AAUGH.com newsletter: Lots of little stuff

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*A BOOK FOR 2005

As you’re all sick of hearing me mention, the next Peanuts strip reprint due out is It’s A Dog’s Life, Snoopy. This reprint of 1998’s strips ships in April, as is available for preorder from http://AAUGH.com
But what about the book after that? Last newsletter, I told you it didn’t have a title yet. Now it does: It’s A Big World, Charlie Brown Reprinting (presumably) the 1997 strips, this will ship in August. Not available for preorder yet, but soon!
Oh, this always makes me grumble. There’s a Peanuts book out there, but we’re not able to offer it through AAUGH.com. At least, not yet (with luck, I’ll be able to offer it soon.) And this one’s a weird little hybrid.

THE PEANUTS TOYBOOK is a cross between a toy and a book, hence the name. It’s a plastic toy of World War I Flying Ace Snoopy, on his Sopwith Camel doghouse — which has wheels on the bottom (which explains how it can fly, right?) Flip open the top of the doghouse, and you reveal a Peanuts Counting Book (1 bowl of dogfood, 2 girls jumping rope, and so on up to 10 musical notes.) This item is designed for ages 18 months and up.

So you can’t get it through me. Where can you get it? I got mine at Walmart (after Toys R Us failed to have it.) If you want to buy one online, head over to: http://www.mjkcollectables.com/ERTLTOYS/Preschool.htm (they have a picture of it there as well.)

Two notes about this for you obsessive folks out there: 1) Snoopy is facing the wrong way! He’s facing the open end of the doghouse; in the strip, he flies facing right, where the closed end of the doghouse is. 2) It’s really hard to say "toybook" 10 times fast.
I’ve spent a lot of today polishing up the collector’s guide in a number of ways. Oh, it’s still the same content, but I’ve made it look a little nicer (and will probably improve the appearance a bit more in the days to come.) Better still, I’ve made it so that your browser window isn’t broken into two frames any more; each page of the guide has the links to the rest of the guide built in. Why is this better? It means you can now easily bookmark any individual page of the guide. If you want the cookbook page, for example, it’s as simple as going to http://AAUGH.com/guide/lcooking.htm In fact, here’s an example of the improvements at work! With the kindly assistance of Mark Ramsey, I’ve added a page listing all of the Coronet UK editions of the Fawcett Crest books, in proper numerical order. A month ago, I would have had to tell you to go to AAUGH.com, click the Collector’s guide link, then click the link marked Coronet Editions to see this list…
but you can see it now just by heading to http://AAUGH.com/guide/coronet.htm
Well, it ain’t Peanuts, but if you’re into comic strips, check this out: http://AAUGH.com/carl/ It’s a random comic strip generator that I developed, using the work the leading theoretician of the comics world, Scott McCloud. It can put out some pretty weird strips. I am inexplicably proud of it.
In a past newsletter, I mentioned an upcoming Schulz biography by respected biographer David Michaelis. Well, you shouldn’t be saving your sheckels for it yet; I now have several sources telling me that it’s slated for 2005! Yipes!
Japanese culture embraces English in an odd way; at times, it seems to be more an embrace of the words as visual objects, rather than what the words mean. Tsuru, a Japanese publisher, published a line of Peanuts books that included Japanese text in the word balloons, with the original English text typeset outside of the panel border. (Having both versions is common in Japanese editions of Peanuts.) Each book in the line had an English title, although the precise wording was occasionally a little weird. There’s "Gloomy Charlie Brown", for example, or "Banzai to Youth, Snoopy".

And then there’s "Gewalt, Lucy". Of course, there is no such English word as Gewalt! There is a German word Gewalt, meaning "force" or "violence"…
but German seems unlikely here. I suspect what they really meant was a Yiddish term which is sometimes used in America, "gevalt" (as in "Oy, gevalt!"), which is along the lines of "How terrible!" or "Woe is me!" The Yiddish influence on American humor never seemed to touch Peanuts directly in the U.S., but it can’t escape it overseas…

Well, that’s all the news for this time. Email me and let me know what you think of the changes in the collector’s guide — or anything else you might want to comment on, complain about, or ask about! My email address is nat@aaugh.com
–Nat Gertler proprietor http://AAUGH.com

Snoopy on the big screen

For those of you who like to keep track of every time Peanuts characters appear on screen,┬áMaestro, the new Leonard Bernstein biopic by Bradley Cooper, has the Macy’s Thanksgiving parade passing by outside a window, including prominent use of Snoopy. You can see the Snoopy moment with some commentary from …

Peanuts publisher buyout

Sources are reporting that KKR is buying Simon and Schuster, probably currently the biggest publisher of Peanuts thanks to their Little Simon-published storybooks, from the current owner, Paramount. Sometimes, when one company buys another, it makes no real difference, just a slight change in letterhead. However, KKR isn’t a media …

Correct the record

While searching for something else, I stumbled across this announcement of the Kaye Ballard Peanuts album in the┬áChicago Sunday Times Magazine for January 15, 1961. Now, let’s take a zoom in on that drawing… and its caption. Magazine sections are generally created with a long lead time, allowing them to …