Tell Me a Mitzi
Lore Segal ~ pictures by Harriet Pincus
Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1970
There's more than a little R. Crumb in these drawings, evoking a wonderful Lower East Side kind of New York vibe in both the architecture and the slight whimsical grump in the character's faces. Tell me a "Mitzi" refers to stories told by a mother about a little girl of the same name who is full of independence and spunk.
Once upon a time (said her mother) there was a Mitzi. She had a mother and a father and a brother who was a baby. His name was Jacob.
There are three outlandish tales here, Mitzi Takes a Taxi, Mitzi Sneezes, and Mitzi Meets the President. In the first, the Mitzi wakes up to find everyone in her home asleep, so she decides to take her little brother on a trip to see her grandparents, alone... only to be thwarted because she doesn't know their address. In the second, a cold is passed around Mitzi's entire family, and in the last, well, Mitzi meets the President and is gifted some chewing gum.
All three stories are delightfully pointless, staying otherworldly while exuding a somber everydayness. Reminds me alot of Uri Shulvitz's One Monday Morning. I love these sorts of illustrations... the dark, tight lines and bright colors. Perfect for this cold winter day.