Cidu Bill on May 8th 2013


I can see where Jeff would be especially upset that he had to run up all those stairs for a non-sale, but what he’s saying doesn’t really make sense to me. Am I missing something, or is this strip just a bit of a misfire?

Filed in Bill Bickel, CIDU, Mutt and Jeff, comic strips, comics, humor | 27 responses so far

27 Responses to “Cherries”

  1. Powers May 8th 2013 at 10:14 am 1

    No, it makes perfect sense. “Why the heck do you live where poor cherry sellers like me have to come all the way up just to find out you don’t like cherries?”

  2. Ian Osmond May 8th 2013 at 10:20 am 2

    Yeah, I agree with Powers. CONSIDERATE people who don’t like cherries should keep Jeff’s situation in mind, and live in places where he can find out EASILY that he’s not going to sell them. Anyone who doesn’t like cherries who lives in difficult-to-reach places is just plain rude. Why didn’t they consider Jeff when they chose where to live?

  3. Blinky the Wonder Wombat May 8th 2013 at 10:46 am 3

    It is a variation of another old joke:

    Phone rings.


    “Hello, may I speak to Jeff?”

    “Sorry, you have a wrong number.”

    “If it’s a wrong number, why did yo answer the phone?”

  4. J-L May 8th 2013 at 11:27 am 4

    Blinky the Wonder Wombat (#3):

    Nowadays that question (”If it’s a wrong number, why did you answer the phone?”) makes some sense, now that many of us have caller ID.

    Ah, technology… a leading cause of generation gaps.

  5. Inkwell May 8th 2013 at 01:05 pm 5

    I don’t think it’s a misfire. Jeff is viewing everything through how it affects him. And why would you live on such a high story if you weren’t going to buy his cherries?

    I dunno, it make me smile.

  6. Inkwell May 8th 2013 at 01:06 pm 6

    *made. I’m not degenerating into a caveman.

  7. PeterW May 8th 2013 at 01:07 pm 7

    Is this continuing to be written, or is Mutt and Jeff all reruns from the dawn of comic strips?

    If it’s the latter… a lot of old strips come off as misfires today. If it’s the former, it’s a legacy strip, so they can’t evolve it much.

  8. James Pollock May 8th 2013 at 01:55 pm 8

    This is a very old joke with exactly the punchline given. It isn’t supposed to make sense.

  9. Judge Mental May 8th 2013 at 02:00 pm 9

    I agree with Inkwell’s take at #5.

    I entertained thoughts that it might be something on the order of “high places are the domain of cherry-pickers” (the hydraulic equipment), but that doesn’t quite work.

  10. The Ploughman May 8th 2013 at 02:09 pm 10

    Jeff’s attempting to make a living by selling cherries door-to-door in a porkpie hat. Climbing stairs is going to be the least of his challenges.

  11. minorannoyance May 8th 2013 at 02:39 pm 11

    If you want to see this sort of thing done right, I refer you to “It’s a Gift” starring W.C. Fields. There’s a long sequence where he tries to sleep on a hammock on a third-story balcony despite an insistent salesman, a vegetable peddler, Baby LeRoy and a mother & daughter shouting back and forth from the top floor and ground level.

  12. Elyrest May 8th 2013 at 03:08 pm 12

    The Ploughman - That doesn’t look like a porkpie hat to me. I’ve always thought Jeff wore a skimmer, often called a boater.

  13. Folly May 8th 2013 at 04:08 pm 13

    I think there is a bit of a visual gag as well with her sampling one of the grapes even though nobody in her family likes them.

  14. Folly May 8th 2013 at 04:09 pm 14

    I meant cherries of course…

  15. Elyrest May 8th 2013 at 04:18 pm 15

    Folly - I often check out food that I have disliked in the past to see if either my taste buds have changed or maybe someone fixed it a way I liked. This woman though is adding insult to injury by eating the cherry.

  16. J-L May 8th 2013 at 04:52 pm 16

    You know, I did notice the woman eating a cherry, which I thought was a bit odd, considering the claim that nobody in her family likes them (including herself, I would think).

    Maybe she tricked Jeff into climbing up the stairs just so she could get a free sample. Then I could understand why Jeff is so upset.

  17. Mark in Boston May 8th 2013 at 10:07 pm 17

    This is fairly typical Mutt & Jeff humor. It is closely related to “Irish Bull”.

    Jeff, on the roof of a building under construction: “Mutt, if you come up here, don’t climb up the ladder.”
    Mutt: “Why not?”
    Jeff: “I’ve taken it away.”

    Jeff, writing a letter to his girlfriend: [writes] “Dearest Snookums, I would tell you how much I love you except that Mutt is reading this over my shoulder.”
    Mutt [very indignant] “I am NOT!”

    Mutt: “Jeff, are you and Julius identical twins?”
    Jeff: “I’m not, but Julius is.”

  18. Kilby May 8th 2013 at 11:40 pm 18

    @ PeterW - New Mutt and Jeff strips ceased in 1982, the ones that you see now are all reruns (normally from the later zombie period). The computer font used for lettering this strip clearly indicates that it was not drawn by the original author (as does the thoughtlessly awkward phrasing).

  19. Boise Ed May 8th 2013 at 11:55 pm 19

    [11] I love “It’s a Gift” — especially the road-hog segment.

  20. Joshua May 9th 2013 at 12:22 am 20

    @Kilby: Were cartoonists using computer fonts as early as 1982?

  21. CaroZ May 9th 2013 at 01:24 am 21

    I’m pretty sure Mutt and Jeff (or any other comic, for that matter) wasn’t being computer-lettered in 1982.

    Did someone recently start writing new Mutt and Jeff cartoons, or (more likely) are the old ones being re-lettered for legibility given current tiny comics pages?

  22. Kilby May 9th 2013 at 02:47 am 22

    @ Joshua (20) - Ooops, you’re right, back then it could not be a computer font. I think CaroZ’s suggestion @21 is probably correct. The text is definitely typeset (not hand lettered), but the font style doesn’t look like anything that would have been produced for typesetting systems back then. It looks like another one of those cheaply produced “sloppy handwriting” PC-fonts.

  23. Gerry May 9th 2013 at 06:22 am 23

    The apartment is a cherry location. Old slang?

  24. DPWally May 9th 2013 at 12:10 pm 24

    I wonder if someone, while typesetting an old strip for legibility, decided to “fix” the dialog.

  25. The Ploughman May 9th 2013 at 10:02 pm 25

    Elyrest (11), you may be right. I am nobody’s haberdasher.

  26. Boise Ed May 11th 2013 at 12:29 pm 26

    [18] Computer font??? Are we still talking about the Mutt and Jeff atop this page? It looks like common cartoonist lettering to me.

  27. Kilby May 12th 2013 at 01:49 am 27

    @ Boise Ed (26) - Hand lettered text can be neat, but it always has minor variations. Not only are the shapes of the letters in this strip far too consistent for hand lettering, the boldface used for “cherries” and “high” indicates a typeface font.

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