Friday, June 1, 2012

I'm Your Love Rhino

Random Barking Fun: Just Add Absurdum

If we're lucky, this is what happens when we ruminate on our lives or news of the day which always seems to be sensationalized and grim: We focus, for no particular reason, on a thing that appears trivial... but as we keep rolling the Thing around in our heads (an advertisement; a line from a movie; the piano piece from the soundtrack of season 1 of In Treatment) it allows us to stop focusing on the darker side of reality.

In the banal repetition of something we can't shake, we're reminded of how absurdly important we think so many things, and ourselves, are -- of how the world is both at once; profoundly important, and ridiculous. And somehow, we regain our sense of humor and our balance. For a while.

Love Rhino: Click For Larger Image; It's Easy And Fun! (© Berke Breathed)

For me, this morning, it was the term "Love Rhino", from the finely tuned mind of Berkley Breathed, cartoonist and humorist who created Bloom County and "Outland", and Opus the Penguin, one of my favorite characters in the history of American comic strips (an equal First with Bill Watterson's Calvin and Hobbes; but that's another story).

Opus: Click For Larger Image; It's Easy And Fun! (© Berke Breathed)

I was disappointed when Breathed decided to wind BC down in the early 1990's; it was as if the kid next door, whom you depended on to show you the Funny Side of things, told you he was moving away with his family.

For the past week, I've been either focused on my Witless Employ™ or the never-ending stream of not-so-good news; I was simply tired of it. And into my partially-empty Dog Brain came an image of that specific Bloom County strip, and the phrase, "Love Rhino". I couldn't get the phrase out of my head, but the rest of the day was tolerably, absurdly all right.

In the short run, what appears trivial may not save our life -- but in the long run it can make life easier to take. It's one meaning of humor.

Thanks, Berke.

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