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This is all based on a D&D game Jason Thompson was running. My friend Rob was the African half-orc who worships Ba'al. The game got pretty complicated, as far as I could tell.

I've mentioned this before, but all the members of the gaming table except Dave and Seth are based on tabletop gamers I know. Iris is based on my friend Laura, and most of the details of the character are taken from life. We are both way into gardening.

Seth is the one who didn't pick up on Iris's pointed mentions of her husband. He told Dave that Iris was single at the Halloween party, hence Dave's misimpression. Anyway, this strip is based on the truth that sooner or later, even your nerdiest friends will get their social lives together and become cooler than you. Right now, for instance, all my friends are suddenly getting married. Even Jason Thompson, the basis for Freddy (who used to be scared of girls), got married last year. It's pretty awesome.

Freddy is wearing a Naruto T-shirt because Jason was editing the manga at the time. Later he passed it on to me for a while.

I have a tendency to draw tables too high.

This strip is basically just here to move the plot along, but what the hell, Dave is cute in it. Also, Iris has really pointy breasts in this strip for some reason.

Nor is Seth's.

Dave is profoundly wrong in this strip. He won't realize it until much, much later, though.

37 comments:
Rachel S. (masamage) says:

I share Iris's ambition to run my tough-guy male friends through a Sailor Moon campaign and make them like it.

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Sailor Moon" theme song (English dub))

Talking to girl who's a critic,
Writing a blog analytic ...
I chat with demons in Semitic,
I am an orc that worships Ba'al!

I might want to leave the sweet talk 'til later,
For although my curiosity's greater,
She is an over-eager castrator!
It's full of fail!
Better Ba'al!

Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

Sailor Mell "In the name of the Moon, I will blow you into small interchangeable bits."

Sailor Artie would be cute, though.

Kay Gilbert (kaygilbert) says:

tune: "Janie's got a gun," Aerosmith

Iris got a guy
Iris got a guy
Info went right by
Dave, who's dense and shy

What is he gonna do?
His fantasy is through
He didn't know that she was married
But clearly she is not Lovelace
She want to garden and run games and
Just hang out with her husband
Now how is Dave gonna save face?

Run away, run away from the shame yeah, yeah yeah yeah
Run away, to a sexy mainframe yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah
Run away, run away, run, run away

Leon Arnott (l) says: Tuesday:

Silent Penultimate Panels: 31. This probably marks that golden moment in Dave's life when one discovers that most of your peers have secretly gotten married and become responsible adults without telling you.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Bus-ted.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

And if her husband does a good job of preparing the bed, she might give him some aspedistra.

Rob (rrreed) says: @Leon—for that to happen, one must first admit that one has peers. BWAH-HA-HA-HA!
Rob (rrreed) says:

"Dave?"
"Helen?"
"Valerie…"
"Bob?"
"Catherine?"
"Heathcliff!"
"Janet!"
"Dr. Scott!"
"Janet!"
"Brad!"
"Rocky!"
"Auntie Em! Auntie Em!"
"ADRIAN!"
"STELLA!"



"And what about… Naomi?"
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

True story: at one point, back in my 20's, I was dating a girl named Edie, my friend Jim was dating Jamie, and my friend Rich was dating Rachel.   Would've been cool if we'd all ended up together, but it didn't work out.

Wayne (wayne) says:

I did a fair amount of dating during my early gaming days, but I didn't meet my wife until she found me online about 8 years ago, we have our 6th anniversary in June.

