Like many children of my era, I grew up being read, then reading, the wonderfully insightful Mr. Men books.
I had a Mr. Tickle hot water bottle, Mr. Men wallpaper and even a matching Mr. Men bedspread. I had the Mr. Men tapes, which I’m sure my parents must’ve grown thoroughly sick off as I demanded that, for the umpteenth weekend in a row, that it accompany our journey to visit my Gran and even a windup plastic Mr. Bump.
I have vague memories of lying in bed, listening to my Dad reading me the stories. Hazy recollections of standing at the counter in John Menzies with my Mum as she purchased another of the books. The theme tune evokes, for no particular reason, a very vivid memory of sitting in the car as we crossed the Erskine Bridge.
Sadly, these days, the Mr. Men have evolved into all sorts of nonsense. Whilst the introduction of “Little Miss…” was of course most welcome, the latest batch are sullying the good name of the Mr. Men. Poor Roger Hargreaves.
Or rather rich Roger Hargreaves I would imagine.
The reason I mention all this now is that I, dear reader, am on a quest. It is of vital importance and is likely to consume me for sometime. You can blame my parents. No, I don’t mean in the Larkin sense but this is directly because, whilst visiting at the weekend, my Mum handed me all my old Mr. Men books!! My Dad had been doing some clearing out and stumbled across them and they thought they’d better check with me before chucking them out.
Too bloody right!
These are original copies, with the original set – Messrs. Messy, Silly, Dizzy, Muddle, Bump, Greedy, Nosey, Sneeze, Uppity, Noisy, Mean, Small, Strong, Daydream, Lazy, Chatterbox, Jelly, Impossible, Fussy, Tickle, Happy, Topsy-Turvy, Forgetful, Snow, Bounce and Funny – published in 1972, and the additional members published in 1978 – Mischief, Worry, Skinny, Wrong, Tall, Rush, Quiet, Busy, Slow, Clever, Nonsense, Clumsy and Grumpy.
At least that’s what they SHOULD have been, turns out I’m missing 4 Mr. Men (you know where this is going, don’t you). Messrs Bounce, Mischief, Rush and Clever have escaped, probably borrowed and never returned.
So, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to hunt eBay and the interwebs for these to fill out my collection.
Ohh and if you are considering being helpful I should point out that the original books DON’T have the spine printing of the more recent publications.