun is a personal pronoun that is used typically as a grammatical object: the direct or indirect object of a verb, or the object of a preposition. Object pronouns contrast with subject pronouns. The object pronouns are me, you, him, her, it, us and them.  ‘Jimmy and I are going to the store.’  ‘She is going to the store with Jimmy and me.’  Would we ever say ‘She is going to the store with I?’  I think not.  Think about it, people.

 

Not my fault…

Where have we heard that before?  And this time he is adding a finger wag for good measure…  Guess what Mark, while you have a case for The Swan in the Great Dismal story line, your last outing with Mississippi Ken and the missing Cobalt 60 is totally your fault… you unloaded a flare into the leaking fuel of the cigarette boat…  in an effort to “slow down” the bad guys… when you could have elected to simply out-run them!  But what’s the fun in that??

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and my… what BIG EYES you have in panel one, Cherry.  You’re a real heart-melter…  Sensing that you might have hurt the big guy’s feelings, you go all Bambi on him… well done.  And by panel three, with Mark’s full understanding of the “joke,” his confidence is restored!  What would he do without you, Cherry?  Why do you put up with him??  OK, don’t answer that.

So sad when Mark isn’t in on the joke…

…and the joke is him…  It would seem that his obtuse-ness has survived the passing of the torch from Elrod to Allen.  For those of you new to all this, or maybe haven’t been keeping score, it’s Mark 2, really-expensive-rental-boats-paid-for-by-The Magazine zerozilch… nada.  So naturally Cherry finds this entire notion extremely funny, in a polite, tee- hee- hee way, not a rude guffaw sort of way…  but still.  Mark, perhaps you’d be better served by finding a charter or a tour that would take you there…  I have to say though, that face in panel 3 is a new one for Mark… probably because he’s never been challenged before, never had his plans actually questioned

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Lets also consider Cherry.  And her neck.  Is it me, or did it get longer in panel 1?  I suppose it had to in order to fit the speech balloon underneath her chin.  But her head just seems to be perched unnaturally on top of it.  Sort of like a golf ball on a tee…

Strange too that Cherry isn’t putting up a fuss over Mark’s apparent desire to go off and “work” on their “vacation…” Perhaps that comes later…