Archive for the ‘Grand Avenue’ Category

Grand Avenue (5/31/11)

May 31, 2011

When I first started this blog, I imagined a decades-long project that would amass thousands of comic strips for casual fans (along with a bit of rambling from yours truly). I thought such an archive would be pretty impressive 50 years from now. Well, it turns out I’m not going to make it to the 50-year mark, since today’s entry will be my last. There will be no entry for June 1, 2058, because there will be no entry for June 1, 2011.

Why am I ending this blog? Let me count the ways:

  • I’m repeating myself. After three years of reading (mostly) the same comics, and expounding on (mostly) the same themes, The Daily Funnies is starting to get stale. How many times can I write about my cat?
  • Writing about other people’s work is not rewarding. I enjoy most of the comic strips I read, and I adore a handful of them, but using those strips as a springboard has not proven satisfying in the long-run.
  • I’ve started writing a novel; a task that is time-consuming and deserves my full attention. Also, writing an original work of fiction has sapped my desire to write inherently less creative blog entries.
  • I’ve started reading books, as opposed to newspapers. It’s become harder and harder for me to read two full comics sections a day, especially when my nose is buried in a paperback.
  • I still love comics, but I now prefer reading them in book form. I’m also increasingly drawn to graphic novels and web comics, neither of which fit neatly within The Daily Funnies.

Put simply, I’ve developed other interests that supersede this blog. I enjoy writing on a daily basis, so I may start a more manageable blog in the future (haiku, anyone?) but for now, I’m calling it quits. Of course, the Daily Funnies archive will remain online as long as WordPress stays in business, so if you feel like checking out old entries, please do. And to everyone who read this site over the past three years, my sincere and heartfelt thanks.

Grand Avenue (4/23/11)

April 23, 2011

Today was indeed beautiful and sunny, but I didn’t spend it relaxing in a hammock. What did I do on this lovely spring Saturday that felt just like a lovely summer Saturday? I dug up the garden. Yes, my wife and I chopped down a tree using a chainsaw, then removed six bushes using a hand saw. We also disposed of two makeshift pools, one of which was buried in the soil and weighed down by hundreds of not-so-small rocks. At the end of the day, I was sore, dirty, sunburned, and somewhat scratched up, but I still felt satisfied at having cleared the yard. Now, to plant vegetables!

Grand Avenue (3/5/11)

March 5, 2011

Eight days from tomorrow, on Monday, March 14, I will wake up early, put on some jogging pants and a light jacket, lace up my best pair of gym shoes, and leave the house to go running. I don’t care that it snowed today, and I don’t care that it might snow again this week. As long as it’s above freezing on the morning of March 14, I’m going to brave the cold so I can go for a jog in the park. The forecast for next Sunday even looks promising, with a high of 42 degrees. Of course, the forecast also calls for a low of 29 degrees, but…screw it, I’m still going running the next day.

Grand Avenue (9/2/10)

September 2, 2010

Somewhere along the line, our society decided that certain jobs should be reserved for the elderly. Walmart greeter is one of those jobs. Strangely enough, so is Wrigley Field usher. When my grandfather retired in the late ’90s, he took a few years off to relax. He watched TV, traveled to Mexico, and helped gut his old workplace (now a Starbucks). Then he got bored and started applying for jobs. Where did he land? Wrigley Field, of course. The home of the Chicago Cubs may welcome young people through its turnstiles, but it employs old people to usher them to their seats. The whole thing makes sense if you think about it; who better than a retiree to teach some inebriated whippersnappers a thing or two?

Grand Avenue (7/4/10)

July 4, 2010

It’s easy to feel small while watching a fireworks display; the mid-air explosions provide plenty of thrills, but they also manage to put us (quite flammable) humans in our place. Something else that puts me in my place is the American notion of independence. I try my best to be self-sufficient, but when I stop to think about it, I realize that virtually everything I depend on is provided to me by others. My water? I can turn on a tap, but I wouldn’t know the first thing about digging a well. My food? I can shop at the supermarket, but I’ve never had to raise livestock or grow vegetables. My shelter? I can pay the mortgage every month, but I’ve never built four walls and a roof. And don’t even get me started on electricity, heating gas, and transportation. It’s enough to make me feel very dependent, even on Independence Day.

Grand Avenue (6/26/10)

June 26, 2010

Today’s Grand Avenue offers a prime example of being too smart for one’s own good. It’s something members of my generation can easily identify with. Were we raised by parents who valued book learning over practical skills? Yes. Did we obsess over The Simpsons and South Park as teenagers? Yes. Did we graduate college with a degree in English or one of the fine arts? Yes. Are we cynical about any and every institution, from Social Security to Halliburton to the Catholic Church? Yes. Do we mask our cynicism with quips? Absolutely. We are the smart-ass generation and unless we do some growing up, we’ll spend the next 30 years in the corner, patting ourselves on the back and marveling at how clever we are.

Grand Avenue (4/15/10)

April 15, 2010

Puns are something of a guilty pleasure for me, but they still make me groan whenever I come across them. Today’s Grand Avenue did not elicit a groan, however, probably because the punchline took me by surprise. The first three panels were filled with gripes and complaints, so I fully expected the strip to end on a pedestrian note. You know, something about there never being enough time in the day, or the hectic nature of modernity, or the generation gap. Nothing surprising. But what I found in the final panel struck me as genuinely clever, which is quite a trick for a pun.


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