1. I like this one. Bet it shows up in a “corporate evolution” presentation some day. The wheel is doing its job correctly; can it do more?!

  2. You may be right, Berber, but what’s the joke? It’s a comic, yes? Comics are supposed to be funny, yes? Or is that just a boomeristic holdover of an idea?

  3. “You may be right, Berber, but what’s the joke? It’s a comic, yes? Comics are supposed to be funny, yes? Or is that just a boomeristic holdover of an idea?” For me, this is a “cart before the horse” joke. What if the first use of a wheel was to be tree swing? And perhaps the fact you have a stone ‘tire’ on a tree… I admit it, the cartoon made me smile, hence it is a comic for me.

  4. @ BillR – It’s not a major laugh, just a couple of minor incongruities. People build “normal” swings using discarded automobile tires simply because they are cheap (usually free, since they are odious, difficult-to-dispose-of trash). The swing shown in this comic has been (laboriously) fashioned using a fair amount of an otherwise valuable material. Besides that, a stone ring of that size would be very likely to break any branch from which it has been hung.

  5. Yes, and the primitive man passing by is meant to show that The Wheel is a recent invention in this world, and people are trying out new applications for it. Some of which turn out not quite ready for prime time; for various reasons, in this case materials.

  6. P.S. I would have thought that Johnny Hart might have done a tire swing gag in “B.C.”; he drew a plethora of “wheel” strips, and while he didn’t have a lot of trees in his barren landscapes, they did appear occasionally. Unfortunately, there isn’t a searchable archive of B.C. strips anywhere, so despite multiple attempts, all I found was evidence that not every tire swing is made with a discarded tire:

  7. My immediate thought was the wheel had not been invented in the world yet. The joke is just the tire swing being invented before the wheel.

  8. I went one step further than the obvious tire swing. He’s got a “bat”, so he may be wondering about trying to hit a ball through the hole. That’s what we used to do if there was no one else to play with. Probably further than Bliss meant to go.

  9. I think Folly has it. Something was invented, but not for the purpose we associate with it.

    Mad Magazine once had a feature with comics in which the characters acted like what they were supposed to be. Pogo characters acted like animals — Albert Alligator ate Pogo Possum. B.C. characters acted like “real” cavemen. They spoke the most primitive, inscrutable language. One character found a stone wheel and a wooden pole and put them together to make a sort of axle with one wheel. A second character appeared, asking some sort of question about it. The first used the contraption like a mace to smash the second to death.

    Getting back to the present comic, my first thought was that the caveman might try poking the club into the hole, pushing it in and out while trying to pin down what it vaguely seemed to remind him of.

  10. not every tire swing is made with a discarded tire

    I have mentioned some of the odd (to me) discussion in C&H where commenters take the action far too literally. Cartoon physics still is in operation there. This is a good example. Calvin is six years old. It’s unlikely he could even jack up the car and remove a tire, let alone then remove said tire from the rim. If you’ve ever had to do that with hand tools, it’s quite the operation.

  11. So they’re okay with a stuffed tiger helping hang a tire swing but not with a 6-year-old jacking up his dad’s car?

    When you have been in marketing as long as I have, you’ll know that before any new product can be developed, it has to be properly researched. I mean yes, yes we’ve got to find out what people want from fire, I mean how do they relate to it, the image –

    Oh, stick it up your nose.

    Yes which is precisely the sort of thing we need to know, I mean do people want fire that can be fitted nasally.

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