Thursday Night Open Thread

Laura, Ahab, and I are still working on the Cafe Press experiment to raise money for animal rescue, and Laura has enlisted Evelyn DeHais (her blog is here) to do some graphic work. Here is her first piece (well, second, actually, because she did the Tunch is Watching You, too):


If you have any logos or slogans you would like to have on the products, fill me in. Also, if you want to submit graphics to use, they should be 8 MB files (ideally 2000pixels x 2000pixels @ 200 d.p.i.).

129 replies
  1. 1

    Shit. Just… shit. What I’m wondering is, how come most of the major lib blogs aren’t commenting on it or giving it short shrift.

  2. 2
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    Our Pet Overlords — we are but in there eternal service.

    This is written. Go Lily!!

  3. 3
    Chat Noir says:

    I don’t have a suggestion at the minute but I will definitely buy Balloon Juice-branded stuff to raise money for animal rescue.

    Love the first two drafts with Tunch and Lily.

  4. 4
    Jay in Oregon says:

    Lily could be my pet overlord, if I didn’t already have a couple of lovely dogs of my own.

  5. 5

    Love it. I would like a t-shirt that says, “Property of Tunch” with a picture of Tunchie’s face on it. Black, please. Maybe a babydoll. Kthxbai.

  6. 6
    Chat Noir says:

    @asiangrrlMN: Or a coffee mug. I don’t wear t-shirts but I will definitely drink coffee from a mug with Tunch’s picture on it. “Property of Tunch” is excellent.

  7. 7
    Demo Woman says:

    What I would like is a Tee with a picture of Tunch and the slogan I got your back. The front could be the BJ logo on the right hand side.
    Lily is adorable but in this day and age, I’d feel more comfortable knowing that Tunch has my back.

  8. 8

    @Chat Noir: I smell a whole product line based solely on this slogan.

    @Demo Woman: Or “Chill the fuck out. I got this.” With Tunch’s pic.

  9. 9
    jeffreyw says:

    Don’t fear the boogieman-
    I eated him.

    [tunch pic]


  10. 10
    Max says:

    Love it! No more politics or negative stories for the rest of the day, please. I’m wiped out from it all.

    At 10pm eastern, I’m watching Project Runway! I won’t even ask for a thread because I got so much shit last week. Fuck off haters.

  11. 11
    Drive By Wisdom says:

    @jurassicpork: I would guess they are not talking about it because it is just another failure of liberal ideas in the free market.

    You know, those radio transmitters do not run on patchouli.

  12. 12
    jeffreyw says:

    DVR’d the Dr Who marathon, working my way through all those.

    edit: one of the three amigos was adopted out today.

  13. 13
    Laura W says:

    To get an idea of how absurdly talented Evelyn is, biggify the graphic John posted above, and then open this Bath Night photo in another window and view them side-by-side.

    Y’all have no idea how much she is doing in terms of reworking the existing images we want to use. Ahab too.
    It’s like a gazillion times more complicated than I ever believed it would be.
    Also. Too.
    You betcha.

  14. 14
    Demo Woman says:

    @asiangrrlMN: Nice, I like this.

  15. 15
    Demo Woman says:

    @jurassicpork: Air America actually had very limited ranges. I could pick it up online but not in my car and I live just north of Atlanta.

  16. 16
    tesslibrarian says:

    I’m with Chat Noir: mugs are definitely the way to go. I just don’t wear tshirts much anymore, but one can never have too many caffeine delivery devices.

    Just be sure there’s an option for giant mugs. I still prefer my old “vast liberal conspiracy” mug on weekends, even though it’s barely readable anymore. More caffeine = more better.

  17. 17

    @tesslibrarian: Oh, it’s gotta be at least 24 oz. At least! I loves me my oversized mugs.

    And black! Everything has to come in black!

  18. 18
    Laura W says:

    Ate my previous post that took me like 15 minutes to compose.

    Once more with less Ketel One:

    To really appreciate how absurdly talented Evelyn is, biggify the graphic John posted above and then open up this Bath Night photo in another window and view them side-by-side.

  19. 19

    I could see a graphic with Tunch wearing a turban that says The Tunchatolla, in sunglasses that says The Tunchinator, or one of the pics of Tunch with “the look” that says Bitch, please. The possibilities are endless.

  20. 20
    beltane says:

    This morning I saw an elderly pitbull sitting in the front seat of a parked car wearing a snuggie. It was the high point of my day.

