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Date Written: August 10, 2004
Author: Litcube
Average Vote: 4.1

08/13/2004 qualcomm (4): ah, that's cute.
08/13/2004 Dick Vomit (4): BEH HEH HEH
08/13/2004 Ewan Snow (4): I can't fucking believe I laughed at this.
08/13/2004 TheBuyer (5): It's A Pants!
08/13/2004 Jimson S. Sorghum (5): I did too!
08/13/2004 Mr. Pony (4): The first five times I read it, I felt nothing. On the sixth reading, however...I think that duck's starting to grow on me.
08/13/2004 Jon Matza (4): Now this pants episode stands on its own.
08/14/2004 scoop (2): I can't believe you laughed at this either, Snow. Since when did all of you become so fucking retarded?
08/14/2004 qualcomm: ga ga ga ga
08/14/2004 Jon Matza: Scoop: you think Tim wouldn't have said that to the toast?
08/14/2004 scoop: A duck happened upon a toast with one large eye and another that appeared squeezed closed in to a slant. The duck's name was Tim. It was sunny out that day and the details of the hills in the distance were well articulated in the dazzling light. Eventually the toast flashed a childish smile, danced a clumsy jig and chattered, "GA,ga,ga." The duck called the Toast silly. The End. Hey Pony by the sixth time you read this it'll be real fucking funny.
08/14/2004 qualcomm: you underrated Fence Guy, too, scoop. you're no good at judging silly comics. thank you.
08/14/2004 scoop: Actually, Matza, I think that's exactly what Tim would have said to the Toast. Something unironic, uninteresting, unfunny, unsurprising and suffering from that most detestable of traits: obviousness.
08/14/2004 scoop: BTW, nothing personal, Clitpube.
08/14/2004 scoop: And you surrendered your credibility with your fatalistic embrace of Steely Dan's Easy-Listening Ethos, OSS. Your Welcome.
08/14/2004 scoop: And while were on the topic, I'm interested on how you think, aside from sharing a basic visual medium, Fence Guy and this thing ahve to do with one another? You really think this is funnier/more interesting then some of the shorts you give fours to around here? I mean, come on!
08/14/2004 qualcomm: quiet, i'm trying to listen to ABBA and you're ruining it.
08/14/2004 Litcube: Holy shit, scoop. You must really want my hog.
08/14/2004 scoop: No, Litcube, I dont want your hog. I just think your sense of humor sucks.
08/14/2004 scoop: OSS: Sorry.
08/14/2004 qualcomm: like i said, they're both (this and fence guy) silly. they both make you laugh for no good reason; i mean, everything fence guy says is stupid. technically, anyone could write it. but it's somehow winning. i recommend you go into shorts with more of an open heart, not flinching and holding your nose as if it were yet another new and unfamiliar food for you to be grossed out by.
08/14/2004 Litcube: Scoop, I think *you* need to stand up *right now* and dance a silly jig.
08/14/2004 scoop: OSS, dude, somehow winning? Once acmeshorts become a safe, comforting place rewarding cubicle art, then I'm fucking out of here. If this site's about cute, winning material then what's it good for? Absolutely nothing. Do I need to say it again?
08/14/2004 scoop: Litcube, I stood up. I danced a jig. A reservoir of joyful memories, once backed up behind a dam of mouldered cynicism and practiced nihilism, came flooding in to my once jaded head filling it with a child-like wonder. Thanks for the tip. I haven't felt this...this ...light, this full of life in years. But then I sat down and looked at your short and got real sad and angry again.
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: Frankly, I'm more worried about Acme becoming a haven for formulaically transgressive gym locker art, where "intellectually honest" folks can go to use the word "cunt" twice in a single sentence and get an automatic laugh. Laughing happens a lot of ways, and I don't think the laughter is invalid just because you're not uncomfortable, or in the process making someone else uncomfortable. Maybe that's not what you're angling toward, scoop. Don't care. As for "Fence Guy", Summer, I disagree that that's something anyone can write. read it again--takes a good ear to write that stuff so clean!
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: heh...clitpube
08/14/2004 John Slocum (4): Scoop, I enjoyed your ranting here, but alas, I also laughed at this short, and kind of 3.2ish laugh, and since wine sales were pretty good tonight, I'm going to round up.
