May 22nd 2018 07:50 am Swiftly Fly the Years…

This is the first of a series from the summer of 2004. Speaking of the passage of time, I can’t believe it’s been that long since I drew this. It’s an odd sequence in which a girl named Sondra makes her one and only appearance. It was my first attempt to move Gene up from pre-adolescent crushes to the big leagues. More to the point, I think it was my effort to explore courtship in the 21st century. Make no mistake about it, “dating” went out a long time ago. The idea of calling a young woman several days in advance (as was polite) to arrange to pick her up at her front door for dinner or a movie had become as archaic as the idea of extended family coming along as chaperones. Hanging out was in, and a “hook up” may or may not be in the cards. Anyway, here’s Sondra.

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Posted by jimmyjohnson / Vintage A&J

13 Responses to “Swiftly Fly the Years…”

  1. TruckerRon on 22 May 2018 at 7:54 am #

    Dating still happens in some areas where hooking up sexually is anathema. We’re just not up-to-date in our social attitudes here. Heck, some people refuse to text to others in the same room. Talking’s still faster and easier.

  2. Steve from Royal Oak, MI on 22 May 2018 at 8:25 am #

    I always enjoyed this strip. Maybe you have repeated here at the website, but it was only a couple of years after my son’s HS years. He ended up marrying his HS sweetheart, so there were only a few girls strolling by.

    A good friend from church passed away a little over a week ago. We were part of a men’s group that met every month. I was disappointed that no one sent out an email with the news and I ended up missing his funeral. One of those cases that everyone assumed that anyone that cared already knew.

    On Sunday I got a notice that the marathon that I had been walking every April is not going to be run any more. I really enjoyed the long walks in January and February to train for the event. I will look for another, but between not wanting to drive too far, pay too much and more importantly will allow someone as slow as me, it might be hard to find.

  3. Rick on 22 May 2018 at 9:15 am #

    Kids just hang out now so there is little fear of rejection but there is not much romance either. Dating and making one person feel special is good training for a life together. Today’s teens are missing an important experience with their group hanging out.

  4. DJJG7 on 22 May 2018 at 10:47 am #

    Polite introductions seemed to have faded out too—”Sondra, this is my father, Arlo Day. Dad, this is Sondra Surname.” “How do you do?” “How do you do?”

    But actually, I know that persists—it has always been that portions are and other portions are not polite to each other.

    Not that Sondra Surname meant any harm.

  5. DJJG7 on 22 May 2018 at 10:47 am #

    Love that eighth note!

  6. DJJG7 on 22 May 2018 at 10:48 am #

    I just got a “You are posting comments too quickly. Slow down.” !

  7. David from Austin on 22 May 2018 at 3:36 pm #

    The only thing about the eighth note is that in the part of the country “where I come from” is that the young lady would have made the “Hi” into two syllables: “Hi-i” where the second syllable was about two-steps lower for Arlo. For Gene, it would start low, and then go higher… sort of a sultry tone.

  8. Rick in Shermantown, Ohio on 23 May 2018 at 4:36 am #

    Perhaps things changed a long time ago.

    Back in the late sixties and early seventies, casual sex was plentiful, and traditional mores were eschewed.

    We didn’t call it “hooking up,” though. We just called it “getting lucky” or other more colorful euphemisms.

  9. Rick in Shermantown, Ohio on 23 May 2018 at 4:39 am #


    Nice nod to the fiddler.

  10. Bob on 23 May 2018 at 6:51 am #

    I was disappointed that Sondra never reappeared. However, IIRC, Ruth was on the horizon.

  11. dave on 23 May 2018 at 7:59 am #

    You named a character, “Sondra”, who only showed up once?

  12. DJJG7 on 23 May 2018 at 9:22 am #

    Walt Kelly made up maybe a hundred characters in Pogo, many of which made a brief but memorable appearance. Memorable because every one of them had a real personality. And in just a few panels. Sondra Surname shows up for one panel, and she’s real. Yeah, Dave, I agree—the name makes that happen too.

    Arlo, why didn’t you at least say hi?

  13. Jym Dyer on 23 May 2018 at 9:50 am #

    ???? I’ve always wondered whether Sondra here was the underclad emailer of Gene’s imagination, a few years previously: