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Smithson Thus Far... ·

Justin Grubbs (the_purple_knight) says: I thought the maintenance guys were his friends.
N La Teer (zapatos) says: So far, Tip has lost his boots and those cute square earings.  I fear for his ginchy little belt.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

I must admit, I'm getting attached to the rat.  Would he be willing to join the Skin Horse team?

Also, what is the black patch behind Tip?  Could it possibly be a ... TARPIT??


Terry Smith (tjlsmith) says: This isn't hard. Just get a soundproof barrier for the door. The maintenance guys can install it. Quietly.


Dave Van Domelen (dvandom) says: Well, Tip thinks in terms of people solutions (for a very loose definition of "people"), not technological solutions, Terry.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says:

Oh no! It's a TARPIT TRAP for the PARTy of TIP and the RAT!
Jeffrey Channing Wells (channing) says:

Ed Gedeon:  Actually, the black patch is just a tarp.

Also, one of the reasons the rat is so large is that it has been genetically spliced with tapir DNA.

Have fun with the above information.  I know you will.

Aaron Shades (prof_tinker) says:

A Tarp for the Tapir Rat and Tip, not Tarpit?

*dodges tomato* 

Dov Mittelman (silentspeaker) says:

No, a tarp trapping the part-tapir rat/Tip pair, for pirate prats.

Martha Mintz (muffinthamighty) says: my head is starting to hurt...  
Brian Rogers (billionsix) says: I just got a copy of the Skin Horse mini-comic! Shaenon drew a silverfish on the envelope! Incredible-awesomic!
Justin Grubbs (the_purple_knight) says: And thus, yhey begin their slow descent through the tarpit to the rat's lab. You know, the one where he keeps all his super secret plans for peaceful cohabitation?
Cameron Nielsen (cameroncn) says: Why am I getting a political vibe off this strip? ... Ah, yes. That.
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says:

Political vibe? Perhaps. Maybe the strip is pointing at 'the other side' and saying "They think that's the right way to do it, ha ha, how silly!"

Or we start from that side, and the punch line is "Look at how easily the desire for peace through peace crumbles in the face of actual trouble."

Or maybe it it's just funny because that turn of phrase is silly and somewhat oxymoronic. I don't think it's very fair to look at this as a political strip, because whichever viewpoint you look from, you're putting words in someone else's mouth.

...As I've probably done right here. So if you find my transplanted words bitter, feel free to spit them back at me. 

Jeffrey Channing Wells (channing) says:

This is probably as good a time as any to say this:

This strip is a work of fiction.  Any similarities between actual persons, institutions, societies or political ideologies, living or dead, past or future, are either coincidental or superficial.  In addition, the opinions expressed by various characters over the course of this strip do not necessarily reflect those of either author.  Neither should the situations said characters find themselves in be necessarily taken as a statement of authorial opinion on any given matter.

Thank yew. 

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

Maybe it was accidental on the part of the writer, but I got a mental flashback to the Vietnam-era, "We had to destroy this village to save it," mindset.

No, I am not a Vietnam vet, nor do I play one on TV.

Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

I will not, as Tolkein says, "confuse 'applicability' with 'allegory'", but it does call to mind a long string of American presidents of both parties madly stumbling through the Middle East trying to get different tribes to cease the xenophobic violence to which Man, the animal, is heir.

[misanthropic pundit mode off] 

NigaiAmai Yume (nigaiamai_yume) says:

And now we know the rat's a girl.

Because she's a H.E.R. ^-^  (first panel Tuesday Strip).

 /me runs from pun-hating peasants.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says:

I knew it would come to this.
Eric Burns (ericburns) says:

I didn't see this as political at all.

I saw it, amusingly enough, as human.

Each of the different societies has very human, very reasonable, and very selfish goals. They have different viewpoints, but they all come down to "this is what I do. I'm not going to stop doing it just because you want me to." At the same time, they want the others to change to suit their needs.

Tip, as an outsider, can see a solution. In the end, it's not a solution they want -- but he wants it so badly he can taste it.

That's not poilitical. That's human -- or sapient -- nature.

And it's funny, too.

Nicely done, guys. 

Aaron Shades (prof_tinker) says:

Ya know, I kinda know how Tip feels?

I say he bails. 

Edwin Quantrall (reynard) says: I would *SO* wear a T-shirt with Tip's last line on it! Any plans to sell one? *insert pleading whimper here*
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

"Politics is nothing but people."
 - R.A.H. Double Star


Basil Jelly (basil_jelly) says: Having invented literacy. Hey, it's our right!
So It Begins (soitbegins) says:

:blink: :blink:
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says: Well, Tip's given peace a chance. Now it's time for Unity's solution.
Jane Narbon (lady_madsci) says: Solomon, Solomon, Solomon, where are you when we need you?
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says: Ro, ro, ro your 'bot / 'Gainst the data stream ...
Eric Burns (ericburns) says: Is it sad that at the end of all this I hope Tip adopts the cobras?
NigaiAmai Yume (nigaiamai_yume) says: Sorry, Eric. The cobras are MINE. ^-^
Aaron Shades (prof_tinker) says:

No, I hope he does too.

