Wednesday, September 8, 2010

One of Them Betelnuts

This is the beginning of an interesting little arc, with an interesting new character.

The rise of the Beatles ran parallel with the rise of social revolution of the Boomers (all them Betelnuts). Kelly was one of the earliest commentators on the scene.


  1. Tom,

    I recall that hippie-like creatures were in the strip in 1966. All with the long hair and hidden eyes. I assume that's where that whole thing started.

    Funny how Kelly gives the "Beatle guy" patois that seems more suited to a Beatnik from a few years earlier!


  2. The whole “betelnut” thing in fact involves a very layered punning: “beatnik” is willfully confused with “beech-nut”, this is then confused with “betelnut”, where the “betel” is homophonic with “Beatle” (itself a pun).

    (And it's perhaps worth noting that “beatnik” seems to have emerged from a misinterpretation of /ˈbitnɪk/ in a sentence “He was just beat, Nick!”, in an explanation as to why a musician had failed to come to a job.)