  21. 21
    Keith G says:

    Its amazing how much help my two kitties have been this week. I think they know I’m a bit blue because they have been extra cuddly these last two days.

    And I will be depending on kitty power now as I try to digest the Scotus ruling, which to my mind is infinitely more troublesome than Tuesday’s vote.

    Kitties and a new bottle of Highland Park single malt.

  22. 22
    MattR says:

    I still want a photshopped Tunch wearing Rex Ryan’s black NY Jets sweater vest.

    (I may be the only one laughing at this joke, but that doesn’t mean I’m gonna stop making it)

  23. 23
  24. 24
    Danton says:

    Please correct by adding a comma after “one.” Thus, “I, for one, welcome our pet overlords.”

    OK, so I’m picky. So what?

  25. 25
    Dreggas says:

    I still say the caption for the Tunch pick needs to say:

    “Fuck Morris.”

  26. 26
  27. 27
  28. 28
    Chat Noir says:

    @Keith G: So right! My kitties are excellent at sensing when I’m depressed or down, as I am now because of the state of the world. My tortoiseshell is plopped on my lap now purring and nosing my left (as I type) as if to say, “ear rub! now!”

  29. 29
  30. 30

    @Dreggas: That made me chuckle. Thanks, I needed that.

    @arguingwithsignposts: SMUDGEY! She makes everything better.

  31. 31
    Evelyn says:

    Awesome. I’m glad you guys like it! I had fun drawing this :)

  32. 32
    Comrade Luke says:

    You need a shirt with one of the pets saying “I Am Aware of All the Internet Traditions”.

  33. 33
    Max says:

    I would a picture of Tunchy, with “O-bot” underneath.


  34. 34
    Laura W says:

    @Danton: Not picky – “Thorough and accurate” and already noted…and we appreciate the input.

    This is all a work in progress right now with plenty of time for corrections and perfections, additions and expanding of slogans and product lines. Evelyn and Ahab are working their butts off here, for free, with f/t jobs and lives of their own. This is 11 gazillion times more involved and complicated than I ever dreamed it would be, so thank DOG for both of them.

    We are committed to getting the products that we open the store with right from the get-go, even if it takes a while and we start with fewer options, because the last thing any of us wants to see in thread after thread is: FYCP!

  35. 35
    dr. bloor says:

    @Drive By Wisdom:

    @jurassicpork: I would guess they are not talking about it because it is just another failure of liberal ideas in the free market.

    You know, those radio transmitters do not run on patchouli

    It’s a pity progressives don’t have the issues with erectile dysfunction and paying taxes that drive about 99.999% of the ad revenue on Rushbo’s, Beck’s and other right wing radio shows.

  36. 36
    Brian J says:


    That would probably be the highlight of my day, too, if I saw it.

  37. 37
    Phoebe says:

    @Max: This is for you.

  38. 38
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    I just got a robo email from Tim Kaine. You know how sometimes the screen is too small to show the entire subject line? Well, this from Tim Kaine had a subject line that showed AFTER MASSAC and I swear to gods I thought that word was going to be MASSACRE. If I were feeling less gloom and doom about, well, pretty much everything right now, I don’t think that would have occurred to me.

    SD +0 but pouring

  39. 39
    Notorious P.A.T. says:

    Cute design )

    Meanwhile, 2010 sure is shaping up nicely, huh?

  40. 40
    CynDee says:

    @Keith G: On a large cup, how about a pic of Tunch at his most imposing, with Keith’s phrase, KITTY POWER.

    How about such a pic with LOVE THIS MUG.

  41. 41
    Kyle says:

    There needs to be a comma after “one,” as in “I, for one, . . ..

  42. 42
    Notorious P.A.T. says:

    how come most of the major lib blogs aren’t commenting on it?

    Because so many other rotten things are happening in our wonderful era of Hope and Change.

  43. 43
    Cat Lady says:

    @Keith G:

    My kittehs “help” me when I’m down too. They were very “helpful” today.

    I vote for t-shirts of Tunch. First choice : “Chill the Fuck Out, I Got This” (thx asiangrrlMN). 2nd choice: I Drink Your Milkshake (and Everyone Else’s). 3rd choice: Obey.

    When our Chinese Overlords or the Mayan ancestors come for us, we’ll be ready. Would you mess with The Tunchinator?


  44. 44
    Brian J says:

    I need the help of people here.

