Little Acorns

Little Acorns

June 24, 1993

July 14, 1993

We’re stilll in 1993, during our “The Summer of 35” retrospective. This year was the last full year before digital archiving, and while the characters looked different, the nature of “Arlo & Janis” had become well established in the eight years since its inception. In fact, I chose these two examples from the summer of ’93, because they’re both harbingers of the strip’s Great Themes. I told you’d I select something that had never appeared in print since its original publication, and that is true of the above. However, I can’t swear that they’ve never appeared here, on the Web site. I just don’t know. However, I’m taking advantage of a loophole. They have not appeared in print since 1993. We’ll get to some of the really old stuff before we’re done.

66 responses to “Little Acorns”

  1. If this had run yesterday, I might have changed what I ordered for lunch. The catfish and grits was really good though, with enough left over for supper.

  2. Oh these are AWESOME!! Gene’s future materializing right there . . . and Arlo’s too. With Janice going, “Wait just a darned minute, there, fellas!” 🙂 Thank you for sharing these!!

  3. It’s funny how Gene’s appearance changes between these two strips. He looks older and more mature in the “crawfish” strip. And the shape of his nose changes as well, although that might just be due to the angle we are seeing him from. Crawfish in your face, now that is a funny line.

  4. Had the crawfish cartoon ever appeared on the blog, chances are I would have seen it. If I had seen it, I would have remembered it, as “crawfish in your face” is one of my favorite dishes. (I was fortunate enough to have had it at K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen on more than one occasion.) Ergo, it has not appeared on the blog. Probably. 🙂
    I suppose we could have a discussion about “crawfish” vs. “crayfish”, but let’s not. Anyway, in my neck of the Deep South woods, they are about as often called “mudbugs”. As in, “Let’s burn some bugs this weekend.”
    The crawfish boil may well be the best thing to ever come out of Louisiana. Other than Jackie, of course.

  5. In ’43 & ’45, first encountered Cajun food / family of Mom’s friends in LaPlace, LA. Spiciness was a little much, tho they’d toned it down for this Yankee teen. By ’73, had become accustomed to various curries & also Mexican food. En route from Bemidji to Houston via NOLA in Dec. [at Nixon’s 50 mph], Elaine, 2 of our 3 kids, & I stopped at a roadhouse for supper, & I had crawfish etoufee. Superb; became a fan! Recall having mentioned this trip before, either here or in a Bemidji Pioneer column. That roadhouse is where Stuart, visiting the men’s room, first [?] encountered coin machines that offered products “for prevention of disease only.”

  6. Here’s a toss up item:
    In reading comics, I enjoy being able to “escape” the imperfect real world. That being so, I do not find it desirable to have a comic necessarily reflect reality. In the current case, I prefer comics wherein anti-viral masks are not seen. Let the comic scenario be of an imaginary world of greater perfection. Oh, I’ll read them anyway, to be sure….


    • For me it depends on whether the strip is using the real-world events to advance the story or to display the writer/artist’s credentials as being properly “correct” in the attitudes and behaviors displayed. I greatly prefer the former and despise the latter. So JJ’s inclusion of things relative to the pandemic enable me to see the human reactions to the tragedy. Strips that insist on taking potshots at real-life politicians leave me cold.

  7. Lord help us! Jimmy I LIKE that you seem to be the ONLY cartoonist reflecting real time real normalcy of the current real normal.

    Right on and thank you! Reason you are my ONLY cartoonist to make the survival cut.

  8. Since I now leave my quarantine only to go to Tulsa for cancer treatment it has been a month since I left the house. Talk about boring!

    Tomorrow I am cooking my first ever brocolli rice cheese casserole (with chicken) in 71 years of cooking. I swear these recipes follow the Southern funeral casserole recipes tradition made popular by Paula Deen!

    Melt a stick of butter and add two cans of cream of something Campbell’s soup, top with crushed Ritz crackers and bake until the grated cheese melts.

    Wish I were making Crawfish in Your Face!

    I don’t even EAT brocolli rice casserole. Let’s hope my friend does, she said cheesey casseroles?

    Ghost is making key lime pie. I am considering using the dough hook to make Italian bread. My hook is virgin so time to see how easy it is to use. It’s not new.

  9. Loving today’s strip, where Arlo reflects on the fact that his son now perceives young adults as “kids.” That’s sure something that stops a person in their tracks the first time it happens. Another one, though slightly different, is that yesterday I learned the “kid” who manages the place we’re living has a 20-year old daughter. Either he had her when he was 10 years old or my perception of who’s a “kid” has slid seriously up the age scale. I’m thinking I might have to decide he was a very precocious child. 🙂

  10. Dawn, today’s strip made me think about the few women I dated before getting married, and realizing that they could have children in the upper 20’s to early 30’s now!

