What do I miss most while full-time RV’ing? I think it’s my daily newspaper. All of the big ones have a good writer or two, not to mention competent syndicated columnists. They have real, solid sports pages; the writing may be spotty but the reporting is first-rate. And this sounds too odd to be true, but I’ve missed my characters in the comics section. It’s been over three years now with no daily paper, and only rarely do I catch a Sunday edition. When I left Lio (the macabre little kid whose best buds tend to be monsters) he was working on his Halloween costume and guest list in August. The lead character of the eponymously named Luann series was crushing on this Australian kid who was about to move back to the Southern Hemisphere. Her brother Brad was beginning to get serious with fellow firefighter Toni Daytona. Doonesbury had gone on an extended hiatus, but was re-running classic scenes from 43’s administration (you can guess the timeline by checking out the plumes in W’s Marc Anthony helmet … that hat had been seriously beaten up by ’07. The best of all time, Calvin and Hobbes, then appeared to be gone for good, but I still had a couple of paperbacks full of his better work.
Today it occurred to me: The Google can find my old friends!
I’ve aged much faster than they have. Lio isn’t a minute older, wiser, not a whit more responsible. Luann is now in college, apparently in her first semester. Brad and Toni are planning a wedding. The deGroots are now perhaps a year older, but I am three. Doonesbury creates a new strip each Sunday, but weekdays seem to be nothing but re-runs. Calvin and Hobbes are up to no new adventures, but it’s been so long since I’ve seen any of them the daily classic that now appears in hundreds of papers still feels new (the non-persistence of memory) and as relevant as ever. If you’ve ever lost focus in a pointless meeting or developed glazed eyes watching a teacher diagram sentences, this week’s Spaceman Spiff series will take you back.
Here’s an update on Lio.
Zonker Harris dreams of being appointed purveyor of premier weed to the court of Prince Henry of Wales.
And last but far from least, Spaceman Spiff misinterprets an arithmetic test, and more.