    I’m struggling with how to define exactly the way I feel. The results in Massachusetts sucked, but I don’t it really spells the sort of trouble for Democrats the Republicans hope for. There was word that lots of local issues mattered. Plus, as everyone acknowledges, Coakley ran a terrible campaign. I don’t think he’ll be elected in three years. It wasn’t a great turn of events, but hardly the horrible sign some think.

    But it could turn into something much worse if we don’t change course. I don’t think all of the criticisms against Obama are warranted, but I do think he’s been far too timid on a lot of fronts. He doesn’t need to act like he doesn’t care and exists only to stir shit up, but he does need to act more like he’s fighting against the special interests bleeding us dry. If he did this, it’d be a rare occasion where the right politics and the right policies align almost exactly.

    I keep thinking that he is going to change things up at some point in some way, whether that involves making big changes to his economic team or simply calling Republicans out more often. I have this suspicion (stupid hope?) that he’s going to use the state of the union speech to come out swinging, and that he’s trying to look weak and pathetic on purpose in order to provide a nice contrast. Basically, I still have a lot of hope. I think he’s a man of integrity who, while far from perfect, is probably the best we can hope for at this point. I think he’s smart enough to recover from when he stumbles and wise enough to eventually realize what he is doing wrong. I think he’s going to be okay in the long term, for a number of reasons (certainly because his opponents are so awful), and that we will end his time in office better than when we started. Even as I keep feeling as if I am being pulled in different directions, I still hold out hope, for him and for us.

    How can I describe this? Stupidity? Naivete? Blind Optimism? Some other word my fried brain isn’t thinking of at the moment?

  45. 45

    @Cat Lady:

    Would you mess with The Tunchinator?

    No, I’d offer him a can of tuna. Cats’ loyalty can be bought. Very cheaply.

  46. 46
  47. 47
    FlipYrWhig says:


    this from Tim Kaine had a subject line that showed AFTER MASSAC and I swear to gods I thought that word was going to be MASSACRE

    Awesome. Or maybe he’s mildly dyslexic and was trying to take advantage of our desponding mood to sell a line of antimacassars. For protecting our couch cushions from our tears.

  48. 48
    freelancer says:

    Bachmann’s delusion train just keeps on chuggin’ along.

    “I was treated, really, like a little girl,” Bachmann said. “I was patronized and basically told to go sit down and shut up in a corner. And I thought, ‘This is how you treat women?'”

    She later added, “I think it will be the end of Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania.”

    I’m surprised the word ‘Waterloo’ wasn’t mentioned. Wait, we’re talking about Bachmann, the valedictorian of the Perino/Palin school of history.

  49. 49
    Cat Lady says:

    @Brian J:

    I’ve been thinking about this all day, and I think electing Obama opened a portal into something, and I’m thinking it’s ourselves. I’m too drunk to look it up, but a while ago Cole posted an “Obama is like _, and there were dozens of hits ranging from Stalin to Spock. So, no, you’re not stupid, naive or blindly optimistic. We’re just all losing our collective shit together.


  50. 50
    Skepticat says:

    @Danton: Thanks, I was about to jump on that in my schoolmarmish way. Can’t have any teabagger-style punctuation around here.

  51. 51
    Brian J says:

    @Cat Lady:

    But that’s just it. While there are moments where I see his face and want to lose it, overall, I thinking it will all end okay. (Perhaps part of it is based on the notion that if we can survive Bush, we can certainly survive Obama if he turns out to be worse than anyone can imagine.)

  52. 52
    Skepticat says:

    @Brian J: “Suicidal” works for me. Disgruntled, dismayed and disgusted fit too.

  53. 53
    Jim says:

    @Brian J:

    I’m feeling the same way. I get “let the dust settle”. I agree, actually. I wish Dumbass Claire McCaskill and Halfwit Jim Webb and Jackass Evan Bayh had thought of that. But I’m not even seeing stories about ‘the White House (or Harry Reid, or Dick Durbin,. or Nancy Pelosi) quietly lobbying…” to get. the fucking. Senate Bill. passed.
    I just feel like we, and Obama, need a big fucking rabbit, and I don’t even see the hat.

  54. 54
    Sly says:

    In more upbeat news, it looks like there’s one Republican douchebag that’s gonna to get his ass handed to him.