  11. My oldest daughter has a grandchild almost as old as my grandson. I am not claiming to be a great grandmother. No way.

    I love my elegant and stately physicians who served in Vietnam, I have three such. All charming and still functional, top of their fields, instilling confidence.

    Ghost’s orthopedic hand specialist is a child wonder, adorable cute Hawaiian surfer boy. Did his ortho residency at 12 apparently and his additional specialties by 15.

  12. Good to see a youngster willing to eat something interesting. Our oldest was enthusiastic about snails in garlic butter when we had them one night – “More nails! More nails!” said the one in the high chair – but got pickier later. He’s now grown, a vegan, but will bend the rules occasionally. In particular a local BBQ joint has tofu étouffée on the menu, which he happily eats when in town while being careful not to ask about butter.

    Shrimp étouffée is one of Ellen’s special-occasion dishes.

  13. Momma Bear’s Grandma asked (when she had her appendix out at 95)
    “Are you sure he is old enough to be a Doctor?” . 🙂
    Has anyone else having problem with Yahoo mail?

  14. For those who haven’t seen any news today, the rump says that members of the US military who have been killed or wounded in combat are “loser” and “suckers”. That from Mr. Bonespur.

  15. Ghost turned out two lovely meringue key lime pies. I cleaned the fridge and made two large chopped salads with most of the contents. One to go, one for us. The casserole won’t win any ribbons for looks but hopefully tastes better. I have made few casseroles in my life to be honest.

  16. I never had a father, killed by the British and “Friendly Fire” while flying an unarmed spy plane in WWII. He was fourth casualty in a month in his battalion shot down by British. He was MIA for seven years. Buried in Italy. He and so many gave their lives volunteering for service.

    • I’m so sorry for such a devastating loss in your life, Jackie — and for the loss your father and others suffered, their lives ending so early in service to others. The way it happened, and the fact he was MIA for so long, must have been very hard for you to deal with as you grew up. But I am sure he was comforted all during those years by thinking of family back home — including you.

  17. Because of the number of pilots killed by the British all the deaths were covered up. I found out truth at age 50 when they were unsealed. I was born after his death. My mom remarried after waiting seven years. I lived with my grandparents mostly. The life of the WWII war orphans was difficult. Thete were about 50,000 of us, most had similar experiences the studies found.

  18. From KSL:
    “This footage of the Wuppertal Suspended Railway in Germany resides in New York’s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and was published on its YouTube page in early August. YouTuber Denis Shiryaev took the video as a challenge and proceeded to stabilize the film, boost the FPS to 4k, upgrade the frame rate to 60 per second while correcting playback speed issues, and colorize the footage using ambiance and historical data. The video was reposted on Twitter, where it promptly went viral and accrued several million views.

    “The resulting film is haunting, beautiful, and will make you feel like a time-traveler. It seems too good to have originated in 1902, and gives an uncanny valley effect of modern video game graphics. It’s mesmerizing, and I’ve rewatched it more times than I can count.”

  19. Have been reading diaries from various farmer/planters covering periods from 1830s to 1927 in my home state/parish in the Louisiana Delta opposite Natchez, Mississippi. Absolutely fascinating, there was a major depression in 1890s, followed by boll weevils in early 1900s and then the Great Flood.

    I am struck by high levels of intelligence, education and what was at the time very ecumenical and liberal thought and beliefs. It is made more fascinating by fact I actually knew many of these families as a child, knew the surviving plantations.

    The richest area in America in 1860 is now the poorest area in America and the least populated in Louisiana. I hung out with my grandfather and his friends, many of whom appear in the 1890-1920 periods. Seeing families go from great wealth and lawyers, doctors to school janitors, juke joint owners, redneck welfare recipients is stunning.

    Sorry, not humor but not political. Definitely not the make believe of those who make believe. All in major university collections

  20. I’ve never been one to indulge in midnight snacking, but I was just catching up on the posts here and saw Jackie’s mention of my pies. I checked the fridge, and there was a generous slice of the one we kept remaining. So tonight, I had a midnight snack. (Don’t worry, baby; I only ate half of it.)
    My key lime pie is simply a different-juice version of the age-old Southern “lemon icebox pie”. For no particular reason, I’ve apparently been blessed with the ability to make pretty decent ones, even if those pies and rum cakes are about the only baking I do. (Much like my father, I suppose, who baked only pecan pies but who baked great ones.) I used to make the pies for my all-female staff, and they would almost fight over who got the last slice. I normally make a meringue topping for them, and I’ve never had a “meringue failure”, which I’m given to understand is a common baking problem.

