Talk:2175: Flag Interpretation

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Can we all just take a moment to appreciate that Randall drew each US flag by hand? He could have just copy-pasted the same one 14 times, but he didn't. 172.68.34.118 16:27, 12 July 2019 (UTC)

Something about a Dali-esque melting flagpole set at half-mast seems very suggestive to me... -- ProphetZarquon (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Flying the US flag upside down would be considered a distress signal by many. Should this be in the main description or a "trivia" section? Cgrimes85 (talk) 15:51, 12 July 2019 (UTC)

I had the same thought (before I saw your comment) and put it in the main description, since it seems necessary to understand the joke. --Aquillion (talk) 05:51, 13 July 2019 (UTC)

Half mast or half staff? In the US (which appears to be the flag shown in the comic), the popular usage is half-staff, although half-mast is more common elsewhere. Cgrimes85 (talk) 15:56, 12 July 2019 (UTC)

Half-mast should be for naval connotations and half-staff for non-naval connotations, at least in the USA.
Definitely half-mast in the UK. To the point that someone showing a lot of sock has historically drawn comments of "Who's died?" or "Your cat died?" which is then clarified by explaining that their trousers appear to be at half-mast. YorkshirePudding (talk) 21:59, 12 July 2019 (UTC)
In Northern Ireland, a flag half way up a lamp post usually just illustrates that the ladder was too short. Not strictly relevant, but it feels like an XKCD style punchline.

The no one dying for a while was done in the TV Show Torchwood: Miracle Day https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torchwood:_Miracle_Day 172.69.160.152 19:01, 12 July 2019 (UTC)

Also the premise of a SCP End of Death hub. 162.158.6.118 10:11, 15 July 2019 (UTC)
Terry Pratchett also did this in one of his books, 'Reaper Man'. 162.158.118.28 02:02, 26 September 2019 (UTC)

Note that a flag may traditionally not fly outside at night, to the point that a flag which hangs after dusk should be burned. 141.101.105.240 13:32, 13 July 2019 (UTC)

" a flag which hangs after dusk should be burned." Uhhh, no. Burning is the respectful way to destroy a worn-out US flag, but just having had the flag fly at night does not mean that that flag should be burned. ( Where DID that idea come from?? )162.158.214.136 20:59, 13 July 2019 (UTC)

It's actually acceptable to fly a flag 24 hours a day, provided there is appropriate lighting on it. Ianrbibtitlht (talk) 14:02, 14 July 2019 (UTC)

Related trolley problem link I am not adding to the explanation lol. 172.68.189.85 22:26, 14 July 2019 (UTC)

I don't know about the US, but in Sweden when you're flying at half-mast the flag is actually at 2/3 up the mast. The 3/4 mast looks almost like that. Also, the explanation for the double flag half-mast says that both clones died, but this is not necessarily the case. It's just that the flag line doesn't have multiple spots to attach a flag to so if you want two flags you have to attach them to each other. The explanation for the upside down half-mast talks about risk of overpopulation and worry about the cause for the lack of deaths, but the text in the comic says that it's statistically worrisome, which to me seems like this is more about gambler's logic; if no one has died for weeks then very soon a whole lot of people are going to die at once. Kapten-N (talk) 07:31, 29 July 2019 (UTC)

I understood the statistical thing, that it is highly unlikely that it happens just coincidally for weeks, that noone dies, so it must be having a reason. Only one I can imagine is either some "death on vacation" thing, which never ends well in fiction, or that there was a mass-dying before this period. --Lupo (talk) 07:35, 29 July 2019 (UTC)