Gertrude’s Diary #104 – Thank You

I know that last week I promised a list of things to argue about with your partner, but I wasn’t really serious.  I mean, what’s the point?  If your in the right mood then it’s possible to argue about pretty much everything.

Instead I thought I’d suprise you all with this little book I found when I cleaned out my bookshelf.  Published by Methuen of London for an Australian audience, it is a brilliant insight into an idealised world of early 1960’s values.  It’s also the lamest collection of printed words I’ve ever seen, but utterly hilarious nonetheless.

Front Cover

This is probably the most visually exciting page of the whole book, so enjoy it while you can.


The postman is riding a bicycle, which has a nice simplicity to it, but I am put off by his uniform.  He looks like some sort of fascist.   And that creepy smile:  “Remember little boy, if you want any more presents delivered you must tell me if mummy and daddy hold another one of those ‘parties’ with the funny cigarettes.”


Now that the kid has tumbled to the fact that it is his birthday, Mother supposes she should cough up a gift too.  She’s got that same little smile, as does…


Father.  The artist has quite a way with the patronising smirk.  Dad’s hanging on to that wrapping paper.  It matches the furnishings so perfectly, he might cover his cigar box with it.


Grandma gives the kid a jumper.  I’ve never seen a child get excited about a jumper, but then again everyone else is dressed warmly,  so maybe he’s just happy not to be shivering for once.  Go ahead son, put the jumper on, then off to see…


Grandpa!  Thank you, Grandpa, but why are you all smiling at me like that?  Do I have something stuck in my teeth?


Mary’s little doll is waving for our attention.  “Help help!  I’m trapped in a monochrome world, let me out!”

Finally, big brother hands over a torch.  None of that sissy wrapping paper here.


Thank you everyone.  Everyone?  Everyone!  Now where did they all go?  Poor kid – he was hoping to introduce the members of his family to each other – funny how they never seem to be in the same room together.  I think Grandpa is really dad with his hair dyed grey and a stoop.  They’re profiles are uncannily similar.

Back Cover

Finally the back cover.  The titles in the Red and Yellow Books seem straight-forward enough: a lot of emphasis on Susan and Peter drawing things, but that’s nothing compared to The Blue Books.  “Where are you going?”  Why, to find something marginally entertaining to do, of course.  “Who likes flies?”  I don’t mind them – at least they’re more interesting than these books.  “Where are the children?”  They’ve gone to play themselves into a frenzy with a variety of coloured plastic and flashing lights that make this child’s birthday presents look like a museum display.

Any more questions?  No?   Good.

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