You are predictably and understandably thinking, “wtf.”
Even if you’ve had the good fortune to stumble upon the brilliance that is Garfield minus Garfield, you’re equally likely to be thinking, “ok, yeah, I get it… but what is it doing here?”
Let me explain.
Garfield minus Garfield is the classic comic strip, Garfield, with the fat cat and all references to him removed. As Publisher’s Weekly describes it:
In an act that should qualify him for the brilliant editors hall of fame, Dan Walsh discovered that if all traces of Jim Davis’s lazy, lasagna-scarfing cat were expunged from his own comic strip, Garfield became a funnier, much darker series, about a desperately lonely, self-loathing man’s existential despair.
I heard about the concept long before I’d actually looked at any of the strips, and – like you probably are right now – I was skeptical at best, eye-rolling at worst. But then I actually looked at the strips.
And they’re freaking brilliant.
As a disaffected, ponderous 20-something, myself, it spoke to me. And maybe it’s because I have allowed sports to become such a big part of my life, but whatever the reason, the connection to my sports-fan-self was immediately apparent – particularly as a fan of the Chicago Cubs.
As Jon ponders above… am I wasting my life? Come on, you know you’ve thought it at least one of these last few Octobers.
Ok, so if I haven’t lost you yet, you’re still puzzling – what does this have to do with Bleacher Nation?
Well, simply, I am going to start incorporating some of the strips into my posts. Sometimes in their original (well, technically altered) form, because for some reason a particular strip “fits.”
But I’ll also occasionally be dropping my own versions of the strip, with certain additions/changes. Think of them as Garfield minus Garfield plus Cubs. There is nothing original left in the world, so all I have left is to do unto Dan Walsh as Dan Walsh did unto Jim Davis.
Hopefully, they’ll be simple but funny – not exactly New Yorker material, but provoking a thought or two. And hopefully, as a Cubs fan, they’ll hit close enough to home to keep you interested. And I won’t just totally jack these strips up. Like Dan Walsh before me, I have an ethos: I will either change the visual of the strip or the dialog, but not both. If I changed both, I might as well just draw my own cartoon – and, well, I can’t.
So, for example, I’ll do something like this:
Maybe I am wasting my life.
But it’s fun.