No recent drawing to post this week, but a quick bloggy-blog update. Why no new drawing, you ask? Well, last Thursday my wife and I became first-time homeowners, and then spent the weekend moving all of our stuff down to sunny, peaceful New Jersey. I hate going so many days without drawing, but I think in this instance it’s all excusable. I might get messed up again this week, because there’s just such an endless amount of stuff that needs to get done. I gotta keep telling myself things will settle down, I will get back into a routine, just because I get disrupted from drawing for two weeks to transplant my entire life over to another State, doesn’t actually mean that I am no longer a cartoonist and should just throw in my Manga Deleter pens and nibs and resign myself to a life of picking out window treatments and area rugs.
A couple upcoming appearances and events:
This weekend is the MoCCA Arts Festival in New York City, held at the decidedly not-sunny, but undeniably spacious Lexington Ave Armory at 26th street. I won’t be present at the show on Saturday (see above paragraph), but will be there on Sunday for a panel at 2:15 and then signing and sketching at the Secret Acres table afterwards.
The panel I’m on is called “Memoir”, and it will be with Peter Kuper, Jennifer Hayden, and Derf Backderf. I’m looking forward to it. Speaking of Derf, I picked up his book My Friend Dahmer at The Strand last night, and read it all in one sitting. Totally absorbing comic.
I was interested in how part of the narrative had to do with the culture of parents in the 1970′s, and them being somewhat more absent than the parenting culture we have now. This is an interesting phenomenon, and from other things I’ve read, it’s totally true: parents were much more hands-off, (or I guess the better word again is absent) in the 1970′s for better or worse. Divorce rates were higher, and I believe the birth-rate hit it’s lowest point ever sometime around the middle of the decade. I was reminded of the movie The Ice Storm while reading the book – a similar sort of unsettling suburban environment, where the kids are essentially left to their own devices while the parents focus on their own dramas, completely oblivious to what’s going on with their children.
It makes me wonder, I feel like there’s a ton of criticism about today’s “helicopter parents”, and often people defend the parenting style of the 1970′s, suggesting a hands-off approach is ultimately better for the kids. I dunno. I don’t especially buy the idea that absentee parents led to Jeffrey Dahmer becoming a serial killer, because it’s not like he was the only one who had them. I was born in the 70′s, so didn’t exactly “grow up” in them, but I was close, and I feel like myself and most people I know seemed to turn out okay… but, how do we know that helicopter parenting is so bad for the kids? They haven’t grown yet…
But, as I type this, I think about American Idol, and the like, and every kid thinking they’re The Best and The Most Talented, and it’s their God-Given Right to have a career in the music industry (even though there is no music industry anymore… just kids on American Idol doing imitations of performance styles which came out of the 1970′s…) Maybe it’s better for a kid to get a healthy dose of 1970′s-style “the world doesn’t revolve around you” medicine every once in a while. I dunno, I dunno…
Anyway, sorry for the tangent! Following MoCCA weekend is TCAF in Toronto, and this convention I will be there the whole time! More about that next week, hopefully along with a new drawing or two.