King Mango Strut

We had a parade yesterday – the King Mango Strut, started in 1982 it’s usually the last Sunday of the year, but this year it was a week later, on Sunday, Jan. 8.

It’s a great small-town event and the best part is that most people know each other. It’s like Cheers, where everybody knows your name.

It was put off a couple of years due to the pandemic, but it was back this past weekend and it was so much fun. There are bands and lots of parodies of things that happened over the year – statewide, local and national. All one big parody.

It started as an offshoot of the Orange Bowl Parade and took on a life of its own. The center of town is shut down and the Strut takes over. If you haven’t seen people all year, they are sure to show up here on this very day.

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I bid and won this Linus cartoon cell

I bid on and won this Linus original cartoon cell created by the Bill Melendez Studio for A Boy Named Charlie Brown in 1969. I was the first Peanuts movie.

I bid on another one featuring Charlie Brown and another character, but didn’t get it.

My cousin works for the auction house that sells orignial cartoon art. They are based in Hoboken, so every time I come up from the PATH train (subway), one of the first things I see is the buidling he works in. I’ve only been inside once.

He told me a month or so ago about some of the Peanuts art they had getting ready for auction. He wasn’t allowed to show it to me, but he informed me about it.

A few weeks ago he texted me about two hours before the auction ended and I bid. I now have this great thing to add to my original cartoon art collection.

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The Great Pumpkin won’t be on broadcast tv this year

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown won’t air on regular tv this year.

I know, I know, we can watch it on DVD’s and other methods, but there’s something about knowing when it’s on broadcast tv and we are all watching together.

This year, you can only see it on AppleTV+, and it is free for a couple of days, so you can download the app on your tv or wherever and watch it from Friday, October 28 to through Monday, October 31.

And it’s the same for A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving and A Charlie Brown Christmas. Those can be seen on AppleTV+ from Nov. 23-27 for the Thanksgiving special and Dec. 22-25 for the Christmas one.

I miss those old Dolly Madison and Coca Cola days when the shows were on CBS every year. Guess it’s time to move with the times.

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If it’s October, it must be New York Comic Con!

Yup, New York Comic Con is back. Last year’s event was a bit subdued due to covid and the year before was totally canceled, but now it’s back.

From Oct. 6-9, all your favorite, movies, tv shows, pop culture, comics and super heroes will be at the Jacob Javits Center, just as they’ve always been.

After four days of rain in NYC, the sun came out for New York’s favorite fantasy fest.

Most tickets are gone, but you may still be able to find a few at newyorkcomiccon.com.

Tell Spider-man, we sent you!

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A wedding, a funeral and Comic Con

NY Comic Con, October 2018

I have some traveling to do in the next week and beyond. But it’s a crazy schedule.

I’m going to NY for a few days for a wedding, coming home to Miami for three days for a funeral, and then going back to NY for 10 days for Comic Con, along with pumpkin and apple picking and the usual fall stuff.

I’ll take you along for Comic Con and Pumpkin and apple picking, the other stuff, probably not.

NY Comic Con, October 2018
Pumpkin Picking, Hudson Valley, NY, October 2021

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Overpriced concert tickets

I wasn’t sure if people would get this cartoon, but they sure have. It’s hit a nerve with so many people. On social media people are letting loose with their comments. With this new “dynamic ticket” pricing, it’s saving all the good seats for those who can afford it, raising the price to thousands of dollars. Ticketmaster allegedly is scalping the scalpers.

I am surprised though at so many people who don’t like Bruce Springsteen, according to their comments anyway.

The last time I saw Springsteen in person was 1985! At the Orange Bowl in Miami. For years I’ve been thinking it was 1984, but this news article says it was 1985.

My mother even went! No, we didn’t need her to chaperone, she just loved Springsteen, too, so she was a fan!

My mom had eclectic tastes, she loved Springsteen, AC/DC, Peter Frampton, Fleetwood Mac and it’s no secret that her favorite song was Sweet Child o’ Mine by Guns ‘N Roses, but she also loved Frank Sinatra and Elvis, Tom Jones and basically everything!

There was a period where I went to a lot of concerts and I would get the best seats possible. I remember about 10 or 15 years ago sitting mere feet from Stevie Nicks at a Fleetwood Mac concert, she was just a few rows up and my friends and I were dead center. And I’m sure we didn’t overpay for the tickets.

Now the ticket prices are out of sight. Like gas, groceries and everything these days. I’m surprised no one has blamed President Biden for the cost of concert tickets yet.

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Bringing Up Father

I’ve been reading a lot of old Bringing Up Father comic strips on Facebook, they pop up daily. If you click on these, they will open larger.

