It’s always tough to know when to retire a strip. If you use as your example Calvin & Hobbes, The Far Side or Bloom County, the right amount seems to be somewhere between ten and fifteen years.
But if Peanuts had retired at that point, we’d have no Flying Ace or Woodstock or Peppermint Patty. In fact, Schulz’s most famous Sunday strip, the one with the characters lying on their backs identifying cloud formations, did not even come until the 10th year of the strip.
For me, the decision is a tough one. I have to balance the freshness of Pearls with financial considerations, because after all, I’m only 42, and need to make money for a number of more years.
But the decision was made a whole lot easier for me last week, when I received this:
From: “BARR JAMES ALFRED”
Date: February 5, 2010 1:28:48 PM PST
To: unlisted-recipients:; (no To-header on input)
Subject: Notification of Bequest In Your Name
Notification of Bequest In Your Name
On behalf of the Trustees and Executor of the Estate of Late Scott Kennedy ,I hereby attempt to reach you again. I wish to notify you that late Scott Kennedy made you a beneficiary to his will.He left the sum of thirty one Million five Hundred Thousand Dollars.($31,500,000.00 ) to you in the codicil and last testament to his will. This may sound strange and unbelievable to you, but it is real and true.
Late Scott Kennedy until his death was a very dedicated Christian who loved to give out. His great philanthropy earned him numerous awards during his life time, Late Scott Kennedy died at the age of 71 years.According to him this money is to support your activities and to help the poor and the needy. Please You should fill the information below for more directives
Yours In Service,
Barr.James Alfred (Esq)
At first, I questioned the email because I found it strange and unbelievable. But he knew I would think that. Look, he says:
“This may sound strange and unbelievable to you, but it is real and true.”
Then I started thinking, “But why would this Scott Kennedy guy leave me this money?” But he explains that too. See, it says Scott Kennedy was:
“…a very dedicated Christian who loved to give out.”
But then I was like,”Wait, wait, wait… how does Scott Kennedy know me?” But he obviously does. See, he says:
“According to him this money is to support your activities.”
See, he knows I have activities. Which I do! I like to sit on the beach and drink, and I want to do that for the rest of my life. But that takes money. Which now I have!
I know what you’re thinking. There’s still the formality of sending him the information he wants. But I’ve already done it! And to be extra thorough, I threw in my social security number.
So when is the right time to quit a strip?
When Scott Kennedy dies.
Rest in peace, friend.