Tuesday, August 05, 2008
Tuesdays With Bapak
Comic Treat -- Aug 5, 2008
Like many people my age, comics ruled when we were young. I hate to point fingers but Bapak has to be blamed for all this. It was Bapak who influenced us and got us started and hooked on comics.
Bapak, I think, must have broken some sacred and cardinal rules of parenting. He'd not allow us to do one thing, yet, he'd encourage us to do something that was akin to what he forbade us to do.
But, who's complaining.
BY the way, this was in the 60s. Way back when....
We know that on weekdays, we're not supposed to watch TV or do our own thing. Yet, on some (week) days, he'd call us to join him read comics/comic books he'd just bought.
This would be just after dinner.
How we looked forward to the latest Marvel comics or Tarzan Of The Apes. Or Korak, Son of Tarzan. Aaah....the little pleasures in our very young life.
After reading Tarzan on a regular basis, we picked up a few Swahili words -- Bandolo! Kreegah! Jumbo!
Bapak would also have The Twilight Zone series to add to his collection.
We'd never know when Bapak would bring those comics home. He'd not tell us until after dinner.
We'd be back at our study tables, finishing off our homework before turning in for the night.
And then, Bapak would holler from the living room ; "Siapa nak baca komik?"
I tell you, that would stop us in our tracks, so to speak. We'd drop whatever we were doing and rush into the living room.
I'd go for Tarzan or The Twilight Zone. Bapak would buy just about enough for all of us. We'd read them all in one sitting.
I'd pass to Kak Eda the one I had chosen, and she'd pass the one she had finished. I'm not sure if Kak Ton ever joined Kak Olin, Kak Eda and I. I know Abang Med did.
We had stacks of comics at a corner of our living room, including our all-time favourite of Beano and Dandy comics. These, we bought with our own pocket money. For some reason, Bapak never bought Beano and Dandy for us. Never asked him why, though.
Then, Bapak started buying for me the Princess Tina and June And Schoolfriend series. I was so hooked on them as well.
Later, in secondary school, I bought my own Archie comics. I had amassed such a huge collection that I made my own little "library" of it. Friends would "borrow" the comics from me.
In later years, I'd buy new-age comic books. And I never missed the latest Lat series.
Comics and cartoons delight me.
Bapak had no qualms about letting us loose, reading and indulging in comics.
Comics are all about imagination, inventiveness and creativity.
I supposed it's because he'd firmed us with a foundation of classics -- Robin Hood, Black Beauty, Ivanhoe, Robinson Crusoe and the likes. Later, we were given doses of Charles Dickens and Mark Twain and......
So, he must have figured that we'd be okay, we'd stay on course and if we went "astray", it couldn't be bad because it would be our imagination that would be fired up.
Old habits die hard. So, I buy comics for my children. But....oh. Not the ones that I used to buy. They don't make 'em like they used to, that's for sure.
I remember how delightfully surprised Adel was-- and maybe a little jealous -- when I told him that I used to have the original Spiderman And Ironman comics.
No big deal, I told him. Everyone had them those days.
Aah..what was common in those days are a treasure today.
Thank you, Bapak for the treasure, yesterday and today.