  21. Think I will go bake a blackberry cobbler and a blackberry crunch. Comparison research.

    Ghost bakes cobblers too. And bread pudding.

    I left him that piece of pie. I had a piece for breakfast, lunxh and supper. He makes a lovely meringue.

  22. From a comment sent to Anu Garg’s A Word A Day:
    “There is a similar term arising from a team of oxen. Oxen are large and are driven typically by walking along their left side. The ox closer to the driver is called the nigh ox. The other, which the driver rarely sees, is called the off ox. That explains why we wouldn’t know someone from the off ox.”
    It does? “… we … “? First time I’ve seen the expression. Any of you familiar w/ it?

  23. KSL, Great video. Has he done any others? BTW, does anyone know the difference between being dumb and being ignorant? One of them is on purpose.

  24. Adam’s off ox was an expression I grew up with along with poor as Job’s turkey.

    I had a great great uncle who drove an oxen team up into modern times and his death at around 100. I think the family still celebrates his birthday?

    Of course my family came from the western hills of the Carolina mountains to Louisiana in 1800 with Louisiana Purchase. They brought with them customs and language of late colonial period preserving them until 1900s due to remote area of Louisiana they located

  25. Spent morning reading about Ghost’s Louisiana ancestors. Fascinating since about 60 years ago I seriously dated another descendant of these same ancestors

    As we say in the South, “They come from a goid family”.

  26. Jackie, when I started getting a little more serious about my family history I found that my dad’s side came from a family that can trace back to a settler in Virginia in the very early colonial days. They seem to have gone from there, to the Carolinas, and then kept going west. It turns out that Vicksburg, Mississippi is named for one of my ancestors. Very interesting, I had always thought my dad’s family must have been rather quiet types because I hadn’t found anything past his great-grandfather and now I’m learning how much they were into along the way.

  27. Mark I ran across the Vick family this week while reading about my area. They were prominent and there were honestly not that many people living in that period to marry!

  28. That expression in South is “He comes/came from a good family ” which you also say when someone does something shocking.

    Three boys I dated committed murder as grown men. One killed husband, the girlfriend, her “roommate ” and himself. I wasn’t surprised actually, just shocked.

    Tourists tour his family home daily in Natchez. When telling my laye husband about the murders he said we should check out all my old boyfriends to see how many more there were?

    I protested, “They ALL came from good families!”

  29. I believe I had mentioned to Jackie I had a great-great-grandfather who served in the Civil War…according to his tombstone, which I have seen, in the 7th New York Provisional Cavalry Regiment. (Oops. Well, at least he either stayed in or came back to the South after the war.)
    She didn’t know I had a direct ancestor (John, same surname as mine) who was a Captain in the North Carolina 2nd Battalion of Militia during the Revolutionary War. Another (also John, same surname as mine) fought with Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812, was wounded in action and was saved by a fellow soldier, but never fully recovered. (He fathered 14 children by four wives, so you can probably guess where his wound *wasn’t*.) The family was kicked off by Richard the Immigrant (1660 – 1712), one of a group of 46 that came to America and landed at the future site of Yorktown in 1688.
    I suppose I could have joined some historical societies had I ever taken the time to do so.

    • One of my distant ancestors served in a South Carolina militia company during the War of 1812. By the time the Federal government decided to offer those volunteers land and a pension for the service, he had passed on. His widow got the eldest son, who was named after his father, to pretend to be him in order to collect what would have been due his father. They got by with it on the initial application, but an investigator further up the chain caught on some time later. The record didn’t say what the government did about it, just a comment by the reviewer that a closer check would have caught it in the beginning.

  30. What Ghost didn’t say was his relative had ended up on a plantation in Monroe, Louisiana and had become a VERY prominent landowner.
    The odd coincidence was my old boyfriend of many years as a teen and young person was a descendant through his mother of these same ancestors!!

  31. Ghost -et-al
    An ancestor of mine did absolutely nothing of note.
    Though the land my house is on (a small part) was given to a veteran of the War of 1812.
    by Pres. Buchanan.

  32. I also didn’t mention that my wounded ancestor John was shot in the left thigh during the Battle of New Orleans. The Redcoat who shot him was reportedly so close the burning power from his musket set fire to John’s clothing. The US soldier who carried him back to safety was unknown to John until 1842, when the man stopped by John’s house in Monroe and introduced himself. The two remained friends for the rest of their lives.
    Reportedly, he drew a pension for being wounded…$8 per month, which was not an insignificant sum then. Perhaps it helped him become a landowner.

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