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Smithson Thus Far... ·

Charles Lee (atomicsnarl) says: Ick! I hate it!! More!!!
Eve Elliott (stroth) says:

Someone's been reading to many of the Anita Blake books. Either Shaenon for coming up with something that's an obvious allusion to them. or me for seeing things that aren't there.


Probably me actually. 

Andy Wetmore (efogoto) says: Ths reminds me of the old joke about how the restaurant is terrible because the food is lousy and you get such small portions.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: TMI, BOTH OF YOU!
Terry Smith (wcfan) says: Penis bones - isn't that what Racoons have?
llearch n'n'daCorna (llearch) says: @wcfan: Whales, yes. Raccoons? No idea, but wikipedia might say.
Liquid Communism (liquidcommunism) says:

*snrk*  Yeah, definitely a Hamilton reference there.  We have a drinking game going around my book club. Every time she puts out a new book, we go in, open to a random chapter, and then take a number of drinks equal to the awkwardly described sex acts found therein.


Haven't made it out sober yet. :p

Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says:

Raccoons do have penis bones, yes. Classic symbols of male verility. My dad has a necklace made of them for when he's acting as a Pagan priest.
Like y'do.

Also people who sell/trade them, especially in the black-powder community, call 'em 'coondicks.' 

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

Dockory Hockery Hick,
A bone grew in his d*ck;
He plunged it in,
Yelled "FTW!"
Slickery dickery, sick!

David Harmon (mental_mouse) says: Indeed, most mammals have penis bones -- it's us primates that are weird that way.  Anita Blake was actually pretty decent, way back at the beginning of the series.  It's a pity she decayed into Monty Haul does St. Louis.  (Hamilton's other series is worse that way!)
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says: LOVE Sweetheart's expression in the last panel.
Laura P. (madcatofmars) says:

Thank you, Shaenon, for showing me that not even The 13 Clocks is immune from the pit of madness that is the birthplace of most fanfic crossovers.  Although I have always had the greatest respect for our werewolf and goblin friends, a few more casual mentions of his tumescent sword with +12 Goluxing action, and I'll be ready to journey all the way to the foot of the Lonely Mountain, dig up Thorin, and stab myself in the eyes with Orcrist.

butsuri - (butsuri) says: The technical term is baculum. Viking colonists in Greenland would undertake dangerous hunting trips to the north partly because walrus bacula could be made into novelty axe handles.
Dave Corbett (mr_dave) says: ...And then the men would have axe-swinging contests...
shui lung (draconautus) says: Which always ended up with someone being slit from their guggle to their zatch . . .
Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says: Can't be any weirder than the romance series about Viking lesbian who somehow is propelled into the future and joins the Navy. I'm not making this up.
Erin Palette (palette) says:

Except the lesbian part.

Philip Cohen (treesong) says:

This is not Laurell Hamilton, but some other perpetrator of a series of steamy vampire books who's infamous for a special vocabulary created by sticking an 'h' after the first consonant of various words.

Aha. Googling /'insert an h' vampire/ didn't work but /lhust vampire/ did. The series 'The Black Dagger Brotherhood' is by J.R. Ward.

From the first link I checked:

<<I had a really hard time taking this book seriously, because it is made of velveeta, there is so much cheese going on. Allow me to introduce you to the members of the Brotherhood. Aside from Wrath, we have Rhage, Tohrment, Vishous, Phury, Zsadist... and Darius. Guess which one is dead by the end of chapter two. (I swear I am not making any of this up.) I have a couple of questions at this point, even if we bypass the "WHY OH WHY WOULD YOU NAME YOUR POOR CHARACTERS THAT WAY" thing. First: do you think the one with the normal name was the one who got beat up when they were kids? Also: do you think Darius would have lived longer if his name had been, say, Ahngst?>>

As for Laurell Hamilton, the Meredith Gentry series is certainly more sex-drenched, but the sex is actually thematic, and I find it much less annoying than in the Anita Blake series. What's more, while the AB series had for some time been in a pit of what my sister calls 'public masturbation', in the latest volume Anita is not particularly idiotic about her relationships. Granted, those around her are instead, but it's a change.

