Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day 2011

Despite the seemingly ghoulish quality of today's Hope n' Change cartoon (which is not a weekend repeat), there's actually a sweet sentiment at its dark little heart.

Because today, I wanted to celebrate my own dear father - gone for five long years now - and decided to do so by making a cartoon out of one of his illustrations.

My Dad was the funniest and most creative man I've ever known (or expect to know). He was a celebrated fine artist, a brilliant writer, a ceaselessly creative inventor, and an incredible cartoonist. Boy, do I miss him.

Many of my father's cartoons were darkly funny in an
"Addams Family" vein... and anyone who's read my "Johnny Optimism" strips will note that the twisted twig didn't fall far from the blighted tree.

My Dad didn't care much about politics...but he would have loved getting his work on the Internet for lots of cartoon-loving readers to see. And now he has!

So Happy Father's Day, Pa...and a very Happy Father's Day to everyone in my extended Hope n' Change family!

-Stilton Jarlsberg

"An innocent smile," my Dad often told me, "is the key to a good surprise attack."


Doktor Paulie said...

@SJ: Thanks for your kind wishes. Your Dad sounds like my kinda guy, especially the part about the innocent smile. That cartoon made me howl. Hopefully we can see more of his stuff from time-to-time.

I'm celebrating with my daughter today. I was hoping my three grandsons would be there so that I could tell them the Old Dog story. In that story, I get down on hands and knees and tell them about this fat, filthy, mean old dog that for some unaccountable reason is really angry with them. Inevitably at the end of the story one of them gets bitten savagely on the leg. Unfortunately, the grandsons are off doing summer things, and my daughter has insisted on meeting us at a public place, a restaurant, where she thinks she'll be safe from the Old Dog, so the story may not get told again today. But I don't know. What's the worst that could happen?

For those of you not so blessed today to be celebrating with your dad, or with your kids or grandkids if you're a dad, or for whatever reason, please join in the fun by finding a liberal, telling them an Old Dog story, and biting them savagely on the leg.

Suzy said...

I love it, Uncle Stilt! :-) I'd never seen that drawing before but its pretty cool. I'm sure your dad would really enjoy all these comics that you make, especially Johnny Optimism.

Happy Father's Day to you AND well as my own dad, other deceased Grandpa, and of course my husband!

I sent my Dad a nice box of See's Chocolates for Father's Day...if you've never had See's Chocolates, you have never tasted the best chocolate ever! A friend introduced me in San Diego and wow.... I was jealous of my own dad's gift while I was ordering it. hahaha.

QPT said...

The greatest gift I ever had
Came from God; I call him Dad!

Kev said...

I'm with you on most of your post, with the exception for me being, Pa's been gone 11 years. I especially like the part about the twisted twig. He definitely would've had a laugh over today's post.
It would seem that you and I were blessed alike. Happy Father's Day to you, as well.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Doktor Paulie- I love the sound of that story and the leg-biting. At the restaurant, ask if they have "doggie bags" - if they do, then clearly any dog-themed performance is acceptable on the premises.

And yes, I may try introduce more of my Dad's artwork from time to time, just for fun.

@Suzy- What?! We're related?! Actually, I'm very proud to say that Suzy is my niece. Everyone here at Hope n' Change is family...but in this case we're actually related by blood!

@QPT- A great and appropriate quote for the day.

@Kev- I'm sorry for your loss, and simultaneously glad you were gifted with the time you shared with your father. This can be a bittersweet day for some of us, but "celebration" and "happy memories" are the perfect remedy.

Earl said...

I hope Obama's daughters surprised him with a nice raw vegetable breakfast in bed. No pie for him. Maybe he'll take a break from golf and visit with his kids.

Chuck said...

Today I am with two of my three kids and my Dad (who will be 91 next month). I am blessed! Happy Fathers Day.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Chuck- That sounds like three generations of Happy to me! Have a great day today!

Doktor Paulie said...

I was surprised at the restaurant when two of my three grandsons showed up, so I got to tell the Old Dog story, though, with the table in the way I had to content myself with biting one of the boys on the arm, instead of nice juicy leg.

Wife, daughter, and her husband got me a gift certificate for a tandem parachute jump, since today's my birthday, too. I'll probably go tomorrow. It'll be my third time out, so I'll have three more takeoffs than landings, in an airplane. Whoop!

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Doctor Paulie- You, sir, are a wild man! Happy Father's Day, Happy Birthday, and don't tell the guy in charge of pulling the ripcord your politics until you've landed safely on the ground!

Doktor Paulie said...

@SJ: Oooh! Seriously good advice! I mean suppose we got into a heated political argument two miles high and falling fast? It could be very embarassing.

"How did YOU get killed?"

"I got in an argument with a guy while tandem jumping and we forgot to pull the ripcord."

You see how it would go. Very embarassing.

So thanks for helping me dodge THAT bullet.

And thanks for you other kind wishes, too.

Emmentaler Limburger said...

Came upon this late as I was engaged with grandfatherly, fatherly, and "sonly" activity from 5:30 am until nigh unto 11 pm yesterday. Lost my Dad five years ago as well. And, as those who knew him (and his "Uncle Louie" jokes) can attest: I'm with ya, Brother - I understand.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Emmentaler- I'm sorry for your loss. They say that time heals all wounds, but at the rate I'm going (after five years) I'm either going to die unhealed or really, really old. Plus, I lost my Mom just over a year ago, and am feeling very much the "middle-aged orphan." And even that is giving me credit for being middle-aged instead of flat out old. Like they say, it's not so much the years as the mileage...

Emmentaler Limburger said...

I hear ya, and I'm sorry for your losses as well. My Mom is still with me, and still active - but you can sense the passage of time, now, where it never occurred to me before Dad passed. I mean, I've lost friends, aunts, uncles and grandparents - but there's just something different about losing someone immediate to you...

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Emmentaler- Losing parents is very different and, in my experience and in various books I've recently read, losing your second parent is an even more profound shake up of your world.

Although we may know intellectually that our parents are flesh and blood, at a deeper non-cognitive level we feel that they are physically immortal; they've always existed, and always reminded us that we're loved and protected. The love and friendships we've made later in life remain and are hugely important, but there's no replacing the original parental structure and support which shaped our view of the world. (Sigh...)