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Monday, February 22, 2010

Historic Otterloop Artifact


Here's something else I found recently. It's a page from a sketchbook I was using in 2003 when I was trying to think up funny names for a comic strip. Right before your very eyes you can see the actual invention of the word "Otterloop," just like watching Beethoven think up da da da daaa, or Shakespeare come up with "Hamlet", or George Lucas putting the words Jar, Jar and Binks together! And the hokiest part of it is, the final names are underlined, like one of those unbelievable clues a detective in a noire thriller finds, where there's a name and address heavily underlined in a phonebook with the note "let's kill this guy" written under it. But that's how it happened and there's the proof. I might have googled the word "Otterloop" to see if anybody else had used it. I did that the other day, and I found the photo below. It's a bus turnaround in Toronto called the Otter Loop that (as of 2006) was in danger of being torn down, and had some people interested in preserving it as an historic example of mid-20th century Toronto area bus turnarounds. That's the kind of vital provenance that you don't usual dream of when you think up a funny name, and I'm glad I underlined "Otterloop" and stuck with it, all right. 


9 comments:

Freddy Letrange said...

My grandma's name was Pastiche Moulin-Wermser! But Ellis Island changed it to "Mills."

Kid Shay said...

Too bad "Ron Weasley" was already taken.

Otterloop is a great name - and now the Canadians have even more reason to save that bus turnaround.

the cheese guy said...

Amazing things happens when you clean up the studio! Fun day!

Paul said...

This bit of history will really be worth something now that you've been nominated for Cartoonist of the Year! Congratulations! If only I could vote…

Mike Peterson said...

Was just thinking the same thing, Paul. Congrats on the nomination, Richard! (And we'll file this document for the Phd candidates of the future.)

David Hagen said...

Spud Otterloop?
I am fond of the name "Crayola," but Alice is more fitting.
Got my ballot yesterday, so you've got at least one vote!

Theophylact said...

Congratulations! Can we have a picture of what your gob looks like when it's been freshly smacked?

richardcthompson said...

Thanks! I'm laying even money it goes to Marisa Tomei.

Brian said...

Congrats on the Nomination Richard!
As much as I like the work of the others, I'd rather see you make it on your freshman try!
(Now what did I do with my Attila the Hun Birthday Bash original...)