There’s a little Calvin in all of us
Like more than a few people I have been waiting for this week to come for it seems like a year, because this is the week that Andrews McMeel Publishing released The Complete Calvin and Hobbes, a three-volume slipcased edition of what I consider to be the pinnacle of the three-panel comic strip.
Although I’ve never given it much thought or intentional planning I’ve always tried to model my posts on that three-point count of intro, set-up, and punchline that a daily comic strip has to adhere to, and if there is a model for perfection that would be Calvin and Hobbes. I still remember back in 1996 when Bill Watterson announced that he was discontinuing the strip and how it seemed like everywhere you went it was a topic of conversation because reading Calvin and Hobbes on a daily basis seemed as normal as checking the weather. For a brief period during its syndication I was working for a licensing company and we once got into a conversation over how many units of a Hobbes tiger doll could be sold if Bill Watterson had been interested in doing any licensing at all. The numbers that got thrown around were ridiculous and yet we could still admire his stance to keep his creation ‘pure’.
During it’s run Watterson’s syndicate released thirteen collections in book form (over 23 million sold) and with the release of each one I would always buy two copies; one for myself and one for my dad,who would never consider buying a book for himself, but who kept his well-thumbed stash stacked on a shelf by his recliner. Casey started reading when she was about three and she quickly graduated from Shel Silverstein to Bill Watterson and you can’t help but see the influence it had on her when it comes to what makes her laugh a dozen years later.
Back in July when I turned fifty my wife (the adorable and knows-what-I-like Mrs tbogg) told me that my ‘other present’* would be showing up in October and since then I’ve been waiting like a kid for Christmas for this week to come around. Of course it showed up at her office today and she forgot to bring it home so I’m going to have to wait one more day to start having some fun.
The wait will be worth it.
*No. My other present wasn’t what you think it is so you can stop with the nudge-nudge wink-wink. Honestly, sometimes you people….