July 31st, 2005

Monday, August 1

Huh. No Howard. Wonder if this week will follow April to the farm, or if Elly and Liz will return home to find a mutilated doll on the doorstep and a note that says, "You."

Panel 1: Okay, first of all, April should be intelligent enough to know what "unaccompanied minor*" means; the question is an unnecessary prompt. Second of all, that tag also lets other passengers, and random people in the airport if she has to change flights, know that she's traveling alone. Maybe not the safest course of action?

Panel 2: Jeez, it looks like Elly's feeling April up!

Panel 3: Another unnecessary prompt for the "I'm being torn from my lover's arms" statement.

Panel 4: You're right; it won't. Separation almost broke up Mike and Martha, and put a serious rift in Liz's friendship with Dawn. Still, as I've said, I don't know what the hell April sees in Gerald. And it would be interesting if April met a guy in Manitoba, and was tempted to cheat on whatever she and the Continental have going.

Panel 5: Why is Alfred Hitchcock in the background? And what is Elly being so uptight about? She can't know about the grad dance smoochfest, because Liz didn't see it, and can't have blabbed to her. One of the reasons Elly was so anxious to send Mike to the farm was that she thought Martha's bike-shorts outfit was "dangerous", and wanted to prevent the two of them "operating the machinery without reading the instructions." Elly belongs in another century, I think, back when people were kept chaste to the point of avoiding hand-holding before marriage, so they'd be eager to rush to the altar before they exploded.

*In the early days of the strip, Michael flew alone to stay with John's parents. I forget his exact age, but he was in elementary school. Anyway, his tag just said "UM", and he asked the stew, "I know the M stands for 'minor', but what's the U for?" "Unaccompanied." "Oh. Daddy said it was for 'untrained'."

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And the monthly letters should be up tomorrow, or next day at the latest, and then we will get the entire Howard story in past tense. Or maybe not quite: maybe Liz's letter, and Elly's and John's as well, will have vague twittering about the guy at work who's been bothering her...but it's not anything to really worry about, is it? OR, we'll get an entire backstory for Howard, including his age, how he came to work for Lawrence, and his last name, which you KNOW will begin with a K. We shall see.