Mark the Insufferable

Well, which is it, Mark?  First you bark at Dusty to bring the drugs and now you are offering up Doc’s stash!!

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Still not an ounce of contrition offered up to Rusty or Doc…  Amazing, too, how Mark manages to talk without opening his mouth!!  Ah, the magic of clip-art!

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Stick it to him, Doc!

We still don’t know what “theory” Mark was testing, and now we sure don’t know what the Trails will be having for dinner tonight!  Cherry will have to run the gauntlet past the tiger and other exotica on her way to the Piggly Wiggly or The Food Lion to get something else to put on the table!

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But meanwhile, Doc is feeling exonerated and is ready to go back in!  And Mark, ever to be the one to take charge is doing just that!  Issuing orders like he’s the Chief of Fish and Wildlife!  Guys with Dart Guns!  Trucks!! CAGES!!!  Bring them all!  Oh, you say there were budget cuts?  Well too bad, Dusty, did I make it clear that your job is at stake??

You mean THAT refrigerator?

The Stainless Steel one that is completely out of character for the Lost Forest kitchen??

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Why do they have to be quiet?  They are inside!  And what is this “theory” that Mark is trying to “test?”  That Large Carnivorous Mammals eat the muscles of other mammals??

And I am not sure I have ever seen a ham with the Femur extending quite like that, but who knows how they butcher meat in northern Georgia?  Probably lovingly cured in their own smokehouse after slaughtering a hog from a local farmer…  We never get to see how the food actually gets onto the Lost Forest table… this is as close as we have ever come to that!

Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh MY!

Well, almost…

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Cool as a cucumber, (at least not one out in the garden on a hot summer day…) Mark gets all scienc-ey and “tests a theory” that if you don’t threaten a tiger, it won’t charge you…  Apparently this worked, at least as far as him turning around on the porch and getting back through the front door…  Is this the return of Richard Parker from Life of Pi fame??  It was a book, too… which I recommend over the movie…  But no doubt this is a remnant from the circus train… the only problem being that if this is a circus of any renown, this isn’t the only large cat roaming the Preserve…

And what will Mark have Cherry-Honey do?  She’s got a “bad feeling” that something isn’t quite right, judging by the look on her face…

The Return of Dirty Dyer?

What does Mark see that has him gobsmacked in the last panel?

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It couldn’t simply be an exotic animal… it has to be the vision of someone who has risen from the dead!!  Recall that Dirty “Didn’t make it” after getting his burnt-up ass hauled to the hospital in the Rhino-horn caper…

But maybe it is just the black bear in a tutu…  But is that sight giving Mark a PTSD moment from the time that a Black Bear with an illegal-trap-injured paw had him treed and worse?

Whatever it is, we can all hopefully be thankful that this little “episode” can move on to the next chapter in which “Mark Realizes he’s been wrong all the time, but can’t bring himself to apologize to anyone…” Stay tuned!!

I’d have my ears pinned back, too…

…if I were the bear in the first panel…  I mean, what the %$#^&?!

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It appears that Dusty is as humorless and devoid of imagination and possibilities as Mark and Cherry are… Boy won’t he be surprised when it turns out that the woods are chock-full of surprises!!

I think by now we can assume that it IS the exodus from the Tingling Brothers circus train we are witnessing.  Funny thing, we have some history right in our own backyard- That is if you live in Wisconsin or Minnesota- the Circus World Museum is in Baraboo, WI, just west of Madison.

From the wiki:

Circus World Museum is located in Baraboo, Wisconsin, because Baraboo was home to the Ringling Brothers. It was from Baraboo in 1884 that the Ringling Brothers Circus began their first tour as a circus. Over six seasons, the circus expanded from a wagon show to a railroad show with 225 employees, touring cities across the United States each summer. Baraboo remained the circus’s headquarters and wintering grounds until 1918, when the Ringling Brothers Circus combined with the Barnum and Bailey Circus, which the Ringling Brothers had bought out in 1908. The combined entity, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, was successful until 2017 when it took its final bow on Sunday May 21, 2017, at Long Island City in New York state.

I get that everything has its run… and apparently there is no room for the Circus in today’s world.  Except perhaps in books:  Sara Gruen’s Water for Elephants and John Irving’s A Son of the Circus immediately came to mind.