Old MacDonald Heard a Parp by Olaf Falafel, published by Harper Collins
Toilet humour is probably the oldest form of comedy. Chaucer's medieval 'The Canterbury Tales' of 1400 is filled with jokes about bodily functions, while 'The Clouds', a 423BC play by the Ancient Greek writer Aristophanes finds the philosopher Socrates debating whether his friend's bowel movements are louder than thunder - complete with enthusiastic sound effects. According to PowerThesaurus.org there are 251 synonyms for "fart" - demonstrating this subject's enduring linguistic appeal.
A new entry to this cacophonous literary tradition is from comedian Olaf Falafel, in his absurdist take on the favourite children's song Old MacDonald Had a Farm. Here, an aurally attuned Old MacDonald "heard a parp" - and suspects his animals to be the culprits.
Accompanying each accused animal and their suspected gaseous emission are amusing instructions on how the reader should make each sound - with a "puck-er" here, and a "pop pop" there. Our 18 month old and her older sister took great delight in imitating this windbreaking wordery.
The one who dealt it is eventually revealed - not before an unexpected and mirth-making dream sequence involving unicorns, rainbows and Salvador Dali's melting clocks (from his painting 'The Persistence of Memory').
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