Odd Temporal Milestones

The first Star Trek episode aired closer in time to the ratification of the 19th Amendment—guaranteeing women in the US the right to vote—than to today.

377 thoughts on “Odd Temporal Milestones

  1. Congratulations. That was one of the most touching stick figure comics I have ever seen. And non-stick figure comics.

  2. I guess this blog post’s title is still accurate, according to the last comic’s last panel.

  3. Was looking for a place to contact you to wish you well and thank you for the beautiful comic “Two Years”. This seems to be as good a place as any.

    I always enjoy your work but this comic really touched me.

    Keep up the good fight.

  4. Thanks for today’s comic. As other’s have said, it is beautiful. Have a glass of something to celebrate for me!

  5. Wonderful comic! Took me a minute to realize/remember the meaning behind it but it definitely tried to get the water works going once I figured it out haha.

  6. Thank you so much for sharing that. I definitely did not at all cry, not even a little bit. :-)

  7. It really made my day to know you were having your 2 year biopsy-versary. Congratulations and if you ever make it out to Vancouver BC, I can show you two around a bit!

  8. Thank you for sharing your life with us-the ups and downs make it real and make us feel closer. So glad things are going well for you both!

  9. Scrabble is serious, man, you caved so easily…unless that was also a chemo gimmee.
    And more seriously, a wonderful, wonderful, touching, funny, hopeful, and romantic comic. Thank you for opening your world. Happy biopsyversary indeed!

  10. Nothing to do with this blag entry, but glad to hear about the milestone.

    For whatever it’s worth, I have been praying for y’all. Keep up the good spirits.

    Dana (Madman) Hansen

  11. More specifically, the RTL override applies to the whole comic list below the ““\u202eLTR” comic on Opera 12.11 (on at least Windows XP and Ubuntu 10.04), instead of just that line.

  12. Great comic. I am in middle school and all of the nerds like me check for what the new comic is, and we really like the what ifs. also, as a dare, I actually staped a beret to my head. it hurt, but getting to hang on a branch wearing the beret, while responding with “staples” when people walk by was worth it. I aslo got 50 bucks, which was cool too. as a final note, I am ashamed that your spam checker is not asking us to post helpful comments.

  13. Domino’s once delivered me a pizza with a pube on it so I agree with the Noid. Destroy all Domino’s pizza and exterminate their employees.

  14. With the inclusion of your cancer stories, you have, in my mind reached Bill Watterson’s level (of Calvin and Hobbes). Thank you.

  15. Mr. Munroe,
    First of all — thank you for writing a great comic, and for keeping things wonderfully geeky.
    Secondly — I’ve been going through some of your old comics tonight, as I procrastinate for tomorrow’s Organic Chemistry final, and happened upon #938 (T-cells). A few minutes later, while scrolling though the news, I found an article (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2246312/Girl-7-beats-leukaemia-revolutionary-treatment-using-HIV-virus-wire-immune-system.html) about how the study actually worked! It was very exciting.
    So, all that to say…science is cool. And you’re cool, too.

  16. Pingback: Some gaming things to make you feel old

  17. The movie “Public Enemies”, about famous gangsters in 1930s Chicago, came out in 2009. I lived in Chicago in the 1970s. It was a shock to realize that nearly as much time had passed between my living in Chicago and the movie, as between when Dillinger was gunned down by the feds outside the Biograph Theater and my time in Chicago.

  18. The Archive page is also broken (by the RTL override, per Jon Brase’s comment above) in IE8 on Windows7.

  19. I noticed in the recent What If? that you mispelled Bethlehem twice leaving out the L. I noticed that this could be an easy mistake because you were writing in uppercase, BETHEHEM, and the HE repeats and there is a hint of an L visually between the H and E. When you use the name spelled correctly in the text in mixed case it has an l.

  20. I believe that the Leap Seconds “what-if” misses a bunch of important options.

    You don’t have to change the earth’s rotation directly – the alternative is to move the moon into a different orbit…which would gradually (and more permenantly) have the same effect. We can whack the moon with gigantic asteroids more or less with impunity and the business of having an atmosphere preventing us from using rockets doesn’t apply (although that’s still a silly option).

    — Steve

  21. My idea would be to cover over about 4/5 of the earth with a space parasol, thus photons hit only one side of the earth, speeding it up like a basketplayer slapping a ball on his finger to keep it spinning.
    I imagine that might be a little underpowered too though.

