This Friday Robot was used before, but I made some brand-new drawings of it because I liked it so much.
I might even summon the courage to ask it out someday. In the meantime, here’s your dose of robots this fine Friday:
Excuse the pun.
I’ve been to three caves in my life, all of them awesome: Wind Cave National Park in South Dakota, and Kartchner Caverns and Colossal Cave in Arizona. Well, four, if you count the lava caves in Oregon.
Caves are just weird. They can have their own complete ecosystems, and oftentimes are completely cut off from the world directly above them. Who knows how many caves remain undiscovered, lurking beneath our feet with their mystery and treasure.
I finally got around to doing a strip that takes place entirely within one of Falling Rock’s many caves. I hope to revisit this idea again soon. Caves are ripe for jokes.
Wait, are they? I don’t know. I do like drawing ’em, though.
It used to be that kings and queens were considered at least part deity. The Americans did one good thing right away by establishing that the President was fully human, acknowledging the fallibility inherent in each of us.
At times the President would become a part of our national mythology. Washington and the cherry tree, Lincoln holding the country together with nothing but his beard, Teddy Roosevelt punching Spain right in the face. These stories are part of who we are as Americans, but we never make the mistake of saying (as much as we wanted to) that George Washington had descended from Zeus.
Then Nixon came along and made it okay to view the President as someone out to get you, kind of like a Boogeyman. The President was not only fallible but potentially worse than the average citizen. This is a perception that successive Presidential candidates fail to alter every four years.
I’ve championed Barack Obama since before he even announced he was running for President. I saw in him some of that mythology that has been missing from the White House since, I don’t know, FDR. I was sick of the run of Presidents who, at best, could be called place-holders, and at worst gave us two wars, the worst financial disaster in 70 years, and ignored global warming and those pesky “anti-torture” agreements.
I couldn’t say I was proud of any President who served in my lifetime* until now.
President Obama is doing exactly what I elected him to do. Hope? Change? Yes, on both counts. In March he signed wide-ranging conservation legislation called the Omnibus Public Lands Management Act, adding new national parks, increasing the size of existing parks, and increasing protection of wilderness areas around the country. In May, he nominated Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. She is the first Hispanic justice and the third woman to serve on that court. Oh, and let’s not forget the nation’s first national health care package, which Obama is currently pushing through Congress.
Besides those accomplishments, Obama spends his time putting out the fires from the bad old days of his predecessor. Acknowledging that global warming is not some liberal fever dream, he’s actually putting money into programs that will help us curb our greenhouse emissions. Funding stem cell research that may one day allow us to cure some of those “incurable” diseases. Appointing people to his cabinet that don’t actively hate this country.
It is the combination of big and small acts that has made Barack Obama’s administration a success. Not yet a year into his Presidency, Obama is proving that he will be there for us like Bruce Springsteen is there for Mary.
Before I go, I want to comment on the unfortunate news that President Obama will be sending more troops to Afghanistan. I’m never for war. There have only been three wars in our country’s history that have been completely necessary.** But if it’s between leaving Afghanistan to the warlords and the triumphant return of the Taliban, or finishing what we started lo those years ago, I say we stay and try to clean up some of the mess we made.
“Cleaning up the mess we made” probably should have been Obama’s campaign motto, because that’s what he’s doing and what he will continue to do for the next seven years. In spite of this handicap, Obama has been quietly bringing about the positive change he promised, moving us forward while rectifying past errors. And if that’s not totally awesome, I don’t know what “totally awesome” means.
*Except Jimmy Carter, who was in office for three months after I was born.
**The War of 1812, The Spanish-American War, and the War on Drugs. Duh.
I thought I’d introduce you, my dear readers, to each other. Where do you come from? Well, according to this map, you come from all over the place.
102 countries, to be exact. The regions underrepresented are Africa, Greenland, and the Middle East. I can’t understand why this blog does not appeal to them, as my comic strip takes place in a fictitious National Park in the American Southwest. I guess you can’t please everybody.
Thankfully I’ve got almost all of Central and South America locked up, West and East Europe, and New Zealand and Australia. Of the 18 billion people who live in China and India, I got 59 visitors in the past year. Score! Sweden, who I famously courted for a while, paid me respect 42 times. I’m happy to report I have 466 fans in the UK, better than the 314 who made the trek south from Canada.
I wonder what Iran (5 visitor) and Saudi Arabia (11 visitors) think of this blog?
I was surprised that Brazil (157) outdid Mexico (50) by a wide margin.
My most loyal international fans hail from Brazil, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom. Thanks guys!
The top 5 countries for visits (excluding US):
1. United Kingdom
What about my American fans?
With a whopping 5,435 hits over the past year, America can’t get enough Falling Rock. Excluding friends, bitter rivals, family, and people who misspelled “amazon.com”, that leaves about 34 hits. Just kidding! I’m sure there are many, many Americans who read Falling Rock on a weekly, monthly, or even centennial basis.
Every state in the Union sent at least one representative to Falling Rock over the past year, including the District of Columbia and one called “not set.” I actually got more visitors from “not set” than from North Dakota, South Dakota, West Virginia, or Delaware.
The states whose visitors linger longest include Indiana, Iowa, Wyoming, Nebraska, Maine, and Kansas.
I am continually impressed with California (599), who shows me that while financially bankrupt, they will never be bankrupt in the heart.
Whaddup Pennsylvania (152) and Massachusetts (150)? I’ve hardly spent time in either of those states, but they are my long-distance buddies. Thank you.
As to the states who arrive at my site and flee in terror without spending even a second there (Alaska, West Virginia, North Dakota), I pledge to do you better in the coming year.
Top states for visits (AKA my favorite places):
4. New York
Robots today, as well as a warning for those of you artists playing with the idea of moving to Oregon. That artist had to fend off an otter attack right before the picture was taken. Also, he had to gnaw off both legs due to infection. He replaced them with carved wood. 1851? This quote could have been ripped from today’s headlines. That’s the way we roll in the Beaver State.