BY NICOLE HOLLANDER
A few years ago I did a strip about a store that opened on the West Coast for people who want to work out their anger on other people’s stuff. For a fee you could break everything in sight and then go home refreshed. I don’t know if I could break other people’s stuff… I have to break my own and then realize it wasn’t as therapeutic as I thought and I have to clean it up and regret its loss.
One day I balanced a pair of plaster hands precariously on a ledge, then I brushed past them and knocked them down a flight of wooden stairs. They broke, revealing a metal armature. They were beautiful. I put them in a small cage that had a canary feed logo on the front and I looked at them for a couple of years.
Last year I added a small slatted wooden table as a pedestal. Janice came by.
“Still not enough,” she said, putting a tiny bird between the mangled fingers.
“Too much,” I said, taking it away.
Then I added a menacing looking blackbird to the edge of the table. We liked it, but I think it’s not done yet.
Nicole Hollander created the cartoon character Sylvia in 1980. The strip was nationally syndicated for over 30 years. Sylvia, Nicole, and, in fact, all the characters in the strip are blatant feminists and love good food, prepared by others. In 2008 Nicole retired Sylvia and started a 6 day a week blog featuring drawings, opinions, politics and classic Sylvia strips. She welcomes contributions by friends and sometimes mere acquaintances. Nicole teaches the graphic memoir, fiction and non-fiction in Chicago and has an introverted cat named Toots.