Great cartoonists have to be a little bit sick in the good sort of way. They somehow have to have that extra twist or demented neural pathway that allows them to look at situations in life and express them in absurd yet funny ways. Jerry Van Amerongen is such a person and we all can be in better humor because of it. Of course, one way to do that is to read this book. The cartoons involve unusual people, in many cases exhibiting odd behavior yet at other times expressing what are common anxieties. One of my favorites in that area is on page 50 where the image is of an old married couple sitting in their easy chairs reading. The woman has turned to the man and is saying, "Honey, You don't mind do you, if I don't live up to my full potential?..." Every person that reads has had a moment when they have read about another person or some item in the self-help area and experienced a momentary feeling of inadequacy. Life can be good, strange and sometimes hilarious and in this book Van Amerongen captures all three.
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Charles Ashbacher (CharlesAshbacher)
Charlie Ashbacher is a compulsive reader and writer about many subjects. His prime areas of expertise are in mathematics and computers where he has taught every course in the mathematics and computer … more
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It's been a long time coming, but Ballard Street fans can finally get their fix. In this first Ballard Street cartoon collection, cartoonist Jerry Van Amerongen (previously of The Neighborhood) is at his best, creating an assortment of panels that have one thing in common: an intense level of absurdity! On every page, the deranged antics of weird suburbanite characters provide delight for all.