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Smithson Thus Far... ·

Andrew Kunz (ampersand888) says:

First! (Always wanted to say that.)

Also, I'm not a fan of pepperoni. Too greasy.

John Campbell (jcampbel) says:

Pepperoni can't be a vegetable. If pepperoni were a vegetable, it wouldn't be an acceptable topping for pizza.

Chicken, on the other hand, is totally a vegetable.

John Sears (john_sears) says:

Well, Unity, that depends.

Are we talking *actual* pepperoni or some really skeezy artificial ingredient filled knockoff? Because if it's Taco Bell grade 'meat', it might be closer to the plant kingdom than the animal one.

Viktor Dosk (hugin) says:

John, I would disagree with everything you said, but your conclusions are unimpeachable. 

Joyce Melton (halfelven) says:

Had a vegetarian friend who agreed with Unity that pepperoni was a vegetable. A member of the squash family, like zucchini, he said.

Andrew Kunz (ampersand888) says:

Anything that they have to use a meat hoe reign in can't possibly be meat.

Andrew Kunz (ampersand888) says:

Love zucchini. Great veggie, even better word to say, or use in a game of Scrabble.

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "You Don't Own Me", Leslie Gore)

Pepperoni ...
Tastiest veg'table you can drink!
Pepperoni ...
In California it's grown, I think!

   Delicious and lots of fun,
   I might have a bite today!
   Spumoni's another one
   That's tasty and fun to say!

Ice cream sundae ...
Yummy and helps make computers go!
For a fun day,
I'll take some home to Moustachio!

   I know 'cuz I think I know,
   Believe 'cuz I just believe!
   My heart's on my sleeve, although
   Right now I don't have a sleeve!

   It's true when I'm saying it's true!
   I'm right when I'm saying I'm right!
   So right now, I'll follow my krewe
   And find something that I can fight!

Dave Van Domelen (dvandom) says: Taco Bell meat, to which the answer to the question, "Animal, vegetable or mineral?" is YES.
Brian Petery (ugwump) says:

I'm gonna try that Ice Cream in my computer advice!  I'll let you know how it turns out.

Glenn Gorsuch (glenn) says:

Ah HAH!  Jeffrey, Shaenon--at least one of you is a GURPS player--you've outed yourselves with the ice cream.


Mmm.  Ice cream.  

Jeffrey Channing Wells (channing) says: I was hoping somebody would notice that.
Andrew Cole (andy4hire) says:

I've eaten at restaurants whose menus list Macaroni and Cheese as a "Vegetable." Pepperoni is plausible.

Rachel Blackman (rainpacket) says:

French fries count as a serving of 'vegetables' to meet baseline nutrition standards in the lunch program of many school districts.  So, why not pepperoni? :P

Sean Duggan (duggansc) says: In their defense, Taco Bell recently proved that their taco meat is 88% meat. The rest is spices, water, and additives which do seem largely vegetable.
John Sears (john_sears) says:

I was shocked that the additives are mostly edible, yeah.  But even if their percentages are correct, the USDA apparently bans putting *any* fillers or added water in something you call 'beef'; they only allow spices.

I've never considered oats to be a spice, myself, and I doubt most people do either.  Even their webpage claims it isn't seasoning, but rather adds to the 'quality' of their product; I have to wonder how adding vegetable padding improves the quality of taco meat.

Joe Windham (tojo102) says:

John C, I find Tucson chicken pizza quite acceptable.

Joe Windham (tojo102) says:

In answer to Sean Duggan, does anyone REALLY expect any different from Taco Bell?  Regular Mexican restaurants are plentiful and don't usually cost that much more.

John Sears (john_sears) says:

There is a fantastic little fast food taco mini-chain in a pit of a town in West-Central Indiana (Terre Haute) called Taco Casita.  Their tacos are cheaper than taco bell and much, much better.  It can be done, and unless they're pulling a Sweeney Todd on me, it is being done.  And I've seen lots of taqueria places that do better tacos than Taco Bell at roughly the same price.

