26 Comments

  1. “Nighthawks” is the painting by Edward Hopper that shows a late-night scene of people at a diner through large windows.

    The painting doesn’t make it clear that the corner is a right-angle, hence the reference to “Flatiron” – the Flatiron building in New York is famous for being an acute triangle.

    Third and fourth frames are not related to the first two. And of course, the triangle referred to in the last frame would between Dolly, Porter and Piggy.

  2. . . . and the joke is . . . ? I’ve always thought this particular ‘comic’ isn’t meant to be funny, just from the few I’ve seen on CIDU.

  3. @ Andréa – “Zippy (the Pinhead)” is often an acquired taste, but it certainly has had its moments of true comic brilliance, which explains why it has a small, but very devoted set of followers (in this regard it has some similarity with “Krazy Kat”). Unfortunately, my all-time favorite example is not available online.

  4. The Flatiron Building, when it opened, had no designated restrooms for women. So the restrooms on alternate floors were designated for women.

  5. I sometimes go down the rabbit hole of historical photographs on YT, and frequently, the Flatiron Building is featured, sometimes in the process of being built, sometimes after its completion. Just look at it gives me claustrophobia.

  6. I’m fine with there not being a joke, but I still don’t see an explanation for the seemingly random remarks. Attempted to break into Dollywood?

  7. And then again, the instances that will appear on CIDU are unlikely to be the ones with straightforward laughing humor.

  8. @Daniel J. Drazen – I had a customer once and their toilets alternated mens/womens in the same position on each floor. No idea why – as far as I know each floor had both anyway. But it so happened that the floor I was always on had the nearest men’s just outside the office area near the lifts and stairs. One day it was out of order, so I went down one flight of stairs and swung in.

    Without noticing the sign on the door.

    Fortunately the lack of urinals was a dead giveaway, and I got out sharply enough to avoid ending up on a register.

  9. ““Nighthawks” is the painting by Edward Hopper that shows a late-night scene of people at a diner through large windows.”

    . . . and an album (before it was a CD) by Tom Waits . . .

    @MarkM: I wonder if this random commentary is an example of how strangers in a diner like this would talk to each other . . . not really listening to the other, just tossing out thoughts to keep from thinking how lonely they are. It kind of reminds me of this . . .
    tom waits bette midler i never talk to strangers

  10. Very interesting article, Brian. It was for the most part the converse of your description!

  11. I’ve always assumed that we don’t do Zippy here because it never makes sense. If we want CIDUs, we could just run Zippy every day.

    As for the random comments, that is literally what Zippy is about. Quoting from the Comics Kingdom “About Zippy”:
    https://comicskingdom.com/zippy-the-pinhead/about

    His mind works in a distinctly non-linear fashion, leap-frogging from one thought to the next, creating a speech pattern that closely resembles the swing of improvisational jazz. Though his behavior may appear “surreal,” he’s really making his own kind of sense of the world. His seeming “non sequitur” style is really more of a rearranging of subjects, objects and emotions, flowing like poetry.

  12. I used to teach in a college that had begun as a women’s college. When they went coed, the restrooms on alternate floors were converted.

  13. I feel your pain. I worked in a building with 7 floors. The identical restrooms were in the corner, men to the left, women to the right — except, for some unknown reason, they were reversed on the third floor. This was where HR was, so you occasionally had to visit there. I don’t know why this was done, and I don’t know why they left it that way.

  14. Dollywood is an amusement park Ms Parton opened in Pigeon Forge TN. Porter Wagoner was a country singer who had a music TV series on which Dolly appeared for many years. Ms Parton and Mr. Wagoner were not an item. The Miss Piggy reference here does seem totally random. In this particular strip, it appears Claude Funston (which Wikipedia notes is a hapless working man) is taking the lead.

    It should be pointed out that Zippy The Pinhead started out long ago as an underground comic, so it is going to be a bit unusual.

  15. At some point a Zippy strip made a reference to the Dilbert strip. An annoyed Adams got his revenge later.


    (These images courtesy a comic thread in a forum called Something Awful)

  16. The search feature on Zippy’s website produces six different strips for a search on “dilbert“. The immediate predecessor to the strips shown above would be Now you get it!!” (19-Feb-98)“, but I think the “revenge” was probably provoked by The Best-Seller Principle” (6-Dec-96) (unfortunately available only as a thumbnail). Four months after Dilbert’s version, Griffith proved that he could write a much better treatment of Pippy the Ziphead” (20-Sep-98):

  17. I just began reading ‘The Night Hawks’ by Elly Griffiths – completely coincidental, as I’m reading her Dr. Ruth Galloway series in order. If you like your British crime stories mixed with mythology and archaeology, this is a great series.

  18. Well, when you consider all the other painters were painting naked women bathing in the river or having lunch in the grass or whatever, and nobody called the cops on them …

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