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Sweet Mother of Sacrilege

This is easily the worst day of Anise's life. It's not only a broken tradition, but an absolute betrayal by her own mother. She may never recover emotionally. Last month Claire ended up having to get emergency surgery. She went to the ER multiple times with severe abdominal pain and the staff couldn't seem to see anything wrong with her, even though it was very apparent something was. It wasn't until she was a few more weeks along they saw she was having an ectopic pregnancy. She had to spend several days in Fort Worth and over two weeks recovering. Obviously we lost the baby, but Claire is doing fine. Our chances of having another baby are still possible, but diminished by a considerable degree. I apologize for the delayed update. The whole thing was very defeating. It was also super scary since she ran herself in to the ER on the last visit, they transported her to another hospital, and I was stuck at home. I wasn't going to leave 4 kids alone all night, and I didn't want them in a panic over mom by taking them to the hospital with nothing to do but worry.  Like I said last update, it's a comedy of errors. Every day presents some new unforeseen challenge. I was doing all the homemaking while Claire was out of commission. Trying to rapidly do all the things I busted open a bunch of trash in yard during some sleeting and ended up picking it up for an hour. Got a mild case of pneumonia. That was when Claire was volunteering to drag me to the hospital while also dragging herself. I said "No. I'm going to Jim Henson this thing. Everything will work out fine." It did. We've both recovered. And I would like to say, thanks to all of you, I actually have insurance for the first time in 7 years. Claire as well. Which, also thanks to you, we got to avoid her $22k surgery bill. Just fucking yikes. Next post is Tuesday.

97 thoughts on “Sweet Mother of Sacrilege

  1. “Ground human horn.” Lovely Futurama reference.


  2. First, sorry for the loss. It hurts and words don’t begin to express our condolences.

    Second, insurance is a good thing. I highly recommend it.

    Third, Sunny D versus Purple Stuff? Love it, love it, LOVE IT!!! Sounds like the 90’s are coming back (also like the box of Texas Toast, but recommend keeping that in the freezer).

    Here’s to some normalcy in your life for a while, Chris and Claire!

      1. You helped… with normalcy?

        That was unexpected. ;)

        Condolences on your loss. I’m glad Claire is ok.

        And if I were Anise, I’d go out and get my kid sister a birthday cake. They’re required. Even if you prefer pie. You can put pie stuff between the layers of the cake if it makes you happy, but a fruit pizza is not, nor will it ever be a birthday cake (it’s obvious when you notice that the word “birthday” appears before the word “cake,” not the words “fruit pizza”). Rant over. :)

  3. I don’t know whether Anise’s grasp of theology or food science is the more appalling.

    Further, kudos on the “funistrada” reference. That was like three whole minutes on Google to chase down.

    1. I knew the Funistrada reference for two reasons.

      1.) Far too many years in the army.
      2.) There’s an Italian restaurant about an hour from where I grew up called “Trattoria Funistrada”

  4. Chemical X – along with the sugar, spice, and everything nice – would explain much about the Buckingham sisters.

  5. Very sorry for your loss.

    Anise is slowly clawing her way up my sister rankings. Really want to give her head pats now. Also, since I also have no interest in eating nasty fruit pizza, I say we do an after party where we hit up a bakery or a Cheesecake Factory or something.

    Seriously, first Hawaii, the California, then Pennsylvania, and now Florida. At this rate a tenth of the country isn’t going to know how to make pizza properly.

    1. The problem is the term “properly.”

      New York and its ridiculous soggy cracker will claim one way, while Chicago’s doughy casserole will claim another.

    2. First of all a Hawiian pizza aka Canadian Bacon and Pineapple pizza is unlikely to have been invented BY Hawaiian’s. They would use Spam and pineapple LONG before Canadian Bacon… Seriously they have a thing for Spam.
      Second of all, Canadian Bacon and Pineapple Pizza is GOOD pizza and long as you actually HAVE Canadian Bacon and not what ever made from pork meat that they want to CALL Canadian Bacon.
      And putting the word for the location of New York into the name of some nasty ass grease bomb someone calls a pizza doesn’t magically make it good or even edible. If I wish to punish my intestinal tract that way I’ll get some White Castle sliders or a chunk of room temperature lard….

        1. Yeah that “thing” was the only meat on the islands during the war was Spam, so their cuisine adapted. And you ain’t lived until you had Spam teriyaki over fried rice.

