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June 20, 2007


Filed under: Bill Bickel, CIDU, comic strips, comics, Funky Winkerbean, humor, thongs — Cidu Bill @ 12:30 am


Darin’s wrong: There was an incident a few years back where a teacher chaparoning a school dance checked to see whether girls were wearing thongs — pretty much in plain sight of everybody else, which sort of defeated the whole “rule designed for the purpose of decorum and modesty” principle

But what’s the actual joke here?


  1. The real joke is that they seem to be more worried about what type of underwear the girls wear than they are about weapons. You’d expect the sign to say “No Guns Allowed”.

    Given that most women who wear thongs do so to avoid panty lines (and *not* to show them off), it sounds like a stupid rule.

    Comment by Charlene — June 20, 2007 @ 12:53 am

  2. In ‘not the USA’ thongs are what you would refer to as flip-flops.

    Comment by Mark — June 20, 2007 @ 2:02 am

  3. The actual joke is that the girl interprets the sign to mean that the machine scans for thong underwear, but the sign is actually referring to flip-flops and just happens to be positioned next to a normal metal detector.

    Comment by Powers — June 20, 2007 @ 5:57 am

  4. This strip was obvious to me, except for why was the sign right next to the metal detector?

    I feel blessed I’ve never been to a school with metal detectors. My school was full of thieves, but “fortunately” that was all there was to worry about during those seven hours each day.

    Comment by Rasheed — June 20, 2007 @ 8:54 am

  5. It’s a dumb blonde joke at its core, I think. The key is in the “sly look” shorthand for the guy’s eyes. He’s feeling smug because he knows the thong he is wearing is undetectable.

    Comment by Dave Geary — June 20, 2007 @ 10:06 am

  6. Maybe she has a pair of those cool switchblade flip flops.

    Comment by Krusher — June 20, 2007 @ 12:21 pm

  7. The “no-thongs” rule itself actually does make sense: At a dance — as in a tennis match — a certain amount of “exposed panty” is inevitable. The school wants to make sure said panty doesn’t leave anything else exposed.

    Comment by Cidu Bill — June 20, 2007 @ 1:21 pm

  8. wait… a certain amount of “exposed panty” is inevitable”?

    are girls not wearing dresses? have things changed that much since i was in high school? OK, so we didn’t really dress up for the homecoming dance, but all the other dances were at least semi-formal … i must just be old.

    Comment by renita — June 20, 2007 @ 1:45 pm

  9. The first thing that came to my mind was the big “scandal” last year when the Northwestern (I think it was Northwestern) Women’s Lacrosse Team showed up to the White House for their “congrats for winning the NCAA tourney” obligatory photo with the president, and *gasp* some of them were wearing flip-flops. The world is coming to an end! Someone wore flip-flops to the White House!

    I’d assume most all schools would already have long-standing rules about appropriate footwear, though, which all students would know and not expect to see on a sign in the hall. So maybe the girl isn’t so air-headed to assume they mean the other kind of thongs after all.

    Comment by Tina — June 21, 2007 @ 12:03 am

  10. Mark said: “In ‘not the USA’ thongs are what you would refer to as flip-flops.”

    We call ’em flip-flops in parts of the USA, too. Lots of regional variations in nomenclature – cf. “soda” vs “pop”.

    Comment by Michele — June 21, 2007 @ 10:24 am

  11. Mark’s comment was that flip-flops *IS* what they are called in the USA. His implication was that “thongs” was the “not in the USA” term. In my part of the country, both are used, but based on the responses here, I would concur with his assessment that a lot of us in the states only think of “thongs” as an undergarment.

    Comment by Marshall — June 21, 2007 @ 11:28 am

  12. I think the joke’s on those of you who think the joke’s on the blonde.

    There really is such a thing as a scanner which can see under clothes. I’m not sure if it can see underclothes, i.e. selectively see under some clothes to reveal other clothes, but the thought’s not that unrealistic.

    It was in the news not that long ago; see .
    And apparently it’s already in use in at least one school – see (and search for “x-ray scanner”).

    That said, your interpretation of the comic is probably right – I admit – but I originally thought it was a comment on these new “body scanners”; and I’m still not sure it isn’t.

    Comment by Ron Obvious — June 22, 2007 @ 2:09 am

  13. Follow-up on my last post: There were two URLs in there which apparently wordpress didn’t like. Maybe because I put angle brackets around them.
    I can’t find any docu at about legal comment syntax, but let’s try just simple urls in plaintext… the first url was USA Today and was this:

    The second URL was from Philadelphia Weekly and was this:

    If these also disappear, I’m not going to try again to fix them – you guys can google as well or better than I can. But maybe someone could point me to where WordPress says what I can type here and what I can’t (even if it is off-topic)?

    Comment by Ron Obvious — June 22, 2007 @ 2:16 am

  14. Yeah but that doesn’t look like a body scanner, it looks like a metal detector. And if the blonde is right, what’s the punchline?

    Comment by Powers — June 22, 2007 @ 9:15 am

  15. Ron, whenever somebody puts two or more links in a response, Word Press flags it as “possibly spam” and requires me to okay it. Since I pretty much live at my keyboard, this usually takes a matter of minutes.

    Comment by Cidu Bill — June 22, 2007 @ 10:41 am

  16. Anyone see the photo last week of our president wearing Crocs – at the White House? (Or Dick Cheney at a funeral for a foreign dignitary a couple of years ago wearing a parka?)

    The dress code at the White House has slipped quite a bit, and not just with visitors.

    Comment by Charles — June 22, 2007 @ 11:49 am

  17. Renita, what I meant was that girls dance and depending on the nature of the dance, dresses move. It’s not intentional — though I guess for some girls it is — but it happens.

    Comment by Cidu Bill — July 17, 2007 @ 1:11 am

  18. Yup, just a joke about how some people call flip-flops “thongs”–and yes, that’s in parts of the U.S. as well. I grew up referring to that particular type of shoe as a thong.

    Comment by Becci — July 23, 2007 @ 4:58 pm

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