Thursday, November 23, 2006

Fanny #4: Night Fruits

Fanny #4: Night Fruits, 1993, The Directory of Women Comic Strip Artists, Writers, and Cartoonists
contributors: Cinders McLeod, Susan Catherine, Karen Donnelly, Jackie Smith, Jeremy Dennis, Carol Swain, Josephine Campbell, Lee Kennedy, Beccy Matthews, Jenni Scott, Jacqui Adams, Juliet Gosling, Suzy Varty, Annie Lawson, Isabel Toledo

We pulled onto Interstate 10 in Southern California around 9:30 p.m. last night, and five and a hours later, we pulled into my mother's driveway in Arizona. Despite the early hour, she was already awake, getting ready for a busy morning at the restaurant where she works. After a few hours' sleep, I awoke early to pick up my grandmother so she could put our turkey in the oven in plenty of time for dinner. A catnap later, my girlfriend, my brother's girlfriend, and I went out for a quick cup of coffee, and we speculated about my cousin's mysterious new fiancee, who may or may be a stripper, but who was very pleasant to meet regardless. Just a few hours ago, my brother and I braved a new episode of Grey's Anatomy with my mother. Yes, my Thanksgiving holiday turned into a very female-centric experience . . .

which, of course, managed its way into today's review, as well. As you can tell from the above list of contributors, Fanny #4 is a jam comic featuring short installments from a variety of women artists. The inside front cover describes the concept this way: "Night Fruits are the flowering of women's thoughts on prophecy, coincidence, dreams and nightmares. The mushroom fruits at night, love is often consummated at night, the most convoluted thoughts come at night. Some of these events are recorded by the artists of this comic. From Virtual Reality to the Curse of Apollo." My opinion of these short tales is as varied as the styles and topics of the stories themselves. I quite enjoyed the first installment -- a cosmic diatribe on the functionality of the world at night thanks to . . . you guessed it . . . women. Other contributions, like "the distant future," were too surreal for my open mind. I've never confessed to understand women. This issue should've helped. In many ways, it just reinforced my ignorance. I guess they like it that way.

Thanksgiving. Some families watch the annual Macy's parade, some friends play their own pick-up football Turkey Bowl, others pitch tents outside of Best Buy for Black Friday's impending deals and steals. Through it all, most families' traditions hinge on the dedication of a woman -- a wife, a mother, a grandmother -- in the kitchen, slaving over a meal that will bring everyone that much closer together. Sometimes they toil the night before, reaping those fruits to stay ahead of the holiday game. So, on this Thanksgiving, I express my appreciation to the ladies. How do you always seem to make a turkey out of us guys?

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