A Tribute To Charles M. Schulz

Most people aspire to create something that will last for many years to come. Very few people can accomplish this. Fewer still become the best in their field while doing something they love to do. Charles Schulz was one of these few. He drew every panel of "Peanuts" (he never did like that name), for nearly 50 years. He could have had someone else draw the strip after his hands developed tremors years ago, but he didn't, probably because he enjoyed drawing so much. Perhaps the reason he passed away the day before his final strip debuted was he couldn't stand the thought of it coming to an end. Whatever the reason, we'll miss him. The strip ended the way he wanted it to, without Charlie Brown kicking the football or finding the love of the little red headed girl. Most of all though, Peanuts was his work and his alone, both now and in the future. No one else will be allowed to draw Peanuts strips, and that's the way I think it should be.

I think most of us can relate to Peanuts. Most of us would like to be as suave and confident as Snoopy but most of the time we feel like Charlie Brown. Unfortunately there are plenty of Lucy's to laugh at us when we fall flat on our backs but there are also some Linus' out there offering us encouragement and friendship. I, personally, can relate to Charlie Brown's fear of doctors, overwhelming homework assignments and classmates who seem to finish them impossibly fast, fear of standing up in front of the class, lack of skill in most sports, and of course fear of failure. I never got a bag of rocks on Halloween but on the other hand I never could fly a kite.

Peanuts will always be with us. Phrases like "Charlie Brown's Christmas tree" and "Security blanket" will be around forever. Mr Schulz may not have invented "Good grief" and "Blockhead" but we will think of Peanuts whenever we hear them. The show "A Charlie Brown Christmas", one of the very few Christmas specials to dare mention the true meaning of Christmas, will likely air as long as people celebrate Christmas. And the newspapers will be printing reprints of strips starting with ones from 1974. I think they should have started from the very first Peanuts strip and worked up from there, but they didn't ask me.

You were a good man, Charles Schulz!

Charles Schulz pic/linkSnoopy.com