Jeff M Hobbs sampler

Cartoonist recommended by Dan Piraro on the Bizarro blog. (And credited by Piraro with coming up with the idea for the “Bird / plane / Superman lineup” Sunday Bizarro we looked at last week.)

Here are the two Superman lineup cartoons:

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Series of sampler cartoons from Hobbs.
Readers on phone or tablet: Try a click on any one cartoon to view all in lightbox mode.

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Arlo-ish alert! A couple more that feature partial nudity.




The Twelve Days – All Twelve

And on the Twelfth Day (05 January) — A day of drumming!

Cynthia Yeh, Principal Percussionist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, announcing the end of the world on the bass drums in a performance of the “Dies Irae” section from Verdi’s “Messa da Requiem”.

Striking the mighty hammer-blows in Mahler’s Symphony No. 6.

Jazz percussionist Max Roach as “Max”, leader of the house band at Billy Pastor’s Café in the film “Carmen Jones”. The band inserts a jazz break and drum solo into Pearl Bailey’s musical number “Beat Out Dat Rhythm On A Drum”, Oscar Hammerstein’s adaptation of the Act II Gypsy Dance “Les tringles des sistres tintaient” from Bizet’s “Carmen”.

Peter Edward “Ginger” Baker (19 August 1939 – 6 October 2019) was an English drummer and a co-founder of the rock band Cream.

Maureen “Moe” Tucker of the Velvet Underground. From the performance of “Heroin” in the video of the MCMXCIII reunion concert.

Watch VU MCMXCIII Heroin at YouTube . And watch Moe Tucker create the overwhelming pacing.

Timpanist Wieland Welzel of the Berliner Philharmoniker finishes off the Symphony No. 5 of Dmitri Shostakovich
Still at the Berliner Philharmoniker, it takes *two* timpanists at eight kettles to finish off the 112 minute performance of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 in D minor, at a concert 29 Feb 2020 under batonless direction of wunderkind Lorenzo Viotti.

For those into timpani, here is Part 1 of 3 of a tutorial on changing and tuning TIMpani heads, by TIM Genis of the Boston Symphony. A little inTIMidating as he starts off with saying it is simple, and showing the ten products you will need. Fun as this is, it isn’t the one I was looking for — let me know if you find one about the excitement of receiving the delivery of the new “skins” and the start of the installation, from a big-name orchestra percussion section.

Djembe circle class

Djembe class recital, Old Town School of Folk Music 2013. This one brings ten drummers!

Third Coast Percussion — they do have drums, just not too evident in this picture!

Drumline is much more than drums in a line!

And how could “Little Drummer Girl” have been an instantly comprehended title had there not been the song “Little Drummer Boy”.

But maybe not everybody loves that boy:

And from the Eleventh Day

And a bonus on the plumber == piper theme!

And from the Tenth Day

And from the Ninth Day

Detail of Feiffer’s “Dance to Spring”

Ist das die richtige Anzahl tanzender Damen? NEIN!

And from the Eighth Day

And from the Seventh Day

And you can have a listen!

And from the Sixth Day

And a bonus of six more geese laying — or at least being encouraged to do so.

And from the Fifth Day

And from the Fourth Day

And from the Third Day

Sarah Willis and other members of the horn section of the Berliner Philharmoniker

And from the Second Day

And still around from the First Day

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Credits, Addenda, and complete series

Comics and other images were contributed by Rob S., Andréa, Kilby, and other readers.
The Liz Climo panel for Six Geese was picked up from a discussion on Arnold Zwicky’s blog, which takes an interest in analyzing the language of comics.

Twelve-days series from familiar comics

“Mother Goose and Grimm” has more than once run thru the twelve days, with different levels of punning. Usually they run these *before* Christmas Day, as a sort of countdown; and skip weekends. (We at CIDU have followed the traditional pattern of starting on Christmas Day and counting forwards until 06 January.) The 2012 series of MG&G, for interest, started with the first day on Wednesday, 12 December 2012, here. The “two hurtled gloves” was used here in draft (until the tee-shirt with the hybrids showed up) and was from the 2011 series, which started on Monday, 19 December 2011, with a “Partridge Family” joke., and did not go on for all twelve.

“Off the Mark” similarly had full or partial series around 2002, 2003, and a one-shot in 2004. These also took a pre-Christmas Day quasi-countdown approach. This strip also gives a nice example of a one-shot panel or strip referencing several of the Twelve Days gifts via some gag like the store returns window seen here — with variations seen pretty often. Our 11 plumbers plumbing came from one of these OTM series. This very recent “Argyle Sweater” also puts a long (but not total!) list of the items into one transaction, in this case a purchase rather than returns (and for eating!).

“New Adventures of Queen Victoria” has had a series, with jokes about the accumulation of gifts. (As faithful reader Deety let us know, back on the First Day!😀 ) It seems to be used for reruns; the 2020 version started with the First Day just on 21 December. A GoComics comment for the Second Day entry answers one of the usual math questions (below) and nicely shows their work for each kind of gift. The 2006 run may have been the original (the dates in the drawings match the publication dates), but it runs for a five-weekdays-plus-Saturday span only, jumping from a nervous Fifth Day to a sudden escape with a Twelfth Day intervention.

After completion of this thread on 05 January, we will make a new post, as a postscript, to sample or present some of those partial or full twelve-day series from familiar comics.

Other kinds of presentation, and Math

The featured image at the top of the post puts all twelve days together in a grid of boxes, with a representative for each kind of gift in the day’s box. That one is straightforwardly traditional and plain representations, but there are good examples of satiric or political-editorial intent in that format, such as this Ted Rall. After completion of this thread on 05 January, we will make a new post, as a postscript, to present a few of these 12-icon layouts.

