Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


Ballard Street

Filed under: Reviews — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

I finally figured out why I love Ballard Street. It’s a comic that is offbeat and strange. There are no real punchlines, but it makes me happy every day that I read it. Partake of the splendor here:

Ballard Street

I love Ballard Street because the characters are so emotional. Their faces fill with pride at their strange accomplishments. Their brows furrough with anger at the disputes. They shiver in anticipation of the next bad thing in their lives. They bounce with joy at their odd activities.

The characters of Ballard Street are living on the edge. They are filled with their respective emotions and they seem like they are going to burst with it. That’s why I love Ballard Street.



  1. Part of the appeal of “Ballard Street” is the way its characters, conventinally unattractive members of the middle class, like to overdramatize their lives, the over-importance they assign their hobbies and whims and annoyances. The captions are also critical, sometimes understatement, sometimes overinflation. I have been looking for some good commentary on Van Amerongen but so far have turned up nothing. Once I ended up trading emails with a Dutch teenager (there aren’t many Van Amerongens out there). In any event, Van Amerongen is an orginal, a true American genius.

    Comment by Scott Rice — 2/11/2006 @ 12:45 pm

  2. More often than not, the word that pops into mind while reading ‘Ballard Street’ is ‘poignant’. The characters are mostly elderly middle class men and women who are past their prime but still want to make sense of their time left, fill it with joys and schemes that will make the rest of their lives worth living. I am 30, but at some level, I relate to their predicament, their mental state, their eccentricities and their imminent dissolution. We all need a reason to live; even when we are old.

    Comment by Anupam Choudhury — 2/5/2007 @ 5:22 am

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