    On Jan. 8, 2007, Kline’s last day as AG, Special Agent Tom Williams, acting on Kline’s instructions, went back to the DA’s office to retrieve the abortion records. Williams then went to Kinko’s and “spent about one hour in full public view copying the private medical files of the women,” according to the complaint.

    Kline even assured a deputy that a judge had given Kline approval to take the abortion records. The judge later testified under oath that he had done no such thing.

    Somebody’s about to get disbarred.

  55. 55
    John Cole says:


    Shit. Just… shit. What I’m wondering is, how come most of the major lib blogs aren’t commenting on it or giving it short shrift.

    Because most of us had no idea it was still on air. The last time I think I even heard the name Air America, it was when Randi Rhodes was viciously assaulted by a dozen Ketel One Bloody Marys.

  56. 56
    Jim says:

    Like this one. Come on, Obama, abra fucking cadabra.

  57. 57
    Jim says:

    @John Cole:
    Yup. Al Franken is in the Senate. Rachel’s on TeeVee. I download Maron’s podcasts and check Seder’s website every day to see if he’s coming back to some kind of political show– he was the best host by the time those morons fired him, which is another reason I don’t really give a shit. Montel Williams? Ana Marie Cox? Please.

  58. 58
    Cat Lady says:

    @Brian J:

    Obama isn’t the problem – this is all on the simpering cowardly Congressional Dems, and the “progressives” that want him to be Opposite Bush. Obama would sign anything that comes to him that makes progress, but he doesn’t want to be Bush. We don’t like authority, remember? We’re DFHs.


  59. 59
    Max says:

    @Phoebe: Thank you.

  60. 60
    ellaesther says:

    @Comrade Luke: In keeping with Internet Traditions, I will say: This.

  61. 61


    I just feel like we, and Obama, need a big fucking rabbit, and I don’t even see the hat.

    Everyone needs Harvey. Very few of us actually get him, though.

  62. 62


    Or “Chill the fuck out. I got this.” With Tunch’s pic.


  63. 63
    Something Fabulous says:

    @Jim: Holy shit. Some Bunny.

  64. 64
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @FlipYrWhig #46

    I thought I was the only one here old enough to know the word “antimacassar”!!

    In case anyone couldn’t figure it out BTW, the word in Tin Kaine’s email was, of course, *Massachusetts*.

  65. 65

    @asiangrrlMN: And black is so slimming….for Tunch I mean.

  66. 66
    Demo Woman says:

    @Ruckus: Cute overload.

  67. 67
    Shell says:

    Overlords, indeed. Somehow, that expression of Lily’s looks particularly pitiless!

  68. 68

    How about a mug with all of the best tags and/or Lexicon entries, in Wordle format?

    I could take a stab at creating this myself if I could find a list of tags. (ETA: a-ha, found it.)

  69. 69
    HyperIon says:


    Please correct by adding a comma after “one.” Thus, “I, for one, welcome our pet overlords.”

    Thanks for doing the comma policing.
    If you’re lucky, no one will call you worse than picky.

  70. 70
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    @J. Michael Neal: I think he means a White Rabbit, to lead us through the rabbit hole to Wonderland. Anyways, that’s what I choose to believe. That, and what Alice saw thru the looking glass. Prolly Bachmann’s crazy ass in overdrive. OH noes!!

  71. 71
    CynDee says:

    @Brian J: “Supremely justified confusion” could describe your response to developments and the motives, both hidden and brazen, that shape them.

    That is, the Bad Guys have been perpetrating so many greedy, evil acts for so long now that the Good Guys can’t keep the sidewalk clean enough to walk on — and look weird for trying.

    Your reaction is the only sane response to such a mess, so take comfort that your brain is just fine, and sink into a peaceful sleep that may bring you an idea for tomorrow.

  72. 72
    Demo Woman says:

    Thanks to John, Ahab, Laura and Evelyn. I for one can’t wait for the finished product.

  73. 73
    Brian J says:

    @Cat Lady:

    In some ways, he is partly to blame. He’s the leader of the party as well as the nation, which means he needs to…lead. He’s young, good looking, charismatic, and usually owns a podium like Jed Bartlet did. If took the lead in adopting a tougher line against the banks, for instance, it’d be a lot easier for congressional Democrats to do the same. He doesn’t need to seem like he’s about to incite a riot, only that he’s ready to push back and end the nonsense coming from Wall Street.

