Home

I wish it was Dilbert. But today it is the May 16th Pearls Before Swine. Check it out today at this URL, but after today it will be in the archive.

http://www.comics.com/comics/pearls/

 
 

In the news, a JetBlue pilot allegedly made a passenger give his seat to an off-duty flight attendant. The flight was full, so the passenger was ordered to sit on the toilet for three hours.


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24585615/



I'm sure your reaction to this story was the same as mine: That passenger got the best seat in the house! He had lots of leg room, total privacy, no one trying to hog the armrest, no seatbelt requirement, and all the whizzing he could handle. So naturally he sued the airline.


The passenger's problem was that he didn't know how to make the best of a great situation. I would have kept the door propped open and yelled "Waiter! More Diet Coke!" every time a flight attendant walked past. And I would have gathered up enough blankets and pillows to feather my little nest.


You might be thinking that the toilet seat in the bathroom has more cooties than Rick Solomon's beard. That's true, and it's why you should always pee in the little sink. But I digress. My point is that there is some theoretical number of airline blankets that will give you three hours of protection. Then all you have to worry about is the germs on the blankets themselves.


The real victims in this story are the two-hundred passengers who had to share one bathroom. They're the ones who should be suing. Airlines have a rule that you can't congregate around the bathroom and wait in line. That means you have to keep one hand on your seatbelt buckle and get ready to pounce as soon as the door opens. If anyone else makes a move, you might need to show your box cutters and yell something about Allah to clear the aisle. It's either that or your bladder will burst. There are no good choices here.


The passenger in this story had his own private suite for three hours and apparently missed the opportunity for a solo flight to the Mile High Club. I assume this is the case because he arrived in California all angry. If you put most men of that age group behind a locked door for three hours, with no other form of entertainment, you need a gurney and an IV at the other end.

 
 

Few things fascinate me more than seeing something work when it really shouldn't. For example, as you know, nothing is more boring than listening to another person talk about the dream he had last night. Therefore, you would assume, a comic that is nothing but an account of a stranger's dream should be the most uninteresting comic in the universe. And yet it isn't.


Artist Jesse Reklaw turns people's dreams into four-panel comics on the Internet. They have no coherent story line and no punch lines. If you read only one, you would probably scratch your head and wonder what he was smoking. But if you read several it feels like accessing the dream part of your brain while being awake. It's the strangest sensation. Check it out.


http://www.slowwave.com/index.php

 
 

The hardest part about writing is capturing your own (or someone else's) inner thoughts. For example, if I ask you to tell me something funny or frustrating about your job, you'd give me tales of coworkers eating your food from the break room fridge, or tell me your boss is incompetent. But those aren't thoughts, just observations. We seem to store memories in terms of actions and some broad emotions, but not thoughts. And it is the thoughts you generally don't voice that make writing interesting.


Let's test this. In the comments section, tell me what you were DOING immediately before reading this blog, and also tell me what you were THINKING about while you did it. If you can do both of those things, you are halfway to being an interesting and humorous writer.


For example, "I was answering an e-mail from my coworker Karl while thinking he won't understand my answer because he has an unusually small head that probably can't hold much of a hat much less a brain."


Your turn.

 
My Cat
May 12, 2008 | General Nonsense | Permalink
 

I have an office cat, Sarah. She's a scrawny little tuxedo cat, about 18-years old. Sarah hates it when I try to work. I mean she really, really hates it. As soon as I enter the office she starts screaming at me. It's not a polite meow. It's more like a baby banshee being attacked by a porcupine. The noise penetrates my entire body. I'm almost certain it causes internal bleeding. This screaming lasts from the time I come to work until I leave.


Sometimes she punctuates the shrieking by puking on my carpet, destroying any documents she can reach with her arthritic leaping ability, and grunting out WMD in the cat box. Only one thing can stop this cycle. I must lift her up and pet her in just the way she likes. Any deviation from the recommended petting pattern means bloodshed.


You might wonder why I haven't thrown her through a double-paned window in all these years. That's because I haven't told you about the licking.


When I hold her in my arms, her pupils widen with love and she starts to lick my chin. I am not talking about a perfunctory little dry tongued "how ya doing?" here. Imagine a toothless, starving angel trying to lick a pork chop. It's like that, but less creepy.


I know I am special because she only licks the things she loves the most, including soft cat food, my chin, and her own ass, not always in that order. She doesn't have a favorite book or TV show, but if she did, I am sure she would lick them too.


Her tongue is surprisingly wet. I think she drinks water all night long to get ready for the morning. She's 4 pounds of cat and 2 pounds of pre-slobber. I've gotten used to the moisture, but the sandpaper texture has made it impossible for me to grow a beard. I live in fear that my town will have some sort of old-timey festival where all the men are expected to grow facial hair. People will just look at me, put an arm on my shoulder and whisper "Must be a great cat."


And they will be right. My cat is great.

 

I'm trying to come up with a catch phrase for a Catbert t-shirt. Here are some rough sketches. Which one do you like best?

