Labor Day Loafers (Not the Shoes!)

One of the dictionary definitions of the word holiday is, “A day free from work, which one may spend at leisure.” America welcomes September by celebrating its workforce on Labor Day, during which many relax or, put a less delicate way, they loaf.

Thinking about Labor Day last time in this space, we looked at a sampling of the comic strips’ many working heroes and heroines. But newspaper comics have certainly had more than their share of layabouts, so it seems only proper to feature a few of their number in recognition of the many hard-working men and women who take advantage of the long Labor Day weekend to put up their feet and recharge their internal batteries. May they be as successful at that pursuit as these fictional loafers!

As so many newspapers were wont to do, we lead off with Peanuts, and Snoopy in a familiar position — reclining on the roof of his dog house — in this strip from March of 1973. Six years later, Britain’s transoceanic newspaper hero, Andy Capp, scarcely moves a muscle in repose as he delivers a zinger to his long-suffering wife, Flo — and this autumnal installment of Walt Kelly’s magical Pogo offers a lazy afternoon in the Okefenokee and a reflection on holidays in general. (Click each image to enlarge.)

One of this writer’s favorite comics, Tumbleweeds, serves up its December 4, 1972 installment focused on stopping work and goofing off in a most unlikely place — Beetle Bailey does what he does best in this April 1966 strip — and finally, rewinding all the way back to mid-July of 1943, one of the grand poobahs of loafing, Li’l Abner Yokum, has his idyll rudely interrupted by his future wife, Daisy Mae Scragg. (Yup, click to enlarge each.)

Labor Day in the United States yields to the waning days of summer, as the day’s length shortens and verdant foliage transforms into a broad palette of colors. We hope our readers enjoy the slow change of seasons as much as they enjoy their favorite comic strips!

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