Me, I'm just glad the additives in Taco Bell Quasi-Meat Food Related Product aren't toxic waste or known carcinogens.


Grant McCormick (grantcmccormick) says:

Unity doesn't seem to be too broken up by this turn of events.

I bet she's not used to her rambling being chopped off like this.

Just as well — her conclusions wouldn't have had a leg to stand on.

Cat Bascle (mage_cat) says:

For the record (so nobody else has to look it up like I did) the flashback took 4 months and 5 days our time, starting on September 24th, 2010 and ending February 1, 2011.

John Sears (john_sears) says:

Let this be a lesson, ladies and gents: when preparing to interrogate sentient plant life, bring plenty of herbicide as a backup plan.

The Auld Grump (theauldgrump) says:

Or a secret agent - I recommend Agent Orange in this case... Just ask an Irisman how the Orange feel about the Green.


The Auld Grump

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: .......which brings us to the matter at hand.
Rob (rrreed) says: "I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure. "
Dieter M. (tangerine) says:

Oh man that was all FLASHBACK?  I thought the beginning was just a trippy imaginationland state.


Sounds like Dokken would have been better.

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Torn", Natalie Imbruglia)

Last night I saw a corpse come to life ...
Glowing eyes, I saw her rise, I saw her lurch and stomp ...
I followed her into the swamp
Where there's an entity I met before ...
Who served me tea cheerfully, but not anymore ...
Gee, my stomach's awfully sore!

I got myself into a mess
Fighting Cypress consciousness!
This flashback's done ...

What the heck? I'm torn!
Seems I've gone to "waist"!
I'm a bit upset,
I'm really broken up!
Didn't hear when Sweetheart warned ...

Moved with too much haste!
Blacked out for a bit,
But now I've woken up,
I'm soakin' up the sporiform!
Gotta warn my team!
Problem is, I'm torn ...

Andrew Kunz (ampersand888) says:

Flashbacks have got to be the worst Birthday Present I could ever get.

Brian Petery (ugwump) says:

This means Unity remembered exactly what Sweetheart told her to do, then remembered remembering it as scritchies.

Just Here (justhere4coffee) says:

Wasn't Unity down to only one arm before the flashback?

Jeffrey Channing Wells (channing) says: The point where you came in is actually a couple hours down the pike from the moment you see in Panel 4; as the line in the last panel is metatheatric anyway, I didn't feel too bad about it not syncing. Good catch, though.
Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

Unity's had a hand named Brian and a paw named Ramon.  Do we want to know the names of all the pieces currently missing, and do they come when they're called?

Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says:

Dammit, you're right. I have to get rid of an arm.
This guy I know (thisguy) says:

A flashback within a flashback! Within a...ah forget it, that's enough recursion for today.

Seven Deer (sevendeer) says:

Recurses, foiled again!

Brian Petery (ugwump) says:

Waaait... Unity just sews herself together, right?  That explains why she keeps losing limbs.  The girl needs to invest in some bone fixation devices.

John Sears (john_sears) says:

Very observant young man.

E.T. the Eccentric Type (et_the_eccentric_type) says:

I was going to say, "What tipped him off? Because it wasn't the skirt", but I guess I was ninja'd.

Ysabet Just Ysabet (theysabet) says:

^__^  I love how pleased he is to meet Tip.  "Thank god, friendly faces!  A talking dog and a cross-dressing psychiatrist! Neither one of you are shambling, mindless undead or sentient plantlife!"

Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

@YSY: Yet.

We've got Thing, do we get Cousin It and Lurch?

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "You Won't See Me", The Beatles)

I met U-ni-ty,
We had a chat!
Ran away ... from me
To catch her hat!
She's been gone .. so long,
I feel that something's wrong!
Then you came ... along!
I'm glad to see you!

Didn't un-der-stand
A word I said!
She gave me ... her hand,
Went on ahead!
She ran off ... to see
The Cypress en-ti-ty!
And this wor-ries me ...
I'm glad to see you!

