WHAM!

Another thing that happened in 1981- WHAM! (the Pop Duo) formed and well, the rest is history… Wake me up before you go-go!

…so as Andy finds himself incarcerated in the deer trap (is there/was there ever really such a thing? For what purpose would there be a deer-sized live- trap?? Forced relocation? Poaching?)

Anyway, like I said, he’ll be in there for a while… so lean back, Trail-heads, there’s a long haul ahead.

This is the one! The story that started it all…

…for me at least. This is terribly ironic. In the comments a few days ago I told of how I got “Hooked on Trail.” It was a story line about how Andy got himself caught in a deer trap…

…and well, what do you know…

…there it is! This is so interesting! It seemed (in 1980 or so) that it took for-ever for Andy to get out. Let’s see how well this story holds up (drags out) 40 years later! And what of the little dates in the strips? They are tracking with the current month. Did they go back to find a story that would do that without having to replace the dates?

Guess what, Campers, the year is 1981! This calendar synchs with 2020!

Some things don’t change…

…like having only a minor sense of dread over Andy’s well-being. He’s a principal (or is it principle?) character, so it’s not like he isn’t going to survive this scrape.

It looks like Andy gets his licks in, but ultimately the wild dogs have bigger fish to fry. Besides, St. Bernard probably doesn’t suit their palate…

“Attackers retreat?” Interesting phrasing there… I think they just got bored. Need to find a new challenge, a new opportunity to terrorize the countryside… Besides, what does one do with wild dogs other than shoot them? It’s not like there is a canine reform school where they’d go to try to turn their lives around…

Tabby, Andy rues the day you walked into his life. Now he doesn’t just smell, he’s wounded and in need of help! What good are you?

They’re so Vicious!

Why do we spell words the way we do? Vi-shus. There… How difficult was that? Why do we have homonyms like there, their and they’re? I really feel for people trying to learn English as a second language. And don’t even get me started on idioms! Our discourse (dis-cors) is replete with words and phrases (frases?) if taken literally, make no sense at all… Piece of cake! Can of Corn! Cats and Dogs!

But of course, “Wild Dog,” while potentially idiomatic, needs to be taken quite literally here… as Tabby and Andy find themselves in their midst.

Tabby, they should name you Little Miss Prance-About… because that’s what you appear to be best at doing! The picture of innocence, until of course your naivete lands you in trouble!

Well, let’s hope that Andy’s recently bestowed stink helps him overcome a decidedly outnumbered and disadvantaged position…

Highlights! Please…

C’mon, people, get with it! Mark= Blue; Cherry = Red! I hate when they mess that up!

But Tabby is off and running!! With Andy keeping an eye on her (like he was told to do…) for sure this is going to get Andy another scolding!!

And it’s Andy the Gallant to the rescue! Under the category of “Let no good deed go unpunished…”

…Andy gets a face-full of stink-juice… Check out the hand-stand the skunk is pulling off… do they really do that?? I’m not so sure… Poor Andy… he’s having a baaaaad day… Look at the smirk on Tabby’s face! HA-HAW, This is fun!!! Looks like it’s Tomato Juice for you, Old Friend!

Is that Mark? Writing??

Poor Joe Morgan, his farm terrorized by wild dogs!! But wait a gol-darned second! Is Cherry bursting in on Mark… writing?? Is that a Computer? A Cathode Ray Tube?? We have never seen Mark actually write an article, they always just sort of appear as if by magic in a future reference- “Loved your article on the Lovelorn Manatees of Coastal Florida, Mark…”

So damn the dogs, let’s sit up and take notice of this brief glimpse behind the scenes of Mark Trail!

I have to draw notice to a link in a comment posted Friday:

The Mark Trail of Yore was a hobo- a Vagabond Vet in 1946, speaking no sense whatsoever- What, did Andy (property of Doc Davis) get drafted into the Army and assigned to Mark? Did we always know that Doc Davis’ first name is “Tom?” Scan the entire link- it’s fascinating.

And no, I don’t see where they are going to stop the re-runs… I guess we’ll have to stay tuned!

Old Comics, New WordPress Interface

Change is hard, my friends, very hard. I awoke this morning with a challenge: WordPress, my faithful blog platform, has forced me into its new “Block Editor” interface, which is causing me to have to re-learn how to post on The Daily Trail… Oh well, keeps the brain nimble even as I head in into the final year of my 6th decade on this earth…

But what’s going on at the Breakfast(?) table? Doc is reading the paper, announcing a scourge of some sort… and while Mark and Doc clean up with sleeves rolled up, Mark takes stock of whether they are prepared:

Yes indeed, it’s the old Wild Dog Scare…

They look more like wolves to me… and it’s curious what’s happening in the third panel- appears the dogs are arguing more amongst themselves than threatening livestock…

What, no telegram?

Or telegraph?  Cherry has to pick up on the fact that Mark will win a major award and probably have to go to New York by reading the paper?

content08122020

And oh my goodness!  There’s Rusty!  Managed to make his way home from the bus stop without any help from Andy!  That’s impressive!  He also appears to be totally invisible!  Ignored!!  That’s the Mark Trail I grew up reading!

I also have to remark that Mark does seem quite a bit younger in these classic strips brought back and colorized…  while he always seemed to be stuck in his 30’s, here he looks more like a younger man in his 20’s!  Are he and Cherry married by now?  Has Rusty been adopted yet?  So much to wonder about!

Mark the wise…

As ‘Tabby’ is introduced to her environs and Andy comes to her rescue…

content08082020

…only to take heat from the human female for doing exactly what she told him to do…  “Look after Tabby…

content08102020

Poor Andy.  People can be so confusing, can’t they?  Tell you to do one thing, scold you for doing it!

content08112020

The scene in the last strip is so classic!  Coffee in tiny cups with saucers!  Brewed into a Bunn Commercial decanter…  Coffee’s on!  Perpetually!  As they say, life is short, stay awake!  And Jittery!!

As Mark holds forth,  he starts Man-splaining motives of other humans without so much as a clue, only based on a set of assumptions rooted deep in his psyche, his confirmation bias on display for all to see.  Yes, Mark, instead of taking the pet to a shelter where they meet up with almost certain death, the derelict humans dump the kitty on your front lawn.  I like those chances better.

Where’s Rusty?!