Saturday Morning Oys – November 7th, 2020

You can always count on Gargle Seawater for some Oy content!

Here is Baldo (1) using an embattled English expression in its traditional form, not the disputed more-modern form, and (2) making a pun out of it.

For comparison, for those who can make use of it, also providing the Spanish version.  The pun doesn’t seem to have been attempted here.

Full-on pun for *Dingbats*.

The sender says: “It’s been over 40 years since Edith Bunker died.
Has anyone used the word ‘dingbat’ as an insult since then?” Probably not, and it may take a geezer to recall it. The *word* of course remains familiar to font-heads.

Dark side of The Horse so often breaks new frontiers in cartoon-physics! And we usually call that LOL, but here there is wordplay on “airplane mode” that should qualify for an OY.

From Andréa.


Take a wild guess at why she’s in the dark and taking a shot.


  1. Bilingual, but Hector Cantu was born and raised in Texas. I think it’s likely his predominant language is English.

  2. “There isn’t much of one (in either language), the strip is banking on the situational Schadenfreude of watching someone else having car problems.”

    Well, in English we have an actual pun. In spanish, it seems, we need to rely the absurd image that the car is so worthless and frustrating he’d think a Pogo Stick is a better option. I think we can view that as a back-up joke.

    ….. Oh… but I guess the Spanish would be weird because the statement that Baldo is indifferent to the car, when he’s clearly angry wouldn’t make any sense.

  3. woozy: “. . . the Spanish would be weird . . .”

    I think Kilby had a reasonable explanation of that – “He can’t care less. . .” meaning “He’s not able to care less. . .”

    Actually, at some point I saw something about the history of “He could/couldn’t care less…” in English, and apparently one of the first uses of the phrase was something like “He cares about you so much. He couldn’t care less even if he wanted to,” so that the “couldn’t” form was used (correctly, in that case), to mean a lot of caring.

  4. When I was a kid, people said “I couldn’t care less” to mean they did not care.Then at some point they started saying “I could care less” ironically. Also when I was a kid, people (in New England at least) said “So don’t I” to mean “So do I.” I can see “I don’t like Brussels sprouts.” “So don’t I”, but they were saying like “I love chocolate ice cream.” “So don’t I.” as each of them digs into a bowl of chocolate ice cream.

  5. @Stan, I haven’t gotten anywhere with the additional “dingbats” you posted. Nor seen others attempting them. Can you offer some help at this point? Thanks!

    Here’s one that works pretty well:

    words words
    words words
    words words
    words words

    And another that goes along well with the theme of the comic under discussion:

    broken arm

  6. After some thought, I got them both. So, you guys want some hints?

    Don’t look if you don’t want hints yet

    The Macbeth one is kind of a … What’s another way of saying “pun”?

    For the other, we have gone through multiple definitions of “dingbat” in this thread. Go back to the Archie Bunker usage, and then do the math.

  7. I had been thinking of a Shakespeare passage that goes “Words words words” and thought “Ah but it’s not Macbeth it’s Lear. So how does it help us?” But in fact, it’s Hamlet.

    I was thinking Lear because the repetition led to association to “Never never never never never”. And then somehow a play on words via French: “N’est vert” …

  8. Andréa, in this thread, following the discussion of “dingbat” as a term of personal insult AND a printing term, Stan in a comment stamped NOVEMBER 7, 2020 AT 10:13 PM said it was also a name for a sort of rebus word puzzle. Several were posed, and solved. A couple were posted but not addressed, until somebody reminded us this morning. These last few comments have been about that.

  9. Okay, I guess we’ve solved PLAY ON WORDS

    I don’t get far with “Edith plus fracture” though

  10. Well I wonder if “broken arm” might work like in “cryptic clue crosswords” — literally break “ARM” into “A” and “RM” or “AR” and “M” and put the two pieces on either side of something associated with the personal-insult sense of dingbat.

  11. These “clues” are more cryptic than the original puzzles.

    I don’t see anybody offering clues, either as help or as claiming a solution. I see attempts at solving and thinking out loud. This complaint about something or other being more cryptic than the original puzzles is peculiarly misplaced.

  12. @Andréa, has your question timestamped “NOVEMBER 12, 2020 AT 1:05 PM” about what some of these puzzling posts are about, been answered?

  13. @ Danny Boy – Your answer “play on words” was not (yet) visible when I made my last comment, and no matter what you want to call it, the “thinking out loud” has not provided me with enough help to solve the other one.

  14. no matter what you want to call it, the “thinking out loud” has not provided me with enough help to solve the other one

    And why should it? “Thinking out loud” means people trying out ideas, to see if they can solve it, or if the group can. But without the presumption that it will be right or will suffice. So why do you come along and complain that it isn’t enough?

    It may be that Stan is the only one here who can answer the last one. He has provided clues, indeed, which don’t seem to give the rest of us enough of a handle.

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