08/14/2004 scoop: Yeah, that's great laughing in lots of ways and all Pony. But I didn't laugh at this thing. As for the "uncomfortable" comment, never used that word. In fact I used these: "unironic, uninteresting, unfunny, unsurprising and suffering from that most detestable of traits: obviousness." I have often voted on things that I didn't laugh at becasue they brought somehting to the table that I can't find when I pick up a gift card or peruse a Dilbert collection. Do I think that that laughter is "invalid" to use you new-agey terminology? No. I think it's fucking stupid and unfunny. Just like this short. I think it's just as lame, if not more so, when intellectually dishonest folks get an "automatic laugh" from three panels of a fucking fat cat that's mean to its owner and refuses to go on diets. Now excuse me while me and my frat buddies go explore pioneering and meaningful ways to employ the use of the word cunt.
08/14/2004 qualcomm: you are a silly scoop
08/14/2004 qualcomm: your comments suck, scoop. give us a real critique of THIS short, would you? all those adjectives you used, except for unironic, are subjective, as is your comparison of it to Garfield. since we're arguing about the value of this short, it's not enough for you to say that it doesn't "bring something to the table." that's what we're arguing about.

let me make a comparison that may ring true with some of the "folks" here: sesame street. you ever watch an old episode of that show and laugh at some of it? yes, it's gay. yes, the jokes are obvious on a certain level. etc. but the magic of pictures is that they don't require a hell of a lot of meaning to get a response. you can laugh at Grover simply because of how his arms might move during a spazz-out, for example.

in this short, i find the toast's leg and arm positioning in the first two panels to be pretty funny, just as i found Fence Guy's spindly legs to be funny. i found the sentence construction of the duck's accusation to be funny. and the actual sounds the toast is making -- again, dopily funny. sometimes these comix require a suspension of disbelief, scoop: are you honestly telling me you wouldn't laugh if you saw a piece of toast dancing around and saying "ga ga gah"? that's intellectually dishonest.
08/14/2004 qualcomm: i must second pony's emotion about formulaically transgressive gym locker art, scoop. i have a feeling you wouldn't be going on so if the toast were stabbing a baby, and the duck comes up and says, "You are a mean toast."
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: Now, scoop, I wasn't actually scolding you for not laughing at this. That would be as insane as you scolding us for laughing at it. Some things just can't be helped, I guess. I just worry that you're dismissing entire categories of humor just as easily as you'd dismiss entire food groups. Sure, life is short, and we have to be on guard against wastes of our time. And if you want to be so "discriminating" that your menu is blacked out like a classified memo, that's your business. I, however, reserve the right to mock you for doing so, just as you reserve the right to do your damnedest to insult everyone who laughs at something you've already dismissed. Am I defending Dilbert or Garfield? No. I'm just appalled that you seem to divide the world up into such a small number of categories. By the way, if anything, the word "invalid" is probably more pop-psychology than new age. If you're going to use that particular method to attack me, please get your generalizations right. I do applaud your correct use of the phrase "intellectually dishonest", which, as you know, has come to refer to the unwillingness of another person to voice and vehemently defend the opinion of the speaker.
08/14/2004 scoop: If I saw a real piece of toast dancing while I was walking down the street I would laugh. I also would laugh if I saw a duck padding down the street and saying, “I am Tim,” just as this particular duck did in a prior short, which didn’t receive any of this current adulation. I would laugh because it would unbelievably fantastic. But you see, Jon, when there are drawings of these things I expect more than just the fantastic to get a laugh. Because in the magical world of drawings anything can do or be anything. An overweight underachieving hag named Cathy can break her diet! A dog can talk to cubicle slave! Mary Worth can be Mary Worthish! That doesn’t make it funny. My problem with this short has nothing to do with being “silly”. I’ve written plenty of silly stuff here, my last short for example. I’ve praised plenty of silly stuff. I’m not exactly sure why you’re even making that point against me. My dislike of this has nothing to do with its silliness. It has to do with expectations and standards. There are plenty of jokes that are funny. But often shorts get criticized, fairly so, for being jokey. The standard is higher. This does exactly what it’s supposed to do for fucking 3-5 year old children. Am I supposed to embrace it just because it’ warm and fuzzy, to show how open minded I am, and that I can “validate” all the different laughters on the rainbow? Part of the joy in seeing Grover act like he does is knowing that there is an adult human being acting like a maniac to bring joy in to the world. As for a “real” critique, would it be enough for me to talk about how it’s “somehow not winning” or how it “doesn’t make me laugh for no good reason?” Lumping Fence Guy and this duck in to the same unknowable miasma of silly fun, is doing Fence Guy a great disservice. Fence Guy takes a bizzarro rendering of a child’s medium and uses it to express a most child-like jadedness about the world and the human condition, with a child’s impunity. That’s interesting, surprising, to quote the artist, ETC. I blew it with my rating and have since tried to make up for it to the author. This short on the other hand doesn’t do anything but what it’s supposed to – it’s formulaic, unsurprising and boring. This is not a new and unfamiliar food I’m grossed out by. Its cafeteria-produced gruel I’m bored with. I stared coming to this new, cool restaurant, to get something different, and the waiter brings me out this! I demand to talk to the manager! And as for your snotty advice – it reeks of someone who speaks haughtily about how his transcendent aesthetic can see the true beauty in Brittany Spears’s “Toxic.”
