A Vehicular Riddle for the Ages

Saw a Hummer on the road this morning.  It was huge.

Whenever I see a Hummer, I  pull alongside it and give the driver the Face.  The Face is somewhere between scorn and revulsion.  I do it every time, unless the driver is big or scary, in which case I just wave.

I can’t explain why I make faces at Hummer drivers.  I guess I just don’t like the people who drive them.  I know that’s an over-generalization, but so is this next sentence.  I don’t like anyone.

Maybe it’s because I think Hummers take up too much space, or suck up too much gas, or look so ridiculously unnecessary on a suburban street not filled with jihadists.

Or maybe it’s just the statement I feel a Hummer’s driver is making, which seems to be, “If you and I get in an accident, I’m gonna pop you like a grape.”

But today’s Hummer driver was special.

Because on the back of his gigantic tank-like car was a yellow bumper sticker with a picture of a bicycle.

That said this:

“Share the road.”

Rare is the bumper sticker that so confounds me that I lose all sense of time.  But this one managed.

I sat in a stupor trying to figure out the riddle.

What I finally deduced was that the driver of the Hummer wanted the rest of us to be careful of bicycle riders because he planned on running over them later.

That’s the kind of preparation you have to respect.

I pulled up beside him, not sure if I should give him the Face or wave.

He had a tattoo.

I waved.

The Little Cricket is Lowering My Blood Pressure

Just cut off a guy while driving.

Didn’t mean to.  I just didn’t see him when I switched lanes.

So the guy revved his engine and pulled up alongside my car to presumably give me the finger.

But I didn’t see his angry face.  Or his angry finger.

All due to my new visualization technique.  Which is this.

Every time I anger another driver, I don’t look at him.

Instead, I imagine that he is Jiminy Cricket.

Singing “When You Wish Upon a Star.”

Then I don’t get mad.  Because it’s hard to be mad at a singing cricket.

This particular singing cricket let loose with a whole host of un-Jiminy-like profanities.

But that’s okay.  I didn’t hear them.

I heard:

“Anything your heart desires will come to youuuuuu.”

Good ol’ Jiminy.


I, Rebel

When I was a kid, tattoos were a mark of rebellion.

You had to be courageous to get one, because they would mark you as different.  They marked you as dangerous.  Unpredictable.  You were Marlon Brando in The Wild One.

Now everyone and their uncle has one.   Tattoos are now as rebellious as a Rotary Club membership.

That is bad.

Because now I am 40 and I want to rebel.  And I have no way to show it.

The conformist masses have robbed me of my renegade symbols.

So I am going to start something new.

Something as dangerous and rebellious and outside the societal norm as tattoos once were.

I’m going to start facing the back wall of elevators.

I will miss my floor at times.

I will be stared at by the squares.

But fuck them.

I’m Marlon Brando.

Staci, the Destroyer of Summers

My wife Staci made me go to another wedding.  This time for one of her cousins.  She has destroyed my summer with these time-sucking monstrosities.

This one was at a golf course.  Under a gazebo.   A hundred feet to the right was a driving range filled with middle-aged guys shanking ball after ball.

I thought that was interesting.

Under the gazebo was one man pledging his everlasting love to his wife.  To his left were twenty trying to escape theirs.

On the other side of the gazebo was a lake.  A male and female mallard floated on its edge.  The male waddled up on shore to watch the proceedings.  Added to the golfers, that made twenty-one males escaping their wives.

Adding to the horror was a harpist.  Every wedding we’ve attended this summer has had a harpist.

I don’t know about you, but I have never bought an album of harp music.  Nor have I ever had someone hand me a CD and say, “Dude, you gotta hear this.  It’s got some great harp.”  There’s a reason for that.  Nobody likes them.

Harps are the only instrument that even when played at their best sound like something you’d hear in an elevator.

I don’t know who first associated harps with heaven.  They should not be.  They are the work of the devil.   They belong in hell.  Or at least purgatory.

Which is pretty close to where I was that hot day sitting between the golfers and the ducks.

So I tried to get my son Tom to look over at the harp.  Not so he would take an interest in it.  But so I could stick my wet finger in his ear.  Which I did.  Causing Staci to hit my hand.

“Stop,” she said, “You’re at a wedding.  Seriously.”

She was right.  I had to stop.  Stop sitting so close to her.

So I scooted my chair six inches out of her range and stuck my finger in Tom’s ear again.

She swung her hand.  And missed.

I had escaped my wife.

That made twenty-two of us.

I Came, I Saw, I Signed

Just stopped by my local Copperfields bookstore in Santa Rosa and signed more Pearls books, as well as some 2010 box calendars.  In each of the books, I also draw a character, usually Rat.  There aren’t a ton of them, so if you want one, you’ll probably need to call soon.  707-578-8938.

Here’s the calendar cover (an unsigned version):

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I think they’re also gonna order a bunch of the new treasury for me to sign.  So if you want one, ask them for it, and next time I go in, I’ll sign them.  The only thing I can’t do is personalize them (complicates matters).

Here’s what the treasury cover looks like:

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Full Frontal Nudity on the Comics Page

Today I showed a frontally-nude woman in my comic and got away with it.  Her nipple is even showing.  Fine, it’s just a dot, but still, you get the idea.

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It’s interesting how the comics work.  Had that been a brand new character named “Hot Nude Woman,” I never in a billion years would have gotten away with it.  Not even close.  But because it’s an established character on the comics page, there has not been a single complaint.

All of this proves that censorship is an unpredictable and fickle beast.

That today I got the better of.