Gnome

Cidu Bill on Feb 17th 2017

feb17-arlo-gnome.jpg

Filed in Arlo and Janis, Bill Bickel, CIDU, Jimmy Johnson, comic strips, comics, humor | 18 responses so far

18 Responses to “Gnome”

  1. Mark in Boston Feb 17th 2017 at 12:24 am 1

    It’s a common prank to steal a garden gnome and move it somewhere, as if it decided to walk away on its own.

    Arlo couldn’t resist pulling this prank. Janis is totally disgusted by his behavior.

    That’s all there is here.

  2. Cidu Bill Feb 17th 2017 at 12:39 am 2

    I think you nailed it, MiB. Except I’d say “embarrassed” rather than “disgusted.”

  3. James Pollock Feb 17th 2017 at 03:01 am 3

    Arlo is prone to whimsy (as am I, one of the reasons I like the strip so much) but Janis is not so much enchanted by the childlike revelry; more accurate to say she somewhat tolerates it and in this case, it’s too much. (She’s also complained about some of the conversations Arlo has with Ludwig).

    A popular prank from 20 years ago was to kidnap a garden gnome, and take photos of it in lots of fascinating places… posed at an observation point for the Grand Canyon, on a ride at Disneyland, soaking in a hot tub with an attractive young woman or two, flying a kit at the beach, etc. Then, eventually, he gets returned.

    I’ve always admired the type of SUSTAINED whimsy that takes. Then it was co-opted into an educational experience (Flat Stanley) and that pretty much let all the whimsy out of it.

  4. James Pollock Feb 17th 2017 at 03:02 am 4

    I didn’t get moderated, but I DID get a “you’re posting too fast, slow down”

  5. Bob in Nashville Feb 17th 2017 at 08:36 am 5

    Arlo takes time to prank, but Janis isn’t about to slow down her power walk for association with such behavior.

  6. Andréa Feb 17th 2017 at 08:39 am 6

    #3: and then Travelocity co-opted it again and made in commercialized . . .

  7. Powers Feb 17th 2017 at 08:44 am 7

    The traveling gnome phenomenon dates to the 70s, but Flat Stanley was written in the 60s. And the story was about far more than simply visiting other places by mail.

  8. Irene Feb 17th 2017 at 10:19 am 8

    My initial thought was an adult/ adolescent ploy akin to the dumb and creepy “elf-on-a-shelf” thing. ( My mom still has her elf that looks like the current incarnation, but never heard of the “tradition”)… but I think Mark had it at #1

  9. narmitaj Feb 17th 2017 at 10:48 am 9

    In the 2001 movie Amelie, if I remember right how it worked, Audrey Tatou’s eponymous character sent her dad’s gnome round the world with an airline stewardess friend; she sent Polaroids back to him to his great confusion.

  10. James Pollock Feb 17th 2017 at 11:49 am 10

    “Flat Stanley was written in the 60s.”

    But the Flat Stanley Project only goes back to the mid 90’s.

  11. sjelly Feb 17th 2017 at 12:15 pm 11

    Janet is pretending she’s not with Arlo, you know, like a teenager embarrassed by her parents, only here it’s the other way around.

  12. Greybeard Feb 17th 2017 at 01:18 pm 12

    I worked with and was a small part of the original Gnorman Gnome “project”. He lived in Australia, and this was in the 1980s. We were on what we’d now call a forum, was then more like a BBS, and knew each other from conferences. First he just told us about it and shared his address, and folks sent postcards “home” about his travels. Then he came to the US for a conference and brought Gnorman, who then toured the world, sending pictures showing him in exotic locations.

    Of course nowadays it would be too easy–connectivity, PhotoShop, etc.–but back then it was pretty clever.

    Travelocity used to have a page acknowledging the origin of their mascot, but it seems to be gone.

    Google
    “neale ferguson” gnorman
    for more!

  13. wkiraly Feb 17th 2017 at 02:36 pm 13

    re narmitaj, Amelie is still my favorite movie and contains an abundance of sustained Whimsy that James Pollock would love.

    But one of the best traveling gnome stories occurs in Sharyn McCrumb’s book “The Windsor Knot” where the peripatetic Gnome sends a postcard from a little city on the Western coast of Alaska…

  14. BeckoningChasm Feb 17th 2017 at 02:49 pm 14

    I’m confused about the ground in the fourth panel. Suddenly it looks like the gnome was standing in the snow? Keeping the snowfall from evenly covering the ground. But there isn’t any snow in any other panel. This is beginning to bother me. More than it should.

  15. Wendy Feb 17th 2017 at 03:00 pm 15

    @14, It’s just bad coloring. The rest of the ground should be green, and that spot should be brown, as the grass would have died if the gnome had been there a while.

  16. Mark in Boston Feb 17th 2017 at 10:25 pm 16

    What I prefer to do, and find more whimsical, is to take several little characters and set them up in a tableau that tells a story.

    Like Calvin did with snowmen.

  17. zbicyclist Feb 19th 2017 at 08:16 pm 17

    Janis doesn’t want to be associated with his ig-gnome-inious behavior.

  18. Arthur Feb 19th 2017 at 09:58 pm 18

    Perhaps he put it by the birdbath hoping to turn it into a
    sundial by the addition of a gnom(e)on it.

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