   Tough, in this fog,
   To locate you, but I guessed right!
   Cute talking dog
   And psychologist transvestite!

Now I don't ... much fear
These zombie men!
'Cause I just ... said, "Here
We go again!"
Now I'm not ... alone
(As Tip enjoys a scone)
Oh, and here's ... her phone!
I'm glad to see you!

Joyce Melton (halfelven) says:

Wow! There are Skin Horse movies? :)

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

@halfelven: I think Sweetheart was referring to when Unity forgets to silence her phone when they're at the local multiplex cinema.

(TUNE: "My Ding A Ling", Chuck Berry)

We're tracking Unity, call her cell!
Remy jumps and says "What the hell?"
The scream that's used for her ring tone
Is bellowing out of Unity's phone!

    Unity's phone!  Unity's phone!
    A scream ring tone for Unity's phone!
    Unity's phone!  Unity's phone!
    A scream ring tone for Unity's phone!

Sweetheart told her, "Turn it on!"
It's true, she did, but now she's gone ...
She's fighting the Cypress, all alone,
And we're stuck here with Unity's phone!

    (repeat CHORUS)

In the movies, when it vibrates,
You feel it shift tectonic plates!
For text alerts, a combat zone!
The sounds we found on Unity's phone!

    (repeat CHORUS)

Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says:

I'm... almost waiting for Remy to flirt with Tip. Dunno why.

Rachel Blackman (rainpacket) says:

I suspect that's still less obnoxious than most default ringtones out there.

Q. Pheevr (q-pheevr) says:

Is there any ringtone that doesn't get annoying at the movies?

Joyce Melton (halfelven) says:

@eddurd But my response was funnier. :) And two hours after posting, I thought I'd be sure the first post was at least a smile.

James Rice (jhrice) says:

I know chicks that don't mind standing knee deep in swamp water.

Ysabet Just Ysabet (theysabet) says:

I never minded. Swamps are very romantic.

John Sears (john_sears) says:

The romance of a given swamp is inversely proportional to the prevalence of mosquitos, dysentary and malaria in said swamp.

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

Shaenon, did you have Sweetheart say "smooth operator" just to see if I would use the Sade song?  Actually, I've been listening to classical music lately, so ...

(TUNE: "The Beautiful Blue Danube", Johann Strauss)

There's something askew ...
Where's U-ni-ty?
Thought she was with you!
She's not ... with me!

We figured you two
Would see ... the sights,
Collecting some new
Mos-qui-to bites!

Or maybe romance
At some ... new bar!
She'd drink and She'd dance
And eat ... a car!

But now, through this bog
We must slog,
Yelling, "Where the fog is Unity?!"

Andrew Kunz (ampersand888) says:

You know, where is Nick in all of this?

Ysabet Just Ysabet (theysabet) says:

RE: romantic swamps-- true, but if you grow up in the swampy bits of the South, they're a good place to sneak away to providing you've decked yourself out with enough bug-spray. And while mosquitoes may be the Florida State Bird, I never caught anything from 'em myself.

Adam (10-0-0-1) says: Nick is probably looking up some hot helicopter babes on the local wifi connection.
Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

Tip trying to keep his skirt out of the mud is so sad.  And hairy-legged.

Cesario VIola (cesarioviola) says:

Tip looks so cranky.

Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says:

That's not leg hair! That's mud! Which is even sadder!
Kay Gilbert (kaygilbert) says:

Yes, but we know Tip will choose mission over fashion.  Remember the sad demise of the Courrèges-style mini-dress and go-go boots when he visited the subbasements?  (And the cobra-kyped earrings!)

M. Alan Thomas II (crazydreamer) says:

I can tell that this is an "A + B = uh-oh!" moment, but I can't quite figure out why.

Sean Riedinger (ariamaki) says:

Because it probably wouldn't be hard to pass the lineage down into a -different- female body, especially a conveniently pre-undead one.

woozy (woozy) says:

Because the nice swamp entity with the cookies wasn't cypress for the papers were intended for and there's a second nasty swamp entity and .... 

no, wait.  That doesn't follow at all.  I'll need to reread those strips about the vodoo queen again.  Sean's on the right track if the vod...

