12 Comments

  1. Not sure what you aren’t getting. Jeff is just being wacky, randomly handing the cop whatever was in his wallet. In turn the cop gets wacky and locks up not just Jeff but his car.

  2. Carl has already explained everything that the joke was supposed to be, but wasn’t. Given the weakness of this strip, I was more interested in the odd details, such as the PC-Paint coloration of the first panel, which proves that somebody must have once re-inked the “Tweet!” noise of the policeman’s whistle, or Bud Fischer’s truncated signature (indicating that the image has been cropped). On the other hand, rereading Fischer’s Wikipedia entry has nearly eliminated my objections to Pierre de Beaumont plastering his name over these re-runs: Fischer himself had been signing Al Smith’s work for several decades before he died.

  3. He hasn’t got a driving licence, so instead showed a document indicating his “sexual licence” or “licentiousness”.

    https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/licentious
    “License and licentious come ultimately from the same word in Latin, licentia, whose meanings ranged from “freedom to act” to “unruly behavior, wantonness.” The Latin noun was itself derived from the verb licere “to be permitted.” Though we are likely to associate license with the card that grants freedom or permission to operate a motor vehicle and licentious with sexual wantonness, in actuality, there is considerable semantic overlap between the two words. Poetic license refers to deviation from a (usually) literary norm for some purposeful effect. A person who takes license with something (or someone) engages in “abusive disregard for rules of personal conduct.” Hence, the semantic range of license in English mirrors that of its Latin antecedent, suggesting either permission or transgression, depending upon the context. Licentious, on the other hand, always implies excessive, transgressive freedom, as is true of its immediate Latin source, licentiosus “unrestrained, wanton” (literally, “full of freedom”).”

  4. If Jeff had been female and had given the policeman a bathing suit picture of herself and smirked “Don’t I look the nuts?,” the implication would be that, if the big silly old copper would overlook this little old speeding incident, she would ‘make it worth his while.’ Fischer would no doubt be shocked that some of us today with especially naughty minds can’t help reading it that subtext anyway. The things we never knew about Jeff. . . !

  5. Was I the only person who initially thought that it was Rich Uncle Pennybags in the Monopoly car?

  6. I’m distracted by the ridiculously tiny car–looks like it should be on a dodge-em ride. But “Don’t I look the nuts?” could mean, “Don’t I look insane enough to lock up?”

  7. Not too long ago, something could be praised as “the bomb!” (or “da bomb!”). That’s okay after you get used to it. And I also have, from long long ago, accepted “sh|t” in many contexts replacing “stuff”. But I still resist, and get shocked in a minor way, by “it’s the sh|t!” as a term of praise.

  8. I think this is absurd derailment with the final panel as “laugh track/rimshot” to just serve not as a punchline but a “why, you….” coming down to earth.

    If we really analyzed it: when the cop says “this isn’t a license; it’s a picture of you in a bathing suit” he meant “this isn’t legally acceptable” but Jeff took it to mean “let’s talk about this picture” which is just absurd and silly in the context. This could almost be Bugs Bunny-esque.

  9. If the car is in a jail cell in the last panel, why is there an inch of mud on the floor of the jail cell?

  10. @ MiB – That’s not mud. This comic was published at least 65 years ago and may be many years older than that. The bottom edge of the front tire appears to have been clipped off by bar of black ink that was probably inserted to cover up an older date or copyright line. There’s no way to tell just how many times the original artwork has been reworked, re-signed, recolored, or cropped to fit the whims of each new syndicate or newspaper in the decades since Fischer (or Al Smith) drew this strip. It would be interesting to see how much of the final panel was chopped off, and whether the person speaking there is the same policeman.

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