Kay Gilbert (kaygilbert) says:

@Shaenon: I just assumed they were finally entitled to sit at the grownups' table.
tune: "I won't grow up," Mark Charlap, Jule Styne, Carolyn Leigh, Betty Comden & Adolph Green, Peter Pan, 1954

We did grow up! (They did grow up!)
We have lovers, husbands, wives (They have lovers, husbands, wives)
You were off having adventures (He was off having adventures)
We were busy getting lives (They were busy getting lives)

We did grow up! (They did grow up!)
Though we still play D&D (Though we still play D&D)
We have mortgages and jobs now (They have mortgages and jobs now)
We may have a kid or three (They may have a kid or three)

If you'da been here, you'da known
No one wants to end up a nerd alone
We're glad to grow up
Glad you showed up
Please don't begrudge or
Bemoan

Chris Brunner (cjbrunner) says: Hawt.
Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says:

Chris: I assume you mean Dave, because he is indeed super hot in this strip.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

Dave is actually trying to sing "The Ying Tong Song" and is hoping Iris will join in.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: At least I know enough to handle that sort of letdown properly.
Joel Brackenbury (mockferret) says:

Iddle i po.

N B (daveclone7) says:

Perhaps it's just cold in the room.  It's useful to do so as it:

a) can add tension to dramatic scenes, and

b) helps prevent spread of the dreaded 'gamer funk'.

Pointy breasts are just a side benefit.

Kay Gilbert (kaygilbert) says:

tune: "I do, I do, I do, I do, I do," ABBA

Your ring disappoints me
But your breasts are so pointy
They attack!
Yargle gabba flurble ynn gak!

I thought you were my secret Valentine
But you're not Lovelace, and you won't be mine

Iris, I like you
But I'll never excite you
In the sack
Yargle gabba flurble ynn gak!

Andrew Cole (andy4hire) says:

Is it bad that my second reaction to this strip (after the part where I feel Dave's crushing awkwardness) was to try saying "Yargle gabba flurble ynn gak" out loud?

It works *really* well as a tongue twister, it turns out.

John Campbell (jcampbel) says:

Seth just hasn't met the right axe yet.

Leon Arnott (l) says: Friday:

Apart from the very first strip, these strips are probably the closest Narbonic gets to a completely innocuous slice-of-life strip.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

It's strips like this that make my glad that my wife answered *my* online ad first. 

Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

An innocuous slice-of-life strip involving people being dragged into Hell.  Why hasn't Mary Worth discovered this?

David Harmon (mental_mouse) says:

That's "slice of life" as in Seth's axe...  "Life?  Slice it!"

Jon W. (kd7sov) says:

So, is this the outdoors lack of background, or the indoors one? Because I don't knwo where they'd be chatting outside, but Iris' hair suggests there's wind around.

Andrew Cole (andy4hire) says:

@kd7sov: That doesn't necessarily mean anything in the Narboniverse. Mell's hair suggests she's surrounded by some kind of weird static electricity, no matter where she is.

John Campbell (jcampbel) says:

Mell works in a mad science lab. It's entirely possible that she is surrounded by some kind of weird static electricity, no matter where she is.

Norman Thallheimer (normanrt) says:

The question is not "Does she <get> games?"  The question is, "Was she playing the same game you thought you were playing?"

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

"... and she tends to rip up the cards and eat them."

Insert obvious "club sandwich" joke here.

Wayne (wayne) says:

Ed, you nailed it in spades!  I'd try somethihg, but mny heart's just not in it.

Brandon Gorley (bowtothebard) says:

Ed, you are a diamond in the rough when it comes to internet commentators.

Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says:

I don't know if this conversation suits me.
Daniel Barkalow (iabervon) says:

Shaenon: then pay no attention to those jokers.

Sam Daniel (samhdaniel) says:

You guys are real cards, and Narbonic is pack'd with puns like this....

Andrew Cole (andy4hire) says:

I love Iris's expression in the second panel.

(That's right, a post without a card-related pun. Take that, rabbit-punchers.)

Andrew Cole (andy4hire) says:

... I'm pleased with myself for having made that last post with a straight face.  But now, flush with comment-thread success, I must go do some cleaning; I'm expecting a full house later this evening.

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The education bestowed on Shaenon K. Garrity by her parents had been expensive, athletic and prolonged. ... full profile