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March Pages 2017

THE ADVOCATE V O L . 7 5 P A R T 2 M A R C H 2 0 1 7 305 to me—she points out (in more pungent words than I can) that it’s little wonder the “Love Is ______” couple don't have any children yet. Harold does like music—Rod Stewart inter alia, but his apartment is full of such recondite albums as “The Seven-Peckered Muskox in Concert” and “The Pewter Prophylactic at Carnegie Hall”. But enough of this background material; let me describe for you my two favourite episodes. In the first, Kitty spots Harold in bed with a girl he’s brought home, and determines on mischief. She pretends she thinks there is a mouse moving the bedcovers, and claws Harold’s behind severely, whereupon Harold gets up to deal with her, slightly inhibited by the girl, who keeps cooing that Kitty’s so cute. Of course the naked Harold is no match for Kitty in the battle that follows. It ends in Kitty dealing Harold the unkindest cut of all, enough to make the male reader wince. My other favourite brings in Mary Wawna, a sometime girlfriend of Harold’s who lives in a commune and has a baby daughter. Mary and Harold invent a novel method of shoplifting. They suspend a hollow receptacle across Mary’s stomach so as to simulate pregnancy, with holes for Mary’s hands to emerge and grab stuff from the store shelves to fill the receptacle. But Mary is spotted by the store clerk with her hand protruding, grabbing some merchandise. With great presence of mind she swoons and announces she is about to have her baby. Everyone in the store rushes around, boiling water or getting out of the way, and in the confusion Mary and Harold escape with their loot. The store clerk who spotted her is completely taken in, and runs to and fro muttering, “I didn’t know they came out hands first!” There are some odd things about Harold Hedd. For instance, his drawings of women clearly owe more to Playboy magazine than to observations from real life—that is, I suppose Playboy bunnies are real but a lifetime of girlwatching convinces me that their shape is by no means typical. Secondly, and surprisingly in view of Harold’s general peacablity, he owns a .303 rifle which he spends a good time pulling through and cleaning—one doesn't need to be a psychiatrist to detect symbolism in that. Perhaps free love in hippiedom isn’t as free as all that. But let’s have done with these unworthy criticisms—if you think you can stomach it and have a dollar that isn’t working, I urge you to go out and buy your own copy and read all about Harold Hedd for yourself. God knows, humour is a scarce enough commodity in Canada, and we can’t afford to turn down a vintage home-grown effort. t t t t t


March Pages 2017
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