And so, as our moderately unexpected plot twist punch-line from last time, has led to more pointless violence, misidentification and general muddle – it does seem as though we may have rather too many villains on this page, doesn’t it? Not to worry, as our dramatis personae, despite their rather marked lack of progress or effort, may soon be on the verge of a major technological and strategical coup…
Regrettably, the Comix Code Authority does compel us to mention that this previous spiel is merely a rather flagrant teaser to entice our readers to keep on reading, and in no way reflects actual reality… Very much like a certain Washington, DC Resident’s Tweets…
Saw that one coming – also Buns looks pretty good in the last two strips!
For the numismatists in the group, some background on the aforementioned Kruddistani currency, the Kaputnik and Zilchnik:
The Kaputnik is worth anywhere from 27.5 to 63 Zilchniks, depending upon the ambient air temperature. Neither, however, are worth bugger-all in international monetary exchanges.
The odd names for the local money were both products of recent history. When the Nazis overran Kruddistan at the beginning of WWII, many Kruddistanis hardly noticed the difference from their usual government. The local currency, the “Azz,” was renamed the “Kaputnik” by the invaders, in recognition of its negative value. After the war, the country was again conquered by the expansion of the Soviet Union, and again the locals hardly noticed… although their fractional coinage was renamed the “Zilchnik,” for the same reason. Even after the Russians had left, with ill-disguised relief, the Kruddistanis did not bother returning their currency to its former nomenclature.
The Kruddistanis’ apathetic attitude in the matter was undoubtedly influenced by the complicated history of their ancient, original money, the Azz.
After the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC, his generals divided his conquered empire between them, forming huge and powerful kingdoms. One of Alexander’s minor lieutenants, Krudd the Barbarian, seized upon a mountainous, vulture-haunted region north of Carpathia, presumably because nobody else wanted it. Settling into a reign characterized by looting, boozing and wenching, Krudd based his wealth upon the Azz, a word which in his barbaric dialect translated as “great blobby lumps of gold.”
Krudd’s successor, Thudd the Avaricious, standardized the Azz as “the weight of his thumb upon the scale.”
Subsequent rulers continued to revise the value of the Azz, generally downward as the local supply of the precious metal migrated to more stable regions.
By medieval times, the gold Azz was reduced to a tiny wafer so light it would float on water, and King Rumpfurt the Simple changed the coinage to silver. A fat lot of good this did him, as he was promptly lynched by an ignorant mob who were unfamiliar with silver.
Under succeeding rulers, the silver Azz also suffered a steady devaluation, shrinking in size until, by the reign of Athol the Obnoxious, it had become tiny enough to lose among pocket lint. Athol attempted to resolve this problem by striking an enlarged Azz in bronze, which was then coated with a very thin silver wash. This thin coating wore through quickly on the high points of the design, particularly the nose of the king’s portrait, resulting in Athol’s popular nickname, “brown-nosed Athol.”
Upon the accession of Athol’s nephew, Rhatzbreth the Bloody Useless, the Azz had become so devalued that even bronze was too expensive to use in striking it. Rhatzbreth (known among his less-than-loving subjects as simply “Rhatz,” as in “Oh Rhatz, it’s that man again”), had noticed that iron, when new, had a sort of silvery color to it, and decided to begin punching out the Azz in cheap iron. This worked well enough at first… admittedly, the Kruddistani populace was not noted for brilliance, or even ordinary sentience… but as it happened, the weather that fall was unusually wet, and the new currency quickly rusted solid. Rhatz was pummeled to death with camel dung by another infuriated mob, and his rusted iron currency was dispersed as ship’s ballast and road fill.
Although no remaining examples of his coinage are known to exist, Rhatz’s numismatic legacy lives on today, in a Kruddistani proverb for apathy that has become universal:
“I don’t give a rusty Rhatz Azz.”
You stayed up all night working on that one didn’t you? It’s nothing short of really good and has put a sloppy grin on my face reading it. I have no doubt that there’s a Wiki page that it would feel right at home on without revision.
Oh, and Josh’s stuff was pretty good too. I guess. (But Bunz’s line should have been, “Pardon me, but can you help out a fellow illegal alien who’s down on her luck?”)
Was there a point to all this or were you just exfoliating your tongue? Is the money mentioned here in any way related to the Rasbucknik of ‘Ill Abner fame? Probably 1000 rasbuckniks for half kapputnik would be my guess.
I think, most likely, Al Capp’s Lower Slobbovian dialect was an’ inspiration for Jay Ward and crew – also, I’m pretty sure that Capp coined the term, “Nogoodnik”, which was later popularized on that Moose & Squirrel TV show…
And so, a belated thanx to Jay Ward, Bill Scott and Kazuhiko Kato as well, for some fun inspiration for our current comix effort… Though just in case there’s any confusion, I should point out that the two Nogoodnix currently menacing our resident alien antidramatic antiheros are inspired by, but no relation to those two from Potsylvania, who did so much to help loose the cold war back in the 60s…
Also, Thanx to Walt for his copious research on the Kruddistan monetary system… As well as other additions – deletions and general muddle to this page… Have I overlooked anything? Like who’s that purse-snatcher guy? Ahh… probably isn’t important…
“…borrowed directly into Yiddish from the Russian негодник (negodnik, “worthless person, reprobate, ne’er-do-well”)”
Webster says it was first used in 1936 so who can say that Capp with his Jewish background wasn’t the first to make the leap?.
Are the (um) Russian hackers really the bad guys if their item of trade is “knowledge” of the back-stabbing that we do to one another? And “knowledge” of that “knowledge” (from them at least) is a great no-no. Don’t blame that particular reality bending on your favorite target. No, rather it was from the supposed grown-ups in the room.
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