How to Appraise an Antique or Collectable

Basic Instructions is generously sponsored by Bacon, Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms Explosives: The blog about livin’ la vida Northern Idaho!

Slow, steady progress continues on the sponsorship front. At the moment we’re just shy of 30%.

I’m thinking that instead of haranguing you with every single comic I post, I will somehow incorporate the progress bar into the corner of the site and then just harangue you once a week. I’ll probably enact that change sometime next week. In the meantime, please know that your support in the form of subscriptions, use of the Amazon affilate links (US, UK, and CANADA) and donations has been extremely helpful and I really appreciate it.

« How to Figure Out What It Means | How to Apply New Insights to an Existing Problem »

Reader Comments (66)

"An" collectible? The hard C sound beginning "collectible" dictates, "a" collectible.

Note from Scott: "An collectible is deliberate. Jenkins is trying to sound fancy.

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJesse

He bought an collectible? Not sure if that calls for a correction, or if it ties into that "reading English" skill he apparently lacks.

Note from Scott: "An collectible is deliberate. Jenkins is trying to sound fancy.

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterShard

Yay! The shot glass has become a new running joke!

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLummox JR

There's something about "an collectible" that I found really funny, but I can't pin down why...

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterChris G.

I can't decide whether "an collectable" was meant to indicate his level of knowledge/intelligence, troll us grammar jerks, or if was just a mistake. I'm going with some combination of the first two, since I feel so trolled...

Note from Scott: "An collectible is deliberate. Jenkins is trying to sound fancy.

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNicole

I've been reading this comic for years, but the funniest thing about today's is the comments.

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoe Fair

Great comic strip..Interesting. But there are some correction for some of the post. :D

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKelly | Black Suits

I got the joke that Jenkins was trying to sound sophisticated by referring to his object as "an collectable". I laughed (internally, at work) and noted, once again, that Scott is a genius observer of human behavior/foibles.
But what are almost as funny are the comments of the grammar police who missed the joke.
I sense the dogged perseverance in Scott's life mission to impart "knowledge" via his replies appended to each of the grammar comments...
Jenkins' naivete in this strip seems rather endearing....a frightening thought, somehow.

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterOlde Edo

I love that you've brought back the Boss's shot glass from the Bahama.
Now if this could be somehow integrated with the meta running joke.....

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPaige

Was "an collectible" deliberate? Was Jenkins trying to sound fancy?

April 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFrax

wow... 4 out of 5 (of the first) comments mentioned Jenkins' poor grammar... how many more mentions must you endure, Scott, before the joke is no longer "worth it"?

I liked it - great comic - as well as the progress updates not feeling at all like "haranguing", even tho I am currently one of the poor schlubs who WISHES we could contribute but don't even have a day job to long to leave.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBI Fan

I sincerely hope no one else attempts to correct Jenkins' speech....

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered Commentereddyline

> An collectible is deliberate. Jenkins is trying to sound fancy.
Seems we aint so fancy--irritants make pearls but tend to spoil a punch line, my pet is seriously peeved. Do you expect us to whistle when you're chewing on our gristle? Though it might crimp artist expression & integrity, you might want to adopt, adapt, and improve, remember? We're here to help. Or else.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterM. Möhling

Wait a minute. Are you trying to tell us that ‘an collectible’ is deliberate, and Jenkins is trying to sound fancy?

(Actually, I was really tickled by that bit. It reminded me of an episode of M*A*S*H where Hawkeye impersonated Winchester over the phone, and to make himself sound suitably pompous and Harvardesque, he said he wanted ‘an harmonica’. I admit with some sheepishness that I am apt to say ‘an harmonica’ to this day.)

Note from Scott:Holy crap! That is EXACTLY what I was thinking of when I wrote this! Seriously! As a kid, the way he said it, slowly, and with a stuffy nose ... "An harmboniga" always cracked me up. Well spotted!