    As I keep saying, imagine the reaction if he announced in the SOTU that he would pull any financial support from Democrats that did not go along with his plans for financial reform, and that while he welcomes any and all Republican support, by refusing to offer input, they are standing with the financial industry against the best interests of the public. Simply put, imagine if he started to call people out, if he drew a line in the stand, if he started to throw some punches. (Okay, I’m done with the metaphors.) What would he have to lose? Unless he does it a way that makes him seem like a raving lunatic, the public would almost certainly rally around him.

  74. 74
    Brian J says:


    After I watch “The Office” and “30 Rock” and study for a little bit, I may just do that.

    Thanks, by the way.

  75. 75
  76. 76
    Jim says:

    @J. Michael Neal: How. Do you do. Mr. Willllsssson? One of my favorite movies. I like the way Elwood looked for happiness, going from bar to bar to bar….

  77. 77
    Violet says:


    “Chill the fuck out. I got this.” With Tunch’s pic.

    This. Hilarious. Please make it happen.

    Love the Lily poster. She’s so cute. It does her eyes justice.

  78. 78
    James K. Polk, Esq. says:

    Jeez, you guys are depressing.

    Harken back to early 2002, and remind yourself of what horrible really is.

    President Camacho: Shit. I know shit’s bad right now, with all that starving bullshit, and the dust storms, and we are running out of french fries and burrito coverings. But I got a solution.
    South Carolina Representative # 1: That’s what you said last time, dipshit!
    South Carolina Representative # 2: Yeah, I got a solution, you’re a dick! South Carolina, what’s up!

  79. 79

    …OK, yeah. If anyone wants the Wordle*, I’m going to have to ask someone with admin privileges to do me a favor and tell me how many posts are in each category. I know you can see that on the dashboard with WordPress, and I’m not crazy about the idea of counting all the posts.

    + anyone besides me

  80. 80
  81. 81
    Demo Woman says:

    @Paddy: I don’t get why it’s called All American if a large minority can’t join.

  82. 82
    katertot says:

    I want the Wordle, please!! I’d pay right now for that, this blog, and the furry overlords.

  83. 83
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: “Antimacassar” is one of my favorite silly words. I’ll never pass up an opportunity to be odd.

  84. 84
    gbear says:

    Might be too long a slogan, but how about this:

    Do I look like someone who’d offer unconditional love??

  85. 85
    CynDee says:

    @FlipYrWhig #46

    Quote from the play The Absence of a Cello: “. . .someone has been playing fast and loose with the antimacassars.”

  86. 86
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    O/T in case this is not an open thread (I think it is but don’t feel like scrolling all the way up to check and then all the way back down to comment — although I admit I could have done that exercise in less time than it’s taken to type these words — yes I’m + a few, why do you ask?): has anyone seen a film called *Maiden Heist*? It was highly recommended to me by someone whose opinion I respect. I never heard of it, but it has a phenomenal cast: Morgan Freeman, William H. Macy, Christopher Walken, Marcia Gay Harden. It sounds cute and funny and I’m ready for cute and funny. I think it’s a 2008 film, but it must have whizzed right on by because I don’t think I ever heard the title or saw a trailer or noticed it in the local listings.

    I would buy any Tunch or Lily or BJ product in any colour with any image or motto.

  87. 87
    katertot says:

    : @TooManyJens: I want the Wordle!! Please!

    ETA: crap, sorry for noob mistake.

  88. 88
    Shell says:

    How. Do you do. Mr. Willllsssson? One of my favorite movies.

    But don’t you think it’s a wee bit disturbing how ready Wilson was to rough up the inmates?

  89. 89
    Kobie says:

    @freelancer: I would have said “No, this is not how I treat women. This is how I treat crazy people.”

  90. 90
    wasabi gasp says:

    Chase the pony, bitches!

  91. 91
    gbear says:


    But I’m not even seeing stories about ‘the White House (or Harry Reid, or Dick Durbin,. or Nancy Pelosi) quietly lobbying…

    My feeling is that Obama, Reid and Pelosi do that stuff without giving a fuck about getting the press involved. The press has proven themselves massively unhelpful anyway. I have some faith that stuff is happening behind the scenes, despite the current sunami of bullshit.

  92. 92
    Max says:

    I am sick and tired of wind and rain!

    Sorry, Bay Area person has reached their fucking limit with this weather.

