sarahx: (badger)
[personal profile] sarahx
Sad that Clement Freud has died. He wrote my Desert Island Book – the kid's book Grimble. It still makes me laugh so hard it hurts. The conceit is that his parents go off on a trip to Peru without telling him, leaving him cups of tea in the fridge, sandwiches in the oven, notes with instructions on around the house, and a list places to go to cook himself dinner (which I seem to remember Freud did when reading it on Jackanory), all of which were curiously deserted when he got there.

Highlights include a telegram from his parents telling him there was a message in the airing cupboard; said message was written in green ink on a squashed fly biscuit and said 'Do not eat this biscuit because eating green ink is bad for you'. His response? 'If that's a grown-up joke, then I'm glad I'm not grown up.'

Then there's the football game called Twinge – one of the school's goalposts went AWOL in a firework-related incident so in the first half one whole team went in goal while the other team fired shots at them, and they swapped round in the second half. Grimble's team lost 61-2.

He also writes poems. My favourite:

My Situation, by Grimble

When parents go to Peru
And leave cups of tea in the fridge
It's jolly hard to know what to do
And I wish I could think of
a useful word ending in idge.
The End.

Closely followed by:

Women, by Grimble

Men are easily the best people I know
Men are sensible and intelligent and good-looking
Some of my best friends are men – like my father
And I'm jolly glad I haven't got a sister.
The End.

It also has fab Quentin Blake illustrations. I suspect it's been out of print for many years. Which is a shame.

Date: 2009-04-16 11:38 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] budgie-uk.livejournal.com
You may want to take a look here...

Date: 2009-04-16 11:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sarahx.livejournal.com
Ah, but that's the slightly less good sequel... My copy contains both and is carefully looked after!

Date: 2009-04-16 06:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] budgie-uk.livejournal.com
OK, you really need to read this...

Date: 2009-04-17 08:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] philaylen.livejournal.com
I have the combined copy too. Loved that book, and it was the first thing I thought of when I heard he'd died.

I particularly like the bit when Grimble's dad is looking for the Falklands on his globe...

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