Originally published in the Grand Rapids Business Journal, September 7, 2009
Actually, the first metaphor that came to mind for this didn’t involve vampires. Rather, I thought of moles that occasionally attack my yard. Well, “attack” is perhaps needlessly inflammatory — I guess it’s really more of a herd migration. A slow, underground herd migration. Not very majestic, but let’s move on.
When the moles show up, there was a time I would try to battle them off with traps, poison pellets, castor oil, and occasional curses. I fought the good fight and had some minor victories, but — being unwilling resort to intense chemical warfare, the moles generally ate what they came to ate and then left. Now that’s how it goes. When the moles get tired, they leave. And we have so many dang trees, my yard has limited areas of mole-preferred feeding grounds so they aren’t around for long. But, that said, it’s much easier to think of the recession in terms of vampires than moles (and much more fun to draw), so that’s the way I went.
Slightly off-topic, but still comics related. I read a blog called The Comics Curmudgeon. The blogger (bloggist?) is a guy name Josh Fruhlinger and the idea is that he reads newspaper cartoons so you don’t have to and explains what’s going on. Generally these are the older serial strips like Mary Worth, Apartment 3G, Mark Trail, etc. But he also opines on “funny” strips. And by “funny,” I mean “funny” (the quotation marks with the full intent of indicating the word has the opposite meaning). This is of course a recipe for the sort of snarky, tedious blog that drains the soul. But Josh is an excellent writer and actually pulls it off quite well.
The reason I tell you this is because I was another bout of “why in God’s name are there so many crappy comic strips still cluttering the newspaper pages when there are clearly infinitely better ones available (Frazz, Speed Bump, Pearl Before Swine, Cul de Sac, to name a few) to replace them?” Today’s entry — and the particular comic strips he chose — seemed to illustrate my thoughts.