October 02, 2003
- On today's date in 1950, Peanuts debuted in seven newspapers. And while it lasted long enough and became so unavoidable as to become almost invisible, it was a groundbreaking sensation when it began, and its reassuring kindness added a little warmth to my life during its final years.
I must have read and enjoyed my Peanuts Classics and Peanuts Treasury collections 50 times each growing up, and even today I'm amazed at how great a master Schulz was at that most difficult of art forms, the four-panel comic strip. Try writing a couple sometime, then try writing more than 15,000. [Oh, the first character to speak in Peanuts history? Shermy!]
- The lovely and relocated Jahna D'Lish informed me that today is Groucho Marx's 113th birthday, and the fact that it's not a national holiday is only more proof of our government's lack of a sense of humor.
And while I'm not sure that there was ever a truly great Marx Brothers film (even Animal Crackers, which I consider one of the five funniest movies ever, closes with an almost completely dead final 20 minutes), they created the funniest moments, and the former Julius Marx turned himself into perhaps the greatest comic character in history. In my heart, I am Groucho as well.
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