Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Could you dumb it down an iota?

Pardon my fascination with the aforeblogged F. Winkerbean, but I just can't understand how this comic strip is in the "funnies." I did some research, or rather just read through the comic starting a few weeks back, and found this storyline:

In the August 4th comic, poor Wally steps on a "bouncing betty" land mine while walking through Iraq. (Don't ask me why.) Anyway, if you've ever seen Blown Away with Jeff Bridges (who, I believe, is contractually obligated to run in slow motion in all of his movies) and Forest Whitaker, the comic strip plays out like that tense scene where Forest has a bomb in his headphones. So finally, by August 20, more than two weeks of panels later, the bomb is defused by an Iraqi companion of Wally's.

And how does Wally repay this supreme display of bravery?

This reminds me of when the caption for a Far Side cartoon was accidentally used for a Dennis the Menace comic to hilariously macabre results. Is Funky Winkerbean printed next to Al Franken?

Speaking of knowing your audience, the passing of Brock Peters reminded me of a lesson we got last year in a seminar on litigation. Peters is, of course, the actor who played the falsely accused Tom Robinson in the film To Kill a Mockingbird.

We were told, the reason why Atticus Finch lost that case, despite giving a heartwrenching, observant and landmark speech: he used the word "iota" in his opening.

Simply, a courtroom audience in that region of the country in that period of time wouldn't have a clue what it meant, and would be lost from that point on.

"We find the defendant guilty of say whaa?"

One of the best albums of the year came out today. Did you buy it?

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