Hey all, so forget what I said last post... It's COLD. Not the coldest it's been, but I may need to start breaking out the long underwear. Also it looks like broomball might be starting up soon, which I may try if I'm in the mood for some broken parts. If you haven't heard of broomball, it's basically ice hockey without skates and with brooms instead of hockey sticks. Hmm... Hockey sticks. That reminds me of a Peanuts comic. Oh yeah, it was the one where Sally got a part in a Christmas play. Her part was to come out and say, "Hark!" and then Harold Angel sings. I can't find an image of the strip, but here's the video version. She spends weeks practicing her line, "Hark!" but then when the time actually comes to say, "Hark!" she says, "Hockey stick!" Yeah... I've read a lot of peanuts. Probably most of it, actually. So sometimes I just get sidetracked when things make me think of Peanuts strips.
One of the things that I really like about Peanuts strips is how I've appreciated the different eras of strips at different times of my life. I used to dislike the later strips; I think they're a bit sadder in a way. Linus sort of passes the torch to Rerun, his little brother, and this creates a time shift in an otherwise timeless space. We start to wonder about the characters: should Linus still be carrying a blanket? Will Charlie Brown really never change? The characters grow up without growing up and we wonder if that's us. We worry that one day our coping mechanisms will fail us, or far worse, that they never will.
At least, that's what I get from it. There are other interesting/nice things about the later strips: Lucy mellows out a bit and is a far better big sister to Rerun than she ever was to Linus. Peppermint Patty injects back some of the innocence that was lost in the transition from Linus to the robustly cynical Rerun. Snoopy's brother Spike adds some great moments of deadpan and lonely humor into the strip, without a hint of Charlie Brown's self-pity. And all in all, life goes on, life goes on, life goes on.
It's an art of gradual inundation, the daily comic strip. If the strip has an arc, and isn't just focused on punch line after punch line, it has a remarkable power to get under your skin. I for one, couldn't imagine doing a daily. It's one of those things that even if you're the best of the best, you can't do it in a way that fools people into thinking you've got it all figured out. That was a long sentence, but do you get what I'm saying? Making every day of work entirely public, with the burden on you to be either funny, significant, or both, is just really hard to imagine. And you can tell how hard it is just by looking at any newspaper. Really good strips are few and far between.
That brings me to another thing that I've been thinking about and that maybe has a bit more to do with this blog. I've been thinking a lot about the fact that the people around me (and I) are growing up and becoming the people that do all the things that make the world run. Not in a grandiose sense, but in a very normal, almost mundane sense. He'll be working at a restaurant. She'll be a businesswoman. He'll be raising a family. She'll own an antique store. He'll be a politician. She'll be a farmer. All around me, the world's infrastructure is going to be replaced by the kid who sat across the room in Calc 2, or the dude from costume design, or that one girl from my new student week group. And I don't know how to feel about that. It's kind of scary, to be honest, because even "the best" of people can be morbidly lazy, or get their lives turned upside down by relationships, or hold onto stupid grudges, or hold the wrong convictions. And suddenly, the whole frustrating world makes a lot of sense.
But it's not only scary, of course. Because despite all our slip-ups and failures and silliness, I know a lot of people who are bound to do incredible things. Also, I know a lot of people who will love to do things that I hope I never have to do, like being doctors or businesspeople or politicians. And it's nice that we don't all have to do everything. Some people are interested in almost everything (I am not one of those people). But I think at the end of the day, the Liberal Arts is not about doing everything, it's about focusing a breadth of knowledge and experience into doing just a few things well.
Okay, well that's enough of my philosophical musings. In other news, I'm keeping busy with lot's of "art" projects. I'm taking Art History, Life Drawing, and Costume Design, both of my work study jobs involve some sort of art, I'm in a play, I'm making a Golden Schillers movie, and I just finished 2 illustration jobs. Whew! Oh also, editing Carleton Graphic. So it's cool and crazy. Updates on the movie to come, it'll be sweet.
Thanks for reading, and please comment! Especially that personalized spam like on my last post; that was hilarious!