Taken With A Grain of Salten

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Hello everyone! Thanks Charles, Milton and Fortunato for helping to identify the Halloween mystery strip (Muggs McGinnis), and for the nice comments on Vic Vac’s cartoon from the Globe-Democrat. I’m glad you enjoyed it.  Felix this time is from 3-2 to 3-8-1936. The adventures of Fooy Tu Yu and Punk Chow continue, as Felix escapes from them with the diamond to the CPS (Cat Protector Society). They shelter Felix, but Fooy pays a tramp to “adopt” Felix from the CPS. Take a look at the last panel in the 3-7, I love the variety of cats in that panel, and the very beat-up black tom cat that the tramp is holding. In the Sunday, Noah tosses Felix off the ark, and the scientist brings Felix forward through Time (400 BC to 490 AD).

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Krazy comes to us from 8-19 to 8-24-1940. Bricks hidden everywhere this week, some falling from the sky by parachute. In the 8-23, Offissa Pupp and Ignatz are pining for the school to re-open. In the 8-24, the Elephant’s Feet formation from the Coconino County Navajo Tribal Park is evident in the background. If you haven’t been to Monument Valley, you must go if you’re a Krazy Kat fan. When Cathy and I went there some years ago, my favorite formation in the Park was “The Thumb”. Just a hunk of rock that looked like an 8 foot high thumb. We may run across it in a future KK strip.

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Patrick is from 5-23 to 5-28-1966 this time. Godfrey (5-23 to 5-25) is a lot like Charlie Brown. Patrick and Elsa make like Lucy and Patty and beat up on him emotionally. Patrick even uses his fists for “good reasons” in an exact parallel of Lucy and Linus’s dialog. Just let anybody try to make a “Charlie Brown” out of Patrick!  In the 5-26 to 5-28 strips, Hancock reverts to his more familiar gags. They never spare the corporal punishment in Patrick land. Sorry about the tape stain on the 5-28, don’t repair your newsprint clippings with adhesive tape, folks.

I’m still on my Felix Salten kick, I borrowed “Perri” from the library, and read it. Now I’m reading a very obscure Salten entitled “15 Rabbits”. “Perri” turned out to be a very gentle story, compared with Bambi and Jibby the Cat. Perri grows up from babyhood, escapes being killed and “marries” Porro. The main focus of the book, is on the little girl who is under four years old. She can understand animal language and is visited by birds and deer, with whom she converses. Perri and Porro also talk with her. The book concludes as Perri and Porro return to the little girl after many adventures. However, she has aged a year or so, and can no longer understand animal talk. Perri and Porro are very downcast at losing their friend. Kind of a bittersweet ending, especially when you compare it with the Disney “Perri” story, with it’s cute “together time” songs, etc. Bambi and some of the stags from the “Bambi” book make cameo appearances in Perri’s forest and are hunted down by HIM again. There is some killing and blood, but it’s not quite as stark as in Jibby and Bambi. I found an alternate translation of JIBBY THE CAT in the Glendale public library called DJIBI, and it’s even bloodier that the version I have. The farmer gets tired of Jibby, and in the last chapter, throws a flat iron (?) at her, killing her. The killing is offhand, not sentimental at all. It made me wonder what the author’s true feelings about Jibby were. DJIBI is the British version of the book, published in 1946. Speaking of BAMBI, go to http://www.archive.org/details/DeerStoryChap.10 and you’ll hear 19 minutes of yours truly carrying on the oral tradition. I read Chap. 10 of BAMBI, in which Bambi’s mother is killed by HIM. Some of the dialog and situations are close to the Disney film, but the reader can’t help being saddened by Mom’s total inability to protect herself from HIM, and by extension her child. The “don’t fly” line, spoken by the pheasants in the film is here. One of the rabbits dies in a very human way, trying to deny that it’s leg is mortally injured until the very end. The line the old Stag speaks, “Your Mother can’t be with you anymore”, isn’t in the book. Salten has Bambi asking everyone if they have seen his mother, but only concludes that he never saw her again. He spares us the bloody details of Mom’s demise. Please listen in, I don’t make too many mistakes. I lack editing software, so I have to do these in one take!

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