I’d like to take a break from the usual broadcasting schedule to share with you something I’ve loved ever since I was a little kid, still figuring out how best to undermine women’s lib.
This post shall contain no chauvinism, no sexism and a few other things ending in -ism. All I ask is that you read through.
Remember Calvin & Hobbes?
Clavin & Hobbes’ last few panels were inked back in 1995, my first year at school. A few years later I would see my first strip and be fascinated by it. Fast forward another few years and there I am cutting comic strips out of the papers and pasting them in an old school exercise book. I used to like Bill Watterson’s handiwork from all those years ago, but as I got older I started realizing there was so much more to these stories than just a quick gag.
Calvin managed to convey the joys of childhood, the folly of our ways, the infinite capacity for entertainment that an active imagination can get you and even the feeling of being utterly lonely in the world in a handful of boxes drawn into a newspaper. Do I think it was the greatest thing to happen to comic strips in the history of everything there has been, ever will be and ever happened in all the other parallel universes as well? In a word, good God yes it is. Eventually I got my hands on every single strip from 1985 to 1995 in digital form and went through each one many times over.
Trying to pick a favourite is a futile exercise as I always feel like I’m a kid sitting under a giant Christmas tree, trying to pick out a present from the thousands littered under it. This comic has cheered me up, given me inspiration, moulded my character and given me more embarrassing moments than I can count, when I caught myself chuckling in public while reminiscing about one of Calvin & Hobbes’ many adventures, among other things. More than belly laughs, the little guy and his tiger had me smiling to myself and just pausing to think about something far more than anything or anyone I’ve ever come across.
I guess what I’m trying to say is, I love this comic. If you haven’t ever seen it, you should. I can’t find the words to explain how much of an impact a precocious little boy and his imaginary friend can have on you.