Calvin and Hobbes on imagination and escapism.

Today, I wanted to write a post on escapism and imagination (did the title give that away? No way!) I started working on this post as I do all blog posts, by groping around the edge of the idea I want to write about, with all the skill and savoir-faire of a teenage boy on prom night.

I wanted to find a way to communicate just how important imagination is, how much we all (big and small) need to escape to the imaginary places that we or others have created.

As ever I was far more eloquent in my head when I was busy imagining said post (if only reality would catch up to my imagination, I’d be a literary goddess) – when it was time to perform, I found my powers of expression somewhat lacking. Luckily, we live in a digital age, where the Internet rules supreme and has the answer to everything. It gave me this Calvin and Hobbes strip. Breathtakingly simple as always: the sadness of a life without imagination, with a little side of commentary on the current tendency to throw medication at everything (pin it).

Like all good stories this has a good ending (pin it):

Hope you guys all have a week full of imagination and stories!

Quick Mid-week ROW80 update:

I have written detailed characters worksheets for the MC and 4 other characters and have done a good chunk of research on the City setup. I’ve got a basic idea for my currency system although that still needs work.

Hamlet is finished (post on this coming up), and I’m just over a third of the way through Gulliver’s Travels. I’m starting to find Gulliver a bit priggish and full of himself, to be honest, although I’m loving his adventures.

The email is a little more under control now – let’s see how long I can keep it up though!

I’ve actually added a new goal for myself, and that is to write 2,000 words a day on another project. I’m feeling a bit rusty as far as writing goes now that I’m spending so much time on research / worldbuilding etc. So I’m going to write a little bit each day on extending the following piece of Flash Fiction. I had so much fun writing it (it’s a first draft by the way and very rough still – don’t judge me on that!) that I wanted to actually dig further into the story. I have no structure, no outline, absolutely no idea of backdrop or backstory, so we’ll see where that goes. It’s more to keep me writing daily than anything else, but I also think there’s a story in there, I have enough ideas in my head already.


18 thoughts on “Calvin and Hobbes on imagination and escapism.

      • Ow. Teach me not to carry a sharp stick for poking at innocent-looking boxes!
        It took me a long time to get used to Rizzo (I grew up a Young), but I kinda liked the guy who came with the name, so I kept the name when he died.


      • I’m still finding it odd to get used to my husband’s name (it’s only been 3 years) – I think in my heart of hearts I’ll always be Jeanjean (maiden name). It’s a funny thing isn’t it to live your whole life as someone and then one day you have to go by another name. Names are such a huge part of how we define ourselves!


      • My sister kept asking me if I was going to go back to my maiden name when my husband died (you can do that for free within the first few months after the death of a husband, at least in Texas). She meant well, of course: she just always thought of me as a ‘Young’ her whole life, and she wasn’t alone – my father, too, kept referring to me by my maiden name. Now that he’s gone, too, though, my sister hasn’t asked Mom why she hasn’t gone back to HER maiden name – my sister has ALWAYS known Mom as a ‘Young’, so why would she change THAT? 😀


  1. I’d seen that comic before but never knew there was a part two so it always depressed me a bit. I’m glad it has a happier ending.

    And good job on your goals! I need to fix a bit more structure into mine work at visiting more blogs doing ROW80. These past two days I was a bit busier than usual.


  2. “if only reality would catch up to my imagination, I’d be a literary goddess”—Loved that line! I, too, formulate so much in my head that sounds masterful, but when I sit down to write it, the brilliance doesn’t transfer. Which suggests my brilliance was never there to begin with. 😉

    Thanks for visiting my site. I appreciate it!


  3. Great post. I really needed this reminder. Calvin and Hobbes always struck me as brilliant. This one really, really touched me.
    Congrats on making progress.


  4. I’ve seen that cartoon before, and the first part always depressed me, because the charm of Calvin and Hobbes is the war between Calvin’s boring and unpleasant real world and his far more interesting imaginary world. I made the mistake of saying that once and was lectured at length by someone who is ADHD. I don’t think Calvin is ADHD; I think the real world just moves too slowly for him.

    Good luck with the added goal!


    • I agree with you, Calvin just has a wonderfully overactive imagination – and it’s part of what makes Calvin and Hobbes so amazing. That and Bill Watterson’s ability to tread the fine line between comedy and commentary on serious issues.
      Don’t you think that if Calvin was real he’d turn out to be a writer or at least some sort of story teller?


    • Absolutely! Also hanging out with an imaginary tiger is far safer than with a real one. Instances of getting one’s head mauled by an imaginary tiger are far less frequent than with a real one – or so I hear.


  5. That comic says to a T one of the many, many reasons my children, 12 and 9, have never attended school. I want my Calvin and Calvinette to have their Hobbes, their ponies, their afternoons alternately bouncing on the trampoline and staring at the clouds, their caterpillar habitats and all night fanfiction reading…

    I want them to have lives that matter – to THEM.

    And I hear you on the imagination front. What comes out on the page doesn’t usually have nearly as much brillinance as it did in my head!

    I think this is the first time I’v visited you. Loved the flash, and I’m eager to see what you do with it! =D


    • Oh thank you Shan for saying you liked the flash! That’s really made my day!! 😀

      I actually was going to send you a TED video on education and creativity that you might find interesting (the jist is why traditional education stifles creativity) but I’m now going to write a whole blog post about it, so it will be in that 🙂

      Giving your kids the freedom to explore and discover what they want is magical. And staying up late reading is one of my best childhood memories (albeit it was hidden under the covers, with a torch, which made it all hot and sweaty, but definitely worth it, and all the more exciting for breaking the rules ;-p )


  6. Pingback: Creativity, Multiplying: May 11, 2014 | shanjeniah

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