A word on the wall

« previous post | next post »

"Best. Cartoon. Ever", says Jesse Sheidlower, about The Rut for 7/15/2008:

"Well, maybe not greatest, but I really love this", he hedged.

I also enjoyed many of the other cartoons at the same site.


  1. Tom Recht said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 3:09 pm

    I think it's even funnier without a caption.

  2. Jonathan Lundell said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 3:10 pm

    "Correct punctuation"?

  3. Q. Pheevr said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 4:08 pm

    Jonathan Lundell asked, "'Correct punctuation'?"; I wondered about that, too. Certainly, Edward is justified in placing a full stop after his name if he views it as a complete utterance (e.g., as the answer to the unspoken question all taggers are implicitly responding to, which is presumably something along the lines of "Who the hell do you think you are, punk?"). But I'm bothered by the implicature that Edward's colleagues in general, and PzAṀʘ in particular, are not using correct punctuation. An unpunctuated name in isolation is no less correct than a name followed by a full stop. On the other hand, it does look rather as if PzAṀʘ is setting off his name with low double quotes („) on each side, which is a bit unorthodox—all the writing systems I know that use „ to mark the beginning of a quotation use ” to mark the end. But I'm not convinced that PzAṀʘ is really using „ as a punctuation mark here; it might just be decoration. Of course, Edward may well view decorative use of punctuationesque glyphs as inherently solecistic, but, with all due respect to Edward as an artist (spray-painting those little serifs is no mean feat), I'm inclined to disagree.

  4. D.O. said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 4:29 pm

    Q. Pheevr, I love those letters Ṁ and ʘ you dug up somewhere, but is the guy's on the right name is PzAṀʘ or RAṀʘ?

  5. peter said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 5:53 pm

    or BAMO ?

  6. Stephen Jones said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 6:02 pm

    To put a full stop or not after sentence fragments?

    Drives me crazy writing exams. As my proofreader and my boss said, it doesn't matter whether you do or not, but you must be consistent; you can't have two options without the full stop and two with, which of course is what I end up with as I am chronically undecided as to which is better.

  7. Preston So said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 6:19 pm

    The name's Ramo, according to the cartoonist in the commentary. And Tom, I second you.

  8. e said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 7:21 pm

    i dont know which is funnier; the cartoon or the commentary
    the semicolon is the only punctuation worth using
    this is great though; really entertaining

  9. Janice Huth Byer said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 8:35 pm

    This cartoonist is a great find. Thanks, Mark.

    For me, the caption adds another level, like icing on a cake. Yummy.

    I'm not to proud to admit some of his cartoons may be too deep for me, but I like that feeling of being in over my head. [Some of y'all may have guessed as much from my efforts on Language Log.]

    My current fav on the site: "This cartoon is holier than thou."

  10. Q. Pheevr said,

    August 16, 2009 @ 8:45 pm

    I stand corrected; Ramo it is. (Edward's dead right about legibility, though….)

  11. Rick said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 12:42 am

    Someone needs to keep an eye on this professor. Today's "Pearls Before Swine" has the same character wantonly breaking private property with a sledgehammer, secure in the knowledge that he is immune from prosecution thanks to tenure. :)

  12. Nathan Myers said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 3:26 am

    Sorry, nothing can top the pandas in a cage, one saying, "If, as you say, it is no crime to be a panda, how do you explain the fact that we were arrested?"

    I agree the one above is better without the caption.

  13. A word on the wall | Zee Slash Blog said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 5:14 am

    […] word on the wall via […]

  14. Graham said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 5:56 am

    How did Prof Edward achieve such a neat, Garamondish script, using a spraycan? A true artist.

  15. Electric Dragon said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 6:08 am

    Compare also the graffito shown at the beginning of "Look Around You – Maths": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pj2NOTanzWI#t=0m35s

  16. Jay Lake: [links] Link salad stumbles into another week said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 8:26 am

    […] A word on the wall — A truly great cartoon for us linguaphiles. […]

  17. ratso said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 8:56 am

    The punction issue is the period is misplaced.

  18. Als Ich Ein Hamster War » Blog Archive » That’s how I roll, motherfucker! said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 12:02 pm

    […] (via Language Log) […]

  19. Mel said,

    August 17, 2009 @ 6:41 pm

    Reading the cartoon was not nearly as entertaining as reading the comments. :)

  20. Two Can Play At That Game « Fuck Grapefruit said,

    August 18, 2009 @ 1:34 am

    […] That Game By misterfricative Over on Language Log, Jesse Sheidlower claims to have found the Best. Cartoon. Ever. And I think he may be […]

  21. Roland said,

    August 18, 2009 @ 6:37 pm

    Leaving out the word 'correct' in the caption would have perfected it, perhaps.

  22. DEfER oNes said,

    August 18, 2009 @ 11:38 pm

    It says RAMO, you toys.

RSS feed for comments on this post