Saturday, January 14, 2017

Reading the Comics

Michael and I read out of early primers a number of times a week. It takes me far longer to prepare for the reading lesson I give him than to give the lesson. We are always done in less than ten minutes. Preparation is at least one-half hour. I have been trying to mix up the activities to give some variety to what we do every day. It occurred to me that he might like to take a look at the comics in the newspaper.

I was curious to see if he would show some interest. The Calgary Herald is delivered every morning and I notice that when I ask the adults here at home if they would like to look at it, all of them decline. They like their news delivered electronically. I am still attached to paper – the bridge column, the food section, the book reviews, the movie reviews, the theatre reviews, the letters to the editor, the obituaries – I do them all. But I don’t look at the comics.

In preparation for giving a taste of them to Michael, I began to save that coloured pages which I used to call “the funnies”. Michael was over for longer than usual and so I pulled out a page and offered to read it to him. He couldn’t get enough of it. And I discovered that some of the offerings are connected, a theme carrying over for many days, which I must have known sometime before, but had forgotten.

... Sherman and the Lagoon ...
one of our favourite strips
It was especially evident in Sherman and the Lagoon. I noticed that if I explained the jokes to Michael, I first had to tell him what it was that we were expecting to hear or see, and then why what we did see or hear was so funny.

Jokes aren’t that funny when they are explained in such detail, except to a five year old. The funniest joke may have been Bizzaro. 

A witch was shopping in the Deep Dark Forest Grocery Store. She had her black cape and hat on and a basket over her arm and she was looking at apples. There were many choices and the names of the apples were on each bin: Gala, MacIntosh, Delicious, Poisonous, Ambrosia ....

The bonus today, Saturday, is that the comics are all enlarged and cover 3 pages. What a joy!

All in all, a happy day with the newspaper for us.


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