Ray Phoenix (graypheonix) says: Wait, orgy of what?
Eve Elliott (stroth) says: The last good Anita Blake book was Obsidian Butterfly, the Merrideth Gentry series isn't worth reading at all and I have forever maintained that the black dagger brotherhood is a poorly disguised attempt to make fun of vampire LARPers lisping through cheap fangs.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Summer In The City", The Lovin' Spoonful)

Hot sex!  Goblin with her highness!
Only read goblin porn that's finest!
Rough hands!  Probe between her thighness!
This'll be the way to drive away her shyness!
Back and forth, twistin' to the side now,
Where the hell'd I put the f***in' AstroGlide now?

It's a diff'rent world in porn!
Doin' it from dusk 'til morn!
Yeah, you can do just as you please,
No pregnancy or STDs!
But you know ... it can still be a problem
When you go ... packing four in a bed,
With a princess, and a goblin, and a princess, and a goblin ...

Katie Powell (pencilears) says:

ok verse one was good you had me with the rhyme of thighness and highness very solid.

verse two, you lost me.

aside from that, now I almost want to go read these Anita Blake books everyone is talking about.

also don't forget the dhragon-goblins. 


Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

It seems I've missed a whole generation of fahntasy fihction. Now, imagine that a trio of female fantasy writers get totally plastered one afternoon and head over to Gringott's....

Mad Andy (andrew_c) says:

Second attempt:

I think I speak for all lovers of good fantasy fiction fantasy snobs when I say of ehrotic fahntahsy fihction:

  YOU MANIACS!! YOU'VE RUINED IT ALL!! Ah, damn you! Damn you all to Hell!

Wayne (wayne) says: Seems to me that a Kindle 2 might work well.  Getting the source material, though....  Is there a porn version of Project Gutenberg?
Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says: I blame Meg Cabot for the Princess fantasy fiction crap.
Joyce Melton (halfelven) says:

Panel 1 reminds me that Unity is very, very young. That early teen gawky stance, how old are her memories, I wonder? How old is she in zombie years?

And do we have to count Sweetheart's age in dog years? 

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: *mind mined, explosion imminent*
Ada Kerman (momerath) says: @Wayne Can you use PG with Kindles?
K C (spotweld) says: Wait.. there's porn you *can't* read on the bus?
John Breckenridge (jbrecken) says:

Has Sweetheart been spayed?

Kenneth Reeves (tetramorpheus) says:

Oddly, the concepts of genre-corrosion reminded me of "Twilight" and the fact that a generation is being raised to adulthood on concepts of glittery vampireness. Shudder.

Although, the Hamilton comparisons are likewise accurate. The last one I read I skipped the sex scenes and just read the story. It took half and hour, tops...

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Stairway To Heaven", Led Zeppelin)

There's a zombie I know
Who is clean out of dough,
And she asks, "Can I please be a table?"
We instruct her instead
To put plants on her head
And to hold them as long as she's able.

And that V-22
Has Gavotte feeling blue;
He wants only to play World of Warcraft ...
Watch as Nick surfs the 'Net,
Makes Mou-sta-chi-o fret,
"Madam, please, we don't need any more craft!"

(Ooooooo, will it be, I wonder ...
Aaaaaaa-nother Skin Horse blunder?)

Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says:

I honestly don't know how to react to this one.  Why is their furnature budget so large?

However, the line "Can I be a table again?" is inherently very funny, even without context.

Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says: I recall seeing a book on Surreal art that had a very prominent (color, page bled onto both pages) picture of a nake female woman on all fours with a glass top. Yup, an artistic surreal table.
Deb Kosiba (bigblued) says: Hysterical!  I once had a seasonal job where the employer got around paying employment taxes on our wages because we were filed as Office Supplies.
Pete Bleackley (petethemadscientist) says: Knowing the beaurocratic morass in which Skin Horse is permanently enmired, it probably has a larger budget for furniture than staff.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Heh.
Terry Smith (wcfan) says: I remember seeing the naked-women-as-furnature pix - in ancient Rome, if you bought a house, slaves came with it, and stayed there if you sold it - like furniture...
Mikhail Borg (mikhailborg) says:

"People as Furniture" is a specific sexual fetish; you can find plenty of websites about the concept, many with plenty of photos. More pictures of women than men, for some odd reason. Someone should do somethign about that.

I'd be the last to put a link here, but for those who can't help themselves, googling "Gord" might be a start. Not that I'd know. Someone must have mentioned it in my presence sometime.

Oh, and Tip would obviously be a bed.

Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says: I remember having to pay $20,000/year to maintain some old equipment that could have been replaced for $10,000, but the DoD has different "colors" of money for Maintenance and Procurement, so I couldn't use the Maintenance money to Procure the cheaper solution.
Jeffrey Channing Wells (channing) says:

"People as furniture"?  Wait, wait, so you're telling me that in my innocent attempt to write a throwaway gag, I actually tripped yet another specialty fetish?  Good crikey, I must be in the zone here.  It's like... it's like all the fetishes are moving in slow motion...

John Campbell (jcampbel) says: Rule 34 applies. Rule 34 always applies.
John Breckenridge (jbrecken) says: Let us gather around the Table of Unity.
Gregory Rihn (ggrihn) says: Actually, Laurel K. Hamilton HAS done "hot goblin and the Princess" in her "Meredith Gentry" series, which is even more poronographic than the Anita Blake books--.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says: @JBrecken:  "Table of Unity"??  Dang!  Why didn't I think of that??  Good one, JB!
Nate Cull (natecull) says:

(Tune: "California Dreaming" by  The Mamas and the Papas)

All my blades are sharp

And my hull is grey

I've been hovering

On a winter's day

Now I'm a FLUFFY cyborg

I could fly away

Helicopter dreamin'

On such a winter's day


Livin' in V.R.

I never meant to stay

But those Anasigma SPORKS

Stole my brain away

Now it's in a can

And I like it that way

Helicopter dreamin'

On such a winter's day


All my blades are sharp

And my hull is grey

If I wanted to

I could fly away

If I had a mission

I'd earn my NACHO BEANS pay

Helicopter dreamin'

On such a winter's day



Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says: Which kind of bed would Tip be? I would think he'd be a futon.
Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says: One hopes she is referring to a projector by a fanciful name.  On the other hand, it is possible that they can't get anything more modern to interface properly with Moustachio.
Andy Wetmore (efogoto) says: Well of course the only desk job Unity could have would be to be the table itself. And who better to fetch briefing materials than Sweetheart. I'm not sure why Tip had to get the beverage. He's gone way beyond teas in this strip.
Martin Weld (ikari_gendo) says:

Yes, Tip has gone way beyond, teas.

Rob (rrreed) says: I can imagine it now — Diana Rigg doing the voice-over for Gavotte…
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Do beehives even get hot?
Pete Bleackley (petethemadscientist) says:

Rob Reed: Perfect!

Mrs Peel, we're needed!

Frank Bahn (caspian_sea_monster) says: THE AR-15?  I'm amused at the thought of a government agency having only one AR-15.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Consequence Free", Great Big Sea)

Manners, Unity!  Please go set up the Magic Lantern ...
Sweetheart, be a dear, and fetch the mission dossiers ...
I see a bee
Drinking her tea!
Saying, "Bzz bzz bzz bzz bzz bzz bzz bzz bzzzzzzzz..."

Dave Van Domelen (dvandom) says: So: Beehives even have a special duty, where some of the workers hang out at the entrance and play the role of ventilation fans to keep the hive from getting too hot. Also, "desk job" joke spread out over two days: Ow.
Elaine Corvidae (elaine_corvidae) says: Dave: Some workers also gather water to help cool the hive. Gavotte probably just has a mister, though.
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says: They changed the name of the Sexual Harassment Training course at work to Sexual Harassement Prevention Training after someone circulated an only-slightly-reworded copy of the course description that included a reference to a "desk job" incident that no one wanted to admit happened.
KaT Adams (kat_adams) says: @ Frank Bahn : With Unity, do you really think they /need/ more than one? Besides, maybe that's just Unity's favorite and they special ordered it. They could stock H&K's or any other number of platforms. Though I kinda see Unity being big on the AR–so many options, so many accessories and replacement parts available...
David Harmon (mental_mouse) says: Re: Panel 4:  Caffeinated honey?
Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says: Jeffrey, how many AR-15s do you have lying around your office? Be honest.
Jeffrey Channing Wells (channing) says:

We actually have a little pit in the center of the attorneys' bullpen that is filled with several hundred AR-15s.  It's kind of like a ball pit; we frolic in it.  To answer your question, then, we are utterly lousy with them.

Oh, wait, you wanted me to be honest.  Riiight.  Forgot, sorry.

Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

heh heh - Lawyers and guns...

