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I might as well take the tiger by the horns. From 1995, here’s an old strip on a familiar theme, Arlo pining for a sailboat. That’s your cue to chorus, “So, what happened to Arlo’s boat that Gus gave him?” The scientific answer would be, Nothing, because I haven’t let anything happen. Yet. The reality is more complicated. Probably, it was a mistake to give Arlo a boat. The perfect analogy is Charlie Brown and the football. The story and the humor were in his desire and frustration. Kick it, and the tension would be gone. Now that Arlo, in theory, has a boat, what happens? Obviously, I could do a lot of boat gags. It would be easy! Forty people who follow the strip would love them. I know; I”m one of them. Everyone else would get bored. However… I’ve tried to explain before, comics don’t exactly move in real time. This isn’t to say the boat won’t reappear. Certainly, we can talk about it.

73 responses to “Saleboat”

  1. I remember the little boat he finally got. I seem to recall him wrestling it in the yard then it disappeared. I’ve always wondered what happened to it. Maybe Janis used it as a planter?

  2. Totally understand Jimmy’s dilemma regarding Arlo’s boat. The Charlie Brown analogy is a good one! But I think perhaps the dream of owning a boat has passed its expiration date. Why not explore what happens when a mature (ahem) adult achieves a dream? Does it live up to the hype? I, for one, would like to find out. Carry on, Jimmy! And more Gene, Mary Lou, Meg and Gus, please. They spice up the pot.

  3. I would LOVE to see A&J do some sailing soon…and I’ll bet there are more than 40 of us that feel that way! Plus, it’s an excuse to get Janis in her bikini again… πŸ˜‰

  4. Not a fan of boats or of sailing, but the strips are just as amusing as the rest and I agree with Rusty about the bikini. πŸ™‚

  5. Let me join the chorus agreeing that some boating strips would be fun. Especially, as Bonnie from Glouster points out, how having is not as fun as wanting. I can see quite a number of strips with Arlo complaining about all the work that a boat entails while Janis sees only the fun aspects of boating.

    With the foreshadowing of Ludwigs fate, perhaps some fun goofy boating strips will be needed. (Plus Janis in a bathing suit is always a bonus!)

  6. Ah, yes, Arlo’s small boat. At one point, as I recall, he was chasing it down the street in a windstorm, yelling, “Someone grab my dingy!” or something to that effect. If he did that today, he would probably end up as a registered sex offender.

    Jean, my favorite line of Captain Ron’s came when the sailboat was leaving port and the owner expressed concern about the heavy maritime traffic: “Don’t worry. They’ll get out of the way. I learned that driving the Saratoga.” (For those of you who do not know, the USS Saratoga, now decommissioned, was a 1000+ foot long, 80,000+ ton aircraft carrier.)

    A close second is when Captain Ron said, “Yeah, incentives are important. I learned that in rehab.”

  7. GR6, the line about the Saratoga reminds me of a discussion in The Bluejackets Manual about rights of way. It went something like this: your 16 foot motor whaleboat might have the right of way over an aircraft carrier, but the laws of physics trump the laws of the sea. I also recall the nickname I heard for the Saratoga when I was on active duty: The Sinking Sara. People who had served on her told that her hull was so thin that you couldn’t chip paint below the waterline. Then there was the USS Forest Fire(Forrestal) nickname due to the massive fires she suffered. One accidental and one arson by someone who didn’t want to go back to sea when she finished rehab from the first one.

  8. The Man In My Life is a military enthusiast and hosts a gathering of his friends once a month. They talk airplanes, tanks and ships till they are blue in the face. I am a regular attendee.

  9. I for one think JJ has more people who’d like to hear about what happens when Arlo achieves his dream and how he deals with it. I have been Janis and “The Other Woman” to boats for 47 years which gives me some veteran experience. Plus I have several hundred boating friends, all male, who confide in me like Dear Abby.

    What I want to see are some strips that deal with Arlo and Janis’ handling of achieving that dream. I do not know what Arlo and Janis will do. I doubt Jimmy does. Writers don’t always know the plot all the way to the end.

    Captn Ron is especially popular with sailors. Kurt Russell can do little wrong in my opinion, even when he does.

    Love, Jackie Monies

  10. Good for you, Lily.

    Radgrad, The Dark Side is a name I came up with for the “other” A&J blog, which may be found under the daily cartoon on the gocomics site. There are several reasons for that name, but let’s just say it primarily means that it’s not as awesome as this blog. πŸ™‚

  11. Radgrad, The Dark Side is the commentaries posted on the GoComics website under the daily strip. Not being moderated by Jimmy, it suffers in quality but not quantity.

  12. Comments are more like some FaceBook or text message “shorties”. I like the one today about Arlo really knowing how to wrap his hands around a hoe.