  93. 93
    Cat Lady says:

    @Brian J:

    which means he needs to…lead

    I understand what you’re saying, I do. I’m a skeptic. I don’t blindly follow anything or anyone and never have, which is why I’m not religious or ideological, and why I come here to BJ. When someone whose character I trust and who has access to a lot more information about things than I do points out a path, I’ll venture down that path until it dead ends and my bad, lesson learned. It’s a strategy I’ll continue to follow, because it’s been successful if you have a good gut/sense of things. Obama may find it necessary to get tougher, but remember what that means when he does – he’ll be an angry black man. He’s done that calculation his whole life, so be careful what you wish for.

  94. 94
    Keith G says:

    @Brian J: I hate to be dickish, but maybe this is as good as it gets for a while, Brian.

    I am beginning to get the dreadful inkling that things have just not gotten bad enough to get this reactionary society off its ass. Everything about our history, our geography, our resources and our population (to this date) has made it easy to skate by like that handsome HS prom king, everybody’s favorite, who badly flunks out of his first freshman year of college.

    The issues we face now wont be solved by opening the frontier, subjugating a primitive people or scooping up plentiful resources. To get by this time, we need to reform our politics and begin to work together toward common political and social goal goals.

    LOL. Right.

    And the SCOTUS just told the common American to fuck off.

    Drink please!

  95. 95
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    @Max: Yea, we are getting it here in the desert SW after it leaves your area. One storm after another. But we get so little rain, though it grates after a few days, it is harder to complain. More rain means maybe we won’t catch on fire this summer and go up in flames.

  96. 96
    Elie says:

    @Cat Lady:

    Couldnt agree more…

    Sorting this out the next few days, weeks…

    I knew it wouldnt be all smooth sailing and hope he prepped himself…

    We will see what he’s got. I have no sentimental attachment to it anymore so will be seeing clearly and expect him to bring it and suffer the consequences if not. We do not have the luxury of indulging idealistic hopes without performance.

    I am absolutely pissed about how Obama and his team dealt with Massachusetts and hope he knows that was nothing but a complete fuck up. Don’t want him to take on a mea culpa — I want him to fucking fix it so that doesnt happen again!

  97. 97
    maye says:

    @Cat Lady:

    52 percent of the voting populace voted for Obama. Better to be seen as an angry black man than a weak, ineffectual nithing.

    He campaigned for two years listening to people’s horror stories about the state of American healthcare. He made it an essential issue of his presidency. He was given majorities in both houses of Congress. He had a window of about a year to get it done. He and his brain trust followed the Clinton reverse play book, i.e., let Congress take the lead. Then Baucus fucked up, August recess came, and the crazies captured the message. The economy got worse and unemployment escalated. It became clear the Republicans’ only game plan was Lucy and the football. Any halfwit could see that months ago. Then Lieberman screwed Harry Reid. Then Massachusetts happened and here we are.

    The White House communications team let the Republicans define healthcare reform as a “government takeover of our healthcare system,” even though it basically preserved the current private system. They didn’t even try to beat back the propaganda.

    Now they’ve given up.

    This failure belongs to the Congress and the White House equally.

    This time last year I was making my way home from DC after attending the inauguration. I will not watch or listen to the SOTU next week. I’ve officially lost hope.

  98. 98
    MikeJ says:

    @Max: Here in balmy Seattle we’re supposed to have higher temps tomorrow than LA. Barely sprinkled for 15 minutes yesterday, no rain at all today, none forecast for tomorrow or Saturday.

    This is not weather I can believe in, in Seattle in January anyway. Fuck Obama. He won’t get my vote again if he can’t stop this shit.

  99. 99
    CynDee says:

    @FlipYrWhig #46

    Playing this out to its conclusion, in which we show that odd things (and their names) may have evolved from something even odder — some bizarre problem initiated by humans running amok.


    “An antimacassar is a small cloth placed over the backs or arms of chairs, or the head or cushions of a sofa, to prevent soiling of the permanent fabric.

    “The name is attributable to macassar oil, an unguent for the hair commonly used in the early 19th century — the poet Byron called it, “thine incomparable oil, Macassar.”

    “The fashion for oiled hair became so widespread in the Victorian and the Edwardian period that housewives began to cover the arms and backs of their chairs with washable cloths to preserve the fabric coverings from being soiled. Around 1850, these started to be known as antimacassars. They were also installed in theatres, from 1865.

    “They came to have elaborate patterns, often in matching sets for the various items of parlor furniture; they were either made at home using a variety of techniques such as crochet or tatting, or purchased. The original antimacassar was usually made of stiff white crochet-work, but in the third quarter of the 19th century it became simpler and softer, usually with a simple pattern in wool or silk.

