A Charlie Brown Memory

adoring red girl

My parents were very frugal when I was a teenager.  They rarely went to the movies and only occasionally took a vacation.  It surprised me then when my mom announced that she had tickets to a play in Boston.  It was the Charlie Brown play, which turned out to have only a few characters, a few props and the characters only wore street clothes.  The play didn’t have regular acts.  Instead each episode was presented like a cartoon strip.  It was funny and imaginative and worth every dime.

The play’s writers let the audience use their imagination.  It was assumed that most if not all were fans of the Charlie Brown comic strip.  When each actor came out and said their lines you knew which one of Charles Schultz’ characters they portrayed.  But how could someone act like a dog, like Snoopy?  I remember the anticipation of seeing my favorite cartoon dog.  The show started and a young man came on stage and sat on a tall box, gave his lines and made us laugh.  The box, of course, was his dog house.  In our collective minds this was Snoopy; no problem.

My family remembered one line for years and years.  One character would come out from stage right, walk across the stage and kiss and pat Snoopy.  Then they would leave the stage.  Another character would come from stage left, hug Snoopy and leave the stage.  Finally the last character came from stage right, hugged, snuggled and kissed Snoopy and left the stage.  Snoopy turned to the audience and said, “The Curse of the Fuzzy Face!”  The audience roared with laughter.

If you live with an animal you’ll understand.  As we go through our day, how many times do we stop for a moment, without consciously thinking about it, and pet, kiss, sweet talk and hug our pets?  The pets take it in stride, perhaps chalking it up to, “The Curse of the Fuzzy Face”.

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