Originally published in the Grand Rapids Business Journal, May 11, 2009
The next time you start ranting on how messed up the world is today, how movies and entertainment are much too violent and depraved, and how we are hitting record highs (or lows) on the debauchery meter, take some quiet time to read a book on Greek mythology. Dude, that stuff is messed up! I mean, Quentin Tarantino writes nursery rhymes compared to some of this Greek mythology stuff. (Wait, as it turns out, most nursery rhymes are pretty messed up, too. How about, “Quentin Tarantino makes Disney movies compared to …no, that doesn’t hold, either. Have you ever seen Disney’s “Pinocchio”? Or “Dumbo”? Freaky, weird sh–, er, stuff.)
I remember reading the story of Prometheus when I was in 6th grade. Basically, as a punishment for stealing and sharing the gods’ fire with humans, Zeus has Prometheus chained to a side of a mountain where a bird (usually described as a giant eagle) pecks out his liver. The next day the liver grows back and the eagle returns to eat it again. And so on. It wasn’t till I dissected a frog in high school that I truly understood the nastiness of this.
Not quite as nasty — but certainly unpleasant — is being the Mayor of a mid-size city and year after year having less money from the state (money your taxpaying citizens sent to the state) to pay for vital services. Definitely hyperbole to compare it to involuntary organ donation, but hyperbole is what cartoonists do. I was trying to figure a way to draw this and actually show a Governor Granholm bird tearing out a Mayor Heartwell liver, but I couldn’t figure a way to do it without a bunch of confusing labels. You will have to look forward to next week when I’ll post a drawing of a man being consumed by a crocodile. What’s the matter with the world today?…