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The comic may be appearing a bit to the left. That would be because I completely crashed the site on Saturday night. Apparently my "theme" is now a bit removed from it's ability to be routinely updated without incident. This caused poor Jessica to spend her Sunday putting all the pieces back together single handed as best she could. If you enjoy reading the comic, please make Jessica feel appreciated for keeping my ability to display them intact. Everyone in life has those morons that create challenges for them. I'm her's. Thanks Jessica. =)

181 thoughts on “Equilibrium

  1. Perhaps it’s my own fault for checking the comic at 3 in the morning, but the comic is not loading. It’s just the ad at the top and then the first, previous, comments, next and latest buttons. And all the earlier comics have the same problem. It’s probably the 3am thing. I’ll check back later.

        1. And to clarify. I still can’t see it. I may just have to accept obsolescence and check on a newer computer.

        2. Pfft! Ha. I thought about that. Not the cat thing. But maybe the outdated version of Mozilla my iBook is running is hung up on its memories of the website. I’ll try that. Until then I can use the desktop.

        3. Okay, so now, when people are all “happy happy happy” is it just Duck Dynasty, or is there some macabre illusionary link to Ren & Stimpy?

        1. I won’t tell a soul, dude. Where’s work? I wish that I had an IHOP around here. I want international kinds of pancakes.

        2. And another new icon for TheLastOutlaw. I’d call you TLO, but I don’t want to get you confused with the Electric Light Orchestra.

        3. It’s cool, TLO is the most common abbreviation I end up with, I know typing long names can be annoying. Though, I prefer T-LO myself.

        4. Speaking of which I’m now tempted to run iterations of TLO through the avatar randomizer to see what I end up with.

        5. Of course I neglected to do my “default” name which is some random dude I can’t remember seeing.

        6. I will be very sad if this is not McFatFat as it’s the last iteration I’ll be doing and NONE have been the fat kitty so far.

        7. I agree. That icon must be eradicated from the possible line up of… well, it’s only a hyphen, and all caps. . so, just don’t do it.

        8. I’m not sure which is funnier, the fact you got Alex to begin with or the schizo argument with yourself afterward.

        9. Well, I did mine a few days ago, after last comic was up, but I’ve got to put them up here too. Just to show I’m not the only multi varied name icon per name thingie or other. You just get to use 2 numbers, 1 and 0 for L and O.

        10. Nah, the 1 as the L is too distracting visually. I don’t mind the zero because it looks similar enough to the O to not be distracting.

  2. 1) Wow… Cinnamon moved back in? Guess all’s not well in her dating life.
    2) Fatty McFatFat ate the data cloud?! Is there anything he won’t eat?!
    3) Glad to see you addressed the “missing” data cloud, from the previous comic. That was bothering me.
    4) Thanks, Jessica, for fixing the site!
    5) Pumpkin looks miffed that Cinnamon moved back in… will we get to see shenanigans, I hope?

    1. 5. Of course Pumpkin is going to be miffed, she was all “squeeee” about being the only girl left in the house. Now she has to put up with Cinnamon and being left alone with her. Haircut instances may hit an upswing in the house with her around. That, or she could become the squirrel’s new gym trainer, just because they’d be wanting to get away from her and the model rockets.

      Oh snap, she got fired from her job for fixing the tickets. That kid was a midget who worked for the states division of weights and measures. The birthday party was just a ruse in order to build up her street cred as a kid. Now we really have to see what Ian looked like all “Extra trashy.”

      (3) The data cloud vs. McFatFat may have to be revisited. You know who you are.

      #6. Are you going to write your dissertation on the ratches? Instant Nobel Prize, eh?

    2. 1) Next comic
      2) Babies
      3) Me too
      4) Ditto
      5) She’s moving back in less for shenanigans, and more to deter Ellie from trying to run back home herself.

        1. Ok I was about to surmise that Cinnamon had quite the nasty malicious streak. If she and her boyfriend do break up, I can’t help but imagine her spouting “Ellie did it”.

        2. Ggrrrah. Cinnamon is out to torpedo Ellie at any move, isn’t she.

          “I suppose if she’s rich enough to afford an iNimbus, then she’s rich enough to have to stay out of the house now.” – Cinnamon Buckingham.


      1. Does McFatFat have control over mouth vacuum enough to avoid eating the occasional baby? I mean, come on, that just seems unrealistic. Especially if the baby’s holding a strip of bacon.