08/14/2004 qualcomm: well, if you look at my initial comment, you'll see that i said, "ah, that's cute." i rewarded it for cuteness. cute things are sometimes worthy of praise. take fold, for example. holy shit, that cat is cute. and she deserves five stars for it. of course, cats are supposed to be cute. are shorts supposed to be cute? i don't know. i'm not willing to say they're not supposed to be cute, though. (incidentally, i don't find Cathy or Garfield to be cute)
08/14/2004 qualcomm: also, i disagree with your explanation for why grover is funny. i don't think the idea of an adult manipulating the puppets has ever played much of a part in why i think some sesame street bits are funny. they are amusing in and of themselves. the puppets look funny. that's it. you are over-intellectualizing the humor process. that is your tragic error.
08/14/2004 scoop: What’s with the venom, Pony? You have the “right” to mock me anytime you want; I’m just not sure why you’d want to. I’m not sure why you are making this personal. But oh well, here we go. As for what’s my business and what’s not. Couldn’t I say that about you and your opinions? Your opinion of this short was your business too, wasn’t it? But you voted and commented. Just so we’re clear that’s what’s going on here. Your praise of this was just as baffling and offensive to me as my dislike of it is to you. But that’s no call for “mocking” as far as I’m concerned. As for “valid” and “invalid,” what the hell is that supposed to mean? I wasn’t attacking you, dude, just your choice of words, unless your counting that retard comment addressed at all of you as an attack rather than the joke it was meant to be. The use of “valid” concealed more than it revealed. It’s an Orwellian pollution of language and I called you out for it. Why didn’t you give my last short a 5 five star rating? Why didn’t you validate that type of laughter? According to your comment this is why: “I'm still trying to figure out if the short going on too long is part of the joke. If so, I'm not sure it quite makes it out of the "not funny anymore" zone that lies between "funny" and "funny again". I wish "Doosh" wasn't hidden so I could compare the two.” Now, I disagreed with you about this short. I thought it was funny, but hey I wrote it and I’m biased. However, you didn’t see me going on about life being short and your eating habits? You apparently blacked that off your menu. Fine. You didn’t like it because it went on too long, because it was stupid whatever. I’m not criticizing your voting, I’m just pointing out that you dismissed it. And also, that your dismissal of that particular short was not your dismissal off “an entire category of humor.” Just as my dismissal of this short is not the same. You didn’t find my short laughter worthy of validating. So your condescending attack on me is about what? That I’m being more forceful with my opinions? Let’s be clear about this -- you are bristling at me for having a different opinion than you, and not because of some high horse you’re on about being open-minded. Just because you have shut different doors, or redacted different categories, make you any more lovable than me. You seemed pretty ready to dismiss “formulaically transgressive gym locker art” in your last comment. Does that reflect on how you eat and categorize the world? Does that make you a monster? No, I don’t think so. I agree with you that that type of humor sucks and is also boring. If you think that’s what my material is like then I find that upsetting, because I value your opinion. But don’t kid your self that dismissing that is any higher or mightier than me dismissing this short. I would say I’m “appalled” at your hypocrisy, but I really don’t think you see the fallacy you are suffering from. As for the “intellectually dishonest” comment, I really don’t understand what you meant by it, but I’m sure it was mean.
08/14/2004 scoop: OSS: Maybe you're right. If I have that tragic-error, then I'm fucked. But that's not all that's going on here. My peers praised somethingI thought was stupid. I called them out on it. Some of my peers told me to be more specific. I tried to be. Yes sure, sometimes cute things are worthy of praise. But are unfunny things supposed to be praised for being funny?
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: That's total horseshit. How does my inability to see the fallacy I suffer from excuse me from hypocrisy? You'd better start thinking with your head, instead of just your dick.
08/14/2004 qualcomm: yeah but scoop, i don't think pony is "baffled" by your dislike of this short. this is the same argument as always: he's baffled over your attack on his opinion, not your attack on the object of his opinion.
