2247: Weird Hill
Title text: I'm compromising by picking a weird hill to lie on.
This comic is a joke about the expression "A weird hill to die on", which refers to holding a position as if it has great importance, and being willing to fight for that position, no matter how much opposition you face, or how little benefit is derived. The term comes from the military practice of capturing and holding hills in disputed areas, in order to command the high ground. Because hills tended to be highly disputed, soldiers would frequently die in their defense. Hence picking "a hill to die on" implies that you're choosing a position that you consider to be so important that you'd defend it at the cost of your own life. The term is generally used to point out the pointlessness of defending a rhetorical position with such fervor, particularly if the point is not especially important, and/or the other party is unlikely to change their views.
In this strip, Beret Guy interrupts Cueball, who is apparently arguing with someone who is wrong on the Internet. Pulling him away from the argument, Beret Guy asks why Cueball should pick a weird hill to die on (fight over an opinion online) when he could pick a soft hill to lie on, going out into nature and relaxing. This comic has a similar message to 386: Duty Calls, 1731: Wrong, and 2051: Bad Opinions. The theme is sometimes we either assign too much importance to our opinions, or we expend too much effort trying to persuade others, and it's often wiser to simply let the argument go. Leaving a computer problem to relax in nature was also mentioned in 1024: Error Code.
The title text is an absurd juxtaposition: that Cueball will pick a weird hill to lie on. In this case, he may be referring to a physical hill, in which case the meaning of "weird" is unclear due to lack of context.
The phrase "a weird hill to die on" was also featured in 1717: Pyramid Honey.
- [Cueball, frustrated, is sitting on a chair in front of a computer and Beret Guy pulling the chair back]
- Beret Guy: Why pick a weird hill to die on...
- [Cueball gets up, still frustrated]
- [Cueball and Beret Guy leave the room]
- [Cueball and Beret Guy climbing a hill]
- [Cueball and Beret Guy lying down at the top of a hill]
- Beret Guy: ... when you could pick a soft hill to lie on?
- Cueball: This is nice.
- A quick Internet search does not indicate the existence of a properly-named "Weird Hill" on which Cueball could lie, but there is a public park in Massachusetts called Weir Hill. Weir Hill's landscape is a weird patchwork, including several threatened species, because it was used for different agricultural purposes by the Algonquin and then European settlers and American farmers before becoming a park in the 1960s.
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