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Gene Weingarten's humor column, Below the Beltway, appears every Sunday in The Washington Post magazine.

At one time or another, Below the Beltway has managed to offend persons of both sexes as well as individuals belonging to every religious, ethnic, regional, political and socioeconomic group. If you know of a group we have missed, please write in and the situation will be promptly rectified. "Rectified" is a funny word.

On one Tuesday each month, Gene is online to take your questions and abuse. Although this chat is sometimes updated between live shows, it is not and never will be a "blog," even though many persons keep making that mistake. One reason for the confusion is the Underpants Paradox: Blogs, like underpants, contain "threads," whereas this chat contains no "threads" but, like underpants, does sometimes get funky and inexcusable.

Important, secret note to readers: The management of The Washington Post apparently does not know this chat exists, or it would have been shut down long ago. Please do not tell them. cartier mens bracelet love fake Thank you. Williamson.

New to Chatological Humor? Read the FAQ. If composing your questions in Microsoft Word please turn off the Smart Quotes functionality or use WordPad. I haven't the time to edit them out. Liz

Today is shaping up to replica cartier 18k gold bracelet be a comics intensive chat. If you haven't hit the polls, please do so now, because I am going to talk about Dennis The Menace right here, soon.

Shortly after passage of the Health Care bill, I got an e mail from Garry Trudeau. It was very simple. Garry linked to a news photo, and wrote only this: "Look to the left of his watch."

Yes, folks, just to put things in perspective. At the transcendent moment of his new presidency, the commander in chief of the Western World was getting inspiration from the Washington Post Sunday Funnies. For the record, it is open to "Doonesbury," "Pickles," and "Sherman's Lagoon." Now, it may just be that Obama is a big "Pickles" fan, but I'm guessing he'd just looked at this.

Okay. Speaking of comics, today in this very space we unveil for the first time the grand designs of "Barney Clyde," the comic strip created by me, my son, Dan Weingarten, and cartoonist David Clark. Here it is, explained in the brand new "Barney and Clyde" Facebook fan page, which you are hereby cordially invited to join.

One day in 2005, I got a package in the mail from a cartoonist whose work I admire enormously. He had come up with a new newspaper comic strip, and wanted my opinion of it. The truth was, I didn't like it much. Dan who was 20 and living in my basement didn't like it much, either. He went on and on about why it sucked until he started getting me mad.

I explained to my son, lovingly and patiently, what a gigantic horse's ass he was being presuming to belittle the work of a cartooning legend, a man thrice his age, just because he happened to misfire this once. I told Dan that coming up with a workable idea for a comic strip was a very difficult thing, and that it was churlish and callow and outrageous of someone with no experience at all to be so judgmental and dismissive. Dan grumbled and muttered and shuffled away into his room. I went back to work in my basement dungeon office.

Five minutes later, Dan returned and said "You know what would be a good idea? A comic strip about a friendship between a billionaire and a bum." Then he shuffled out again. I stared at my computer screen for a minute, got up from my desk, walked over to a calendar on the wall, and circled the date: April 28. That's the birthday of "Barney Clyde."

I figured it would take us about four months to find a cartoonist and get into a few hundred newspapers. So, yes, it has been five years in development. Dan has since moved out, gone back to college, won the Nobel Prize in physics, etc. We have more than a year's worth already written and cartier rose gold love bangle drawn.

We found David Clark, the cartoonist, through my friend, the great Richard Thompson. David is a hayseed who is holed up in the hills of Luray, Virginny with his woman, three young uns, and copy love bracelet cartier men assorted critters. He is an artist and a half.

The Syndicate (I love this term) doesn't want me to release any strips, but you can find the characters on the Facebook page, and a brief description of what the strip is about. I'm happy to field questions, and take brickbats, here.

Also, I'd be grateful for any ideas for how we can make this site interesting, interactive, subversively lascivious, etc., once the strip debuts.

The "Dennis The Menace" cartoons in the poll were the first cartoons I ever saw. They're straight from a book that my parents had in the house when I was a baby published in 1952, the year after I was born. They're apropos today because they stand as a reminder to me what can happen to a good idea, over time and under market pressures, if you are not careful.

Have you ever wondered why Dennis was a "menace"? Well, now you know. He used to be.

When Hank Ketcham started this strip in 1950 to near universal applause, "Dennis the Menace" was a mean spirited brat who did awful things. He stuck the cat's tail in a wall socket. He scissored up books and cut pigtails off little girls. He twisted swans' necks into pretzels. There was a good reason Mr. Wilson hated him. The strip had a nice raw edge that seemed both familiar and strangely comforting to frazzled baby boom parents: Dennis was even more of a handful than their kids.

As its client constituency got broader and spread across the square states, "Dennis" soon succumbed to the numbing and dumbing committee effect. Then came the TV show, which delivered the coup de grace: Dennis Mitchell became likeably mischievous, then just cute, and, eventually, just sickeningly precious. He's still there.

Dan, David and I hope to remember this always and resist dairy calls to homogenize and sweeten.

And yes, poll wise, old was waaaay better than new. Edge is good. The one in which Henry Mitchell took Dennis to the strip club instead of the zoo is simply breathtakingly great. The only place I disagree with the poll results is that I think Ruff in the corner is excellent. It's just a wonderful sight gag.

Hank Ketcham's art was very, very good. I asked Bob Staake, the Style Invitational and New Yorker cover cartoonist (in that order) to explain why. It's the fluidity of line, he said the feel that it was drawn in one grand, effortless sweep. The style has been copied by cartoonists for the last half century. Bob says it falls short of great that it's mostly very competent, very professional, but not utterly brilliant like Walt Kelly (Pogo). I would have called it world class, but I defer to an expert.

My friend Horace LaBadie supplies today's news clip gem, which is both a Person Who Should Be Convicted on Mug Shot Alone, AND one of the greatest aptonyms in the history of the world:

WOODSTOCK, Ga.

Police said investigators went to Patrick Molesti's Woodstock home last Thursday with a search warrant and recovered a computer with child pornography on it. Molesti was not at home at the time.

I mentioned this a long time ago in your chat, and you said I am quite unusual. But I want to do a quick informal poll and find out how true that is. Basically, I've been involved with my boyfriend for many years. We are both 40 somethings. We have the same attitude you do about marriage (no need) but remain fully committed to each other. We are best friends. Here's where we probably differ from most people I don't care if he "gets some" occasionally. I mean, I believe sex is sex and it's different from love, and if he gets the opportunity (say, while on a business trip) to get some "strange", well, I don't mind if he takes it. We have 3 rules (no lies to anyone, must be safe, and it mustn't impinge on our own GREAT sex life). How weird am I? I must say it really rarely happens (the strange) and as he once said (maybe half joking) "you've taken the fun out of cheating!". But that wasn't my intent I just think it adds to our own enjoyment of each other. Variety is the spice of life.
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