“I am hungry. Therefore I am.” – Garfield
For over forty years, the Monday-hating but lasagna-loving, not over-weighted but under-tall cat brings joy to everyone worldwide.
On 19th June 1978, the first comic strip about the iconic egocentric cat and his somewhat dorky owner Jon Arbuckle was published. Since then, Garfield was everywhere: his adventures were published in more than 2500 newspapers, 100 countries, and 40 languages all over the world.
Why seems everyone to be so infatuated with this cat? He is very impolite, fat, lazy, and always puts himself first – but he is also a cat with a warm and loveable personality. He is a real antihero who unites within himself almost all of the bad characteristics a human could have – and people celebrate him for it. And maybe this is the reason: He is selfish and doesn’t care about it. He is like an old friend who makes us feel a little bit better by showing us that it’s alright not to perform perfectly all the time and that being selfish sometimes helps to protect ourselves. And let’s be honest: When we are on our own, don’t we secretly celebrate Garfield’s behaviour? Don’t we sometimes identify ourselves with him? I think we do indeed. And when being in a good mood, we might reflect on our behaviour and find that life is not bad at all and we should not take ourselves too seriously.
This red tabby cat is a fixed component of pop culture and an excellent resource in the EFL classroom: The drawings are lovely and easy to catch. The vocabulary is quite easy to understand, and above all, students will find points of connection to their own lives very quickly. Moreover, Garfield’s philosophy is very light-hearted and easy to get for everyone – thus, it can motivate to access more challenging tasks. So, teachers, it’s up to you because (to let Garfield speak in his own wise words): “If you are patient…and wait long enough…Nothing will happen!”