Monday, March 15, 2010

Danger For Breakfast!

Mary is having a lousy day all right. First John yells at her because Billy is "mopey" and sickly. And then she sees an ad about how, if you do not give your dear children Cream of Wheat, you are exposing them to Double Danger. Not just one danger, two!

The shopkeeper isn't really helping either. Oh sure, he'll hand over some Cream of Wheat. But he says "I guess most of my customers are good mothers" - haven't seen you in here lately, Mary! Guess that means you are a  Bad Mother. But thank goodness there are 40 helpings of Cream of Wheat in that little box.

Billy stuffs down about 38 of them the next morning and - well, guess what? As soon as he starts eating that pasty stuff, he's happy! And John's happy - which is refreshing, because he really can be quite a sourhead when he gets the notion.

As for Mary's - well, she's relieved. Because some dude in the last panel stops his car to talk to John about how now Billy is "beginning to look like an All-American" (key word: beginning). Now, I think they mean All-American as in some kind of athlete, right? But it has that double meaning, just like Double Danger: not feeding your kid library paste cereal is tantamount to harboring a Communist cell in your dining room. Dodged a bullet there, all right.

And do check out the Jolly Game that Freddy and Fran - Billy's compatriots - are playing down at the bottom of the page. It's like the people who try to stuff down 600 hot dogs in 15 minutes - only you play it with Cream of Wheat. Oh, that does sound enchanting.

Many thanks to TJS Labs for this wonderful cartoon ad from a 1933 Good Housekeeping. The terrifyingly big version is right this way.


Barbara said...

First comes Cream of Wheat. Then dad will notice that the kids aren't "regular" and out will come the Castor Oil. It's all downhill from here.

Bill said...

I've bitten my nails down to the quick. What a harrowing nick-of-time story!
And not just Billy, either. I wonder if Mary knows how close she came to being pilloried in the town square.

Tori Lennox said...

What a bunch of drama queens! If I was Mary, I'd run away from home and let them choke on their Cream of Wheat.

Eric said...

From this, I take away that you can never underestimate the value of a gold star whilst bribing the undernourished.

Richard @ The Bewildered Brit said...

Phew! Thank heavens Billy can grow up to be an All American!

While I was reading the comic, I skipped a comma: I thought it said "Billy's beginning to look like an all-American john!" Eeek!

Lidian said...

Barbara - Yes, this is just the beginning...

Bill - It is a hair-raising tale indeed!

Tori - I agree, John would have heard from me all right, if I was Mary.

Eric - Gold stars are good for all kinds of situations.

Richard - I wonder if John is.

Marcheline said...

This really shows how times have changed... I bet if people would feed their kids Cream of Wheat instead of Big Macs they'd actually LOSE weight.

And what is the big "DANGER" from age 1 to 6? And who exactly is in danger? They never specify...