Za Zdorovje

What do I do for fun on the weekends? Frau Grace drags me to a Russian vodka tasting party. Complete with a Russian balalaika band.

Balalaika Band

This is a contrabass balalaika. The guy told me that made it himself 20 years ago. Big sucker.IMG_5245Steve tasted his share…IMG_5227And guess who was the big winner? Susan! She won about 18 bottles of vodka. I’ll be hanging out at her house for the next week or so.IMG_5238IMG_5242IMG_5243IMG_5249OK, enough of my drinking habits. Fred and Deb asked me about a beautiful baby contest. I haven’t been able to find the particular strip they were interested in (I’ll keep looking) but here are a couple Sundays that I found. I’m sorry the first one isn’t in color. It’s B.C. (Before Computers)Ernie 90-03-04Ernie-12-01-22-ColorWhile I was looking for beautiful baby contests, I came across this ugly dog contest from 2009.

Ernie 09-06-15 Ernie 09-06-16 Ernie 09-06-17 Ernie 09-06-18 Ernie 09-06-19 Ernie 09-06-20 Ernie 09-06-22 Ernie 09-06-23Ernie 09-06-24 Ernie 09-06-25 Ernie 09-06-26 Ernie 09-06-27

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Boy, this brings back memories…

Of course when I was a little kid, we didn’t have snow plows to make the forts. We also made igloos. It snowed all day yesterday. We got about a foot. The kid in black throws like a girl. Check this out…

Snowball fight

Like I said last week, I drew a Stinky Stinkbug story. Here’s my drawing table with a bunch of half drawn Stinky strips and a Hunchback of Notre Dame story that I finished on Friday. Blow it up and you can see the details. Click on it then zoom in.

IMG_5212Brian emailed me last week and reminded me how computer savvy I am. Kind of. Back in 1965 the Florida State computer took up the entire basement of the Keen Building. (My office was on the sixth floor.) Now my IPhone can do more than that behemoth, and faster. It ran Fortran. We had to punch cards, like the old Univac computers back in the early fifties. I wrote one program that had to be a couple thousand cards long. The mathematics was very clever, if I do say so myself. It was a reiteration scheme to determine solutions to two dependent equations for which an empirical solution was not possible. But Brian reminded me of a strip from 1980. He writes:

Dear Bud,
Back in the ‘Ernie’ days, there was a great strip where the boys had successfully entered a password to get a cup of coffee, only to be asked to recite the Gettysburg Address – an early form of what is now known as ‘two-factor authentication’.  Pretty relevant nowadays, and rather prescient on your part!  Any chance we could see this one again? Published on 7-6, don’t know the year.
Many thanks, Brian

Here is the two week story.

Ernie 89-06-26 Ernie 89-06-27 Ernie 89-06-28 Ernie 89-06-29 Ernie 89-06-30 Ernie 89-07-01 Ernie 89-07-03 Ernie 89-07-04 Ernie 89-07-05 Ernie 89-07-06 Ernie 89-07-07 Ernie 89-07-08

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Back to the Freezing North

At least I’m not in Boston. I was in Boston for the blizzard of 1978. Over two feet of snow. And I had been living in Florida 30 years. Oh, yes. Happy Valentine’s Day.  You know, of course, that Valentine’s Day was named for me. Buddy Valentine. Buddy Valentine was a pen name I used for a feature I drew twelve or so years ago. It was called “Babs and Aldo”. I originally called it “Babs and Binky” but King Features didn’t like the name. “Binky” was the name of Jiggs grandson in George McManus’ “Bringing Up Father” with Jiggs and Maggie. It turns out that King started syndicating my old strip to alternate city weeklies this January. See if it’s in your city. If you live in a city. Here’s a little sample:

Babs-&-Aldo-03-10-15 Babs-&-Aldo-03-10-14 Babs-&-Aldo-03-09-23 Babs-&-Aldo-03-09-20Ah, VCalentines Day! Look at the beautiful flowers I gave Frau Grace…IMG_5206And she cooked a beautiful Valentine’s dinner for me…IMG_5205She always eats the turkey off the bones before she gives them to me.

