Monthly Archives: October 2013

Saturday October 5, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

While the character, Uncle Phil, was starting to get serious about the character, Georgia, my brother had met Joan in real life. Since the quitting smoking story and the move in the strip closely and coincidentally paralleled his own life, Alan had me promise not to have Phil and Georgia announce their wedding plans until he had proposed to Joan!

Sunday October 6, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

Allowing Aaron to stay home while I went shopping was a privilege for both of us. He was a responsible kid, and his grandparents lived next door. As far as I know, he didn’t get into any mischief, but I was always on my guard. All I had to do was remember what my brother and I did when given the run of the house.

For years Mom and Dad worked in our small jewellery shop on upper Lonsdale in North Vancouver. It took twenty minutes for them to walk home, so we could gauge almost to the minute when the front door handle would turn. It was my job to get dinner on and Al’s job to stay out of my way. Sometimes, dinner was a snap, and I’d take off on my bike until the folks arrived. During these times of freedom, Al (aged 13 or 14 at the time) emptied Dad’s gin, substituting the missing booze with water. He ate whatever candy was hidden and smoked Dad’s cigarettes. I thought he’d be in for it, but he never got caught.

I explored every drawer and every crevice in our house looking for treasure or secrets or hidden birthday gifts. I tried on my mother’s underwear and used her perfume. I made crank phone calls and listened in to the party line. (This was a forbidden indiscretion, but I saw Mom do it as well.) I ate stuff and danced on the sofa and felt the freedom I longed for. Freedom then was having the house to myself.

It was with these memories in mind that I looked for evidence of similar lawlessness when Aaron was left alone. I never saw a thing. Obviously, he was as good at covering his tracks as we were!

Monday October 7, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

Curlers had gone out of style along with the housedress, but Elly occasionally sported them. Curlers and gobs of face cream were a cartoon cliché. Television sit-coms and comic strips often used these props to make a woman look her most unattractive. Today, comedy has to rely on other props…and fortunately, the shapeless housecoat is still first choice in comfortable morning garb. The good thing is that husbands look bad in them too!

Thursday October 10, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

As a kid, I had a talent for making insults. This “gift” could be quite a threat. Woe to the child who had a name that rhymed with something funny or initials that spelled a word. If I was suffering at the hands of a bully, I’d go into my repertoire of insults and “win.” When I began to change from kid to teenager, however, I became a butterball, and if somebody called me “fatso,” I’d crumble. What goes ’round, comes ’round!

Saturday October 12, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

My brother and I fought like crazy until we were both safely out of the house and on our own. Now, in our sixties, we are the best of friends. We’ve talked about our childhood and tried to figure out why we were so hard on each other. The old Smothers Brothers line “Mom always liked you best” was part of it but, we were also creative, competitive, and bored. Yes, it’s a family fact: boredom is nicely relieved by a good dust-up!

Sunday October 13, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

Again, a Sunday strip that didn’t have to be invented. Word for word, this was real dialogue, and I wrote it down on a paper towel in the kitchen. I never seemed to have a notebook available. There was one in my bedside table for ideas that came in the night, but during the day, I had to grab whatever scrap of paper I could find. I learned quickly to capture an idea as soon as I could. My chequebook, which was always in my purse (before credit cards), was filled with punch lines, fast sketches, and ideas for future strips. Trying to remember these things later was impossible, and if I let a good one get away, I’d be miserable! This exchange made for a cathartic cartoon and saved my son, once again, from the wrath of Mom.

Tuesday October 15, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

I have a wonderful costume trunk. Over the years, I have amassed a huge variety of dress-up clothes, masks, wigs, props and makeup. We never lacked for materials when Halloween, plays, and local ice shows came along. I was never too protective of the supplies, which have been lent to family and friends, and now, passed from generation to generation.

Wednesday October 16, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

One of my favourite props was a punk-rocker “wig” which I gave to the accordionist, Ray Johnson, of the Newfoundland comedy team, “Buddy Whatsis Name and the Other Fellas.” After attending a show, I realized that one skit needed a punk-wig, so I offered it as a gift. It was a gift that keeps on giving. I got to know these talented and fabulously funny guys — just a bit. I get a card from Wayne Chalk (guitarist) every Christmas, and some day, I’ve promised myself that I’ll go to see them live on stage in St. Johns.

Saturday October 19, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

When I was growing up, there were a lot of stay-at-home moms. Ours was the one who bandaged knees, handed out cookies, made the bathroom available, and let us play in the sprinkler. So many times we had all the kids over, so many times the parties were at our house, and I remember my exhausted mom saying, “Why is it always my house? Why can’t someone ELSE have them over?” When the other moms explained that they were busy, she almost cried — she was busier than anyone!

Sunday October 20, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

One of the children’s books I loved best was about a family of rabbits who painted the woods with all the colours of the rainbow. In spring they painted the buds bright green, in the fall they painted the leaves different colours, and in winter, they painted the shadows on the snow. Even now, whenever I see long turquoise-grey shadows stretching across a snowy lane, I remember the illustrations in that book.

Wednesday October 23, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

Because Aaron was four years older than Katie, she was left out of a lot of activities. She couldn’t race away on her bike or cross the street alone or camp out with the boys in the backyard. She became attached to her dad (since I was working full time in the house) and spent hours with him in his workshop learning how to glue things and make stuff. I think this is why she is so comfortable with tools and to this day can build or fix just about anything!

Sunday October 27, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

Like me, Aaron and Katie truly appreciate good costumes. Every year at Halloween, they just had to look in the costume box or make a suggestion, and we had a plan. We would all get into the spirit of making wearable art. There was nothing too complicated or too farfetched for us to make and, our kids had the best homemade outfits ever (if I do say so myself). We had a Sherlock Holmes hat, pipe, and cape, but the year this strip was done, Aaron didn’t want to dress as Sherlock. I was insistent and said that all I had to do was make the jacket, but no deal. Instead, he painted himself green and went out as the Hulk. Left to mourn for Holmes, I did this series of strips in his honour.

Wednesday October 30, 2013

Lynn’s Notes:

For years we gave out a Halloween themed dental kit — with brush, paste, and floss included. One time, thinking the kids would be tired of getting toothbrushes, I decided to give out candy like everyone else. The next day, I got calls from a couple of parents asking what had happened to the toothbrushes! Apparently, they counted on Halloween, when every year their kids would get a new one.