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Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Revision as of 03:05, 4 September 2013

Welcome to the explain xkcd wiki!

We have an explanation for all 1 xkcd comics, and only 0 (0%) are incomplete. Help us finish them!

Latest comic

Go to this comic explanation

How to Make Friends
No, wait, come back! I want to be friends at you!
Title text: No, wait, come back! I want to be friends at you!

Explanation

The theme of this comic is social awkwardness. It shows Cueball (standing in for Randall) trying to be friends with Hairy.

It starts out with a common way of making friends or interacting with friends, hanging out over a meal. However, Cueball suggests doing so with awkwardly literal phrasing; whereas most people use expressions such as “have lunch” or “grab a bite to eat”, Cueball explicitly invites Hairy to “eat food”. The fact that he feels the need to clarify that they’ll be eating food, as opposed to any other orally consumable items, indicates his lack of confidence to clearly communicate his intentions.

Before Hairy can even respond, Cueball then says that they could instead “sit together and talk without eating.” Although this is indeed another common way to make friends, it’s kind of an odd way to phrase it, especially since he didn’t even give Hairy a chance to reply to his initial suggestion. Cueball then says he doesn’t need to eat (meaning not right now, especially as a prerequisite to talking), but he immediately feels compelled to clarify that he does need to eat (meaning in general), and again it’s weird that he clarified, as his original wording probably would have been understood. He then awkwardly remarks about how he can eat later if Hairy would rather just talk. The overall implication is that Cueball’s awkwardness and over-explanation would be off-putting to a typical person.

This is apparently a situation that Randall has encountered before, and he apologizes for trying to offer advice.

The title text says Cueball wants to be friends at Hairy, rather than with him, which isn’t how friendship usually works. “At” implies that Cueball considers being friends to be a unilateral action that he needs to direct towards Hairy, like “smiling at” or “pointing at”, and does not understand that it is typically a mutual activity of building a relationship, which would be indicated by being friends with him.

Transcript

Ambox notice.png This transcript is incomplete. Please help editing it! Thanks.
[First panel with words:]
Presenting:
How to make friends
[Second panel with Cueball and Hairy facing each other:]
Cueball: Want to go eat food together?
Cueball: We could also sit together and talk without eating. I don't need to eat. I mean, I do need to eat. But if you don't want to eat then we can just talk. I can eat later.
[Third panel with words:]
Okay
It turns out I still haven't figured how to do this.
Sorry


Is this out of date? Clicking here will fix that.

New here?

Last 7 days (Top 10)

Lots of people contribute to make this wiki a success. Many of the recent contributors, listed above, have just joined. You can do it too! Create your account here.

You can read a brief introduction about this wiki at explain xkcd. Feel free to sign up for an account and contribute to the wiki! We need explanations for comics, characters, themes, memes and everything in between. If it is referenced in an xkcd web comic, it should be here.

  • List of all comics contains a table of most recent xkcd comics and links to the rest, and the corresponding explanations. There are incomplete explanations listed here. Feel free to help out by expanding them!
  • If you see that a new comic hasn't been explained yet, you can create it: Here's how.
  • We sell advertising space to pay for our server costs. To learn more, go here.

Rules

Don't be a jerk. There are a lot of comics that don't have set in stone explanations; feel free to put multiple interpretations in the wiki page for each comic.

If you want to talk about a specific comic, use its discussion page.

Please only submit material directly related to —and helping everyone better understand— xkcd... and of course only submit material that can legally be posted (and freely edited). Off-topic or other inappropriate content is subject to removal or modification at admin discretion, and users who repeatedly post such content will be blocked.

If you need assistance from an admin, post a message to the Admin requests board.

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