08/14/2004 scoop: Pony: I don't think it's "horseshit" that you call me out in a condescending fashion for doing somehting that you do too. I wasn't being sarcastic. You're too smart to do it knowingly. As for thinking with my dick, I'm not sure what you mean in this context. Since that usually means sleeping with lots of women without regard for the circumstances. So I'm not sure what you mean by it here.
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: Seriously, my only real problem with what's going on here is that we are arguing questions of taste. Which I guess is fine, but I think such arguments become very worthless very quickly. I admit that the other thing that we are brushing up against, the idea of inclusion versus exclusion is just a personal peeve, and I bring it up every chance I get.
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: My entire "horseshit" comment was intended to be dismissed outright. I don't want to waste a perfectly good Saturday--we could be outside playing! As for my condescension, are you serious? Any of us would be hard-pressed to find a single argument on Acme that didn't start, continue, or end with someone taking a superior tone. If condescension is off limits though, let me know.
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: Summer's right. This is the same old argument. What's wrong with us?
08/14/2004 scoop: Pony: I think it's paradoxical how your passon for inclusion manages to force people like me out. I don't thin questions of taste are wastes of time, they're really the arguments worth having, in a way. Questions of fact are easily resolved with a google search or an set of encyclopedias. Those aren't arguments as much as they are people having misunderstanddings about their facts, wrong facts, bad memory or whatever. OSS: I disagree with your assessment, or rather, I think it's a differnet way of phrasing the same thing. Let's say comes up to me and says "I beleive in God, and Jesus our Lord and Saviour." Now some might argue that's a matter of taste/opinon. I could do three things. Agree. Disagree and say but hey that's your opinion. Or I could rail in to the person about atheism. I am baffled by that belief. And baffled by someone's opinon of that belief. It's really hard for me to not attack that persons idea (GOd) without attacking that person. Pony's/Your opinoion of this short is an "attack" (using the word loosely) on my opinion. I don't know what the differnce between me railing against this short without asking you guys why you voted high on it, and railing against and asking that question. It would be kind of weird to hold diametrically opposed opinions but not broach the subject, I think.
08/14/2004 qualcomm: yes, but nevertheless, pony doesn't view an attack on this short as an attack on him. i don't think he identifies with it that closely, the way people do with their misguided notions of deities. correct me if i'm wrong, pony.
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: Actually, I think the analogy is flawed. It points out the differences in what we're talking about. I'm sure even you would agree that the two ideas "...exists" (referring to jesus christ and his dad, god) and "...is funny" (referring to, say, this short) are starkly different in tone and character, but more importantly in provability (at least theoretically)--one is indeed a statement of taste, but the other is a statement of objective fact (perhaps not googlable, but correct or otherwise). If your analogic person were to say "Despite all evidence to the contrary, and completely ignoring the total lack of evidence leading me to this conclusion, I find myself believing in the existence of a magic dude who lives in the sky and likes me," then maybe we'd have a ballgame. By the way, I find your use of the word "broach" to be a dramatic understatement, sanitizing what I believe to be the source of my initial irritation.
08/14/2004 qualcomm: scoop, here's the difference between your approach and pony's: pony doesn't give a shit if you have a low opinion of this short. and if memory serves, when he lowballs a short, he doesn't sit around arguing with those who have praised it. (now with women's soccer, he was arguing because we attacked his position, not because we praised the short.) you, on the other hand, are engaging those whose opinion is opposed to yours. now i'm not saying what you're doing is wrong, but i mean, come on: you have to see the difference.
08/14/2004 qualcomm: (by the way, to answer a previous question of yours, i think my last comment explains why pony is more lovable than you, too.)
08/14/2004 scoop: Oh, christ, I'm not trying to sanitize anything, Pony. But your irritation and the consequent ad hominem attack seemed to have nothing to do with the short or my intnese dislike for it, or consequent confusion as to why people whom I respect liked it so much. If calling you all retards was insulting -- Sorry. The analogy is to illustrate that an attack on an opinion is just another way of saying I have a different opinion. I would agree with your characterization, Pony, but the people who have faith wouldn't. And I admire the faith you OSS and the other discples of this short have in belieivng that this is funny. Your devotion contrary to overwhelming evidence is going to rewarded in the afterlife.
08/14/2004 scoop: ...and OSS: the differnce between attacking a short and a position are much slimmer than you're making them out to be. And Pony is lovable to many, and by far and away more lovable than I, but he can be a real meanie to people who don't act the way he approves.
08/14/2004 Mr. Pony: Great, scoop; suggest that my treatment of the opinions of the folks who voted on this short is religious in nature. That's not a stretch at all. In fact, it seems to get truer every time you do it. Look, everyone, I almost believe in god! By the way, I'm sorry for being such a meanie, but my feeling is that my attacks are just another way of saying I have a different opinion.
