Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Calvin and Hobbes

I was at the library the other day and was looking for something about graphic arts that could help me learn how to make dazzling layouts for our newsletters and maybe even this blog. I would love to be able to envision creations that blend different lettering, photos, drawings, and other graphics to convey the message and the mood to whoever looks at it. As I perused the shelves of books which included classical painting, photography, drawing, etc., I came across one of the classics of modern male psychology in graphical form - Calvin and Hobbes.

I couldn't resist checking out the collection of this masterfully created investigation of boyhood. It has become a point of family contention - but hey, I checked it out so I shouldn't have to wait for anyone else to be done looking at it so I can. As a family that loves to read, we always have a number of books at our disposal. But most of what we read doesn't make us laugh out loud. When you are sitting in the room with someone who is suddenly laughing as they read, you feel left out. It is as if there is a secret that you don't know and the one in the know wants you to know that they know while at the same time mocking you for not knowing. With TV, everyone in the room knows what the joke is. Not so with a book. Anyway, we have really been enjoying it.

My sister might argue that there are many similarities between the comic strip boy, Calvin, and me. I would say she is completely wrong. I just wish I would have had the imagination and adventurous spirit of the perpetual 6 year old. Oh the places I would have gone and the stories I could have provided my parents with had Calvin been around when I was of the same age. I could have used such a role model. I think my childhood would have been much different. But she and Mom would probably say there are plenty of stories.

At times, she probably felt like Susie, Clavin's annoying neighbor girl. Sure, Susie is smart and reasonable and tries to like Calvin. But He is just not interested in returning the favor. Just because my sister sometimes felt she was on the receiving end of a few, minor, little, Calvin-like interactions doesn't mean that I have/had much in common with Calvin. I think she should be very grateful that I am not/was not much like him at all.

Then there are Calvin and Hobbes tobaggon, wagon, and box rides down the hill. Now, that would have been really cool. We did have some sleds and a little red wagon, but the hills in our yard were pretty pathetic; hardly steep or long enough to attain warp speed or anything like that. There was the hill on Miller Road where we lived when I was Calvin's age. But since the hill was actually on Miller Road, Mom freaked out whenever she heard about us sledding down it. It is interesting that Calvin tends to be very philosophical as he is screaming down the hill with life and limb on the line. Maybe there is something to be learned there - maybe not?

Well now you've made it to the end of this entry and really haven't been enlightened or challenged or anything. But hey, I am still laughing from the book and you are just sitting here reading a blog and wondering why.


  1. Definitely a guy thing! You probably like the movie "The Christmas Story"! Joe and Joseph watch it every year (several times, since it plays all day) and laugh like they are seeing it for the first time! Ahh, but laughter is good for the soul!

  2. You and Josiah have many, many similarities to Calvin! Ya know I really do love Calvin and Hobbes...Josiah was almost named that, but decided I wasn't really ready to tempt fate that up with a little boy very similar, but mine will give hugs. (smile)