A few years ago, there was case where some Talivangelical cretin went into an abortion clinic with the intention of killing people for Jesus, and in the process a lawyer on the premises got ahold of one of his weapons (a 1911) and unloaded it at him -- Nine rounds of .45 ACP and all he needed was a bandaid. Sheesh.

shui lung (draconautus) says:

I actually do have a gun at work . . . it's a 1 pound swivel gun that I get to fire nearly every day . . .

Unity, just how do you think a swarm of bees is going to handle a magic lantern?

M. Alan Thomas II (crazydreamer) says: To be fair, a .45 has a bit more kick than an untrained, paper-pushing lawyer is likely to be ready for.
Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says:

Insert the theme song of Northern Exposure here.

And actually, if I recall correctly, that part of Alaska is probably warmer now than it is in Washington D.C. 

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Er.
crazy dave (crazydave) says: Hey Moustachio is that a projector in your chest plate, or are you just pleased to see me?
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Cold As Ice", Foreigner)

Off to Paradise!
Up where the wind, like ice,
Still blows!
Gotta play it safe!
You know the cold will chafe
My nose!

(Paaa ... raaa ... diiiise,
Na-tives claim it's niiiiice ...)

vicka corey (drbrain) says:

my dog eats my "sweet japanese girl" face soap.  it doesn't even seem to disagree with her.

 (my dog also looks like the earlier, daintier version of sweetheart.  i was all set to be disappointed when sweetheart morphed into her current build.  that said, roses is from texas.)

Glenn Gorsuch (glenn) says: Ironically, I LIVE in Paradise.  The one in California.  And it's a beautiful sunny morning, so nyaah!
William Hostman (aramis) says:

Paradise Alaska is a real place. It is a tiny little village in the middle of nowhere in western Alaska.

Population: not many. Looks to be a fishcamp. Hit it in google earth. Those greyish things along the river edge would appear to be tents...

K C (spotweld) says: While I would like to avoid all potential poltical snark here, I can't help but wonder what would happen if Unity met Sarah Palin...
Vlad Taltos (flyingfish) says: Palin's busy taking on Robin DeSantos from Shortpacked.
Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says:

William: Geez, I didn't know that. I Googled around for a Paradise, Alaska before starting this and couldn't find anything. It looks like the real Paradise might not be far from the cartoon one.
Nate Cull (natecull) says: Take me down to Paradise City
Where the moose are cold and the ice is gritty
Oh, take me down...
Erin Palette (palette) says: Oh. This *can't* be good.
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says: In charge? What are they doing, raiding a sorority house?
Eric Burns (ericburns) says:

...Tip just got a spontaneous promotion?

...oh God, he unconsciously used his Superpower on Gavotte, didn't he?

It was unconscious, right?

Andy Wetmore (efogoto) says: "spontaneous promotion"? Is that when you burst into fame?
Rob (rrreed) says: Perhaps they're finally off to see the Wizard!
ribbles (ribbles) says: "Spontaneous promotion" kinda sounds like the rapture.
Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says:

You know, it's too early in the day for a pun like that, Andy.

And maybe he's now the Uber-Impudite?

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Ooooops.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

@Andy W:  "Burst into fame" FTW.  Good on yer, mate.

David Toboz (professor_zobot) says:


This will not end well. This will not end well at all. I'm not saying that I expect Tip to do a bad job as field commander (actually, I expect he'll be about as effective as a certain star trek commander with a similar superpower) but Sweetheart is NOT going to take this lying down. Or rolling over, for that matter.

Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

@Andy, that is the most awesome Saturday-starting pun ever!

Tip was a military officer. This won't be his first command, just his first chimerical command. 

Joseph Charneskie (mutantsentry) says: I suspect there is more to Tip than we know.  I'm keep thinking Gavott is going "Heh Heh Heh" everytime the feild team leaves her office, but I'm sure she isn't that evil.  But she deffinitly knows something about Tip that we, and I think Tip, doesn't know.
Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says: Oh noes!  Not only does Tip now have the pressure of command (i.e., "blueberry waffles"), but he needs to find some kickin' Uggs!
Naomi H (starbright) says: I think Gavotte only intends it to be for one mission. Judging by the storyline name, this one's going to be personal for Sweetheart, and, well... would you leave Unity in command?
William Hostman (aramis) says:

Paradise AK is at: 62°25'04"N  106°03'06 W or so

South of Anvik, North of Holy Cross, across from Carlo Island, on the west bank of the Yukon River.

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