November 30th, 2017


Saturday, 02 December 2017

Today we learn for the first time that Martha and Michael actually have a class together.    This raises a few questions like:

1.     Why did Michael stalk Martha around the school to meet her for the first time after summer camp?   He could have just talked to her the first day of class.
2.     Why was Mike unaware of the gossip going around about his and Martha's kissing at summer camp, when he shares a class with Janet and with Martha?
3.     Why does Michael wait until Martha passes him by in the hall to hand her his note?  He could have handed her a note anytime in class.
4.     If Martha is willing to hand Michael a note in class, why does she leave her response note in his locker?
5.     Why couldn’t Lynn Johnston take even the smallest amount of time to figure this stuff out before she drew it?

(Strip Number 5054, Original Publication Date, 03 December 1988)

Panel 1: We find that Martha's and Michael’s desks are the closest to each other and yet they are still about a mile apart.  Thank goodness Michael is not wearing that Christmas sweater anymore and look!   Lynn Johnston can actually draw the hand of someone holding a pencil.  Martha thinks, “I’ve told Michael everything in this letter.  I’ve apologized for everything.”  The contents of the letter are then “Everything and an apology for everything.”   The only question is, “Will that be enough groveling to satisfy Michael Patterson?”

Panel 2: More Martha thoughts and we learn the letter has Martha’s guts and soul.  This is starting to seem less like a letter and more like a contract with the devil.

Panel 3: Just in case I thought I was fooled by Lynn Johnston's usual issues with drawing perspective, Martha stretches her arm across that giant chasm and can’t even get halfway to Michael's desk.   Michael turns to her and probably thinks, “There is no way I am going to get that note.  That’s at least a two or three hour hike to Martha’s desk.”

Panel 4: Mr. Burton’s hand reaches in and he has a very short pinky finger.  According to this website:

Your own early family dynamic may be observed in the way the pinky is set on your hands. If it’s very short or low set, trust is a major issue.

As it turns out Mr. Burton is very trustworthy, in spite of his short pinky finger.  He is the person who finally tells us Martha’s last name is MacRae.

Summary: If you don’t want the teacher to catch you passing a note then:

1.    Don’t try to pass the note across a giant chasm of emptiness.
2.     Don’t spend so much time clutching it to your chest before you pass it.
3.     Don’t pass the note right in front of the teacher.