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Betty’s Cartoon – “Please Sign Slowly”

May 30, 2009

Back in 1979, Betty worked at DCARA— Deaf Counseling, Advocacy & Referral Agency in Oakland, California as Public Relations Director. Among other duties, she was responsible for the agency newsletter (she became Executive Director for part of 1980, before moving to Los Angeles). [And for us geographically-impaired folks, Oakland’s what’s on the “other” side of the San Francisco Bay Bridge.] Naturally, she put her art skills to work and created cartoons for the newsletter.

Last month, NAD had a board meeting and fundraising event in Philadelphia, site of the next Conference in 2010. A week before the event, Nancy J. Bloch, NAD CEO, asked Betty if she had artwork that could be used in the auction, with the proceeds to be shared between Betty and NAD. Well, most of Betty’s work retails between $2-4,000 so we went looking for a drawing that would be suitable for auction, and found some of the cartoons from the DCARA era. Most of them were created on tracing paper, but we found one that Betty re-drew in 1986 on good drawing paper. So we bought a new frame for it and brought it to the fundraiser. 

It was interesting to see the different responses to the drawing. One guy went up to Betty and told her how much he identified with that experience. Other people talked about whether the man was the kid’s father or a new teacher. The drawing was bought at auction by Rodney Danco. Here’s a photo of Betty with the drawing, and a close-up of the drawing itself.

Betty G. Miller in her art studio with a cartoon drawn in 1986.

Betty G. Miller in her art studio with a cartoon drawn in 1986.

"Please Sign Slowly" ink drawing on paper, 1986

"Please Sign Slowly" ink drawing on paper, 1986

Poor guy, he will be mortified when he finds out what the girl is saying! But it’s even worse for the girl! 

Related sites:

Original artwork available online: 
NAD— National Association of the Deaf: 
DCARA— Deaf Counseling, Advocacy & Referral Agency:

2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 4, 2009 11:00 am

    I never seen that old comic and yet, it’s funny!

    Only I could argue that kids trend squeeze without use concept to go bathroom themselves like I was. Therefore, adult would should able to see the behavior that easy…. or not?

  2. purpleswirlarts permalink
    August 4, 2009 12:40 pm

    Hey, Bright! Yeah, you’re right, kid would probably squeeze when they couldn’t get the message across the “polite” way. But first, you have to be proper and polite.

    —Nancy Creighton

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