Thursday, July 14, 2011

Lauren’s Book Club: Where Wally is (and what he’s keeping from us)

Books! Woo! Reading! Yeah!

Where’s Wally – Martin Handford

There was one question that plagued, baffled, and in some cases caused major eye strain to children in the early to mid nineties. What was that question, you ask? Well shut up for a second and I’ll tell you. The question was this: Just where, exactly, is Wally?

There he is. Yeah, over there in the stripy jumper. No not that one, over a little more to the left. Yeah, that’s him, the bugger in the glasses with the magic walking stick. I know, right? Apparently he knows a wizard.

That was an ordeal, wasn’t it? It’s a bit harsh how they make so many other people look like him. You would never see that many people wearing red and white striped jumpers in the real world.

Though we are led to believe that Wally’s whereabouts is the main issue here, these books tend to ask more questions than they answer. Why is he always hanging out in big crowds? Who is he hiding from? Why do the Americans call him ‘Waldo’? Does no one else think it’s odd that he has multiple identities? The man travels a lot, does this name issue not make it hard for him to get through passport control? Then there’s the confusing title Where’s Wally in Hollywood. Is the answer not in the question? He’s in Hollywood. Let the kids have a day off.

Why do we never see him working? What is his main source of income? How is he funding these trips? And why do we have to find him? How hard is it to inform a friend or relative of your travel plans? I’m not one to jump to conclusions, but I think it’s a safe to say he’s a drug mule. Has anyone actually checked what’s concealed inside this alleged ‘magic’ walking stick?

I find the whole situation to be quite suspicious.

Why is there never a double page spread of Wally sitting alone in his living room, kicking back in an armchair while reading a good book? Where’s Wally? There he is, enjoying a quiet night in. How about Where's Wally in the IT department? I know you shouldn't judge someone based on their appearance, but lets face it, if he did have a job it would be in IT.

I’ll tell you why we've never seen him taking part in these everyday activities: it’s because of the drugs.

Maybe he is a drug mule. Maybe I’m just jealous that he’s friends with a wizard and I still haven’t met one. Maybe he’s just a drawing that some guy did to sell some books. I guess we’ll never know.

But it’s most likely the drugs.

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