        1. I would think that McFatFat’s vacuuming ability is inversely proportional to the amount of a loaded diaper that said baby would potentially have.

      2. 1) Yay! I just have to be patient until Wednesday, to learn the sordid details!
        2) All babies, or just human babies? Wait… probably shouldn’t ask that.
        5) That, as a story point, makes a lot of sense… Ellie can’t come running back home, now, because the momma won’t have ~anymore~ children moving back in.

        But poor Pumpkin. No more dancing around in wigs, singing about having the house all to herself anymore.

      1. The last comic had Ellie being rained on by the I-Nimbus. Since the I-Nimbus floats in proportion to Ellie’s since of self affirmation; it must have been dragging on the ground by the time she got back to her apartment to change. Cats like to chase, pounce on, and eat slow moving thing on the ground that are smaller than their head. McFatFat is just a head and tail at this point so he will eat anything smaller than himself.

  3. So apparently Ellie is a serial animal overfeeder. I find equal parts funny and disturbing. And floating McFatFat is hilarious. Also Pumpkin looks less than stoked about the return of Cinnamon. Regarding that last one, the use of body language to add subtext to a statement is sadly underused in comic strips these days.

    I also really dig Ellie’s emo hair.

      1. Of course that raises the question… will McFatFat float forever or will he eventually “pass” the data cloud? In which case would Ellie even want it back afterward?

        1. In the realm of cartoon physics, the point is shutup, and once eaten, it will stay put until comedy is needed to trump the issue.

        2. Ugh, brown cloud.

          How now brown cloud, have you moo’d today.
          Don’t bother me with your dairy, I must say.

          :D I’m a poet.

        3. I think she’d just have the parent cloud rain on it for a week straight or so, examine it, order the cloud to rain for another week, then we see an Ellie speech bubble from a closed door with steam coming out yelling to ask Quinn if they have any courser sandpaper.

        4. Having family members that own cats, I vote that regurgitation is an equally likely method of data cloud recovery.

          P.S. Thanks for the hard work Jessica.

        5. As a cat owner, I would agree with you in principle about any other cat, but McFatFat does not appear to be able to clean himself. Om the other hand, he rolls every where and possible has an extremely long tongue which is why he is always clean; then the regurgitation option is almost 100% likely. preferably all over Cinnamon.

  4. You’re welcome, Chris. Glad to be of help …If I didn’t help, how would I read the comic this morning? ;)

    FYI to all I hope to fix the off-centeredness tonight. If you see any other glitches, alert me or Chris.

    1. Thank you Jessica for helping to fix the website. Jessica = summation of (Chris)^Buckingham Sisters * (number of items Mr. Fatty McFatFat will eat)^(number of items Mr. Fatty McFatFat will not eat – 1) to the absolute value^zero!!!

      That is your number. :D

  5. BWHAHAHAHAHA! *falls out of chair laughing* Those squirrels just made my monday morning, thanks for this little ray of sunshine dude ^ ^

    Oh, and thanks for putting the site back together Jessica!

    1. Either she stopped by after school for a quick trim or clippered it herself.

      Or Cinnamon gave her an, “I’m back home” dominance establishing trim which might further explain her being non-plussed with Cinnamon’s return.

      I’ma go with three until word of god says otherwise because it fits the mental model of Cinnamon I have thus far developed.

      1. I’m going to go with, none of the above. I just scanned the bus, Mr. Steven’s class, and today’s strip. I don’t see much of anything that could be considered out of place for Pumpkin. I think that for anything to be done, she’d have to have at least, a reverse mohawk.

        And I think that Pumpkin would be smart enough to not be alone in the same half of the room with Cinnamon.

        1. I’m voting Cinnamon haircut special as an, “Oh, thank you for the obviously insincere welcome back home, lil’ sis!”

          Cinnamon was probably relatively starved for her amateur barber role (hey, even Ellie couldn’t resist a little cut), and she couldn’t have pulled off as much trouble growing up to the point of needing to explain it if she couldn’t be sneaky and cunning for at least a little while.

        2. How would you like to spend the next several nights wondering if your crazy, out-of-work, bored sister will shave your head while you sleep? See you in the car.

        3. Correction, in seeing the updated and current strip.

          “How would you like to spend the next several nights wondering if your crazy, undersexed, bored sister will shave your head while you sleep? See you in the car.”

