This week Mark got a hard lesson in reality when his a priori assumption that, after presumably years of being asked by Rusty to go fishing, his son would hold onto that desire as he grew older. In this case, Rusty clearly has other aspirations and goals, but fishing at 4 AM is not one of them. Mark was apparently not aware of that change. It’s like the Harry Chapin song “Cat’s in the Cradle” about an older father lamenting his uselessness when his grown-up son had acquired the same habit he had as a younger dad of never making time to be with his son. Now, the son has no time for his dad.
Mark seems oblivious to that lesson and instead, is hung up over the idea that the real issue is Rusty just hates fishing. Okay, I’m going out on a limb here, second-guessing Rivera’s motive for this small morality play. Will Mark be able to update his thinking and build a more realistic relationship with Rusty?
Or is it really just that Rusty is moving into the rebellious phase of teenage life and it is up to Mark to bring Rusty back into the fold of Mark’s Family? Perhaps we’ll find out this coming week.
SIDEBAR: I am driving across the country to Virginia on Monday morning, which will take 2-3 days. I know it will be tough, but you may have to wait until then for me to catch up on the strips. Be brave and stay strong, dear readers!
Usually, we can count on Rivera’s Sunday strips for presenting actually useful information on interesting topics. But I have to say that I think this strip does not reach that bar. It’s kind of like some student’s weekly report: “Our friend, the muskrat”. Okay, the muskrat is a builder—like a beaver—and has a general similarity of appearance. But also smells. So, is telling them apart really the important point here, when they both live in different habitats?