        2. Chicago Deep Dish is the best, hands down.
          That’s like asking “who is the greatest super hero of all time?”
          The answer of course is Batman
          And another thing…what?
          (Gets dragged off)
          YOU CANNOT SILENCE THE TRU-(door slams shut)

    3. Making pizza properly is easy.

      Detroit style is best
      Buffalo style is second best (- sweetish sauce, cheese and toppings all the way to the edge, cup and char pepperoni -)
      Y’all can fight over third and lower

      1. Speaking as someone who comes from Michigan, the first time I was offered “Detroit-Style” pizza, I asked what made it Detroit style? Was it served actively on fire while the server shoots at me?

        Then I discovered it was just square slices without a proper handgrip, and I said, no way.

  6. I dare say that fruit pizza has a shortbread crust, making it nigh a cookie pizza.

    And Anise is not only treading on thin ice, but it seems that for some reason that may not even hold her and her bra busters up. Did she go to the same surgeon who took care of the family of the guy who came up with the Nike Pump sneaker?

    Chris, use one of those round sleds to drag the trash out. And after you coat the bottom with Clark W. Grizzwold’s non nutritive vegetable based cereal coating, you can get that trash to the curb in no time at all, let alone enough to catch pneumonia.

    But what with all that’s been going on, I’m glad you two are ok. Now go snuggle with the kids you two. For no reason.

  7. I am glad you all have recovered, even if wasn’t under the best circumstances, and I’m sorry for your loss. Medical science is wonderful if you can afford it, and I’m really glad you all have insurance. I have to say, driving one’s self to the emergency room while in severe pain leaves much to be desired, I found that out by driving to the hospital with a ruptured infected appendix, at the beginning of a blizzard. Had to park in the visitor’s lot and walk across the street slowly bent over in pain, while a snow plow headed toward me. Fortunately the blizzard kept everyone out of the ER, and they got to me quickly, but the surgeon who was going to remove the appendix was late the next day, snowed in. Next time you all are in a similar situation (never again, I hope), leave the driving to someone else, if you can.

    1. I agree that while Claire is a badass for being able to drive herself in, I really really wish she hadn’t had to do that at all. Severe abdominal pain like that isn’t just distracting, it’s straight-up debilitating. It’s almost impossible to focus on anything but the pain so it makes driving rather risky at best. And the fact that it was because of an ectopic pregnancy breaks my heart.

      Also, why are appendixes such motherfuckers? Mine was an especially dirty bastard, ’cause it sent me the ER during the Superbowl last year and it had actually apparently burst without me knowing several days before and gone gangrenous. I thought I was having some weird gas issues until shit got so very real so very fast. But at least I got into surgery the same night. The pain is so miserable I shudder at just the idea of having to wait even one day for surgery, but maybe that’s because morphine did little more than make me relax a bit and also made my stomach hurt even worse. I really hope you were drugged out of your skull while you waited.

      1. My insane pain was my gall bladder, which had gone into gangrene. I drove myself into the er where a friend worked. I didn’t know what the pain was, and I just kept putting it off.

        1. Ouch, I hear that hurts like a bitch on fire. People like us who ignore the signs drive doctors crazy. I’m sure none of them enjoy mopping the gangrene out of idiots like us.

        2. My surgery was laproscopic. I think he said that it was just about ready to pop. But I think that I shall blame my mother on shirking the pain. But that lady time I had pain bring me to tears was just after a car accident. I was in the dentist’s office when Bill Cosby got Carol Burnett to grab my lower lip. But it was actually my neck. I had to get pillows to help alleviate the pain. Lousy dentist said that they were only licensed to use novicain as directed.

      2. Same with my little demon, although the pain was showing up a day before I went to the ER, I remember lying in bed with pain, I rolled over and felt a slight *pop* around where the pain was, but I let it go until the afternoon of the next day. I actually made a dry run to the hospital but decided I’d be too embarrassed if it turned out to be gas, but at least when the blizzard was just starting I wised up and made it in. It might have been better to wait, as the ER parking was full on Saturday afternoon, but by Sunday night it had cleared out due to the snow coming. The surgeon orignally tried the laproscopy, but when they looked in apparently they said “uh oh” and then had to fillet me, it had ruptured, spilled all it’s little nasties, and had started gangrene. I actually have more bad memories of the post-op pain, which was caused by having to inflate the intestines with CO2, which took it’s sweet time working its way out. I found out that morphine does nothing for me, and the pain “killers” were really just pain “mild suggestions to cool it for a bit” ers. It all worked out well, I waited until that Saturday to check out of the hospital, old-manned my way back to my car and drove home. The really strange part is that the blizzard hit on Sunday night, and by the time Saturday rolled around, it was 70 degrees, so there was no scraping snow off my car or anything.