Yeah, Sean's got it figured out.

Wait.  No, he doesn't.    I should go to bed right now.

woozy (woozy) says:

Okay.  On Wednesday Sweetheart and Tips dialog that "Either Cypress is innocent or a great liar" and Tip's comments about the cookies implies that Sweetheart and Tip have visited the tea granting swap entity off-stage.  The samp entity that is molesting Unity is anout swamp entity all together.

So what do two swamp entities have to do with two voddo queens.  Um, I'm guessing that as vodoo queens use swamp entities to make zombies that vodoo queens stave off death by becoming swamp entities and ... so P wassisface married a zombie queen when she was human and as Gavotte was friends with Cypress and hadn't known she'd married ... then Cypress/friendly is the mother and Venus/nasty is the daughter (now a swamp entity herself) and the *both* are referred to by the same appelation either "Cypress" and/or "Bayou des Whoozits" so Gavotte incorrectly assumed the divorce papers referred to Cypress/friendly. 

woozy (woozy) says:

D'oh!  It's much simpler than that.

1)Sweethearts asking about the vodoo queen in mild curiosity for no reason.
2)Remy says there were two vodoo queens.
3)Sweetheart realizes she was assuming that there was just one vodoo queen, and if she was wrong about that, she could also be wrong about the assumption that there was just one swamp entity.
4)If there are more than one swamp entities then...
5)Unity is in danger.

It's not an A + B = uh-oh moment.  It's an if A  allows B than C allows uh-oh moment.


Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Dancing Queen", ABBA)

In the shade of a mangrove tree,
Team is searching for Unity ...
Sweetheart, Tip, and Remy,
(Also Brian too),
They don't know what to do ...

As through water and mud they go,
Remy tells of Marie Laveau ...
Daughter having the same name,
Took her mother's place!
Sweetheart, she makes a face ...
And through the swamp she'll race ...

They were the voodoo queens!
Mom and daughter in New Orleans!
Voodoo queens!
Sweetheart knows now just what that means!
(Oh, s**t!)
More than one, there were two ...
Sweetheart's commanding the crew,
"Come one guys, follow me!
Gotta find Unity!"

Andrew Kunz (ampersand888) says:

I had wondered when Ed would use Dancing Queen. Bravo, bravo. 

Just Here (justhere4coffee) says:

Y'know, trying to read Woozy's rambling exposition has made ME woozy! :D

Tom Powell (top1950) says:

I love watching how the 'hand' reacts to everything.

Woof Arf (woofnarf) says:

Shaenon and Jeff: You guys must have connections in Hollywood to have Thing from the Addams Family appear in your strip.  Isn't this the second story arc he's appeared in?

See, it's the effort in deliverying quality like that that makes us appreciate you guys!

woozy (woozy) says:

Y'know, trying to read Woozy's rambling exposition has made ME woozy! :D

I plead sleep deprivation.  Sorry.

Eric Burns (ericburns) says: It's more than just the Cypress having a daughter gestalt that is also 'the Cypress.' It's that the daughter is, as with Marie Laveau, gradually taking over for the mother. She is potentially expanding into her mother's gestalt, claiming trees for her own. And she has apparently infected human corpses with plant goop, taking them over.
Brian McPherson (brian-m) says:

@ woozy

"Tip's comments about the cookies implies that Sweetheart and Tip have visited the tea granting swap entity off-stage."

Not necessarily. Possibley Unity bought back come cookies with her, and shared them with Tip after the kiss?

I'm thinking that maybe the swamp entity sometimes "posesses" a body the same way she creates the zombies. Maybe Cypress is the Voodo Queen?

Ysabet Just Ysabet (theysabet) says:

I have to wonder how the swamp goop got into the corpses.  Sure hope it wasn't transmitted via cookies... 

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