Geeze! I’ve been looking through old strips to try to find something that people would just die to see again. It’s been such a long time. Here he is. Your favorite comic character. The indomitable Stinky Stinkbug! Along with his pals Bobby Fly and Spike Spider and his girlfriend Stinkette! (I’m going to draw some new Stinky comics this week.)Ernie 10-04-05 Ernie 10-04-06 Ernie 10-04-07 Ernie 10-04-08 Ernie 10-04-09 Ernie 10-04-10

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Sorry I’m late

I’m in my old home town, Bradenton, Forida, and yesterday we had a family medical emergency. But things are ok now. I grew up in Anna Maria Island just below Tampa Bay. Here are some picts: This is the trailer my famiy lived in for about 5 years. Before that we lived in an even smaller trailer. It was pretty bleak way back then. There was no air conditioning, we didn’t have toilets,  the mosquitoes were like a plague of locusts that never went away, and the water was virtually undrinkable.IMG_5165There’s some good eatin’ down here. Every day Red eats at Duffs Buffet. Either that or the Golden Corral. An adventure in senior eating!

IMG_5134If you ever go to Bradenton, visit the flea market. $5 watches and tons of other junk.


Dinner at the Anna Maria Oyster Bar…IMG_5166

Or the Clam Factory in Cortez…

IMG_5098We ate six dozen.
Grouper sandwiches at the Tide Tables on the water at the Cortez Bridge.


Every Sunday a boat ride to the north end of Longboat Key. Here’s an escort…



The weather was beautiful. During the summer this area inside the pass between Longboat Key and Anna Maria is packed full of boats and people walking on the sand bar or swimming.IMG_5176

Today Frau Grace and I drove down to Sarasota and had lunch at the City Grill.

IMG_5196If you ever go to Florida try to visit the Sarasota Bradenton area. You’ll like it.

Back in 1996 the Japanese were buying up prairie dogs like hotcakes. KACHING!

Ernie 96-07-15 Ernie 96-07-16Ernie 96-07-17Ernie 96-07-18Ernie 96-07-19Ernie 96-07-20Ernie 96-07-22Ernie 96-07-23Ernie 96-07-24Ernie 96-07-25Ernie 96-07-26Ernie 96-07-27




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My fun filled nights are over

I’m leaving for Florida tomorrow and Frau Grace is going to nail me at Tampa International. BUT…


Country Joe, who, for some unknown reason, lives in Japan, keeps sending me pictures of his favorite foods. The man must be certifiably NUTSO! Maybe he’s over there because they won’t let him on an airplane. You know how you smuggle food on the plane so you won’t have to buy it? In the old days they used to feed you crap that was almost edible.  Now you have to buy it. Here’s what C.J. eats:

Fish heads




Tons of squid of courseP1000117


Including squid jerky


Peanut crusted squid



And octopus dumplings. These beauties he buys from a vending machine. Can you imagine? You drop your buck in the can looking for a Zagnut and out pops squid dumplings.



Not for me. When I cook I cook good wholesome AMERICAN food! I made spaghetti the other night.IMG_5048

Now that’s some GOOOOOOD EATIN!

Another reminder, you can download my 2005 dailies in pdf format for FREE. Go to my Buy Stuff Page.

Here are some old single panel cartoons from way back when…

D-45D-51d-48 B-20 D-46


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It Is NOT My Birthday!

I repeat, it is not my birthday. I stopped having birthdays ten years ago. It works. I haven’t aged a bit since then. But Frau Grace and I went to brunch today with some of our friends. The drinks were lousy and the food was about the same. But being with people you like makes it all so much better. Here are Louise and Steve…IMG_5045

And Don and SusanIMG_5044

Both Louise and Susan sing beautifully. I found Louise on YouTube:


Tuesday morning Frau Grace goes to Texas to visit her sister.  So if you live in Northern Virginia, look out. Lock up you wives and daughters and domestic livestock.

If you haven’t yet, download my 2005 daily strips. The link is in the Buy Stuff page. But it’s free.

Here’s a story from 2004. Ernie is at it again…Ernie 04-02-02 Ernie 04-02-03 Ernie 04-02-04 Ernie 04-02-05 Ernie 04-02-06Ernie 04-02-07 Ernie 04-02-09 Ernie 04-02-10Ernie 04-02-11 Ernie 04-02-12Ernie 04-02-13Ernie 04-02-14

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What’s for Dinner?

The other day Frau Grace sent Loinfruit to the supermarket. This is what he brought home for dinner.DSCN0048
That’s some big squids. He also came home with flying fish eggs.


 If you haven’t downloaded my 2005 daily strips, go to the Buy Stuff link. It’s free.


If you’re interested, here’s a little follow up on my 1947 Howdy Doody campaign button. It comes from Keith B. Thanks Keith.

I saw your Howdy Doody button.  If it is what I think it is,
I believe there is an interesting story that goes with it
(if my memory serves me correctly).

