Farley might have been my favourite character. He was fun to draw and he gave me subject matter that was neutral. Whenever I thought I might have run a storyline for too long, or if things were getting too serious, I’d push old Farley onto the scene for a little comic relief.
After he graduated from high school, Aaron moved to Vancouver. With plans to study broadcasting, he couldn’t wait to go. He left home with confidence and an attitude that said, "Goodbye, no horse town!" A few weeks after he’d settled in to his apartment he was sharing with a friend, I got a phone call from my liberated son; "Hey Mom…everything’s fine, I just need you to send me something. It’s um…well…uh…could you please send me my, um, …teddy?"
After I’d made some pretty sarcastic remarks, my dad asked me if I lay awake at night thinking of nasty things to say. I didn’t, but it was a great idea. After that, I did lie awake thinking of smart aleck remarks—my way of getting back at "the big kids." After awhile, I got pretty good at it and words were my weapon of choice. Sometimes they outlasted a bruising.
My dad was particularly fond of Halloween. He loved to tell us scary stories and he was good at it, too. He once told me that if I couldn’t see into a corner at night, where the walls meet the ceiling, then there was a goblin in the corner. I believed him and would lie awake waiting for the goblin to appear…
One of our dental suppliers made up special gift boxes for Halloween. In each box was a small tube of toothpaste, a small spool of floss, and a brand new toothbrush. Year after year we gave out toothbrushes and toothpaste for Halloween until I thought we would get egged for not giving out candy. I then switched to candy bars. When Halloween was over that year, one of the local moms stopped me on the street and asked why we’d changed our routine. As it turned out, a lot of kids were looking forward to getting a new toothbrush!