40 years ago today, Garfield, first appeared as a comic strip. Created by Jim Davis, it chronicles the life of Garfield the cat, his owner Jon, and Odie the dog, with topics ranging from the orange tabby’s laziness and obsessive eating, Jon’s need for coffee, and disdain of Mondays and diets.

As of 2013, the strip was syndicated in roughly 2,580 newspapers, holding the Guinness World Record for being the world’s most widely syndicated comic strip and earning up to a billion dollars a year from merchandising, books, films, and television. WATCH a Garfield and Friends clip, “What Happened to my Lasagna?” (1978)

MORE Good News on this Day in History:

  • Blaise Pascal, the French mathematician and philosopher who, as a young man invented a mechanical calculator and later philosophized that “all men’s miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone,” was born (1623)
  • The first official baseball game was played— with the New York Nines defeating the N.Y. Knickerbockers 23–1 in Hoboken, New Jersey (1846)
  • The U.S. Congress prohibited slavery in United States territories, nullifying the Dred Scott Case (1862)
  • Ann Wilson, co-founder of the rock band Heart, which sold over 35 million records worldwide, was born (1950)
  • After surviving an 83-day filibuster in the United States Senate, The Civil Rights Act was passed by Congress outlawing all segregation on the basis of race (1964)
  • Edgar Winter’s No.1 hit ‘Frankenstein’, named because of how many cuts and patches were contained in the original studio tape, earned a Gold record (1973)
  • EU nations agreed to lift their sanctions against Cuba, in the hope of encouraging democracy on the island (2008)


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