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Illustration: Denial

In Mel Lazarus' comic "Momma," the title character is visiting her shiftless son who is still in bed. She says, "Francis, do you ever think about the challenges in life?" He replies, "Constantly, Momma. I've been doing it for years—and have actually figured out how to avoid most of them." Challenges come to all. There is no way, no matter how much we wish it so, to avoid the challenges of life.