  22. can you make another vers of the alternative_energy_revolution comic where the turbines just bust out in the thriller dance? that’d be awesome. thx.

  23. istanbul su tesisatçısı servisi , su kaçağı tespiti , robotla tıkanılık açma , makineyle petek temizliği yapıyoruz . Sudan sebeplere teknolojik çözümler üretiyoruz . 0212 544 36 75 -0216 612 55 90

    su tesisatçısı

  24. I understand the concern about brain eating amoebas, but:

    1. If you use a new aquarium pump and distilled water, doesn’t that mitigate the problem a lot? Pretty much all of the brain eating amoeba cases I’ve heard about involved tap water, or large bodies of impure water.

    2. Couldn’t you also just run the pump in reverse, as a suction device? That’d keep the amoebas out. You might need a good nasal seal to get the proper degree of suction, but I’m sure that can be arranged, maybe with some moulding putty from the hobby shop.

  25. Thank you. A comment lost, but a debt, if not paid, then at least respected. At least for now. Your ‘work’ I was tempted to say, but that’s crap. I mean your insights, and your willingness to share them, unafraid and unabashed, intellectual and emotional, have entertained, baffled, and mostly, delighted me to no end. I have my favorites of course: Spinning counterclickwise and many, many more I refuse to list.

    But I feel compelled to praise you for ‘Nihilism’. So much fun, and so well told, and so much philosphy so succinctly expressed. And such a beautiful point expressed. It is not so much a comic as a poem, begging your forgiveness if you feel I am suggesting the tacit superiority of the one form over the other. It is like Edna St Vincent Millay’s ‘Figs’ and her ‘Afternoon on a Hill’ all rolled into one, and I love it. It is lines on virtual paper and a little bit of color and it is a jewel too to be cherished and admired and shared. And I imagine it helps many to feel good about their lack of faith, there sadly being so few support structures for people exploring such realizations. So I imagine it acts as a bulwark too, at least for some lucky individuals. And as such I respect it even more. It’s among the most beautiful things it has ever been my pleasure to enjoy, and I’m big on enjoyment. I mean that entirely sincerely. Again, thanks.

    Afternoon on a Hill

    I WILL be the gladdest thing
    Under the sun!
    I will touch a hundred flowers
    And not pick one.

    I will look at cliffs and clouds
    With quiet eyes,
    Watch the wind bow down the grass,
    And the grass rise.

    And when lights begin to show
    Up from the town,
    I will mark which must be mine,
    And then start down!

  26. Dear friends,

    I wanted to let you know about a new petition I created on We the People,
    a new feature on WhiteHouse.gov, and ask for your support. Will you add your
    name to mine? If this petition gets 25,000 signatures by February 09, 2013,
    the White House will review it and respond!

    We the People allows anyone to create and sign petitions asking the Obama
    Administration to take action on a range of issues. If a petition gets
    enough support, the Obama Administration will issue an official response.

    You can view and sign the petition here:


  27. uhhmmm are you testing the audience? am I the first to realize your math is missing a couple zeros. x .01 is 1% so you either wrote 99.99% when it should have been 99% or you meant x .0001. I’m surprised at this mistake and wonder if the fans are being trolled. so by the method of the post above 2 uses would in theory leave only 2 germs. not likely but not so gross if you look at it that way.

  28. ^^ just realized it has a % sign…”.01%” not sure you can punch it in a calculator that way… atleast not one i own.. kinda through me off…

  29. I noticed your calculation for the percentage of germs killed by hand sanitizer is off. You are calculating 1% by writing 200 000 000 x 0.01, where it should be 200 000 000 x 0.0001

  30. Re. log tables: what if the number of iterations is too big to fit on a stack of cards which will fit in the room?

  31. Hey! My physics teacher used your comic 435 “physicist character” in a slide today in class; Awesome!

  32. xkcd.com meat search results:
    veal: 0 results
    mutton: 0 results
    sausage: 3 results
    pork: 4 results
    beef: 5 results
    chicken: 10 results
    ham: 10 results
    bacon: 6,270 results

  33. How fast would a helicopter blade have to spin to take off on mars, and what would the forces be like on the blades and other components such as bearings?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>