      1. Maybe, I dont know, it just looked like her hair was even the last few times we saw her, and in this page her short bob cut turned into a crew cut. The left side has some length to it coming past her ear but the right side looks almost like a Marin style jar head cut.

        1. I thought the same thing at first but going back to look at the strip where Ellie arrives at school with Pumpkin there is a very distinct line in Pumpkins hair where one layer is much shorter than the other. I think I initially assumed it was an effect of shading but it’s her hair.

    1. I remember that the fattest pigeon is from Thepunchlineismachismo dot com.

      The fattest cat is no longer Garfield, here.

      Three fat squirrels, see how they bounce. Bounce on the blind mice.
      (insert Three stooges theme)

        1. We are really having fun playing with the iterations and combinations and permutations on our namesakes, eh The Last One?

        2. Indeed. My cunning plan is to bookmark this page and always have a one stop avvy roulette reference for future updates.

  6. Ok. This is just supporting my idea from looooooong time ago, but I think that Ellie should go into working with animals. (In a more constructive outlet than over feeding them!) she should study to be a vet! And until then she could work at a pet hospital. She has a real obvious love for animals.

    1. As long as she didn’t have to work with Nick from “Hot Tub Time Machine.” Her having to put up with that BMW hipster would be tooooo much.

      But, now that we’ve seen the fat squirrels, Mr. Fatty McFatFat, and the ratches, could it be that Ellie has some sort of quantum flux field generators in her brassiere? It could explain the ratches parents ability to mate in the first place.

      1. With ratch mutation starting on her first day, if Ellie’s bras had that kind of radiation, McFatFat would be flying without an ingested data cloud. If coming from Ellie’s apartment, I’d go with trace elements of Quinn’s hatred rubbing off on KK and starting the ratch mutation, and hence McFatFat is only starting to come into mutant powers (vacuum being first, as it’s most useful).

        1. hee hee hee hee hee – Uncle Buck.

          Okay, I’d take the Quinn/KK connection better than the French Connection. Or was it he China Syndrome? Czechoslovakian Polka?

      1. The other one’s name was Nom, and was the reason Ellie fed the others up to be too much effort for McFatFat to unhinge his jaw to fit in his mouth.

        Note – I’m explicitly not claiming McFatFat COULDN’T eat the fat squirrels, just that they’re too much effort to be worth with so many other things to eat first.

        1. C’mon man. I named them first, unless Chris and/or Jessica and Heather are going to claim first rights, man.

          But Nom? at least my names have vaudeville backgrounds dude. You know, I wonder why no one has been hinting at a movie tribute to the Marx Brothers.

          Maybe because Warner Brothers won’t let anyone be brothers on the film screen, except maybe either those guys who wrote “Fargo,” “The Matrix” or “Axe Cop.”

  7. Honestly, whoever Jessica may be, she did a good job putting the site back together. Didn’t notice the difference till pointed out.
    And obviously Ellie over fed the squirrels to keep the odds of McFatfat catching them the same.

      1. Now I see what the boog is in reference too. Although, I remember that icon look from seeing a Buckingham sister in the bathroom asking about the band.

        1. And now I see what you’re in reference too. Though if I were going to initiate discussion about that page of the comic, I would probably go way back and comment on it directly or start a thread in the forums, rather than post on it here.

          But if we’re on it already, I feel I should specify that I would never describe his look as “stern” (unless for some reason you and I were reenacting this commentary with roles reversed, and in that case I might only imply such a description in response to comments about a “stern look”). In all other circumstances I would probably use the words “taken aback”, as they better describe his reaction upon discovering The Slutty One in the boy’s bathroom.

        2. I was confused defuzzled about the cloud /ellie/pumpkin/mcfatfat trifecta of who the cloud could be upset with in terms of the look on it’s face. I thought that it was initially in reference to something else until Chris put the information out there in order to allow for me, who should be asleep right now. to make the connections prior, and allow for a slight of hand into misdirecting you to a previous thread.

      2. You mean it has its own personality? I thought it was simply programmed to display the emotions of its user (Ellie doesn’t look as put off about the cat – whereas Pumpkin has basically the same face as the iNimbus in the previous panel), or its jovial default.

        What an advanced bit of technology.

  8. Thanks, Jessica. I hope you didn’t lose any sleep while fixing the site. And Chris, don’t worry too much about the theme. I didn’t even notice it at first.

