November 26 ~  A Ten-Speed Bike Right Words at the Right Time

"Life is like a ten-speed bike. Most of us have gears we never use." ~ Charles M. Schulz

Charles M. Schulz

Peanuts creator Charles Schulz (1922-2000) was born on this day in Minneapolis. Known to his friends as Sparky, he was a combat veteran of World War II.

"No problem," Schulz observed, "is so formidable that you can't walk away from it."

After the war, a church publication hired him to draw comics and he created a boy named Charlie Brown and a girl with red hair. "It seems beyond comprehension of people that someone can be born to draw comic strips, but I think I was," he admitted. "My ambition from earliest memory was to produce a daily comic strip."

Schulz introduced his special characters, called Li'l Folks, to seven newspapers on October 2,1950. The name was soon changed to Peanuts, which ironically Schulz disliked.

Over the years, the comic strip grew in popularity because of the wisdom shared about life by the delightful children. "Some days are like being in the 'ten items or less' line behind a dozen people who don't understand the new math," Schulz penned with clever wit.

In 2000, Charlie Brown and the gang appeared in over 2,600 newspapers in 75 countries, and translated into 21 languages. Beloved beagle Snoopy is the most widely-recognized cartoon character in the world.

Happiness is laughter... and a warm puppy.