1. I didn’t notice the neighbor’s prickly nature until I read the first two comments. Even if the word was intended here as a veiled reference to the witch in “Oz”, I have heard (and even used) the term “munchkins” to refer to small children. As far as I can recall, it was generally meant in a friendly way.

  2. If I had decided to keep my parents’ house in Yuma, AZ and we’d moved there, this is the kind of garden I’d’ve had. Not a white fence, tho; every house is surrounded by stone/brick/cement block wall, six feet high in the back; lower in the front.

  3. I forget which chain it is, but there is a branded product called Munchkins, similar to donut holes. Or maybe that should be Donut Holes. And can Canadian readers comment on whether TimBits are much the same?

  4. Not Canadian, but I can confirm that Timbits are far, far superior to Dunkin’ Donuts’ Munchkins.

  5. The “munchkins” part isn’t overly significant — it’s just a somewhat affectionate term for small children, presumably because of Wizard of Oz. So I think the neighbor making the offer is sincere about it.

    It’s just… if they take her up on it, it’s gonna end in at LEAST tears, if not ER visits.

  6. The “Munchkins” isn’t significant and the cartoonist just used that as a generic “the little dears” or whatever. Apparently in was a bad choice because it’s too noticeable and distracting and more noticeable and jarring than the actual point of the joke– the unpleasant prickly garden that can hurt them.

  7. Anybody who refers to children as Munchkins or Rugrats or (as my mother used to do) Midgets usually doesn’t use it as a term of endearment.

  8. Broth reminds me of nuns.
    I see them smashing with rulers
    Disciplining munchkin cretins
    Tortured munchkins
    Tortured munchkins
    Irish Catholic victims
    Little green scratchy sweaters
    Little green scratchy ones
    And courduroy ponce
    Courduroy ponce

    — Frank Zappa

  9. I guess I’m one of the exceptions to Daniel’s rule: my use of Munchkin is never less than positive.

  10. “Anybody who refers to children as Munchkins or Rugrats or (as my mother used to do) Midgets usually doesn’t use it as a term of endearment.”

    Your experience differs from mine.

  11. I wouldn’t go so far as to agree that “Munchkins” is less than positive, but it’s a word that can very easily be a negative one. I’m not sure I can think of another term that can as easily both be positive/neutral AND negative. “kids”, to me, skews positive.

  12. I think it’s the context, and this context gives the word a negative spin, to me. I don’t like WOZ (altho I specialize in rescuing ‘Toto’-Dogs), and find the Munchkins in that movie to be very creepy, altho having met ‘Margaret’, less so IRL.

  13. I feel that “munchkin” has a better connotation than “rugrat”, but I think the latter term suffered a lot after being branded onto a second-rate cartoon and a moronic comic strip. In its place, I prefer to use “ankle biters”.

  14. “Rugrats” and “ankle biters” are all very well, but I tend to go with “spawn” (or, in extreme cases, “hellspawn”).

    /// Why no, as a matter of fact I don’t have any children; why do you ask?

  15. Our local NPR station ran an interview about raising goats, and running restaurants with goat specialities.

    It was a little creepy to hear them using “kids” in the sense of young goats, and discussing things about when they will be tender, how soon to remove them from the mothers and put them in their own pens / herds, etc …

  16. Mitch4: Goats? Sure, if that’s the cover story they’re going with, all right. But then why did they decide to name their restaurant “The Modest Proposal”?

  17. Sorry, I didn’t notice that this version of the picture didn’t have the text saying that in Swedish the word for goat is get and for kid is killing, and this is from a children’s book.

  18. Again with the Manchurian subliminal activation post Arthur… Whom did I assassinate this time, I wonder?

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