The Moose Riders, Page 1

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First off, let me wish Casimir Pulaski a heartfelt “Happy Birthday.”

The image on this page is where it all started. Well not quite. It all REALLY started with a Pottery Barn catalog one Christmas when my son was a tiny little boy. On the page of the catalog where Pottery Barn had its rocking horses, there was one rocking horse that was actually a moose. Truman’s Grandma Marsha decided this was so cute, her grandson just had to have it. So that Christmas morning, Truman rode on a moose for the first time, and had a good time with it until he eventually got old enough to not be interested in such things. We set the moose aside, and some years later, Truman’s little sister Wini had her first turn riding a moose.

She, like Truman, had a lot of fun. Truman played with her as she rode the moose, and I was just struck by this look of nostalgia on his face–not a look I expected to see on the face of a 9-year-old. I found myself wishing they could ride a moose together, so I drew it.

In the original sketch, for some reason I drew the hilt of a katana sticking out of Truman’s backpack. In my head, the fact that it was there to fight zombies was just sort of assumed, and rather obvious really.

“Katana? Is that for the zombies?”
“Of course. What else would it be for?”

As I looked at the sketch, I thought, “Wait a minute. Where would a 9-year-old get a samurai sword? Don’t be ridiculous.” That’s when I changed it to a crowbar… because that made perfect sense.

Anyhow, I’ve redone the antlers since that original concept, but other than that, it’s mostly the same. The old antlers are still available on a skateboard deck, btw.

Oh, and if you find yourself trying to turn the phrase “riding the moose” into some sort of filthy euphemism, then you are officially a sick bastard.