Tag Archives: boredom

We Never Wordplay Anymore


It was a love of precise description that brought them together, but it also tore them apart.

This nerdy little comic is a sort of a riff off something I drew in August using the same banged-up copy of Webster’s 9th for reference. That book is about 30 years old, and my Roget’s model is even older: that one has my mom’s name and “Room 209” written on the first page, and my mom stopped teaching for a long time after I was born, meaning the thesaurus is at least 40. I like the idea of them being an old married couple, but it’s hard to believe they’d really split up. They absolutely go together. They even line up perfectly in juxtaposition on the bookshelf and I’m pretty sure that Roget is going to go back to Webster after taking a few days to think about priorities and remember their shared love of linguistics and wordplay.

I’m not totally sure how the arms are attached. If I were a better cartoonist these books would have more and better extremities and possibly some kind of faces, and Webster would be in a La-Z-Boy, but I need photos for reference because my mind’s eye is more turned toward words than images, and couldn’t quite picture how a hardcover book would fit into a recliner.

It’s probably only funny if you’re the kind of person who reads dictionaries and thesauruses for fun. Which I do. Clearly, there must be others.

Dragon Comics 78

In reality, the Girl's reaction to being swarmed with butterflies would not be quite so favorable, and would definitely involve a lot more shrieking

In reality, the Girl’s reaction to being swarmed with butterflies would not be quite so favorable, and would definitely involve a lot more shrieking.

This was originally meant to be a comic about The Man, but I wanted him to write his own dialog and he fell asleep instead. Ergo: the kids.

When we were little, my mother taught us that boredom was our own fault. If we were incapable of using our brains to entertain ourselves, then that represented a sort of intellectual laziness. I had a sister and a brother, and we played together, but I also spent a lot of time alone, with my own head, which was, and continues to be, a magical place. Sometimes I still went and whined to my mother about not having anything to do, but since her response was usually along the lines of, “If you’re bored, go clean your room,” I learned not to ask her for entertainment advice. We read a lot, did puzzles and art projects, went to the park or bike riding, and made up our own games, constantly. TV was pretty limited–we didn’t have cable for the most part, and even when we did, there wasn’t that much programming for kids anyway, and even if there had been, our mother wouldn’t have let us sit in front of it all day long–so we used our imaginations.

I do worry what effect on-demand video technology has on kids. I see too many of them who are utterly incapable of filling in their own minds without a screen. Even with the ubiquitous screens, they’re still bored all the time. I mean, I like the Internet as much as the next person, possibly more, but I can also think of a million fun things to do without it. It’s a great tool; it’s a great friend. But it’s not everything.

It’s funny how when you put people–kids and adults–outside, out of reach of wifi, their whole outlook can change.