 


 

 
Recently we redesigned the Dilbert.com web site and added a ton of features, such as animation, deeper archives, mash ups, and more. The reaction from readers has been fascinating.
 
www.dilbert.com
 
Let me get this out of the way: I realize the Beta version of the web site has lots of issues. It’s overloaded with Flash, slower than it needs to be, and the navigation is confusing. We’re fixing most of that over the next few weeks. I apologize for the inconvenience.
 
The fascinating thing about the responses is that it revealed three distinct types of Dilbert readers:
 
The first group is the ultra-techies who have an almost romantic relationship with technology. For them, the new site felt like getting dumped by a lover. Their high-end technology (generally Linux) and security settings made much of the site inconvenient. Moreover, the use of Flash offended them on some deep emotional level.
 
The second group objected to the new level of color and complexity, and the associated slowness. They like their Dilbert comics simple, fast, and in two colors. Anything more is like putting pants on a cat.
 
The third group uses technology as nothing more than a tool, and subscribes to the philosophy that more free stuff is better than less free stuff. That group has embraced the new features on the site and spiked the traffic stats.
 
For you first two groups, if you promise to keep it to yourselves, we created a stripped-down Dilbert page with just the comic, some text navigation, and the archive: www.dilbert.com/fast. This alternate site is a minor secret, mentioned only here and in the text footnote to the regular site as “Linux/Unix.”
 
The main site will be getting a Flash diet that will make it speedier soon, so check back in a few weeks. That’s where all the fun will be.
 
Enjoy.
 
Our web site upgrade (BETA) reminds me of a local restaurant in my area. The owner painted the storefront a hideous purple, the sort of color that is an insult to all buildings. He did it without city approval, and it got the residents up in arms. Everyone was talking about the restaurant with the awful color. A month later, the owner repainted with an inoffensive color and everyone was happy. In the meantime, the controversy made this restaurant universally known in the area. I drove past it the other day and it was packed. Damn, I wish I had thought of that idea with my own restaurant.

We weren't nearly that clever with our web site redesign, but something like the purple restaurant happened by accident. The majority of people who left a comment had bitter (and totally valid) complaints. We used way too much Flash, the servers slowed to a crawl, the navigation of strips was klunky, and so on. We plan to fix all of that in the next week or two. The developers won't be getting much sleep. We've already made the site much quicker.

Meanwhile, traffic on Dilbert.com doubled. And the new features, particular the Mash Ups and the archive search functions are a big hit. People either loved that the strips are now in color or hated it, but everyone had a strong opinion. That's what I love about Dilbert readers. It makes my job a lot more interesting.

Linux users were the most vocal in their complaints. (Who saw that coming?) Your numbers are small but your power is mighty. Just for you, we're working on a bare bones page with only the strips, text navigation, and not much else. Look for that in a week or so. You'll be able to jump from there to the main page if you want to experience the new features like regular folk.

In the meantime, you can always use the new (legal) Dilbert RSS feed. It's just the strips, the way you like it. Click here:
http://feeds.feedburner.com/DilbertDailyStrip

We appreciate all the comments. We're looking at them carefully and making changes. Some will say we shouldn't have inflicted this messy Beta version on the public. There's merit to that argument, but if I was worried about embarrassing myself in front of millions of people, I would need a new job.

Thanks for working with me through this upgrade. I apologize for the messy start.

P.S. My blog hasn't officially moved to this page yet. You can read the regular posts at the old site:
http://dilbertblog.typepad.com/the_dilbert_blog/
 

Welcome to the almost-too-incredible-to-believe BETA version of the new Dilbert web site! We spent most of the past year, and a small fortune, to unwrap all the pent up Dilbert goodness and provide it to you for free, embracing the new realities of intellectual property on the web.

The site is still in BETA. You're getting a preview of future wonders. Please be patient. This is a generation beyond any comic web site, and it gets bumpy when you pass beyond the rim. Take a sneak peek at these new features: 

PUNCH LINES: Write your own punch lines for Dilbert strips - just type them right into the panel - and e-mail them to friends!

Soon you will be able to write the entire strip, collaborating with others, in what we call Group Mash! (One person writes the first panel, another writes the second, and so on.) Readers can vote the best ones to the top of the heap. That way you get the attention and credit you need to make life worth living. 

Starting today, mocking the idiots in your workplace is a competitive sport! This is going to be fun. I'll participate in the Punch Lines and Group Mashes too. Look for my contributions under username ScottAdams.

ANIMATION: We've animated Dilbert online. Several strips are already done and we plan to add one per day. You have to hear the new voice for Dogbert.

FAVORITE LISTS: Create lists of your favorite Dilbert comics and share with others. 

ARCHIVE EXPANDED: Now the free Dilbert archive extends back to 2001. We're working on putting the entire archive online.

COLOR: All online strips are in living color. They look sensational. 

SEARCH: Filter the archive by favorite characters. For example, find all the comics in the archive featuring Dogbert or Catbert or Asok, etc., plus any combination of characters.

DILBERT BLOG: My personal blog is moving to this page. And you'll be able to vote on comments, so the wisest and funniest float to the top. 

The site has so many features and options it will take you a while to discover them. Send me your comments at scottadams@aol.com.

 
 
 
Showing 1041-1049 of total 1049 entries
 
Get the new Dilbert app!
Old Dilbert Blog