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Episode 1590

Primary Colors

Centuries ago, monks who took a vow of silence developed their own hand signs, with hundreds of gestures, that are still in use today. Plus, how do speakers of different languages distinguish similar shades and tints of colors such as red, yellow...

Ready for Freddy

Sarah from Haddonfield, New Jersey, wonders about the phrase Are you ready for Freddy? It’s a catchphrase that was part of a running gag in Al Capp’s long-running “Li’l Abner” comic strip, which ran in newspapers in the...

Rebus and Grammagram

If you simply read each letter aloud, you can see why O.U.Q.T.! U.R.A.B.U.T.! can be interpreted to mean “Oh, you cutie! You are a beauty!” A statement expressed that way with letters, numerals, or drawings is called a rebus, or, if...

Fibber McGee Junk Drawer

The Fibber McGee drawer is that essential place where you quickly shove a bunch of junk when you need to clean up fast and don’t have the time or care to organize anything. It comes from the old radio comedy, Fibber McGee and Molly, which...

stripper

stripper  n.— «More daily cartoonists, who call themselves “strippers” and many of whom consider themselves artists, really should consider hiring gag writers, although a few do. Just because you can draw doesn’t mean you’re...

Yahtzee

Yahtzee  n.— «Regular readers of our site know about Yahtzees, a term I coined to refer to times when five or more cartoonists draw the same gag at the same time.» —“Harvard Cartoon “plagiarism”” by Daryl...