During the 1948 presidential election, Buffalo Bob
thought he would run a gag on the program “Howdy
Doody for President”.  He said on television to send in
for a “Howdy Doody for President” button.  Much to
their surprise they were inundated for requests for
the button.  Buffalo Bob didn’t know what to do.
He didn’t expect a response and furthermore, they
didn’t have the money to make the buttons.  He was
in a panic mode- what to do?  Sarnoff’s son saw him
and asked what the problem was and Bob told him
about the request for buttons.  Immediately Sarnoff’s
son showed great interest and wanted to see the requests.
Buffalo Bob showed him the cards asking for the buttons.
Sarnoff’s son told him that he would take care of the
matter.  This was of great importance to him.

Back in 1948, nobody thought television could ever
replace radio.  The NBC network for television was
about a dozen stations on the east coast.  No one
knew how many people were watching television:
no one, one person, ten people, 1000 people etc.?
But those post cards requesting those buttons
showed him that there were many people watching
television even as crude as it was back then.
That button issue, as I understand it, caused the
industry to move forward on their development
of television after they found out they had a large

I emailed back to Keith:

I asked Buffalo Bob why they changed Howdy from a clown to a freckle faced boy, and he said the new Howdy was more appealing. That’s true, but I think it’s also true that somebody else owned the original puppet and they didn’t want to pay royalties. You know, of course, that the original Clarabell was Bob Keeshan.

To which he replied:

I understood the reason they switched puppets was because they didn’t own the puppet.
Yes, I knew that the original Clarabell was Bob Keeshan.  As I understood it,
originally Bob Keeshan was a stagehand just wearing a T-shirt for his shirt.
Someone decided that he should be dressed in a clown outfit. After that he
wore a clown outfit, but he did not have a clown face.  Apparently Emmett Kelly
(that name really dates us if you know who he was) was a guest on the show.
They told Emmett Kelly that Bob Keeshan was their clown. Apparently he put the
Clarabell face on Bob Keeshan which is how Clarabell acquired his appearance.
After he was made up as a clown, the Clarabell character developed.  Again this
is from memory which may not be totally correct.

220px-Buffalo_Bob_Smith_and_Howdy_DoodyBuffalo Bob was And just in case you didn’t know, Bob Keeshan later became Captain Kangaroo. My family was among the first 50 families in the Philadelphia area to own a television. It was an RCA, about 45 inches high and 32 inches wide. My sister in New Orleans still has it. It had a record player that played both 10 and 12 inch 78’s, and a radio that played all available frequencies that were broadcast at that time. I think it even had short wave. My favorite TV shows were  The adventures of Lucky Pup, featuring Pinhead and Foodini,

175px-Pinhead_and_Foodini_1949Kukla Fran and Ollie, and Milton Berle. Ed Wynn also had a wonderful show. One day my father came up to my room and said “Buddy, there’s a show on tv you ought to see. I went down and it was episode two of the Lone Ranger. I didn’t get to see episode one until I found it a couple years ago on Youtube. In our correspondence Keith also mentioned Tonto:

There were other kid’s shows from the 50s that have interesting facts
associated with them.  For example, did you know that Tonto’s real
name was Harold J. Smith and he spoke English very well?

Tonto’s stage name was Jay Silverheels. The Lone Ranger was Clayton Moore. 330px-Lone_Ranger_and_Tonto_1956And finally, I told Keith about a wonderful little incident in my life from about 30 years ago:

30 years ago I was at the Salmagundi Club in New York. I went down to the little bar in the basement to get my self a drink and noticed a little old man over in a dark corner eating lettuce out of a bag. As he was leaving he stopped and said hello, and he asked what I was doing there. ( Salmagundi is an artists’ club) I told him I was a cartoonist at a meeting. He thought I meant animated cartoons, so I jumped in and started lamenting the loss of good animation. I mentioned three cartoons that I thought were so very good in the old days. One was Walter Lance’s first Woody Woodpecker cartoons, I forget which was the second, but the third I praised was Beanie and Cecil. A wonderful smile came over his face. I was talking to Bill Baird, the puppeteer who invented Beanie and Cecil. It was a wonderful moment.

I’ve been scanning in my old single panel cartoons from way way back. Here are a few I scanned today:

A-01 A-02 A-07 A-56 A-59 A-88 b

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Je Suis Charlie

All of us who embrace our unalienable right to free speech stand in solidarity in repudiating those who would try to silence us. We stand by the people of France in their resolve in light of the heinous attack on Charlie Hebdo, and we salute their determination and courage. Vive Charlie!

