We were going to tell you a story in the next few strips; as usual, it will be your half of the equation to determine what percentage of what we say at any given time is true. It’s never been an especially hard game, because it always is. But that epistemic judder is what allows you to engage true topics. Sometimes you need a little space.
We legalized weed and gay simultaneously in my state, and we haven’t fallen into the sea yet - even though the sea is right there and you’d think all it would take was a good kick. There are many instances in our archive where the primary or, indeed, only source of mirth is that I was (at one time?) enthusiastic about a specific plant. That’s the strip I could find with the investment of ten seconds or so, I’m not saying it’s the apex of the form or whatever. It was simply at hand. The situation here is especially peculiar for the time being, because they’ve legalized use and ownership without legalizing sale. I mean, that’s funny, right? It’s the bureaucratic version of a joke. This is sophisticated, high concept material.
The weird thing about “legalizing” things that had previously been “illegalized” is that changing the paper law is only one part of a complex system. They interface with a knotted mass of beliefs people have, some of which were informed by the law, but not all of them, and they’re still real. That is to say, the social costs exist independently of the criminal ones and they’re incredibly strong. I suspect this series will give me an opportunity to experience those contours for myself.
In other news, Erika’s redesign of The Penny Arcade Report is USDA Fucking Choice. Ben goes into some of the choices they made here, and he kicks things off with a couple bad-ass features: one about the new Torment team, and one about blacksmithing on Man At Arms.