In season 7 of Scrubs, they created a musical episode (trendy yes, but pretty much always funny) called “My Musical.” One of the highlights was the song “Everything Comes Down to Poo” in which Turk and JD sing to a patient that they need a stool sample. The song is full of a ton of different terms for poo and where it comes out (and it’s all rated PG).
It’s very funny and quite clever, given the subject. Who doesn’t love seeing a chorus of doctors and nurses high kicking down a hospital corridor singing “Everything comes down to poo.”
[READ: January 30, 2013] The Giggler Treatment
Who knew that Roddy Doyle, humorist of Barrytown and very serious chronicler of women’s pain would write an outrageously silly children’s book about dog poo? I don’t know what prompted him to write this book (he has written several children’s books since), but he manages the chapter book format with aplomb and a slight (hilarious) disrespect for the genre.
So The Giggler Treatment is structured in a manner not unlike Nicholson Baker’s early novels in that pretty much all of the action takes place over the span of about a minute. Mister Mack is about to step in a huge pile of dog poo. And the story flashes around to different pieces of information as we watch with bated breath for his shoe to inch its way closer to fate.
Mister Mack is a decent bloke, a good father, a hardworking biscuit taster (a different biscuit every day from the factory where he works). [Incidentally, I assume that these details are extra for the American edition, but Doyle includes a warning that explains that biscuits are what they call cookies in Ireland. There’s also a hilarious glossary which translate rudies, bums, knickers and other things for young U.S readers.] Mister Mack is on his way to work, but is distracted by a talking seagull (who hates fish) and while his head is turned his foot is headed right Rover’s poo.
Rover’s did not poo on the sidewalk there. No indeed, Rover is a very smart dog (he can talk and send emails). And he makes a lot of money (cleverly buried all over the yard) selling his poo for just such a devious purpose. For indeed, there are creatures out there who would buy dog poo. And they are the Gigglers
The Gigglers are there to protect children. But since they are small, they can only exact revenge on adults who are mean to kids. And when Mister Mack send his boys to their room, the Gigglers spring into action. But what if, what if in just this one case, just this once, the Gigglers acted prematurely?
This story was really funny, surreal, bizarre and surprising detailed for what was a one-note joke. But Doyle clearly had a ton of fun writing it–you can almost hear him giggling himself while reading it. I loved the way he messed around with the structure of the book. Like the chapter numbers, which begin normally but which slowly get confused until he gives up with proper number and starts naming them after his mammy and Elvis and all manner of things. And the “reader’s voice” which keep interrupting to question what the author is doing.
I couldn’t wait for Clark to read it. Although I may have liked it more than he did.
I’ve mentioned before that I don’t understand why US editions make different covers (well, I do, but I don’t understand why they make less interesting covers). Check out the UK cover. Doesn’t that look more appealing? Regardless, if poo jokes make you smile, you could do worse than reading this.