Comic Relief

In the midst of a cold, dreary winter and a continuing pandemic and quasi-lockdown, I really enjoy a good laugh now and then. So lately I’ve been trying to use Facebook to join groups where the posts are likely to give me a smile.

My two favorite comic strips, ever, are The Far Side and Calvin and Hobbes. That opinion apparently is shared by many people out there in social media land, because there are lots of Facebook groups just for fans of those classics from days gone by, where the participants can post favorite selections from those legendary strips. By joining the groups, I now get a regular feed of Gary Larson’s takes on cows and dogs and insects and scientists, and Bill Watterson’s treatment of Calvin’s Mom and Dad and disgusted friend Suzy again. And a recent post made me remember how much I enjoyed the Calvin snowmen strips like the one above — which seems apt, right now, with those of us in Columbus being in the middle of a frigid, snowy period.

Social media obviously has some pluses, and just as obviously has a lot of minuses, too. I figure it makes sense to reorient and exert some personal control and direction over the whole Facebook experience, mix some humor in with the politics and the ads, and try to put the social media world to better use.

Return Of The Far Side

Here’s some very welcome news — it looks like The Far Side may be returning to the funny pages.  (Well, perhaps not to the physical funny pages, because it looks like any new panels apparently will be offered online only, but you get the idea.)

gary-larson-far-sideGary Larson’s The Far Side was unquestionably one of the most original — and funniest — cartoons ever conceived.  It ran from 1980 to 1995 and brought a daily chuckle to millions of fans, including me.  When it ceased its run we groaned, but clung happily to our favorite Far Side offerings.  But recently The Far Side‘s official website posted a new cartoon, featuring the familiar Far Side cows, dogs, and women wearing cat-eye glasses being blowtorched out of an iceberg.  Under the drawing was the announcement: “Uncommon, unreal, and (soon-to-be) unfrozen. A new online era of The Far Side is coming!”

I don’t think you can overestimate the significance of bringing a smile to people’s faces, especially in this era of so much rancor and discord.  It would be a great thing if The Far Side made its return to brighten our days,  Then, we could all start lobbying for a return of Calvin and Hobbes, too, and all would be right with the world.