Rob's Blog


Saying Goodbye to a Friend – May 23rd, 2017

by on May.24, 2017, under Buddies, Friends, Swampy's Florida

I’m temporarily grounded as my brakes in the car have decided not to operate as they should. This meant on Tuesday I needed a ride to a memorial service for a friend. Maxine Thomas was kind to give me that ride out to Dunnellon to say goodbye to our mutual friend Penny Fleeger. The service was held at a favorite spot of Penny’s, Rainbow Springs State Park (Photo above).

Penny was born and raised in the same city my mother and aunt were born and raised, Coral Gables, Florida. It was one evening Penny and I were talking about Coral Gables and high school. Suddenly we found that Penny went to elementary, junior high, high school AND the same college with my Aunt, though they didn’t really know each other.

Penny moved on from Coral Gables to other places, married and ended up in Dunnellon, Florida. Widowed and wanting to help the community, she was voted in as a Dunnellon City Council member. She also got involved with the local historical museum, the Chamber of Commerce and helping preserve the Rainbow River, which she lived along.

I met her several years ago and we were very good friends until the her health took her. Penny loved everything that drove my Swampy’s Florida efforts. It was Penny’s efforts that produced the ‘Swampy’s Florida: Dunnellon’ book.

Penny’s gone now. In a place she can rest from the maddening crowd – One of her favorite places – the Rainbow River.


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On the road in Orlando with many friends! – May 17th, 2017

by on May.18, 2017, under Buddies, Friends

Started the day with an early morning run to the monthly Orlando Remembered meeting at the Orange County Regional History Center.

From there I slipped over to Beefy King and got together with a crew of friends. I was showing friend and Apopka native Melanie King my Apopka illustration I had done. Her friend Joe was there and took the photograph.

I hadn’t seen most of this lot in a few years. Standing is Pam Treadwell. Seated are Charles Treadwell, Marvin Bennett and Kim Cullars, who was celebrating his birthday.

I told Pam she looks like a member of a FBI task force who has caught three fugitives.

Marvin has just published an ace of a book, ‘Trutles, Tortoises and People’, full of information, art and Marvin’s scientifically accurate paintings of slews of turtles. This book is not widely available. Let me know if you’d like one and I’ll help you get one.

After Beefy King I had a rather long business meeting about a project and then just had to stop. I was pooped!!! I guess my age slowing me down.

I got back on my horse and rode out to the Winter Park Library to sit and hear my friend Susan Trewick and her group pick guitars. While heading in, I noticed the library book store sign still out and went in to see if they would like me to bring it in. Oops! I spotted a Florida history book I needed. Then found another and another! I got back to Susan’s group half hour later stayed too short a time and ran on to meet with pals Robert Bauerle and Ken Culotta, below, to write a set of political cartoons.



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Entertaining for a cause. – April 8th, 2017

by on Apr.08, 2017, under Caricatures, Cartooning, Friends

Jim & Nicole Collins, me, Don Nottingham and David Moore.

A successful night Friday night during Champions for Champions Fun, Dine, Wine and Giving Night. Much was raised through the dinner, silent auction and other fund raising activities, including some raised by my doing some drawing.

Champions for Champions mission “is to enrich family lives and values through providing and facilitating educational, sports, music, and life skill programs for people with special needs.”



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On the road again & high school fun! – December 23rd, 2016

by on Dec.23, 2016, under Friends, What's New?

I’m back on the road!I was off delivering cards within minutes of leaving Muffler Man of Apopka, Complete Auto Repair around 5pm. Thank you, Dray Coggin, for getting me out so fast so I could do more Christmas card deliveries!!!

One stop was to my Orlando High School Christmas Alumni gathering in College Park (Orlando). Passed along a few cards there. Here I am with Denise Lappe and Allison Campbell Thurston.

Allison and I were one of the few to be chosen at Edgewater H.S. to start a part-time job drawing caricatures (for me) and portraits (for her). We were literally pulled from the quiet life of school and thrown into the eager, hungry jaws of the tourism industry.


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Jim Ivey – The gang’s all here! – December 22nd, 2016

by on Dec.22, 2016, under Friends

There was a Christmas gathering today in Apopka, Florida, to spend a bit of time with friend and cartooning legend, Jim Ivey.

Jim is one of the founders of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists. He was a poltical cartoonist for the Washington Star, St Petersburg Times and the Orlando Sentinel Star. He started The Cartoon Museum in St Petersburg and moved it to Orlando as he moved onto the local newspaper in 1970. The Cartoon Museum was more a comic book store, showcase of cartoon art spanning the past century and a hangout for Jim and pals to play cards and smoke cigars. If that sheet music has a hint of cigar, that’s why. Shortly after the move to Orlando, he started the Orlando Con, which was eventually sold and later became the massive MegaCon today.