    It’s good to see Mama Buckingham loves her daughter. Over the past several comics, I was somewhat unsure about the relationship between her and Ellie. Even as Pumpkin reiterated Rosemary’s words to Ellie about showing up for her birthday, I still thought that there was some bad blood between them. In a very logical thought process, we could say that she kicked Ellie out to ensure that Pumpkin didn’t pick up on any of Ellie’s negative habits, but even so, kicking Ellie out within a week and taking away her phone seemed a bit harsh. Even if, at that moment in time, it wasn’t the first time they discussed Ellie moving out on her own, it still seems like a stark contrast to the mother I see here.

    I suppose it’s something only a parent can get.

    1. But we’ve hashed this apart from nigh on day one. She was kicked out because she was going to become a lump on a log if she didn’t get a fire under her kiester if she didn’t move any faster than she did already.

      At least, the room had to have been vacated before Cinnamon moved back in. So, we know that the girls are not going to be under complete eviction status. However, I foresee rent and chores around the house under Cinnamon’s new terms of lease. And a waiver on her renter’s protection status under Florida laws.

      1. PAT-
        I understand that, hence my line “In a very logical thought process…” so I get that, its just that it seemed a bit… off. I feel that she showed one side of her personality at the beginning, and now shows a very positive side. But, eh- I guess it’s just me being my odd self.

        I’d like to think that I analyse things so that everything is as congruent as possible, but in real life relationships, not everything is congruent, and I guess I’ve just forgotten that.

    2. Well, Ellie’s avoiding eye contact, so she’s not exactly over it I would think. And what’s harsh to some parents isn’t harsh enough to others. The premise is Ellie drug her feet forever and a day to get a job or go to school. Not only was she not doing that, she was making things worse at home. So her mom got stern with her and let her either sink or swim. It can be speculated with what Pumpkin said, she knew Ellie would swim, which she did.

      1. You’re right, it’s not like when birds push their babies out of the nest, right? I mean, they shove those little suckers out of the nest. Fly or hit the ground, running or something or other, right?

      2. That makes a lot of sense. Even if she understood why her mother did it intellectually (which is a big if, since I don’t think she’s at a stage where she would ponder that. At 19, I wasn’t thinking about my parents’ motives just how their actions made me feel), there could still be some emotional distance because of the move.

        It also strikes me that her mom is being more loving that she normally would be because a) she sees/anticipates that emotional distance and b) wants to try to fix it.

        But, I do agree with Pat that this was done more for Ellie than for Pumpkin.

      3. It makes sense, it really does, but it still strikes me as being somewhat callous. But then, I’m just writing what I’ve written before.

        It’s like a mother bird throwing her chicks out of the nest- they won’t fly unless they are forced to. But don’t forget- chicks actually DO die, they sometimes they can’t actually fly.

        I guess mama actually knew that Ellie would swim rather than sink, but nothing is guaranteed- that uncertainty is a little disturbing to me. Maybe mama Buckingham had faith in Ellie, but… eh, I’d just be repeating myself. I expect there to be more on this in the future, though.

        1. Sure. I’m also acknowledging with Rosemary that Ellie is, and will always be, one of her babies.

          (Plus it’s her baby’s berfday.) =P

        2. :)
          Awright, awright… :D I’m clearly over-thinking things. Instead of simply enjoying the comic for what it is, I’m obsessed with dissecting everything, trying to find deeper meanings, even if the pursuits lead me to dead ends or incorrect conclusions.

          I’ll try to take this all with a grain o’ salt in the future, and not be so serious.

  9. I don’t know what it is, but the squirrels are just too hilarious. It’s seems Ellie has a habit of stuffing adorable critters to the gills.

    Also, Pumpkin definitely can’t be happy. She has only been recently freed of Ellie and now Cinnamon ups and moves back in. She definitely seems to prefer Ellie over Cinnamon, so this would be a step back.

    Oh! Oh! Is she blaming Ellie for whatever happened? I would like to to her “Ellie did it” in action and how family members react to it.

      1. And then, after their mom hits her in the head with the top round of cake tier, Cinnamon stumbles outside, where the squirrels have just turned zombie-rific, and McFatFat floats outside after the cloud pummels it with ice cubes and frozen lightning tears. With the increase in distance, McFatFat looses levitation at the same time as floating over the cake riddled corpse being devoured by the squirrels, and he joins in on the festivities. I mean, it’s cake. Cake and frosting and evil twin, win win lose situation. Because now McFatFat is zombified after a squirrel nibbles on his tail. The data link between the extra cloud and the phone link up, in a reverse goth rainbow effect and the cloud has become a feral technozombie, all of the women retreat to Pumpkin’s room, where her cosplay armory is the only thing that can save them until Tarragon’s thesis on the ratches is complete. That and she shows up with lead undergarments from Victoria’s Secret for Ellie’s birthday present and a tombstone for Cinnamon. Which could explain the fact that she just showed up dressed as Lara Croft, but with a black eye and some dork trailing behind her in a wheelchair.