  8. My condolences on all of your losses, Chris and Claire. May your healing go well.
    Anise must be out of her skull with sugar withdrawal, I didn’t think she would have objected to mere drunkeness otherwise (unless Mommy was also withholding the wine from her).

  9. Condolences on both of your loss.

    I’m now wondering what books are on Rosemary’s kitchen book shelf. I’m suspecting the old classic “To Serve Man” would be there.

  10. Several trips?? Standard practice is to give a pregnancy test to ALL women of reproductive age admitted to the hospital with acute belly pain. (Unless they haven’t had sex recently) She was lucky. Once an ectopic pregnancy progresses to “acute pain”…. the woman frequently dies of internal hemorrhage in a matter of hours. This is also why doctors are generally very aggressive about suggesting abortion for any pregnancy that MIGHT be ectopic.

    1. Google the hotness-crazy axis. (its on youtube). But that goes a long way to explaining why Anise is my favourite sister, Elsa is my favourite princess, and why my relationships always fall apart the same way burning dynamite falls apart. And yes, I am fully aware that I’m the common theme, which is why I am not in a relationship or dating.

  11. Glad things seem to work out despite the continued adversity. Thank you for the fan service Chris, for your continued writing n’ drawing, and thank you to the Patreon supporters for keeping our talented artist and his family afloat.

  12. Fucking “Purple Stuff”, must you tickle my funny bone so? XD

    And not that I’m complaining, but does she bend over that way for every situation she engages in? That can’t be good for your back.

    Fruit pizza looks and sounds kinda yummy, actually, so long as no real pizzas were harmed in their making.

    1. No. No it should not. Purple Stuff is a grape-flavored drink whose primary components are “Sugar, Water, Purple,” as Dave Chappelle revealed.

      Purple DRANK involves cough syrup. Typically prescription-grade.

        1. Yes, just so. I had forgotten she checked the dishwasher not long after the oven.

          …there’s no reason to look for cake in a dishwasher. She’s desperate.

        2. You’ve obviously never had to deal with an undersized or crowded kitchen. The dishwasher is a useful place to store things short-term when you’re running out of space in the more traditional locations.

    1. Health-ier maybe, but its a long ways from healthy. Fruit still contains a crazy amount of sugar, and being layered on top of cookie pretty much nullifies the ‘no refined sugar’ bit. Has more beneficial items than cake sure, but definitely not healthy on any kind of absolute food scale.

  13. I’m really glad you guys are okay, but geeze. “I’m going to Jim Henson this thing. Everything will work out fine,” sounds like some famous last words to me.

  14. She checks both. First the oven, then 2 panels later the dishwasher. I get it. Where would you try hiding the cake when your kids find it everyyear. Fridge, oven, cupboard… “f-it, they never do dishes anyways, they’ll never look in here.”

    1. No. The eye is, I believe, first shown during the Black Friday arc. Hang on, I’ll have the link in a bit for the start of the arc and then the link to the eye.

      The start of the Black Friday arc begins with Ellie dragging Quinn to Thanksgiving Dinner at her house.
      November 20, 2013 – What the Pilgrims ate:

      The results of the eye is touched upon here.
      Nobember 27, 2013 – (What happened) – Paterfamiliasa:

      The first mention of the eye: March 21, 2014

      The first appearance of the eye in the comic.
      April 13, 2014 – Nightmare Fuel: http://shotgunshuffle.com/comic/nightmare-fuel/

    2. No, this is not the first glimpse. As stated before, the black Friday arc starts with Ellie dragging Quinn to her house for dinner. There is a link above.
      It can be found in the archive on November 20, 2013 – What the pilgrims ate. November 27, 2013 – Paterfamilias describes some of the how the eye happened in. The eye is hinted at by one of the sisters in March 21, 2014 – Nemesis. And the eye is first shown April 13, 2014 – Nightmare Fuel.

  15. Maybe it’s just me, but it’s starting to seem like Rosemary talking to her children with a knife in hand is getting to be a pattern.

  16. Nice to see that the hiatus hasn’t rusted any of Chris’s skills — the art in this comic is just gorgeous, every panel “pops” visually.

  17. Damn. Mom put down the cookbook and pulled out the knife fast and without spilling a drop of her wine. Are any of her single daughters like that?

  18. I’ve been reading a manga lately (Knights and Magic) and getting confused because I started to read this right to left

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