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Ovation: Charles M. Schulz of “Peanuts” Fame.

11/28/2012

Growing up, our family gathered pretty much every Sunday throughout my entire childhood.  Be it on “Mom’s Side” or on “Dad’s Side”, there was always something going on.  There was always good food, and good conversation but sometimes, as they’re want to do, the children got bored.  Particularly on Sundays during the winter or when the weather outside was uncooperative.  Our folks would frequently bring something extra for the kids to “do”, but their efforts generally lasted for only a short time.

When we found ourselves looking for something to do, I would always read the comics from the Sunday morning paper.  The Sunday comics were the only comics of the week that were printed in color, they were several pages in length and the pictures were larger than they were during the week.  I would go right to Heathcliff to see what trouble he was getting himself into.  Beetle Bailey was also a favorite as was the single-frame hilarity of Marmaduke.  I didn’t enjoy the serialized comics because if I missed a Sunday I couldn’t follow the storyline.  One of my all-time favorite comics was Peanuts.

Peanuts, the life’s work of Charles M. Schulz who would have been ninety years old this week, made its first appearance in October 1950 and ultimately became the most popular comic strip of all time.  At its height, Peanuts was published daily in 2,600 newspapers in 75 countries and in 21 languages.  His comic strip inspired an entire industry that included books, television specials (that still run annually to this day) and innumerable toys for children of all ages.

The lessons learned from his characters including Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus, Schroeder, Peppermint Patty, Pig-Pen Snoopy and Woodstock have been passed from child to child and from generation to generation.  They were lessons of humility, fairness, love and happiness.  For me, the messages were even stronger when shared with family on the floor of a grandparent’s house on a cold Sunday afternoon.

I still have a vintage copy of Happiness is a Warm Puppy on the bookshelf in my front room.  Perhaps I’ll take it down and read it again this evening.

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9 Comments
  1. Isn’t it amazing how those comics (like Calvin & Hobbes) still fit perfectly?

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    • I know, right? They were so simple that they’ve become timeless.

      Don’t get me started on the demise of Bloom County and my one true love, Opus the Penguin!

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      • Barneysday permalink

        Bloom County was my all time favorite. When people ask if our dog, who turned 14 on thanksgiving, is named after the music, I say no. Opus is named after the penguin in Bloom County!

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  2. Loved the comics as a kid, especially the Saturday ones which were in color & a bunch of pages long.

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  3. I have nominated you for a blogging award if you are interested 🙂 http://www.lookingforpemberley.com/2012/11/28/leibster-award-for-blogging/

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  4. My husband and I love Peanuts. We actually stopped at the Charles M. Schulz museum in northern California. It was an amazing place.

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