    1. I’m guessing Ellie’s “I’m going to mess with my younger sister” impulses are in the “Time to make her dress up in her cosplay wigs for my amusement” or “No, this is mine and I’m not sharing” directions. Cinnamon seems more likely to be a bit more destructive.

      Ellie just seems like you have to push her fairly far in an anger direction before she gets to the enjoying malicious actions phase. Cinnamon’s archetype and exhibited behavior suggests enjoying malicious actions comes somewhere around or before mild boredom.

      While I had no older siblings, I think I’m fairly certain which I’d prefer.

  10. Thanks Jessica!!!!!!!!!

    Ellie sue is looking emo, next she’s going to dye her hair black and stuff haha jk. Also, those squirrels are killing me.
    I can’t imagine Ellies mom could possible get mad at her daughter for the place closing down.

    1. Mom getting mad is different from Ellie being willing to share something she’s sore about and hasn’t figured out how she’s going to deal with yet.

      1. I agree with That one guy right now. Ellie is unsure how to reveal the big news, and what with Cinnamon there to rub salt in the wound already, bleah.

        1. I thought that we were just the desserts committee, and that we were voting on Coconut Creme Pie, with real whipped cream topping.

    1. I can’t link it at the moment… but click on the archives page and all of that is under the comic titled “Odds Are”… its fairly recent date-wise.

  11. 1) Has Ellie had any other pets?
    2) Has the family had any other pest Ellie has overfed?
    3) I still want to see the I-Nimbus shoot lightning (Cinnamon is now the obvious target)!

    1. I would be of the thought, with the imaginary hamster wheel when Ian Eagen showed up at the apartment on movie night, and Cinnamon blaming Ellie for that hamster taking flight on a super duper bottle rocket, I’d guess that Ellie had a hamster at one time, that more than likely heeded it’s own hunger pangs.

    1. My dear Civ,

      Have you ever watched “Tom & Jerry” at all? Spike is around, somewhere… Either that, or the Alligator can’t close it’s mouth around those furry rodents.

  12. Well, while i did’t have any loading problems, i thank Jessica still, since we might never have seen it if it was’t for her :)
    Conserning the Comic, how is it even possible for Ellie’s cat to swallow something that i think is just a digital projection???
    Also, i think the squirrels show that its bad to have Ellie near any animals, period…

    1. I never had the impression the data cloud or phone were just projections, they seem to be physical objects (that can hover).

  13. Ellie is like a parade now, with two floats following everywhere she goes.

    It’s also amazing that that data cloud is able to transmit through the impediment that is a ridiculously bloated cat, but then, if it can hold that kind of weight aloft, that’s one strong data cloud.

  14. Okay, I have no idea why, by this is the funniest comic that has come out in a while.

    It’s probably the squirrels.

      1. On that note T-1o. You need to purchase a coconut creme pie with whipped cream topping and place it on a table. At 1:10 pm CST Friday afternoon, you need to get up from what your doing. Pick up that pie, and smash it into your face in front of a camera linked to you tube.

        1. That is the sort of abberant behavior that would cause me to lose access at work. In other words I would have to have a VERY good reason to do so.

        2. Testing company pr in a comedic quality assurance manner when connected to the social media that your place of employment uses. Just mention to them, that when they get over five hundred thousand views when it goes viral where you got the idea from, eh?

          Chris and me, we could use the coin, ya know. Serious, serious coin. And then we could hire you away from that retched hive of scum and villainy.

        3. Are you stalking me?

          I only ask because I have a “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villiany” plaque on my desk.

        4. I’m a freaking geek man. What else would we have to describe the hell holes that we work in? I mean, instead of complaining in public with someone who can hear around, we can just quote “Star Wars” at least until Chris comes up with something just as profound, am I right?

          Hey, did you hear about John from accounting?

          Yeah, accounting. You will never find a more wretched hive of sum and villiany.

        5. By the way, you forgot to take the original out of the photo copier again. I’m not going to read them, because we aren’t supposed to talk about it.

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