Comics I Don’t Understand – This site is now being updated daily at Please change your bookmark if necessary, and notify any web site with a link to the old address.

July 13, 2007

Car 54



  1. They were speeding, as is their wont (see bumper sticker, license plate; don’t know what star thing is, though – no sheriffs?) but have the time to wait to get a ticket. Either they’re used to it, or this is pure irony.

    Comment by Keera — July 13, 2007 @ 7:03 am

  2. That these people consider themselves to be “speed demons” is one part of it.

    The other part is that they don’t look the part at all. They look completely suburbanite. And – sure enough – these “speed demons” were doing 54 (which ain’t that fast) in a 40 mph zone (which ain’t exactly the wide open road).

    So OF COURSE they’ll docile enough to just say “That’s OK, We’ll wait”. They’re probably immensely pleased and proud that they really got pulled over for SPEEDING and are going to get a real SPEEDING TICKET! What a badge of honor!

    Comment by Ron Obvious — July 13, 2007 @ 8:27 am

  3. they are old people who drive 5 mph in front of me in Florida. That is a breakneck speed demon speed for them….

    Comment by Trish — July 13, 2007 @ 9:54 am

  4. Is that supposed to be a radar detector on their dashboard? If it is, it still doesn’t help me to understand the joke.

    Comment by Phil — July 13, 2007 @ 10:12 am

  5. The star thing on the back of their car looks to me like an anti-Semitic symbol. Although I’m sure it’s actually an anti-cop symbol.

    I thought that maybe the joke was that as soon as the cop goes back to his car to issue the ticket, they’re going to speed off?

    Comment by Autumn Harvest — July 13, 2007 @ 10:54 am

  6. In this strip, Burl and Co. frequently vocalize the obvious. Burl is saying they’ll wait assuming he actually has a choice of staying or going in the situation.

    As for the star, it DOES look (anti)semitic, but it matches the one the cop is wearing.

    Now, that I look more closely, just WHAT THE HELL IS THE COP WEARING???? A pinstripe tracksuit and a flower hat?!

    Comment by Rasheed — July 13, 2007 @ 10:59 am

  7. Given the Illinois license plates and the word “DeWitt” on the cop’s hat, this could have something to do with some local speed trap in DeWitt, DeWitt County, Illinois. It’s in eastern Illinois, not far from Peoria (note the “CAT” hat in the backseat, Caterpillar is headquartered in Peoria).

    Something must be going on there regarding speed traps, but what the cartoon is actually trying to say, I have no idea. Unless it’s that people in that area of Illinois are exceedingly polite speeders.

    Comment by JT — July 13, 2007 @ 1:07 pm

  8. I come from near Peoria and I’m an exceptionally polite speeder. 🙂

    As to the symbol on the back of the car, have you ever seen those decals given out to people who donate money to police related charities? Some people feel these are a “get out of a speeding ticket free” card of sorts — that a cop who is tempted to pull you over will see the sticker and think, “Oh, they’re in the club!” and you’ll go on your merry way. Kind of like the Masons, but less likely to end up in a Dan Brown novel.

    Comment by Molly — July 13, 2007 @ 1:43 pm

  9. Well, it’s at least nice to see that “The Dinette Set” continues to be as gut-bustingly hilarious as it always was…

    Comment by Djagir — July 13, 2007 @ 2:28 pm

  10. Heh – we used to play “What state are they from?” by watching cars approach us to pass on the Ohio Turnpike. If they were fast but had good lane control, they were probably from Illinois. (Fast and poor lane control meant New York.)

    Comment by Anonymous — July 13, 2007 @ 7:33 pm

  11. Based on the other strips I’ve just read, I’m guessing the driver is being sarcastic. That is:

    Police: I’ll be right back (i.e., I’ll be fast).

    Driver: It’s ok, we’ll wait (i.e., being ‘right back’ is still slower than I could go…)

    But another thing is that the “Your speed” sign’s legs disappear in the windshield, leading one to suspect that they have painted over their windshield and thus cannot see the speed limit signs, thereby explaining their rather odd traveling speed of 54 mph.

    Comment by Someone else — July 13, 2007 @ 11:00 pm

  12. “Dinette Set” seems to follow a consistent pattern: a clunky joke which depends both on awkward dialogue and various “clues” in the signage, t-shirts, bumper stickers, and other assorted background details. Once you’ve decoded it, you realize the joke wasn’t that good to begin with.

    The true hilarity in this one is, as Rasheed points out, the cop’s uniform. The policeman is obviously a child wearing his grandmother’s bathrobe and Sunday hat. I assume the child is actually standing on the shoulders of another child — a la “The Little Rascals.”

    One last note: director John Waters reports that he had a friend who displayed a tasteless “I DID IT FOR JODIE” bumper sticker on his car soon after the Reagan assasination attempt. This friend of his kept getting pulled over and finally asked the cop why. The cop replied, “With that bumper sticker, you’re ALWAYS speeding in my book!” The point is, it’s utterly foolish to display anything on your car that could piss off a cop — or the person behind you in traffic, for that matter.

    Comment by Joe Blevins — July 14, 2007 @ 2:16 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply to Molly Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: