While Dad unintentionally made me a nonconformist, Mom actively did, and I thank her for it. Mom was skilled at making clothes, and it was a rare occasion to get a shirt from J.C Penney's. What Mom did was have me pick out a material I liked, and she would make it into a perfectly fitting shirt. And I loved things that were different, and so picked out ostentatious designs. Out of a classroom full of kids looking like they stepped right out of a catalog, I would be the short, nerdy looking kid in the bright yellow shirt with cowboys and Indians on it. And I would be proud of it, and, other than being there, felt great.
This nonconformity, or at least the appreciation of nonconformity, has stuck with me all my life, giving me a great independence of thought and action. While other kids were writing and passing notes, I'd be reading the Iliad and the Odyssey. While they collected D.C. and Marvel comic books, I collected Dell and Gold Key. While they turned out for mainstream sports, I played squareball with my few good friends or tetherball with my brother or chess with my dad. While they joined the F.F.A., I bought a pet tarantula. While they try their iniquitous best not to have more than two kids, I happily raise six. While they get divorces, I remain faithfully and happily married. And while they text, I write the Butter Rum Cartoon.
|You could always recognize me by the shirt.|
For the complete contents of the Butter Rum Cartoon, click here.