(Strip Number 140, Original Publication Date, 3 June 1981)
Panel 1: Now the kids have been bullied into submission, John sets up the week's annoying plotline by soliciting pity for his lot in life. He does so by telling Elly that despite her complaints about how her brain is turning into mush, he thinks that SAHMs are lucky.
Panel 2: She reacts to this by listing the tasks that eat away her time and drive her to the brink of despair: chasing kids, cleaning, shopping and cooking. She forgot to list bellowing in a blind rage, being filled with despair because small children want love and affection, watching soap operas and gossiping with one of the two friends she has about the other one.
Panel 3: She makes that stupid palms-out gesture because she really can't see what there is to envy about her lot.
Panel 4: Since John has no idea what Elly does all day, he points out that, unlike him, she has free time enough to make friends.
Summary: As howtheduck has proven, John is in this instance a mouthpiece for Lynn; unlike home-town boy Rod, she had only one or two friends in Lynn Lake; not only did she not feel very welcome, her OCD and default shyness kept her from working the room. In terms of the strip, John could probably defend his assumption by pointing out that his mother had time to make friends; this is because it took him close to forever to realize that Elly needed to fill empty time with pointless chores.