For a detailed account of the history of the song and variations in the gifts accumulated in the lyrics, see the Wikipedia article. After completion of this thread on 05 January, we will make a new post, as a postscript, to present the table of historical lyric variations from that Wikipedia article.

Maybe someone can find and link the math-problem treatment of summing the total number of each kind of gift, on the assumption that the gifts mentioned in different “daily” run-thrus do accumulate — so that, for example there are 5 gold rings for day 5, another 5 gold rings for day 6, etc., for a total of 40. Which item has the highest total count? Which the lowest? What is the total of gifts for all kinds? Do the partridge and its pear tree count separately? If you don’t care to do the work yourself right now, here is how a goComics commenter summarized it for Queen Victoria readers. Now tell us, what is that series {12, 22, 30, 36, 40, 42, 42, 40, 36, 30, 22, 12} related to? It’s not quite a binomial expansion, or a diagonal of Pascal’s triangle …
Note from Second Day: There is a nice exposition from CIDU faithful reader Woozy on some math questions for the Twelve Days!.

And here is an interesting graphic account of some of the numbering questions:

Parodies, stories, and radio plays

Also there is an epistolary story parody similarly based in an assumption of accumulating quantities, in which the fair lady receiving the gifts gets increasingly annoyed in each letter, up to the cease-and-desist order. Please do find and link!
Update: Many thanks to faithful reader Shrug for finding and sharing this publication of a transcript exactly that story! And in turn, the collector who runs that blog has provided a link to an MP3 audio file of what seems to be the original radio presentation of this story.
Further: Actually, it is listed on the Wikipedia article in the Parodies and Other Versions section. If only we had been reading closer, sooner.

(And how charming that the lady in the skit turns out to be named Cynthia – pleasing for a reason you will see on Twelfth Day!)

The Music

We have been concentrating on the lyrics so intently, we mustn’t lose sight of the music itself!

(Answers start around 6:30)

(Top graphic credit: Xavier Romero-Frias, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)
Little Drummer Boy phono single cover art: for usage see

Happy 250! (Part 2)

A bonus posting for Beethoven’s birthday (baptismal record).

Part 1, yesterday, dipped into the history of the Peanuts strip taking note, in various ways in different years, of the occasion. But they weren’t the only ones in the world of cartooning to take note!

But Peanuts does cast a long shadow:

Sent by Andréa.

From Kilby, an on-point musical panel:

The funnies can reference Beethoven without centering on his birthday, of course, as these selections contributed by Olivier illustrate:

Which musical works get into the comics?

As seen above, the Fifth Symphony has long been a source for drinking jokes because of that peculiar fluid volume measure, one fifth (of a gallon, ICYMI). The opening three-and-one is pretty ubiquitous, though probably by now it is pure geezer to connect that with V-for-Victory.

And of course the symphonies can be referenced by number without going into anything about content. Nicknames help — plenty of “The Erotica Symphony”, not too many from “Pastoral”. The Ninth as a whole comes up sometimes, but the Ode To Joy on its own is a beloved perennial for jokes, adaptations, parodies, Flash Mobs, what you will.

I did see a reference (in a Peanuts?) to “Beethoven’s Seven Concertos” which was a rather interesting take, I thought, to make them a group despite the different solo instruments. But it turns out this was probably an allusion to a book, The Seven Concertos of Beethoven by Antony Hopkins (not the actor Anthony) whose choice of that title is less surprising after seeing he also wrote The Nine Symphonies of Beethoven.

The Sonatas come up some, particularly the Moonlight — though did you notice yesterday in the 1957 Peanuts there was even a bit of the score and a reference to the very early F Minor Sonata? This 1952 Peanuts features an excerpt from what may be the Hammerklavier:


and the NYT A&D article by April Dembosky which gave me that strip also gives some context:

In a strip from 1953 Schroeder embarks on an intensive workout. He does push-ups, jumps rope, lifts weights, touches his toes, does sit-ups (“Puff, Puff”), boxes, runs (“Pant, Pant”) and finally eats (“Chomp! Chomp!”). In the last two panels he walks to his piano with determination and begins playing furiously, sweat springing from his brow.

I was wondering at the absence of the quartets, but then this image of a Thong Quartet came in:

The perhaps surprising high-frequency champ seems to me to be that wonderful Bagatelle “Für Elise”! (And this first example even elevates its significance. Despite being really lovely, it is after all, a mere bagatelle.)

And how about second-order references — cartoons about other treatments of Beethoven in popular culture? I was expecting, and saw a good many, references to the use of “Für Elise” as a ringtone. But I was quite unprepared for the allusions to a movie (and sequels!) called Beethoven and featuring a dog who bears that name!

“Hahaha, that’s a dog’s name!”

Contributed by Olivier (who may be able to clarify if that apparently nonstandard French is a particular identified variant or just what a kid might spell.)

Some interest in his general history and biography:

And it’s good to see, in cartoon format, a genuine educational interest in serious history and biographical fact!

(Several uncredited individual images above contributed by Olivier.)

How confusing! It seems the prompt “If Beethoven were alive today, he’d probably be a jazz fan” and the picture would be coming from a fan of both LvB and Miles Davis. But then the take-it-back line about being old seems to be a put-down of both Beethoven and jazz as a genre.

But it should be no surprise that jazz musicians are fans of Beethoven. There are at least two albums of jazz variations on one movement of Beethoven’s, the Allegretto from Symphony No. 7.

Possible Part 3 tomorrow? : Let’s see what contemporary cartoon series had to say on the big 250th birthday date!

Nope, nothing of note! But feel free to comment with relevant comics that were overlooked!