Hey all! Â A while back I got the opportunity to draw a guest comic for a fellow parenting cartoonist (among many other topics), the hilarious and talented Lunarbaboon! Â By opportunity I mean I just asked, and he was gracious enough to consider my piece as a guest comic strip. Â I’ve been reading his webcomic for quite some time, not only because it’s always spot on perfect in its portrayal of parenting life, but it’s also got more heart, more reality, and is just truly more touchingÂ than any other comics of its kind. Lunarbabbon does not fear being absolutely ridiculous when it needs to be, and borrows playfully from the likes of Calvin and Hobbes in its imagination and spirit, but also never fears touching on real human elements like depression and mental illness. This comic is a breath of fresh air in a world that gets way too tough to laugh at sometimes. Â Thank you again Lunarbaboon for the guest comic opportunity!
I felt a little wrong drawing this as a wannabe cartoonist, as there is a consensus that it is dirty and wrong to use Bill Watterson’s characters in jest and parody, but I thought this was appropriate as a representation of how the creator feels about his characters being “walked all over”.Â Â Although now, I’m part of the problem defacing true artistic genius!
Editors Note: Marcus I. Rensworth is the lead Toys & Games writer for Fun Sized â„¢ Media.
Billund, Denmark – August 1st 2013
–Â This week, Â the Lego corporation, based out of Northern Denmark, held a press conference to announce one of several new additions to its “Friends” line of their popular building toys aimed at young girls. Â The most controversial of which appeared to be a small women’s health center, dubbed the ‘Heartlake Abortion Clinic’.
The plastic construction toy is set in fictional ‘Heartlake City’, in which a group of friends including Amy, Sophia, & Mia among others reside. Before opening up the floor to questions, Legoâ„¢ creative director Garth Evans defended the decision: “Legoâ„¢, and any other substantial toy manufacturer, is directly influenced by the markets in which we do business, and the United States is no exception.” Â Evans continued, “the direction we are taking the friends line is the product of careful and thoughtful research into the actual lives of young women in our demographic.”
When pressed about the timing of the product launch, the marketing chairman of Lego, Doug Michaels, responded, “if we were trying to sell Legoâ„¢ Friends to mid to late teens, Â this set would have been on the shelves years ago, Â so now with nearly 80% of our actual target demographic now familiar with this previously adult element we feel safe that its going to be a solid hit”
The toy itself is a nondescript white building with large windows, and is opened up in the back to allow for imaginative play. Â The front features several flower baskets, and a small horse stable for the main characters such as Mia & Sofia who are avid horseback riders. Â “Here at Lego, we always strive for detail and play value with every set” says Lego Jr. vice chairman Mark Brentin, while showing off the demo set on stage with unique accessories such as consent forms, Â hospital gowns, and several popular ultrasound devices with detailed apparatuses.
“With the Lego friends abortion clinic set, we are vastly expanding the play possibilities of our upcoming generation of women by introducing reproductive health scenarios as an important element, alongside dancing, musical, and equestrian pursuits” Â insisted Evans, while toying with the small green dumpster complete with working lid that is included in the new set.Â
The question of the politics was raised by several reporters, and it was answered with a brief statement from Creative director Garth Evans. “We understand this particular medical procedure is a hotly contested issue, and to appeal to all involved we included pro life picket signs, and adoption counselor figures to reflect alternative views for our ambiguously aged ‘Friends’ characters to express during play”.Â
Nearing the three hour mark, Theodore Roseman, Sr. Financial adviser at Legoâ„¢ stated “As we are aware with all of our product lines, localization is of the utmost importance, and therefore we have adjusted and or removed elements accordingly.” Roseman later elaborates on this, and details the version that will ship to Texas which confusingly includes a pose-able ‘friends’ figurine, a Bible, and several seemingly unrelated household items. After the conference, Chris Billings, a self proclaimed AFOL (Adult fan of lego) present at the event elaborates excitedly, after the announcement.”The stripped down version of the Heartlake Abortion Clinic’ is really a treat for collectors like me, because of the special pieces you cant find in any other set, like medicine bottles and coat hangers.”Â Billings also added, “And its this set especially that highlights logic and creativity during play”.