    That was an astute comment! Jimmy, you really did a fantastic job drawing that particular detail. Hands are hard, hard to draw and cartoon. Notice how bad they are or absent in most strips?

    Love, Jackie Monies

  13. Regarding naval rights of way:

    ACTUAL transcript of a US naval ship with Canadian authorities off the coast of Newfoundland in October, 1995. This radio conversation was released by the Chief of Naval Operations on 10-10-95.

    Americans: “Please divert your course 15 degrees to the North to avoid a collision.”

    Canadians: “Recommend you divert YOUR course 15 degrees to the South to avoid a collision.”

    Americans: “This is the captain of a US Navy ship. I say again, divert YOUR course.”

    Canadians: “No, I say again, you divert YOUR course.”


    Canadians: “This is a lighthouse. Your call.”

    (Not realy true, but a great story nevertheless.)

  14. I believe the last glimpse we had of the boat was Gene living on it prior to marrying Mary Lou? Maybe they still use it when they stay at the restaurant or Meg is with Gus.

  15. I think Arlo and Janis stayed on it during the wedding festivities and Janis loved it, talked about how cute everything was. Or maybe that was just ahead of Gus giving it to Arlo?

    I have more trouble with real time than comics time!

    By the way, our schooner is living in Pensacola, FL now with a happy owner who loves her.
    She spent some time in Penobscot Bay in Maine and in the Caribbean. None of it with us.

    You see, I know the story of my Arlo’s schooner, I know what choices he made, so I want to learn more about Arlo’s. Consider it JJ looking through our windows at us.

    Love, Jackie Monies

  16. {The below comment disappeared (twice), so I’ll try again. If it shows up later, I apologize for the duplication. Also, I’ll post the link separately to see if that helps.}

    Jackie, from your comment that you only started lurking here a couple of years ago, you may not know about Jimmy’s “Cartooner Schooner”. I’m not sure of the dates of his ownership, but I believe it ended pre-Katrina and well pre-A&J-blog-in-its-present-form. Of course, there are probably a number of folks around here who, for one reason or another, don’t date back that far. Heck, Lily was probably still in elementary school. πŸ™‚

  17. The link is kicking out the comment, no matter how I format it. If you want to see the Cartooner Schooner,try googling “cartooner schooner”.

  18. Thank you, Ghost! Yes, I knew about the Cartooner Schooner and figured Arlo’s schooner was based on Jimmy’s. But I could NOT find a photo of her anywhere. I tried Googling her name, nothing. I knew Jimmy had donated her to one of the nautical museums down in Florida panhandle, so I tried writing some, still no results.

    I was terribly afraid she had been lost in one of the hurricanes. Believe you me, I check on the health of “our” schooner all the time, as much as I can. Boats, especially these kind are not to be parted with lightly.

    Jimmy, would it be rude to ask about the fate of the Cartooner Schooner?

    Does Arlo’s boat/schooner have a name? The procedure to change the name of a boat is so complicated many do not do so. I mean, it is the offerings and prayer to all the gods of the sea and wind and compass points, not to mention the libations flung into the water and all the attending guests.

    Love, Jackie Monies

  19. Jackie, some have been threatening for years to organize a get-together of sorts for the Villagers, or the A&L Irregulars, or whatever we decide to call ourselves. A symbolic re-christening of Arlo’s schooner would certainly seem to be a perfectly good (or at least adequate) excuse for doing so. πŸ™‚

  20. Rechristening a boat also requires the wearing of a costume that looks rather papal, some long prayers (often read) and copious amounts of consumable fare, both liquid and solid.

    And music! Which depends how seriously and dignified you want your service to be. I generally favor boat music and boat drinks. I cannot remember if we actually broke a bottle on any of our boats or not. Lately we just pray for the paint to be dry before we launch them.

    Love, Jackie Monies

  21. Off topic, but wouldn’t this have read better with possession of inserted between the two last words?

    Man arrested for Ecstasy

    Headline from a Tennessee newspaper.

  22. Mark here is another for you. When I came to Oklahoma the first week to house hunt the local newspaper had a banner headline:

    “Bumper Marihuana Crop Predicted For Year”

    I go “Have they legalized production here already?” This was 20 years ago, so no.

    Love, Jackie Monies

  23. Thank you Ghost for providing the link because when I googled Cartooner Schooner I once again got about a thousand unrelated links!

    There is a reason of course. When a boat designer or marine architect draws the original profile drawing of a boat he is designing (or thinks he may design) it is a black and white pen and ink called a “cartoon.”

    Often that is as far as it goes and the real design and specifications is never done. Prolific designers like the late Phil Bolger (think the boats you saw in “Master and Commander” the movie which were his designs) often drew hundreds and hundreds of cartoons which exist only in that form today, no plans.