Also, I' should point out that I don't really blame those who thought it was a mistake. 9 times out of 10 me making a grammar error is a pretty safe bet, and they were just trying to help. They were all nice about it, which is all I ask. I'm sorry if I caused any of them any embarrassment.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSuperversive

"Whom" is the word of choice for the truly fancy. We also like to drink with our pinky raised.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJessica

Take that, grammar nazis! It's not a bug, it's a feature.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPimple

I get the impression that "an collectible" is deliberate, is Jenkins trying to sound fancy?

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMatchstickman

When I read 'an collectable' my first thought was how many people would go grammar nazi on you and out of the 5 comments on as i'm typing it stands at 60%. I assumed it was Jenkins trying to add an extra layer of importance to his collectable, I sometimes do it myself.
But when will the 'Date-ists' comment, copyright 2011, it's April 2012, oh the humanity!!!!!

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJeff

The comic was good, but the grammar dickhead pwnage in the comments elevated it into instant classic territory.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCzernobog

'an collectable' like someone would say 'an heirloom'

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDally

I was wondering whether "an collectible" was intentional or not.
Then I scrolled to the comments and noticed all the notes from Scott.
Haha
That one sure backfired, eh?

I can just imagine his/your face now: Sitting there, adding notes to every other comment.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWilla

Got up at 04:00 with a toothache (which I've been lying to my wife about for 2 days) and I just want to thank you Scott for helping me forget the pain for even a few minutes. I urge everybody to subscribe.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercmacd

Is the use of "an collectible" a deliberate choice, to make Jenkins sound like he's trying to be fancy?

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterD

Today was the first time I laughed harder at the comments than at the comic.

Great comic. Outstanding comments.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLisa Boban

Is "an collectible" an effort on the behalf of Jenkins to try to sound fancy?

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHenry

Not sure if deliberater ...... or Jenkins is just being fancy.....

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDennis Unger

Could it be that An collectible is deliberate and Jenkins is trying to sound fancy ?

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFreddy

Now I want to poke at the "an" as well, to get a cutnpasted comment from Scott...

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterZoltan

Of course, four of the five first comments are about the deliberate grammar error. :P

Anyway- the comic is quality work as usual. Two fifty isn't much, perhaps I should consider buying the subscription service...

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDekord

It doesn't have anything to do with today's comic, but as you already have Amazon affiliate links for 3 countries, I wanted to let you know that if you add one for France (amazon.fr), I'll use it. :)

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCyäegha

Ahh the skill called 'Reading English' that most people seem to lack.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJames Mason

you're use of "an" is funny.

:-)

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTom

my mind immediately rebelled against "an collectible" until I thought of how it was Jenkins saying it - then it seemed totally fine. what's this I see in the comments? vindication from scott? how excellent.

in addition, I really like your new "inspecting object" pose. I hope it's featured again for something.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteralex

Scotts expression in the last panel is my favourite EVER

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnastasia Creepy

"Collectable" is what things are. What you have there is a "collectible".

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSpike

The M*A*S*H reference is also what immediately came to my mind. An collectible, indeed.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKaa

Given the fundraising drive on at the moment, I'm surprised you've missed the obvious opportunity: auction off a special commemorative Basic Instructions shot glass.

Bidding would start at $52. That might sound expensive, but considering it would commemorate TWO different Basic Instructions strips PLUS the nation of China, it would be a bargain at any price!

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFrax

I always say "an salmon", but I can't remember why.
I liked both the comic and the comments.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTrip Hazard

I loved "It was made in China in 2009" "Youcan tell that just from looking at it?"

Future antique shows are going to be even more boring than current ones, aren't they?

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

Lol I just read Zoltan's comment, where he said "cutnpasted" and for a minute it looked like he wrote... well... see-you-next-Tuesday pasted. And I thought - what a great word that would be to use.

"I had hoped to get a personal reply from the author but I just got a c**tpasted response."

Oh and the comic itself was hilarious. Except for the typo in frame 1 where he mistakenly said "an collectible". That really dragged it down a notch for me.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEdgar E. Cayce

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>