Vincent De’lagase, the original creator of the ‘Friends’ line at Legoâ„¢, closed the conference with a few last words. “The Heartlake Abortion Clinic is really a natural progression of the ‘friends’ series. Â Lets remember the whole line is full of time consuming and expensive activities, such as keeping and riding horses, river boating, raising exotic animals, and even running a small business. having an unplanned child on top of all that would completely negate the ‘Friends’ lifestyle”. Â When asked about a possible spinoff taking on the result of the ‘Friends’ characters carrying pregnancies to term and raising kids as young teens, De’Lagasse smiled, with a quick “no comment”. Â
Â Â Sources report, before exiting, Garth Evans additionally denied claims of a boys crossover set, by saying “I really don’t see the possibility of any ongoing relationship or financial commitment relating to this new set at this time by the Boy’s Lego design department”.
The Lego ‘Friends’ “Heartlake Abortion Clinic” will hit shelves in fall of 2013, just in time for the Christmas shopping season, and is completely fictional if you hadn’t of figured it out already.
Marcus I. Rensworth Â© 2013 Fun Sized â„¢ Media.
From Chapter 15
‘Outings with the friend’
Editors Note:Â The following is an excerpt from the New york times bestseller ‘What to do if your child brings home the poor kid’ by GloriaÂ H.G HammondPublished by Fun Sizedâ„¢ Publishing Press paper books, Portland, Oregon Â© 2013 Â Â Â
As discussed thoroughly last chapter, there are many reasonable ways of avoiding the responsibility and confusion of taking both your child, and their disadvantaged friend with you on your daily errands (My favorite being the “broken” booster seat).Â If these fail you, don’t panic!Â If handled correctly, your outing can actually be entirely survivable.
First off, in a retail environment there are many situations that will arise that bring attention to the fact that your kid’s new friend probably doesn’t get whatever they ask for on a daily basis.Â Knowing this from the get go will be invaluable in making sure your own offspring does not question their notion of entitlement and bring up awkward conversations about the value of money and inequality.
Your kid’s friend will no doubt meander through the store as they would with their own parents, with their hands at their sides, assuming there’s only one day a year they could ever expect to obtain a toy or a pair of new shoes. This will arise suspicion almost immediately within the ignorantly privileged consciousness of your child, so don’t let it ruin the day!Â Â I have a treasure trove of great ideas to sidetrack the curious minds from drifting to a meaningful discussion about class in America, but a few of my favorites are:
â™¦ Just say “Everything in the store is free today”Â -This neutralizes any discussion about the value of commodities, and leaves your child’s innocent mind free of any grounding truths.
â™¦ SEPARATE!Â -In some cases, you might have your spouse or significant other with you, and its possible to divert the disadvantaged friend from your own child temporarily and let your kid fulfill every usual request and desire out of view.
â™¦ “Return Policy” – While in the store just purchase multiples of every toy for your child, and their friend.Â Both children are disillusioned long enough to not ask any questions for the day, and then simply return the second set of toys after dropping of the friend at home and politely explaining the situation to the underprivileged kid,Â just out of earshot of your child.
There are many, many more ideas out there, but these will get you started.Â Besides the complications arising from all the stuff you are seen buying for your child to maintain the status quo, one of the things you will need to master is changing the tides of their conversations.Â Its amazing how quickly the poor children will proudly slip in that their grandparents bought them a jump rope for Christmas, or the casual admission they are not familiar with popular brands like Barbieâ„¢ and/or power wheelsâ„¢.Â Â These things normally might inspire a “huh”, “what” or “why” from your possession laden offspring, but if you are quick to act with several bags of fruit snacks, or a jar of peanut butter for them to share it will buy you some time to rework the conversation in your favor.
I do have to mention one thing that happens to come up allot in my experience, and that is the inevitable question from the friend to your naive spoiled child “Is it your birthday?”.Â This must be answered with a “Yes” to avoid suspicion, but wait!Â You must be prepared with cake to complete the rouse, and it is always a safe bet to keep one in your car or purse just in case.
Above all, the most important thing to remember is, Don’t change up your routine!Â Kids are smart, and they will sense if we are unreasonably depriving them of normality to accommodate their less fortunate friend.Â If you read through this entire book, with a little luck your child will be tucked in bed at night, knowing in their head that EVERY little boy and little girl gets whatever they want, no matter what.
As the title suggests, it has been a while since I have updated the site with new comics, but have just gotten started with completely re hauling the website!Â I have a vision of a wide array of content available, such as articles, fake new stories, animated shorts, and of course new one panel Fun sized comics.
Hope you all like it, its still a work in progress.