What gets me is the detail. I can’t understand how George McManus, the cartoonist, drew the same characters day after day, multiple times in each strip with such precise detail. His linework is amazing.

Brining Up Father featured Maggie and Jiggs, the two main characters. It ran in newspapers for 87 yeras, from 1913 to 2000.

Jiggs is an immigrant from Ireland who comes to the U.S. and wins $1 million in a sweepstakes. So now he is up in the world but prefers his working class life. His favorite food is Corned Beef and Cabbage, which he gets often at his friend Dinty Moore’s restaurant.

The art has an Art Nouveau/Art Deco design, which makes it stand out. When McManus passed away in 1954, other artists took over the strip until its ending in 2000.

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Wordle showoffs

I love this cartoon because I love the characters. I drew this months ago and it had different text and context. I don’t even remember what it started out as, but I changed it so many times over the past few months.

I didn’t change the drawing, I changed the wording. It reminded me of something someone said on social media about the New Yorker cartoon I wrote about the other day – that “they draw the images and then figure out what they are saying later,” which of course I don’t think that’s the case, but maybe it is, because this Wordle gag ended up that way.

One part of love about the cartoon is that the thought Steve is thinking “Ouch!” as a Wordle answer is not really an answer because it’s only four letters. But it almost makes it seem like his whole life is Wordle, including all his thoughts.

I find it silly that people post their Wordle scores on social media every day. The silly part is that you don’t see their answers or the way they got to the final word of the day, it shows blank boxes. It doesn’t show what the previous word tries are or even what the word is.

Maybe people just hit a “share” button on Wordle somewhere and it posts your final score without you even realizing what it looks like on Facebook or wherever.

It’s like saying, “I’m great!” everyday.

One friend of mine posted his score every morning and I actually appreciated it because it reminded me to play the game. But posting your score without any concept or content is like saying, “I won an award for something,” and not saying what the something is.

It’s annoying when people post this online, but then again, it gave me the idea for this cartoon, so it all worked out.

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My cartooning styles and ideas

A friend came up with the concept of today’s cartoon.

He kept telling me to do something with “intense” and “in tents.”

“Get it?” He asked. Yes, I got it, but I didn’t know how to put it together. It took a couple of weeks and a couple of different drawings, text and concepts until I came up with this. Lots of changes to come up with this.

This one is self explanatory. Not to put down New Yorker comics lovers, but I wonder if they just pretend to get most of the gags just to be part of the “in crowd” or whatever you call them.

Not being sour grapes here, it’s just a gag and I do admire the cartoonists a lot who do work for the New Yorker. I have interviewed many, I have gone to some of their talks and showings, went to a Roz Chast exhibit a few years back at the Museum of the City of New York.

I’ve submitted stuff to the New Yorker and I know it’s a numbers game to get your first cartoon published and then become “one of them.” But the thing is they take too long to respond to your submission – sometimes eight months! And they have first rights of refusal. So imagine me sending them my fresh work, unpublished, and then waiting months for a reply. The work I publish daily would be eight months old after getting the rejection from the New Yorker, and then is it work publishing “rejected” work?

I have two cartoon styles – one was designed to be a “New Yorker style” and the other is the one I have used all my life, I call a Hanna-Barbera style, or “Flintstones style.” So I have accommodated my work to fit in with the New Yorker, and I like it. I go back and forth, depending on the gag, to see which drawing fits.

Like this one here I call the New Yorker style.

And this caveman one is my “Flintstones/Hanna-Barbera style.”

By the way, this caveman one, speaking of Flintstones, has been one of the most shared, viewed and liked cartoon of all of mine, so who knows what style is best. I just go with my mood that day. Same with the borders. Sometimes there is a very think board, sometimes a wild fat freestyle border, other times no border.

I think the fat, freestyle border works with this chicken cartoon.

Anyway, that’s all I’ve got to say today!

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Returning to the 1980s

I’m always wanting to return to the 1980s – my favorite decade.

I always imagine that when we die, we can return to any time period we like – mine would be to relive Jan 1, 1980 to Dec. 31, 1989 and then do it over and over again – sort of like a 10 year version of Ground Hog Day.

I saw this picture recently, the Kevin Bacon poster. it’s from 1986 and it’s still hanging in the subway – at one particular station in NYC. Still there, 36 years later!

I’d like to visit it and sort of be in a picture in front of it, transporting myself to 1986. It’s at the 71st and Continental subway station in Forest Hills Queens. I am always at that station, too. I get off at that stop (and get on) when I’m coming and going from the city when I meet my cousins in Queens. I will visit this when I get to NY in a couple of months. Look for it here!

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