    “By the beginning of the 20th century, antimacassars had become so associated in peoples’ minds with the Victorian period that the word briefly became a figurative term for it. (See also, Doily).

    “Antimacassars are also used on the seat headrests of commercial passenger transport vehicles, such as trains, buses and especially aircraft to extend the life of fabrics.”

  100. 100
    ellaesther says:

    @Max: I see your wind and rain and raise you wind, and rain, and a temperature of 33 degrees. The only thing grayer than the Chicago sky today were the scraps of filthy snow laying along the sides of the road. Holy crap it was an ugly, ugly day out here in America’s heartland.

    But I am, of course, sorry for your troubles!

  101. 101
  102. 102
    Max says:

    @ellaesther: I know, it’s hardly the worst weather, but… when you live in Chicago you expect it.

    When you live in Northern California, you don’t.

    I also can’t take the constant wind. PTSD from living in Florida and going through 4 hurricanes in 6 weeks in 2004.

  103. 103
    WaterGirl says:

    @Skepticat: Are you still in a corner, whimpering? I almost wrote last night to say that you would find me there when you got there. It was the perfect description of how I felt feel.

  104. 104
    ellaesther says:

    @Max: Oh. Oh then! I am truly sorry for your troubles, then!

    Actually, I was so pleased with my weather rant up above that I went so far as to tweak it some and post a version of same on my blog, a space that is usually free of such rants — and there I mentioned that while you might think that I would be used to it, I am not, in fact, used to it.

    I am a child, is what I’m saying.

    I think that 4 hurricanes in 6 weeks might cure me of such nonsense, however.

  105. 105
    Anne Laurie says:

    @Comrade Luke: TUNCH: I Am Aware Of All Internet Traditions. Yep, I’d buy that. As long as it came in XXXL!

    Evelyn, Ahab, Laura W — thanks so much for your hard work transforming our whimsies into actual product. This thread is definitely a bright spot in a long, dark week!

  106. 106
    Max says:

    @ellaesther: PTSD might be an exaggeration. Wind just makes me grumpy and I can’t sleep with it.

    I do love Chicago and would totally put up with the winters to live there.

    ETA – Project Runway time! Go Anthony!

  107. 107
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @CynDee: Thanks for the info on Macassar and antimacassars. I knew some of that (when I was growing up, every sofa and upholstered chair in the house was adorned with an antimacassar, and I knew the idea was to keep hair dressing from rubbing off on the fabric) but did not know, for instance, the Byron quote. The antimacassars, and matching covers for the armrests, in our house were mostly crocheted lace, and I can remember my grandmother hand-laundering them and ironing them smooth. They were held in place by special (and to me, odd and wonderful) fasteners like decorative thumbtacks or upholstery tacks, but with a spiral nail that you kind of twisted and screwed in place, if that makes sense.

  108. 108
    MikeJ says:

    @Anne Laurie:

    TUNCH: I Am Aware Of All Internet Traditions. Yep, I’d buy that. As long as it came in XXXL!

    It has to be available in a size that would fit tunch, if anyone were so foolish as to try to put the shirt on him. Add an X or two.

    And to add an x or to to myself, I’m making Thomas Keller’s chicken pot pie from ad Hoc at Home. This is the greatest cookbook ever. Keller quality dishes that take less than 4 days do make. Which is not to say they aren’t fussy. The pot pie recipe called for exactly twelve pearl onions (not eleven, not thirteen), and cooking the potatoes, carrots, and onions in separate pots for 8 minutes each with one sprig of thyme, one bay leaf, and eight (not seven, not nine) peppercorns in each pot. And then the celery cooked separately from that.

    It sounds ridiculous, but the effort put into his recipes really does pay off. I don’t do them *every* day, but ad Hoc at Home is easy enough to do at least once a week.

    When I get my étoile Michelin it will be because I ripped off Keller.

  109. 109
    Fern says:

    @Anne Laurie: Yup, rooting for the large lady sizes here as well!

    I’d like a long t-shirty thing for sleeping in. Please.

  110. 110
    SGEW says:

    I sincerely would love to see the Shepard Fairey ones (I did the mock-ups here (obey) and here (posse)), but don’t have th’ time/skillz to do them properly – I just grabbed the original Shepard bits from google images and plastered ’em together w/ graphic converter.

