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Humorous Sympathy Cards

By Dean Norman

My first full time job was writing cards for Hallmark. I specialized in funny cards for their new contemporary department. But I was in the editorial department and often assigned to write not-so-funny cards. The hardest to write were sympathy cards. I could never write a good one.

Hallmark hired cartoonist Sam Van Meter to draw cartoon sketches for humorous card verses. When he was caught up on his sketch assignments, he tried his writing hand at some humorous sympathy cards.

“Now that the old curmudgeon is six feet under
When do you vultures split the plunder?”

“Sorry your beloved is pushing up clover
When can I start coming over?”

Sam’s cards were never published, but they boosted morale in the editorial department where writers often got weary of creating so many sweet rhymes. Sam and I were both transferred to contemporary where our talents were more appreciated.

—Dean Norman

Dean Norman
 is a cartoonist and humor writer, whose work has appeared in greeting cards,The New Yorker, MAD Magazine, The Cleveland Plain Dealer Sunday Magazine and The Kansas City Star. He's also written comedy for cartoon shows and written and illustrated children's books. He illustrated a cartoon book for Cleveland Metroparks, Cleveland Metroparks Adventures.

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