Jim was and is still famous for giving away as much as he sold comics and cartoon books, toys and original artwork. I bought tons from Jim during the time of his store and was given almost as much. Jim is 91.







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Dinner with a lot of Friends! – November 14th, 2016

by on Nov.14, 2016, under Friends

Attended a dinner meeting with a pile of friends tonight. The fellowship was great and the vittles by Chef Randal White even better! There were give-a-ways including items Brigitte Smith brought back from her recent trip to Kenya. How she got a fine statue of elephants back from Kenya in one piece is anyone’s guess. Here are a few photos mostly taken by, co-organizer of the event, Donna Dollar Wilson. Incredible job, Donna, you and Ed did!
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Former classmates and drawings at a Victory Party! – November 8th, 2016

by on Nov.09, 2016, under Caricatures, Cartooning, Friends


It was great to see Lynette & Suzette Duncan Weddington at a party Tuesday night. I think the last time the three of us were together was during a play we did at Edgewater High School, ‘Dirty Work at the Crossroads’. Unlike myself, Lynette and Suzette have not changed a bit. Stephen Orth, who played the dastardly bad guy, likely remembers that triumph of us thespians! 😀
Otherwise, I volunteered my bit of humorous illustrative life coaching.

img_9687 img_9706



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With some pals – October 25th, 2016

by on Oct.25, 2016, under Friends


With Marion County Commissioner David Moore, party leader Paul Skinner and Commissioner Stan McClain this evening. Great guys all!

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I attended the Florida Springs Restoration Summit & here are photos!

by on Oct.02, 2016, under Florida Outdoors!, Friends

It's fellow artist Johnny Dame, graphic artist & fellow Florida history nut Rick Kilby and me.

It’s fellow artist Johnny Dame, graphic artist & fellow Florida history nut Rick Kilby and me.

Spent most of Saturday helping out at the Florida Springs Restoration Summit in Ocala, Florida. Got to help out with an event involving such an important subject as protecting our water for us now and future generations. The success of keeping our Florida water clean will save taxpayers tons of money. American taxpayers are already spending ridiculous sums of money trying to fix our water problems. Goal should be not to put us in this position in the first place. As our water goes bad, business stops being created and people stop moving to Florida. Desalinization is not an option. Neither practical or cost effective, as we’ve learned the hard way. Being excellent stewards of our natural resources will save us all.

I also got to spend time with friends and make some great connections.

Here are photos from the event!

David Simmons has done a lot to help our water troubles. If only more would follow him.

David Simmons has done a lot to help our water troubles. If only more would follow him.


A view across the room of the conference.

A view across the room of the conference.

Question & Answer time to the panel!

John Dunn, Silver Springs Alliance board member (in yellow), asks the panel a question.


Another view of the room. that's David Bottonly (in black) in the foreground, who filmed most of the summit.

Another view of the room. that’s David Bottomley (in black) in the foreground, who filmed most of the summit.

A panoramic view of the room during the action!

A panoramic view of the room during the action!


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September 10th, 2015 – Evening Political Pow-Wow!

by on Sep.10, 2015, under Friends


Been meeting writing gags and talk in’ politics at a Steak ‘n Shake in Winter Park, Florida, with Robert Bauerle and Ken Culotta. Ken’s son Chris came along with Ken. Old pal Richard Bazzo and his wife happened to be at the restaurant. Great to see and talk to Richard for awhile.


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April 7th, 2015 – My Stan Freberg Remembrance and Tribute!

by on Apr.07, 2015, under Friends


I LOVE humor and today we lost one of our greatest American humorists, Stan Freberg. Lost today are the genius of Twain, Dorothy Parker, S. J. Perelman, Steve Allen, many others… and, now, Stan Freberg.I was more than tongue tied when I got to meet Mr. Freberg a few years ago at a party during one of our annual The National Cartoonists Society Reuben Weekends. Forever thank yous to my friend Chad Frye for bringing him to the party! “Him” being Chad and Mr. Freberg. I pushed out a pad hoping Mr. Freberg would sign and mumbled something that he wasn’t signing for the cost of the party. I thought of bowing, realizing I was surrounded by fellow cartoonists who would’ve just thought I had dropped a pen. Decided to just use up the years allocation of Thank Yous and clear the way for comedy royalty to meet the next subject.Some of Freberg brilliance:
Little Blue Riding Hood – (With June Foray)
St. George And The Dragonet p
The Lone Psychiatrist –
Terribly Adult Cereal –
and on and on…Was just talking to my old pal Gar Thaddeus Gernstein about Mr. Freberg and promised top send along this photo. Sorry to do it under these circumstances.
2015-0407-StanFreberg-2 2015-0407-StanFreberg-3
By the way, that’s Rob Rogers standing in the background.
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