Snatch The Pebble From My Hand

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Do you live in or around Austin, TX? Come see me and Dave from Cyanide & Happiness and Randy from Something*Positive at Wizard World Austin this weekend (Saturday and Sunday only). We’ll be at the Dragon’s Lair booth selling merch and doing sketches.

I’m actually extremely straight with my daughter when she asks me a question. If she asks me something that I don’t know the answer to, we’ll look it up and both get educated. She’s incredibly smart, so when I feed her a line of BS like the ones in the panels above, she immediately gives me this screwed up look and calls me out on it. Question/joke answer/real answer is just part of our dynamic. I’m not trying to turn her into a cynic, or a wise ass (OK, maybe that one’s not entirely true), but perhaps I am trying to teach her how to think on her feet. It’s shocking how far you can get in life by just being able to instantly and consistently talk words with your mouth while your brain takes a moment to think of an actual answer to a question.


Graphic Knowledge MagazineI did an interview with Graphic Knowledge Magazine (Issue 2) (available here for iOS devices) about the origins of HE, the recent shift to storyline/character based comics, and the ups and downs of this weird job I have. I felt like I was super honest and there’s probably some good info in there for anyone looking to do their own thing for a living.





Comments (25)

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As a result, everything out of their mouths (i.e. the teen years) will also be bullshit.
Your kid is a real scene-stealer, Joel! How long before she gets her own spinoff strip?
HereForTheRide's avatar

HereForTheRide · 82 weeks ago

I must say sarcasm is one of the best parts of parenting. To see the look on their sweet faces when they finally realize that you are yanking their chain. Then to watch as they learn to use it wisely themselves. Gives the mamma goosebumps.
Xample's avatar

Xample · 82 weeks ago

Yay! I’m not the only parent doing this!

Pro tip: Some day she’ll declare you incompetent and put you into a nursing home.

My 4yo frequently calls me out for “tellin’ STORIES.” Those stories are either sarcasm or lies, I’ll let you make the call on that one.
This is why I’m one of the few people who lists Calvin’s DAD as my favorite character from the strip. Because there’s no question why Calvin is as screwed up as he is.

1 reply · active 82 weeks ago

lou's avatar

lou · 82 weeks ago

Not just Calvin’s Dad. Don’t forget Hobbes helping Calvin with his math homework, and turning it into calculus.
PokeyPuppy's avatar

PokeyPuppy · 82 weeks ago

I love that my deadly serious 12-yr-old nephew has started lightening up and successfully trolling his mom. He is so like his uncles, it’s fantastic. Finally, the sarcasm and smart-assery has started emerging!
I didn’t realize until today’s side-of-the-head view that Gracie wore glasses. Part of that is my vision problems. Don’t notice the frames in most panels, though.
You’d fit in well in my family. I come from a long line of harmless bullshitters. Pretty much every household in the extended family on my dad’s side had the Calvin & Hobbes strip where he asks his dad how they determine the weight limit on bridges, and the dad deadpans that they drive heavier and heavier trucks over until it collapses, weigh the last truck to make it over, rebuild the bridge, and that’s the weight limit (and the mom explodes “THAT’S NOT HOW THEY DO IT!” in the last panel). Because that’s totally something our fathers/grandfather would say.
OMG, your family is so awesome and your daughter is so adorable! Can I move in with you guys and be the “cool gay uncle”? I’m sure Josh has that position filled, but I’m willing to share that job with him (and share another kind of “job” with him…hint, hint, wink, wink, say no more)
Kevin's avatar

Kevin · 82 weeks ago

Let me tell you about the Hawaiian Pineapple Famine…
Bruceski's avatar

Bruceski · 82 weeks ago

My dad used to do that all the time. Mom would tell him “just because you’re supposed to be smart doesn’t mean you can’t say ‘I don’t know'”. My brother and I loved it.
I find I’m too serious to be sarcastic with my nephews and niece…mostly because I hate the idea of giving them the wrong information from the start. my padawans deserve better
lou's avatar

lou · 82 weeks ago

Lovin’ the new direction of the strip, Joel! Can’t wait to see how the missus & kiddo get embroiled in your geeky adventures.
I remember my dad pulling my leg and my brother’s all the time, to lighten the mood for big house projects, as well as letting loose with some choice curse words. What’s your policy on swearing at your house?
Thundery End's avatar

Thundery End · 82 weeks ago

You’re actually being facetious, as much as sarcastic, from panel 2 onwards.
That’s how sarcasm can rise above being considered ‘the lowest form of wit’, and gain respectability as a tool of a comedy artist.
If only puns could benefit too. I like puns.

1 reply · active 81 weeks ago

zathael's avatar

zathael · 81 weeks ago

My dad always used to say that the difference between being sarcastic and facetious was love.
zathael's avatar

zathael · 81 weeks ago

When I was eight, I asked my dad why the sky was blue, but turned red in the evening. He sat me down and talked me through light refraction, including drawing pictures and diagrams when I was confused to help me understand it. By the end of it, I had a better notion of the physics of light than most high school students.

I only hope to be as patient once I’m a dad myself.

manbeardman's avatar

manbeardman · 81 weeks ago

the very first word my niece learned to spell was poop my sister still has not fogivin me for that
Chris M's avatar

Chris M · 81 weeks ago

I’m so glad I’m not the only one who does this… it sometimes makes it difficult when I’m actually being serious tho.
ThePhysicist's avatar

ThePhysicist · 81 weeks ago

I have viewed the current comic every day since it posted, and chuckled every time. I’ve lived that scene both as the kid, and as the dad. You captured it PERFECTLY… it’s a beautiful thing, man.

1 reply · active 71 weeks ago

That’s very kind of you to say. Thanks!
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  1. Yay! I’m not the only parent doing this!

    Pro tip: Some day she’ll declare you incompetent and put you into a nursing home.

  2. I have viewed the current comic every day since it posted, and chuckled every time. I've lived that scene both as the kid, and as the dad. You captured it PERFECTLY… it's a beautiful thing, man.

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