08/14/2004 Jon Matza: 1. Are certain people forgetting that today's the Sabbath (day of rest)?
2. Don't know what this means but I got a laugh out of Scoop's "A duck happened upon a toast..." text version of the short. That is, I liked it on its own, in spite of (or perhaps in addition to) Scoop's extreme exasperation.
3. Am upset that yesterday's fracas has been supplanted by this, never got latest controversy status & is already fading into the mists of time.
4. Have nothing substantive really to contribute here...though this doesn't seem comparable to Cathy, Garfield or Dilbert to me.
08/14/2004 Dylan Danko: Didn't read all these comments because I figured i got the gist with OSS's '...also, i disagree with your explanation for why grover is funny.' I am praying for all of you.
08/14/2004 Jimson S. Sorghum: I have to say, despite my vote, I do understand Scoop's comparing this to Dilbert, Garfield and the like. I think it's more comparable to some vague greeting card idea. Or a comic one might find in the school paper. Clearly, though, I'm not wired beyond it. It got a good hearty laugh outta me.
08/14/2004 Ewan Snow: Yeah, scoop's wired beyond finding this cute. He had all these ideas in his head, and now they're gone. And he can't take this semantic bullshit any longer; he's getting clandestine on us. He has an orbit, it just such useless one and he goes in there talking like a fish. I know how you feel.
08/16/2004 Jon Matza: Re Dilbert, Garfield, Kathy: You, collectively, are nuts. This thing does not resemble those comics in form, content or tone--if anything it's a fuck you to them. Those are everyday observational "humor" strips with a middlebrow, sitcom sensibility. This thing is surreal-abstract; there's no punchline and the drawing's intentionally amateurish, if not infantile. I am disappointed in, if not crushed by, your collective lack of discernment.
08/16/2004 Jimson S. Sorghum: Matza: You're right, visually it resembles them not at all. The joke isn't one of theirs. But I think the accessibility of the humor is what draws comparison. This is a very vague comparison, I'll give you that. And I certainly can't speak for Scoop. It seems to me more reminiscent of (as I've said) a greeting card or something from my college paper. I wish I could be more specific, but I don't happen to keep apprised of the employees of Shoebox Greetings (a tiny division of Hallmark), but perhaps Scoop lumps Garfield et al. into the same category. Maybe two things remotely similar automatically fall under the same level in his hierarchy.
02/16/2010 qualcomm: I am struck by Pony's comment at 12:00:49 PM. There we were, that tranquil summer Saturday almost six years ago, in the days when Acme--and we--were young and vigorous. Mr. Joshua was probably handicapping up at the Spa. Scoop and Doula were lazing about in their sixth floor apartment, lives as yet unburdened by the screams of rotten children. Ewan and Jimson were blazing up. Matza was chatting on the phone with Slocum. Danko was erasing the child pornography his roommate had downloaded to his computer. And I was probably preparing to or finishing up a nice long wank. Now that day and hundreds of other Saturdays have come and gone. We are like Sam Gamgee, returned from our long adventure, only to have Frodo depart for the Grey Havens. A part of us has died. Did we indeed waste that precious August Saturday? And the gift of watermelon pickle from a friend named Felicity? And more importantly, what would you guys think if I started using capital letters in comments from now on?
02/17/2010 scoop: So this is what you people were giggling at while Bush's stormtroopers were out there fixing electrodes to ragheads' nuts? I see now why you otherwise discerning consumers of culture found comfort in the harmless and unthreatening exploits of a toast and a duck. This was your sunny potemkin reality, a safe place to huddle in while storm clouds of tyranny gathered overhead. A quiet place to muffle the self-righteous, anguished screams of the innocent. You should have told me then. I wouldn't have been so (correctly) hard on you all.
02/17/2010 Mr. Pony: Looking back on all this (not all of Acme, just this comment thread), I still think scoop's argument boiled down to "not formulaically transgressive enough". I can forgive that, though; of course I can forgive that... Scoop, you are my brother, and I love you.
02/17/2010 Litcube (0.5): A. See?
02/17/2010 Litcube: DISNEY!
02/18/2010 qualcomm: scoop, is there anything you'd like to say to pony?
02/20/2010 scoop: Why yes, qualcomm. There is.
02/26/2010 Mr. Pony: I bet there isn't
02/28/2010 Jon Matza: Mr. Pony: here is what Scoop would like to say to you.
03/16/2010 Marvin_Bernstein (5): toast is such a beloved meme