January 18th, 2008

Saturday, January 19

Panel 1: Okay, John's overseeing bedtime, smiling proudly. You know, there actually were strips from this era, yes, from the very beginning, that showed John being a parent to his kids. And not a bad one either. Plus, while he didn't do dishes or any traditionally Women's Work, he did do plenty of handyman stuff to take care of his family's home. True, they're not particularly relevant to Elly's story, but John could be reminiscing about them with Mike. But John/Rod's POV is specifically and permanently excluded.

Panel 2: And they look in on Jailbird Lizzie. Too bad Liz didn't grow up delinquent, so we could see this as foreshadowing. But she will end up in a cage, so perhaps it is.

Panel 3: Well, Lynn let this one slip under the wire. They're happy, companionable, and both young and full of life, hope and optimism. They look like a good couple. Even though they both have front-butt. Told you there were good-John strips.

Panel 4: So busy yammering, I forgot to comment on this. Okay, kind of homespun, but no bitterness that I can see. Again, Lynn must be starting to run out of "Motherhood sucks and John's a pig" strips. And this is unusual. Lynn rarely shows the TV screen; usually just a profile and sound coming out. And when she does show the screen, generally the images are very cartoony. Probably drawing realistic TV images proved to be more trouble than it was worth. But it looks so '70s! It's priceless!

Also, I want to clear up a possible misunderstanding about my comments yesterday. I guess I sounded like a Kool-Aider when I said being a parent should be rewarding, but I didn't want to go into tremendous detail at that moment. Basically, what I mean is, no, I'm not a parent, but I've heard a great many parents compare parenting to Vista or the Peace Corps or whoever had the slogan "The toughest job you'll ever love." It's not easy and it's not without friction and frustration, but at the end, you get plenty out of it.

Like in my job, I like my co-workers, and the location, and the nature of the work is okay, but I have no personal investment in it. I took on the job because they had the opening and I needed the money. They hired me because they needed my service and were willing to pay for it. But I could leave the job at any time without taking an emotional hit. A parent does have a personal investment. They can't leave the job, at least not without either legal severance or cutting off all contact. Or unless the child dies. That sounds like more than just a job to me, and it leads me to assume that there's a reason why generations of mothers did do the job without monetary compensation. So that's why it sounded odd to me that Elly wanted to get paid.

Although, if I view it in the context of "If I got a paycheck, people would respect me!", I can understand it.