Now that we're about a year or so away from entering into the more readable and less nasty middle years, I think that it's somewhat appropriate to cover a topic that will become fairly commonplace should the reprints last that long. Said topic is Lizzie's constant insecurity as regards her physical appearance. Most of the reason that Liz thought that no one liked her and that no one could like her is that she looked in the mirror and had the same laser-like focus on her physical defects Elly does. This allowed Lynn to make a rather grudging admission that while Elly tended to blame the evil media and the evil, conflict-causing, woman-marginalizing men for Lizzie's struggle with her looks, the real source was closer to home: a mother who came out of the womb thinking that she was ten pounds too heavy to be loved. Of course, this was back when Elly was supposed to be as flawed and imperfect as the rest of the family. Had the strip continued, we'd probably be bearing witness to Elly scourging forth the evil men at evil Portrait for evilly brainwashing girls into thinking they're ugly. The problem with that is that she'd be too late because the man at Portrait who's most responsible for feeding into the default defeatism is in her old house churning out glurge.
As we've seen, most of the reason why Elly gets in a snit about left-overs is that she was brought up to clean her plate at all costs. It didn't matter if she hated the food being served or if she was already full or even if doing so would lead to Marian feeding into her fear that she was too fat to live, she had to clean that plate to be a good child. The reason that I mention this is that "biting off more than you can chew" is an idiomatic expression that has greater applicability than watching Elly glumly choke down old casseroles because of her sick fear that Marian will teleport into the room and lecture her about waste if she doesn't. It is also used to describe a habit that defines the Elly of the middle years: her habit of taking on far too many responsibilities in the belief that if she doesn't, people will think that she doesn't care about anything. This means that the general public is destined to be exposed to the same Elly that tries and fails to do ten things at once that the family is familiar with in the strips that are currently on tap. Ah, well. At least she has that public image she always wanted. Too bad it's "Harried middle-aged lady who can't say No to anything."