Life lessons from Jef the cyclist

Cartoonist Stephan Pastis tends to poke fun at cyclists in the form of a recurring character known as Jef the cyclist who is portrayed as a very athletic and fit person who is always smugly giving unsolicited advice to others about how they they should exercise and eat.

(Pears Before Swine)


  1. Bruce says

    I like this cartoon except for one thing. We should indeed be boosting our omega-3 intake, but we should eat less from omega-6 sources.
    Unfortunately, I don’t know whether I am making this suggestion nutritionally, or ironically.

  2. John Morales says

    I’ve never understood this USA custom, but apparently if you don’t get a treat, you are allowed to make a trick∗. It’s in the name, basically a form of extortion.

    Pig did not get a treat. So…

    ∗ “The “treat” is usually some form of candy, although in some cultures money is given instead. The “trick” refers to a threat, usually idle, to perform mischief on the homeowner(s) or their property if no treat is given.”


  3. derferick says

    In The North (of UK) and especially in Yorkshire*, there was a tradition, sadly now lost, of Mischief Night. This was the night before Bonfire Night (Nov 5th, look it up if necessary) and small acts of mischief were allowed. Typically egging a window, shaving cream on a car windscreen, hiding (but not stealing) a garden gate etc.
    There was no option to avoid the mischief by bribery.
    Sadly, as I said, the tradition has lapsed with the introduction of Trick or Treat and the tendency for the mischief to escalate.

    * In Scotland it was called Guising.

  4. Who Cares says

    I wonder if Jeff (or Pastis) considered the consequences of his actions.
    Since what he did is robbery and destruction of property.

  5. rrutis1 says

    I for one am outraged at the depiction of a cyclist (I am one) as a smug know-it-all taking candy and throwing it away!!! Now give me a minute while I fetch a wall of text to paste in here as to why I am right….

  6. Rob Grigjanis says

    Mano @7: Apparently one needs to have a Faceplant account to see that. Can you summarize?

  7. Mano Singham says

    Strange. I don’t have an account either. I could see it earlier but now am blocked. Anyway, here is what Mallet said:

    Every time Stephan Pastis does a Jef the Cyclist gag (and yes, we’re friends and Jef the Cyclist is me), I get a number of questions about vengeance. My answer is usually kind of disappointing — I enjoy it, so I don’t feel a need for true revenge or retaliation, and my strip just isn’t set up in a way that can bend to the situation so readily.

    Until, of course, an opportunity presents itself. We’ll see if it works. And then we’ll see if as many people ask Stephan about revenge.

    He then has a couple of panels that makes a snarky comment about the puns in Pearls Before Swine.

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