23 Comments

  1. Is there a reason “Dang it, Corey” starts with a quotation mark but doesn’t have a closing one anywhere?

  2. I’m not familiar whatsoever with the term “feghoot”. I have heard of “shaggy dog stories”. (Asimov’s ‘Shah Guido G’ is the ultimate saggy dog story.)

  3. Powers, I take it as an oversight. And actually the presence of the opening ones seems more questionable than the absence of the closing ones.

  4. “Is there a reason “Dang it, Corey” starts with a quotation mark but doesn’t have a closing one anywhere?”

    Apparently, ‘goldang’ is a word…a euphemism for, well, you know. Could be he meant it as an apostrophe to represent the missing letters but mistakenly doubled it.

  5. I dispute the idea that ‘feghoot’ was well known in science fiction circles. I’m 70, and Ive been reading SF since I was 8, and I never heard it.

    But I have to admit it certainly sounds like a neologism Isaac Asimov would have coined.

  6. @Chak, I assume you didn’t read F&SF, because for years and years they had a short feature about Ferdinand Feghoot which ended in an awful pun. They were by Reginald Bretnor, writing and Grendel Briarton.
    I wrote one myself for a fanzine once.
    I can quote a short one from memory, but won’t because of copyright.

  7. I’ve seen the word…in Fallen Angels, maybe? It was definitely an SF fandom Thing, but not in my actual experience. I’ve read some F&SF, but never on a regular basis. The magazine, that is – I read SF&F (the genre) as the majority of my reading (literally – I’ve been tracking my reading for quite some time, and my SF&F genre is always 50-60% of my total reading for the year).

  8. Okay, so some mis-estimation on who might be assumed to know what a feghoot is. But now that we’re all up to speed on that, can we further agree that Pearls Before Swine very often uses something like a feghoot structure? And a harder question, do we agree with the Frog Applause character that PBS has lame feghooters? And what is her “Do I look like” question doing?

  9. Feghoots were standard in F&SF through the 50s and at least early 60s. They seem to have faded out by the time the Fermans took over the editorial duties in 1966. But they were featured again in the early years of Asimov’s SF Magazine. I don’t know if they were written by Bretnor, though. I’m a decade or so younger than Chak and IASFM was where I first encountered them.

    Properly speaking, the tortured puns in PBS aren’t Feghoots. To be a proper Feghoot, the story must feature Ferdinand Feghoot as protagonist. They also aren’t really long enough to be shaggy dog stories. They’re just puns with really contrived set-ups.

  10. Since everyone else has been exhibiting the typical gentlemanly decorum that is the hallmark of CIDU discussions, it’s time to get down to brass tacks on that first panel:

    By using the phrase “Do I look like…“, she’s clearly calling attention to her appearance. Given the obscurity of the term, it’s not surprising that my very first impression was the utter incongruity of associating that figure with any conceivable type of “hooter(s)”.

  11. The Fictionmags Index indicates there 68 Feghoots published in F&SF, 1956-1964, followed by 6 in the revival of its short-lived companion VENTURE in 1969-1970, followed by 15 in ASIMOV’S and/or its own short-lived companion ASIMOV’S ADVENTURE, followed by 9 in AMAZING, with a final straggler in WEIRD TALES in late 1988. So, roughtly a hundred over a thirty-plus-year run:

    http://www.philsp.com/homeville/fmi/i/i00414.htm#A62

    Randall Garrett published 8 parody/homage pieces, THROUGH TIME AND SPACE WITH BENEDICT BREADFRUIT in AMAZING in 1962; his twist on the originals was that the puns were all on the names of sf authors.

    http://www.philsp.com/homeville/fmi/n/n00249.htm#A151

    And I’m sure versions “by other hands” showed up in fanzines; I even had one myself (involving “Reginald Ragweed”) in BEABOHEMA sometime in the late 1960s.

  12. The fun thing about that giant salt shaker is that once it’s empty you can make a cool Dalek prop out of it…

  13. I read the comics here backwards – starting on the day I am reading them and back to the prior Monday and then back through any I have posted comics on.

    I had opened this page in my trip backwards and walked away from my laptop on the kitchen table as I went to start getting our late night snacks out as Robert had come downstairs from his computer for the night. He looked and asked me “What’s feghooter mean?” I replied I had that I no idea. So that’s 2 people of advanced years who did not know.

  14. @ Grawlix – That reference to “salt shaker props” reminded me of an anecdote in Roddenberry’s “The Making of Star Trek“. They needed a salt shaker as “bait” for a monster who had an uncontrollable appetite for salt, and somebody went out to buy a number of futuristic-looking salt shakers. Perhaps the monster might have recognized what was in them, but since ordinary television viewers would have no idea what they were, an ordinary salt shaker from the studio cafeteria was used instead, and the futuristic salt shakers went into service as some of McCoy’s medical “instruments”.

  15. Not to spoil the chapstick joke, but I’ve long heard that real cowhands pronounce the name of their leather leggings as “shaps”, derived from the Mexican Spanish “chaparreras vaqueras”.

  16. @Meryl A – make that at least 3. And I too am a lifelong SF reader. Although never the F&SF mag.

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