December 1st, 2010
by Terri Libenson
So every year, the Kaplan family either travels to Florida to visit Jillâ€™s mom or Jillâ€™s mom makes the trip up north. What can I say, itâ€™s tradition. I introduced the â€œJudyâ€ character the first Thanksgiving â€œPajama Diariesâ€ launched. She makes a few reoccurrences throughout the rest of the year(s), but Thanksgiving is always all about Judy.
Itâ€™s apparent she demands attention — as she should. Originally modeled after my own mom, Judy is both a worrywart and a guilt monger. She also happens to be a widow (my dad passed away in 1996). This year, I decided to reward Judy with an early holiday giftâ€¦that is, a boyfriend.
My own mom has a long-time boyfriend of her own. He happens to be my #1 fan (in an endearing way, not the Stephen King way). I warned him I would introduce â€œHarvyâ€ into the comics during this yearâ€™s Thanksgiving series. He was quite tickled. Yet thatâ€™s where the similarities end. Harvy is no doppelganger. He is own personâ€¦semi-deaf, semi-blind, and with a heart of gold (the one similarity the two share). He also happens to be Judyâ€™s late husbandâ€™s cousin (not a similarity).
This strip above is one of my absolute favorites. I donâ€™t know what it is about these characters; they start out derived from real people and then take on a life of their own. I suppose thatâ€™s the beauty of this medium. Anyway, Iâ€™ve always wanted to work â€œJDateâ€ into a strip, and Harvy provided me with the perfect outlet. God bless him!
Soâ€¦ back to the Thanksgiving topic. In real life, we couldnâ€™t actually celebrate with my mother this year, but we had a great time with family and friends. I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, too â€¦surrounded by the inspiring characters in your life.
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