  111. 111
    SGEW says:

    Alternate “obey” here.

  112. 112
    WaterGirl says:

    @SGEW: There was a lot of love for your mockup of “obey” when you first posted it, so I can’t imagine it wouldn’t be one of the options.

    Edit: To clarify…I was referring to the actual Tunch photo with OBEY, not the more artsy one.

  113. 113
    RedKitten says:

    I think that you should make ladies’ underpants with Tunch on the front, bearing the legend “Cranky P**sy”.

    I’d buy those.

  114. 114
    Laura W says:

    @SGEW: I posted to your sock puppet in an earlier thread. Please email me (link from my site above) re. Tunch’s posse graphic.

  115. 115
    Laura W says:

    @SGEW: Evelyn reworked that one. It’s in.

    @RedKitten: How about a thong with the OBEY Tunch in red? That is currently in stock. Look for the FEED ME coming soon.

  116. 116
    WaterGirl says:

    @RedKitten: On this depressing day, during this depressing week, I actually laughed out loud at that. Many thanks!

    Oh, and who wouldn’t want a pair of those?

  117. 117
    JR says:

    Be the TRAIN, not the COW

  118. 118
    ellaesther says:

    @Max: That’s alright, I will still be sincerely sorry for your troubles. For they still contain within them 4 hurricanes within 6 weeks!

    But I will not watch Project Runway, not even if our host loves you so much more than the rest of us that you get your own open thread. Dearie, dearie me….

  119. 119
    Ecks says:

    A picture of Tunch, sitting in a grassy field, with the caption “every time you masturbate, Tunch doesn’t care”

    For the reference ya knows.

  120. 120
    CynDee says:

    @RedKitten: You kill me. I’d buy those, too, in all colors.

    And, does anybody think it would be too stupid to have Tunch and Lily antimacassars? Everybody’s got a couch or a chair, and you could have this nice big creature and his/her message staring at you all the time. Maybe they’d be too expensive or complicated to produce. Or maybe I’ve done just a bit too much research tonight. Just thinkin’ here; probably time to stop, but anything to keep SCOTUS off my brain until we figure out what to do. Sic em, Tunchie.

    You could have different Tunch messages, such as KEEP OFF, or BACK OFF, or SIT UP STRAIGHT, or TUNA NOW, OR ELSE, as well as the regular TUNCH IS WATCHING YOU.

    Lily’s could say Lily Loves You, or Watch Out for Ice, or something better.

    OK. That’s it for the antimacassar thing.

  121. 121
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @RedKitten: Can I just say, with a mom like you, Sam is going to be one awesome and formidable kid when he gets a little older and starts school. I’m thinking you’re probably going to be kept busy explaining some of his utterances to teachers and principals and parents of his playmates.

    I’m picturing him taking a pair of mom’s “Cranky P**sy” panties to show and tell.

  122. 122
    Morbo says:

    Me, I’ve been enjoying my new box set and plan to enjoy the hell out of some Conan O’brien later tonight. Can’t be doom and gloom all the time, after all.

  123. 123
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Morbo: *Can’t be doom and gloom all the time.*

    Well, no, but you can try.

  124. 124
    Delia says:

    That skateboarding bulldog was the best thing I’ve seen all week. Well, the sun came out for two hours this afternoon in Eugene and hardly anyone could remember what it was. That was good, too.

    Other than that, the week’s been shitty. I turned on Rachel’s show tonight and she was ranting about how weak and stupid the Dems are and I just couldn’t handle it. So pets are great.

  125. 125
    slag says:

    I like this image a lot! But I kinda wish it said “furry overlords”.

  126. 126
    slag says:

    Also, I think a design listing Tunch jokes would be fun and funny.

  127. 127
    Lesley says:

    Is that a photo of Lily because the likeness is astonishing!

    I love this and would buy a t-shirt.

    I like the Tunch one, too, but think a photo of Tunch would be best (though the art work is very good on the Tunch one, it doesn’t fully convey the full diabolical powerz of teh Tunch the way a photo does.)

  128. 128

    @RedKitten: I’d be all over that, and I normally go commando. Anything with Tunch’s face on it is an automatic must-have for me.

    @Lesley: Nope it’s a drawing by Evelyn. Check out Laura W.’s comment at #17.

  129. 129
    Nazgul35 says:

    “I kan see Russia from Jon’z lap!”

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