Breakfast Without Meat Part Three - Stupid Comics

by Derrick Bostrom

Back in the days before media saturation, folks relied on their own resources in order to amuse themselves. You could find people clustered under awnings, along roadsides and behind bus stations -- notebooks in their laps, ball-point pens at the ready -- all chuckling to themselves over their latest doodle or humorous cartoon. I miss those days; I still have all my old notebooks. Somehow, when I was younger, I had nothing better to do with my time than fill page after page with crude drawings. As I grow older and their memory grows more and more distant, these drawings make less and less sense to me. But I guess they must have made sense to the editors of Breakfast Without Meat magazine, because they used to publish 'em.

In those days, I had a whole arsenal of characters. Kee-Lah was a blithe, childlike everyman, protected from the effects of his awesome self absorption by the sheer fact that he was fictitious. Painman was one of many deconstructionalist superheroes. He seems to derive his power from the jaded assumption that his use of physical force will achieve the desired outcome. The narrative treats his victory as a foregone conclusion, concerning itself merely with the inevitable restoration of normalcy. Prez is another meta-character whose only purpose is to follow the conceit of his conception to its logical extreme.

As for the Burger Family, perhaps the less said about them the better. They do lead me to suspect however, that spending most of your day sitting in front of a notebook might be a practice greatly aided by a certain deliberately induced state of mind.