I'll miss the cobras, you know? They just need hugs. . .  

Basil Jelly (basil_jelly) says: and no scary big words!
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says: No sir, cobra-adoption is a fine hope indeed.
Aaron Shades (prof_tinker) says:

For the record, my mother actually *is* a civilian scientist, and I can honestly say that I fully agree with todays punch-line.

Plus, much love for the noting of the difference between *psychologists* and *therapists*.

Now that that's been said, Adorable Cobras anyone? 

Typhin Reynard (typhin) says:


Finally, I'm becoming a savvy consumer!

Basil Jelly (basil_jelly) says: About now that rat has be thinking. "How hard would be be to breed a two ton terrier?"
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

Basil -- if you added wings to him, he'd be an aircraft terrier.


David Given (dg) says: Does it say anything about me that I keep mistaking Jeffrey Channing Wells for John Wellington Wells?
So It Begins (soitbegins) says:

So the two have stepped off the trapped tarp the tapir-rat put above the tarpit that would have trapped Tip, the tarp, and the rat?

Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

dg: It says that there's a non-zero probability that you'll mistake Carol Channing for the guys who sang the theme to Gilligan's Island.

Basil: It's trivial to breed a two-ton terrier. Take two three-ton terriers (one of each gender, mind you), put them in a romantic location for several weeks, then take the runt of the litter.

Aaron: I am a civilian scientist, and today's punch line makes me ROFL 'cause I'm old enough to know better (now). It can be hiLARious when a *psychologist* tries to be a *therapist*. Psych: "Are you a heavier than average drinker?" Me: "I dunno. What's the average drinker weigh." (at a psych eval for an overseas job - really!)

 Three rules for surviving in a bureacracy

1) Always mess with the Psychologists

2) Never mess with Security

3) Always take chocolate to Personnel


Dave Corbett (mr_dave) says: Tiff: Wouldn't that make you a biological terrierist?
Justin Grubbs (the_purple_knight) says: I'd be grossed out by that.
Martha Mintz (muffinthamighty) says: yeeeeah.
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

mr_dave: Since I work mostly with computers, that would probably be "cyber-terrierist".

Langorously munching from a bowl of delicious, chocolate-drenched zombie heads.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says:

Looooong pause.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

I like how the zombie heads are totally silent while being devoured.  You would think they'd at least get out one last "I protest vigorouslyyyyy ....!" before getting munchified.

Here's an idea ... why not offer the zombie heads government jobs?  Put them to work in the Dept. of Homeland Security; no one'd notice the difference.

Dave Van Domelen (dvandom) says: The more disturbing issue is how the zombie heads continue to maintain their population in the face of giant rat predation....
Incog Neato (ghede) says: More importantly, Is the source of the giant rat's zen the Zombie heads? Is zen a dietary additive? Does it improve flavor?
Jeffrey Channing Wells (channing) says: What, like MSG?
Aaron Shades (prof_tinker) says:

Sure, great fkavor AND it'll give you a migrane. Sounds like MSG to me.

I'm not big on Zen myself. I prefer Taoism, which can be summed up as: Stuff happens, so just try to hit your mark and say your line. 

Zarathustra's Id (zarathustrasid) says: Pff. Taoism Daoism.  How can you knock Zen when it Says
Jane Narbon (lady_madsci) says: Say, Tip could start a company called Tip-Trap.
Edwin Quantrall (reynard) says: "That was Zen, this is Tao..." - T-shirt seen at SF/Fantasy con.
Basil Jelly (basil_jelly) says: Go tip go!!
Andrew W (mrandrew) says: everyone needs a Giant Philosopher Rat to talk with when they're adrift and frustrated
Justin Grubbs (the_purple_knight) says:

everyone needs a Giant Philosopher Rat to talk with when they're adrift and frustrated

Especially to persuade them that the only path is violence. 

Alex Martin (grimgrin) says: He should totally demand to ride the giant rat around like a pony
Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says: I dunno about that.  While the line bewteen unreasonable and sucicdal may be thin, it does exist.  Demanding to ride the Giant Rat seems like it would be way on the other side of that line.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says: He's gonna teach the crystals some AC/DC, and drive the silverfish away, right?  Except for a few young rogues who will form the silverfish version of Rockapella.
Katie Tandler (katesith) says: That last panel silhouette is so... 'magical girl'.
NigaiAmai Yume (nigaiamai_yume) says:

Pretty Magical Soldier Boy Tip.

I must see this art work. 

Aaron Shades (prof_tinker) says:

Oh dear. That last panel and wait-

Pretty magical Soldier Boy Tip?!

I call number one in the fandom!!

*sigh* He's so cute when he's forceful. 

K C (spotweld) says: Is anyone else a little disappointed that Tip didn't end up getting to ride the giant rat like it was a Luck Dragon?
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The education bestowed on Shaenon K. Garrity by her parents had been expensive, athletic and prolonged. ... full profile