    Love, Jackie Monies (I noticed that Jimmy labeled her a project boat-I know that term!)

  24. Jackie, do a search for funny wedding announcements. Some of them had me laughing till I nearly cried. Not all safe for family reading so I won’t post a link, but they aren’t hard to find. And yes, I get a kick out of typos and unintentionally funny headlines too.

  25. My personal favorite, from the local newspaper where I lived a number of years ago, was a classified ad. “WANTED: Small short-haired dog for a pet. Mixed-breed OK. Must be able to fly a small airplane.”

    Yeah, and you probably thought it’s difficult to be a pilot, didn’t you? Although I suspect that unusual prerequisite was the result of a lost-strayed-or-stolen “in” between “fly” and “a”.

  26. Someone mentioned Ludwig’s possible demise. Please do not do that Jimmy! Please?

    Lynn Johnston who writes and draws For Better or Worse tries to keep her strip in more or less real time. Farley (who was featured in yesterday’s Mother’s Day strip) was getting very old and she decided to have him die. She did, heroically, and his death was treated with great love and respect.

    However, she confided this in advance to Charles Schulz who she admired and considered a mentor. He told her not to do it but that if she decided to do so, to please let him know in advance and he would have Snoopy hit by a truck but recover to defray some of the reactions she would get.

    She went ahead and had Farley die but I understand she still gets unhappy readers. Since the strip is in a rerun status she will have to go through this all over again unless she changes Farley’s fate.

    I love Ludwig and he can live to be older than Mickey Mouse as far as I am concerned.

    Love, Jackie Monies

  27. In 1972 I flew on TransMagic Air from SLC to Idaho Falls. The plane was the smallest commercial one I’ve ever flown seating just one passenger on each side of the aisle. There was no door between us and the pilots; there also was no flight attendant. It was also the lowest commercial flight I’ve ever endured, with the plane finding its way between the mountains, not soaring over them. Can anyone tell me what class of plane that probably was? I’m sure it made the Martin 404 look huge by comparison!

  28. TR, I had a business associate some years ago who had to fly a regional carrier from Atlanta to somewhere in West Virginia. He claimed their “airliner” was so small that when he turned on the reading lamp over his seat, the plane slowed down.

    From your description of the airliner you rode, and the fact that Magic Air (later Air Idaho) operated them on that route in the early 70’s, I believe it would have been a de Havilland D.H. 114 Heron aircraft. Does it look familiar?

  29. GR6, that one’s about the right size and is likely the right one. I lost track of the company; I just vividly remember looking straight out and up at the mountains that my prior flight (DFW to SLC) had easily soared over. And hearing the pilots discussing whether a gauge was working or not as they tapped on it.

  30. According to my flight tracker program, there is a Cathay Pacific Boeing 777 about to touch down right now at Los Angeles International Airport after an almost 13 hour flight from Hong Kong. I love the Internet.

  31. Will be gone about a week for the chest part of the implant. The local rag doesn’t carry A & J anyway so be ready to catch me up when I get back.

  32. Good morning Villagers…

    Let’s see, I’ve been on 1) a homemade houseboat on the river, as a child growing up on weekends at the cabin on the river; 2) a really nice yacht anchored in the Corpus Christi Bay when Texas celebrated it Sesquice Centennial; 3) a pontoon boat….that about all the sea faring adventures I can tell I’ve had.

    GR πŸ˜‰ …no, and I’ve not heard from my nephew-in-law since….I did send him a text telling him how much I do love surprises, he’s the one who divorced his wife back in January and then went back to her….he has nicknamed her ‘Ursula’….when he sat down on the couch with me to tell me he was going back to ‘Ursula’, with a straight face I asked him….”so, what do we call her, Nicole or ‘Ursuala’? Oh, (and with a hug) Aunt Debbe, you are so cool….cool or not, I want my surprises πŸ™‚

    Spent about $500 of the Boss’s money yesterday afternoon….supplies and new tools… work to do I’ll tell him…hey, he’s the one that made me ‘overseer’ of my building…a woman’s got to do what a woman’s got to do to get the job done. Tired of sharing equipment between two building….tight German…and I can say that and get away with that, ’cause I’m half German πŸ˜‰

    Ya’ll have a blessed day……

  33. I’m beginning to wonder if EVERYBODY doesn’t go through a sailboat phase. My wife & I certainly did (we bought a farm instead; it doesn’t sink as often). We gave up on the idea when we found that there can’t be two captains: my wife fell overboard and it took a couple of scuba divers to get her back into the boat.

  34. Good luck Jerry! See you soon.

    I think I have missed out on something. The only “boating” experience I have ever had was paddling around the small lake on my grandparents’ property in their little row boat.

    When I go it will be to “On A Clear Day You Can See Forever” and this one, from one of my favorite bands: Really nice guys, friends and neighbors all!

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