20 Comments

  1. Iris? It’s a stretch. And I’ve always heard “ibid” pronounced with two short “i” sounds, making it even more of one. If it was “EYE-bid” it would almost make sense. AH, just looked: those crazy Brits do seem to say “EYE-bid”. Not sure that helps, as I’ve always thought this was an American strip.

  2. I think “iris” is one good potential explanation, but I wonder whether Blazek might have been playing with flower “buds”. Either way, it doesn’t quite work.

  3. After a quick look through Soundex for “ibid”, I found nothing vaguely flower-like or plant-like.

  4. I don’t think the joke requires an actual ibid flower to work. In fact, if there were such a flower, the joke would probably be too old and jaded to have any effect.

  5. Not really “old and jaded”, Usual John: I don’t think a large enough percentage of the population (outside of CIDU) has any idea what “ibid” means.

    Ir’s probably more obscure than “eg”.

  6. It might also be a “shut up” comment – “I told you all about these flowers, but you weren’t listening or don’t remember – so I’m going to say ibid.” They’re still the ones she mentioned before.

  7. I think the cartoonists *did* think if you spelled out “ibids” it looks like a typical flower name. *Why* he thought that is debatable, but I think it physically reminded him of “irises” but they are supposed to be irises; they are only supposed to be flowers with a flower like name like “irises”.

    They look like impatiens to me.

  8. “Ibid? But isn’t that the exact opcit of what you just told me the time before last?”

  9. B.A., while that may be true, I don’t count the part of the population for whom the joke doesn’t work anyway.

  10. The correct answer (what they’re called again) has been given, but I note irrelevantly that an ‘irid’ is a plant of the family Iridaceae.

  11. In technical papers, ibid is used in footnotes and references to refer to a previously cited source (instead of repeating the source information over and over). The hook herein is the phrase “you referenced earlier”.

  12. Working off the “eye-bid” angle, many botanists refer to experimental modifications in plants as hybrids. It’s a stretch, I know.

  13. I don’t think it’s much more that “reference” and “ibid”, the later being often seen in footnotes or acknowledgments.

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