Stick to Drawing Comics, Monkey Brain!: Cartoonist Ignores Helpful Advice

I have been aware of the Dilbert comic strip for years. I admit that I am neither a zealous fan nor a loyal reader although I did find a number of Dilbert comic hilarious and worth being cut and pasted on wall as I have seen some of my professors did in their office. Two weeks ago, I came across a book titled Stick to Drawing Comics, Monkey Brain!: Cartoonist Ignores Helpful Advice in the clearance section at Barnes and Noble. That was the time when I realized the creator of the comic, Scott Adams, is also a writer. I skimmed a few pages and was immediately attracted by his sense of humor. Needless to say, I decided to read on.

One might find some of the content and words used in the book inappropriate and/or offensive. Others might feel that some chapters were essentially meaningless. However, I can guarantee that you would also find jokes that give you a good laugh as well as thoughts that most people don’t dare to express or don’t bother to put into words.

Here are some of my favorite parts from the book along with my thoughts. Those parts are not necessarily funny but I like them because they are very true:

“Maybe it’s the way I was raised, but I find that I get mad about all the wrong things. For example, when I hear a news report about some serial killer who buried forty-three victims in an underground bunker that he constructed beneath his shed, my first reaction is Wow, he built an underground bunker under a shed! I find myself admiring his industriousness and passion in the pursuit of his dreams. That’s clearly wrong.” (My thought: Wow! I used to have similar reactions when I heard those stories. Of course, I don’t admire the killing part. I just think that it is unbelievable that a person can, and have the time to, build something that big on his own.)

“Did you see the story about the convicted murderer who escaped prison by using a fake ID and a set of civilian clothes? The guards just opened the door and let him out…I feel sorry for the guard who checked the ID, saw the picture of Joe Camel, and thought looks good to me. Plus, you’d think one of the guards would notice the skort made from a pillowcase.” (My thought: Yeah, I feel sorry for that guard too.)

“…I return to my closet with a warm basket of freshly laundered clothes, only to notice one sock on the floor halfway between the clean laundry in my arms and the hamper from whence it came. Now I have to ask myself, is that a clean sock that just now fell from my basket, or is it a dirty sock that fell an hour ago when I was taking the dirty stuff from the hamper?…I inspect the sock, checking for radiant heat, flexibility, and freshness. I sniff it, give it the dangle test (to see if it is still shaped like a foot), and then make my decision. I’m never entirely comfortable that I made the right one. That’s why I often walk with a slight limp, just so I don’t spend so much time putting weight on what might be a dirty sock.” (My thought: Haha, that happened a lot and I usually just put that sock back to the hamper. For the obvious reason, I never dare to sniff it.)

“If you see a Realtor’s photo and she looks less than stunning, there’s a good chance she has the sort of face that would make Stevie Wonder even blinder. His eyeballs would retract so far into his brain he’d forget how to play the piano.” (My thought: That’s mean! But…I laughed.)

“If I were to sell real estate, I would use my ugliness to my advantage. No one trusts beautiful people anyway, especially when large sums of money are involved. My real estate motto would be ‘I’m hideous and I haven’t starved to death yet, so you know I must be good!’” (My thought: That can be my motto too!)

There are more to this list but I don’t want to bore people with my recount. All I want to say is that I like this book and am interested in reading other books by the same author. After some research, I have decided to read The Dilbert Principle next if I can find it in the library.


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