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Should Wizard Hit Mommy?
Short and Simple Summary of the lesson in English– Should Wizard Hit Mommy?/ Summary in simple Words/ Critical appreciation of the lesson – Should Wizard Hit Mommy?
Jo, a four-year-old girl, is accustomed to hearing stories from her father, Jack, every evening and for Saturday naps. Jack followed a basic story structure. The main character of the story was Roger but it would be a different animal every day. Roger would have a problem and would consult the wise owl for a solution to his problem who in turn would direct him to a wizard. The wizard would solve the problem through his magic spell and would demand his fee. The wizard would then guide Roger to the place where this money could be found. Finally, a happy Roger would play games with other children and go back home to his mommy before his father returned from Boston.
That Saturday afternoon, as per the custom, Jack began his story. Jo suggested skunk as the main character for the story. Roger Skunk’s problem was his foul odour because of which other small animals avoid playing with him. To solve this problem, he went to the wise owl who directed him to the wizard.
Jo had lately started questioning the credibility of things told in the stories like magic spells, death, God, etc.
The wizard used his magic and changed the skunk’s foul odour to that of roses. The wizard charged him seven pennies. However, the skunk had only four pennies with him. So, he was directed to a place where he would find the remaining three pennies. He found the pennies easily and gave them to the wizard. Roger Skunk happily played with other children.
When Roger Skunk reached home, his mommy disliked the new smell. She did not want him to smell any different than other skunks as their foul smell was a weapon against enemies. Mommy Skunk took Roger back to the wizard to undo the spell. She hit the wizard over his head for making her son smell like roses. Now, Roger Skunk again regained his foul smell.
Jo was dissatisfied with the ending of the story. Jo wanted her father to retell the story the next day with a new ending where the mommy was hit back by the wizard.
However, Jack refused to change the way he ended the story. According to him, parents only did what was right for their kids. He explained to Jo that the little skunk loved his mother and did what she wanted as he knew that the mother would always do what was right for him. Jo, however, refuses to understand and insisted that Jack change the ending of the story. He went downstairs. Clare, his wife, was painting the chair rail. Clare observed that it was a long story. He simply said, ‘The poor kid’. He watched his wife working. He felt he was caught in an ugly middle position. He watched everything with utter weariness.
Summary (2) :
The story begins when Jack is telling stories to his four-year-old daughter Jo to put her to sleep on Saturday evenings. All these stories are made up by him. This started two years ago. Every story is a variation of the same tale and it starts with the same Roger Animal. He would go to the wise owl to solve his problems. The owl will direct him to the wizard who would do magic and solve his problems and demand money in return. Roger would be short of money and would go to a well as directed by the wizard and will get the money from there and would pay him off. He would be happy to solve his problems and would play with his friends happily. His father would return on the train and the family would have a delicious dinner.
That day, Jo wants it to be a Roger Skunk’s story who smells very bad and that is why no other animal wants to play with him. They will tease him saying ‘Stinky Skunk’. Roger would cry. At this point, Jo starts feeling connected with the character and she also starts crying. Jo insists on sending Roger Skunk to the owl. This reaction of Jo surprises father and he realises the growing changes in the child. Finally, the owl directs Roger Skunk to the wizard and he gets the smell of roses. Skunk is too happy and runs into the wood. All the animals gather around Skunk and they all play games.
When Skunk reaches home, his mother is annoyed and doesn’t like that smell. She takes him back to the wizard and hits him on the head and orders him to restore Skunk’s earlier smell. Jo doesn’t like this. She is angry at the behaviour of Roger’s mother. She wants the wizard to hit Roger’s mommy. But father disagrees and defends Skunk’s mother saying mothers are always right. But Jo is adamant and angry. Jo argues with her father but father exerts his authority as the storyteller and doesn’t change it. So finally Roger Skunk comes back home with his mommy and gradually other animals also get used to his smell and start playing with him.
Jo disagrees that this can happen and refuses to sleep. She wants another story in which mommy is hit. But Jack refuses and confronts Jo and threatens and orders her to sleep. He is in a dilemma because he knows that his pregnant wife is working downstairs all alone and he must help her. He feels trapped and uneasy, caught in a difficult situation.