Below are three two week stories. The first two appeared in 2007. I submitted the third story, but was told by my editor that we couldn’t publish it. The Toronto Star had dropped my strip due to complaints from the Muslim community. I did not mean to offend the Muslim community. I was trying to ridicule Osama Bin Laden. Here are the three stories in the order in which they would have appeared.

Ernie 07-02-05pErnie 07-02-06Ernie 07-02-07Ernie 07-02-08Ernie 07-02-09Ernie 07-02-10Ernie 07-02-14Ernie 07-02-15Ernie 07-02-12pErnie 07-02-13pErnie 07-02-16pErnie 07-02-17This second story is the one that broke the camel’s back:

Ernie 07-04-23Ernie 07-04-24Ernie 07-04-25Ernie 07-04-26Ernie 07-04-27Ernie 07-04-28 pErnie 07-04-30Ernie 07-05-01 Ernie 07-05-02 Ernie 07-05-03 Ernie 07-05-04 Ernie 07-05-05      This last story was never published. The two additional characters in this story are based on personal friends of mine, names changed to protect the innocent, of course. Agent Dumblavey recently retired from a long career in intelligence.

Ernie 07-10-01Ernie 07-10-02 Ernie 07-10-03 Ernie 07-10-04 Ernie 07-10-05 Ernie 07-10-06 Ernie 07-10-08 Ernie 07-10-09 Ernie 07-10-10 Ernie 07-10-11 Ernie 07-10-12 Ernie 07-10-13

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No, I’m not hung over

We stayed home New Years Eve. Now when I was young I was out drinking till two or three in the morning. And that wasn’t just on New Years Eve, it was every night of the week. But I still have the body of a 30 year old. A 30 year old schnauzer with fleas.

Before I go any further let me remind you to download my daily comics from 2005. It’s on my buy stuff page, but this one is free.

Frau Grace closed out our safety deposit box at the bank list week. We got a new one in Easton Maryland near where we have our house on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake. We’ll be moving there permanently in the spring. I already am a legal resident there and have been for years. But what I wanted to show was two things from my childhood. The first is my father’s gold watch. That’s what the oil refinery gave him after he was so badly injured.They also gave us fifty dollars a month to live on. Ain’t that nice. When my father died a few years later they stopped giving us the money, and my mother had to go to work as a cleaning lady to put food on the table. This is true. I’m still very bitter. Anyway, here’s his gold watch:IMG_4943

The other thing is a 1947 Howdy Doody for President campaign button. My old man bought a tv in 1947 because he wanted to watch the World Series. WE didn’t have a lot of money, but my old man was like that. The tv cost almost as much as our house. $1100. Which turned out to be our annual income two years later. In 1947 Howdy was a clown. The next year they turned him into the freckle face kid that people remember. I met Buffalo Bob many years later, and I showed him my button. He was very impressed and he told me confidentially that it was worth a lot of money. I don’t know. But here it is, and I’m sure you will never see another one:IMG_4942

Mike from Massachusetts emailed me and asked if I remembered a Sunday about waiters trying to sell Ernie stomach pumps from way back when. Well, Mike here it is along with another stomach pump Sunday and four others ta boot. They’re from 1988. Sorry, I don’t have the color files.Ernie 88-07-17 copyErnie 88-09-04 copyErnie 88-07-10Ernie 88-04-10 copyErnie 88-04-24 copyErnie 88-06-12 copy

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Happy New Year!

Yeah, 2014 is a done deal. Let’s hope for a 2015 with no hatred and no war and brotherly love throughout the world. (Right. Like that’s going to happen.) I hope you had a wonderful christmas. Mine was pretty typical. Frau Grace gave me:IMG_5009Underpants andIMG_4984a dead fish.

If you haven’t  download my daily comic sterips from 2005. click on my “Buy Stuff” link above.  Buty don’t worry about the title. The download is free.


It’s time for New Years resolutions. Every year I make a New Years resolution. Most people start out with good intentions and then after a month or two they give up. I’m not like that at all. I never even start. But here are a bunch starting with 1991. The last several were from 2007.

Ernie 91-01-02 Ernie 03-01-01 Ernie 01-01-01Ernie 98-01-02Ernie 07-01-04 Ernie 07-01-02 Ernie 07-01-03 Ernie 07-01-05Ernie 07-01-06 Ernie 04-01-02Ernie 99-01-01

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