The Book That Will Change Your Life is Here

At long last, the next Pearls Treasury is now available.  You can buy it in stores or HERE on Amazon.  It has my commentary below many of the strips, and also contains a number of previously unpublished strips.  Plus, it contains my first-ever published drawing (It’s not good, but hey, I was only 12).

The book is guaranteed to change your life.

And by change your life, I mean you will have $16.99 less in your pocket after you buy it.

Here is the cover:

sells out cover

The Controversy That Wasn’t

I’ve always wanted to get Pearls on TV.

Just not this way.

The strip in question is yesterday’s, and the panel in question is this one, which you can see here:

pb090811 (happy box 2)

Apparently, certain readers think they see the “f” word appearing twice in this panel.  Personally, I can’t see it, and I know it was not in the strip as I created it.  The only thing I can think of is that the way in which certain newspapers compressed the strip resulted in the “f” word appearing.  If you are readers of either the St. Louis Post Dispatch or the Fayetteville Observer or any other newspaper with similar compression techniques, perhaps you can confirm that.

As I told the editor of the Post Dispatch, there are plenty of times where I do things that merit legitimate criticism.  I just don’t want to waste one of those opportunities on something I didn’t do.

Maybe it’s one of those “Magic Eye” things, those popular paintings where if you squint your eyes hard enough and long enough and “look through” the painting, certain images appear.

I never could see those images.

And I can’t see this one either.

Chickens, Asses and Garage Doors

There are chickens in my garage.

There are six of them.  They are young.  And they are in a cardboard box.

My wife Staci put them there.  I do not know what she is doing.  I fear it’s some strange, middle-age thing.  I will have to buy a medical book and see if women who turn forty start collecting chickens in their garage.

All  I know right now is this:  It is disorienting to be confronted by live chickens when you leave the house in the morning.  Granted, they are in a box and they are small.  But I know they are watching me.

And it’s a bad sign.

A bad sign because when we first got married, there was romance in our lives.  Now there is livestock in our garage.

I do not want to open the garage door tomorrow.  I fear I’ll find a donkey.

I bring all this up now because this morning I backed into the garage door.  Hit it with my car as I was driving out.  I’ve never done that before.

I am certain it was the fault of the chickens.  I think one of those chicks flew across the garage as I backing out and pushed the little garage door button on the wall.  Probably showing off.  I’m sure it got a big laugh from the other chicks.

Staci’s claiming chickens can’t fly.  So I looked it up on Wikipedia and it says they can fly, just not long distances.  Now we’re debating whether the distance from the front of our garage to the back is a “long distance.”

This afternoon we fought over it.  I yelled the line from above about finding a donkey when I walk into the garage tomorrow.  She replied, “Then we’d have two asses in the garage.”

That was a pretty good line.

Next week’s our anniversary.

I think I’ll buy her a garage door.

There’s No Such Thing as a Stupid Question

My wife Staci doesn’t ask me to do many things.  She’s says I’m more trouble than it’s worth.

I don’t know what that means, but on Sunday she asked me to go to Walmart to get her photos and to pick up a metal bracket for a filing cabinet.

I didn’t know what a “metal bracket for a filing cabinet” was, so she showed me by opening the drawer of our filing cabinet.  They’re the metal bars that the hanging files hang from.

I asked her if you had to buy the hanging folders with the metal bracket and she said no.  But, I added, if you DO have to buy the hanging folders, did she still want me to buy the metal bracket?  Sure, she said.

So I got in my car, but stopped in the driveway.  Then I called the house on my cell phone.

“Where are you?” she said.

“I’m still in the driveway.”

“Why are you calling?”

“The pictures,” I said, “What name are they under?”

“Pastis.  What other name would they be under?”

“Could be Staci,” I said.

“They’re under Pastis.”

“Okay,” I said.

I hung up.

Halfway to Walmart, I called back.

“What?” she said.

“I forgot to ask — Do I have to pay for the photos or did you already pay for them online?”

“I told you, I paid for them online.”

“I don’t think you said that.”

“I did.  Is there anything else?”

“No.  But I really don’t think you said that.”

“Fine.  Anything else?”

“Yeah,” I said, “Do you know what aisle the metal brackets are in?”

“Just past the school supplies.  Is that it?”

“And the photo counter?”  I added.

“From the aisle with the brackets, just walk straight toward the back of the store.”

I got to the store and parked.  I walked to the aisle she told me to walk to.

There were no metal brackets.

I called Staci.

“They’re not here.”

“Did you ask someone?” she asked.

“No.”

“Ask someone.”

I hung up the cell phone.  I asked someone with a little blue vest where the metal brackets that go in file cabinet drawers were.  They didn’t know.

I called Staci.

“They don’t know.”

“Fine.  Get the pictures.  You can at least do that.”

I found the photo counter.  I asked for the photos.  The lady in the blue vest asked me some questions.  I didn’t know the answer to any of them.

I called Staci.

“The lady here wants to know how long ago you submitted the photos.   I just told her you did it online.”

“Last week,” she said.

“Last week,” I told the lady in the blue vest.

She found the photos.  I looked at them.  There was some strange border around each photo.

They looked bad.

So I called Staci.

“The photos have some strange border that looks like white paint flecked everywhere.”

“I know.  I picked it.”

“Why?”

“I liked it.  Are you coming home now?”

“Yeah,” I said.

Driving away from the Walmart, I noticed an Office Depot in the same shopping complex.  I called Staci.

“What??” she said.

“There’s an Office Depot in the same parking lot as the Walmart.  You want me to check and see if they have the metal bracket things?”

“Alright.  Fine.”

I parked at the Office Depot.  It was closed.

I called Staci.

“It’s closed.”

She made a strange sound.

“You sound angry,” I said.

“Stephan…Come home.  The kids want dinner.”

“You want me to pick something up?” I asked.

She paused.

I heard a deep sigh, like the kind therapists tell their anger-management patients to take before punching someone.

“Fine.  They want five crunchy tacos and two beef chalupas.”

“Okay,” I said, “I can remember that.”

I hung up.

I called back.

“Where‘s Taco Bell?”

I Am This Close to Being Single Again

When I first got my cell phone about two years ago, I downloaded a bunch of ringtones.  Mostly songs.

When the phone would ring, the cell phone would somehow assign different songs to different callers.  If it was from someone I knew, it was one song.  If it was from someone with no caller ID, it was another.  And certain people seemed to have their own specific songs.  Maybe it’s something I did when downloading the songs.  I don’t know.  But it seems very random.

Long story short, I have gotten tired of these songs.  So last week I downloaded some new songs by U2, Coldplay and B.B. King.  The new songs are great.

But last night, I lost my cell phone.

I suspected it was somewhere in the house, but I couldn’t find it.  So I asked my wife Staci if she would call my phone, so I could hear it ring and find it.

So she called it.  And she heard the ring my cell phone decided to assign to my wife’s calls:

“The Thrill is Gone.”

It was a long night.

me alone

Intimate Moments in the Life of Stephan Pastis

I’m posting very compelling videos of myself on Facebook, but for some reason or other, WordPress isn’t allowing me to post them here.  So friend me on Facebook, and see these masterpieces of cinema.

To see them once you’re at my Facebook page, click “View Videos of Me” just under my profile picture.  Then you’ll see them listed under “Stephan’s Videos”.