LNH: Onion Lad #9

Tom Russell milos_parker at yahoo.com
Thu Jun 15 22:03:53 PDT 2006

Jesse Willey wrote:
>Tom wrote:
> > Um.  That was six years ago.  I think, by now, that
> > Cheesecake-Eater
> > Lad has learned his lesson.  After all, he
> > inadvertantly created
> > Student Driver Lass in his original revenge scheme,
> > and met up with
> > Simon Velcro as a direct result of that.  By the end
> > of that one, I
> > think he realized that his revenge scheme was quite
> > futile.
>   Yes, which why he claimed hitting Onion Lad with a
> pie thinking he was hitting Vel as his revenge.
> Because he knew he'd never get another shot.

Ah.  :-)

This is a perfect example of something that, for me, is too subtle to
register.  Looking at the relevant passage, having read Jesse's

<<        Cheesecake Eater Lad threw a pie at me.   I ducked.  Onion
Lad, who
had been reaching into his pocket to get his inhaler, wasn't so
lucky.  The force knocked him into the wall.

        "Vel... I knew you'd return to the scene of..." Cheesecake
Lad said.  "Oh it's YOU.  Revenge is mine!" >>

it's obviously as he said.  But without Jesse's explanation, it's not
so apparent, which is why I was confused.  One way to make it easier to
pick up on would be the use of some descriptive narration--

"Vel, I knew you'd return to the scene of..." Cheesecake-Eater Lad
blinked when he saw Onion Lad.  He tried to save face: "Oh, it's you.
Revenge is mine!", he said half-heartedly.

-- but that might be too much.  Maybe just a dialogue change--

"Vel, I knew you'd return to the scene of... oh, Onion Lad!  It's only
you.  Um.  Revenge is mine!"

-- or, for something slightly less subtle--

"... return to the scene of... Onion Lad!  Um, at last, I have achieved
my revenge!"

-- though perhaps that phrasing, "Revenge is mine!" is the most
archetypical.  But since on the printed page one doesn't have vocal
inflections, there has to be some way to show to the reader what Jesse
intends.  Maybe a question mark...?

"Vel, I knew you'd return ot the scene of... oh!  It's you!  Onion Lad.
 Um.  Revenge is mine...?"

But just to make it a little more LNHy--

"Oh!  It's you!  Onion Lad.  Um.  Revenge is mine...?" Cheesecake-Eater
Lad cracked an awkward smile.

--  I'm not saying any of these are any better, or that they
necessarily work, or that there's anything necessarily wrong with
Jesse's text.  I'm just saying that in order for a joke to work, the
audience has to get the gag, and, for me, at least, well: I didn't get
the gag.


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