Chapter 5 – Should Wizard Hit Mommy? Questions and Answers: NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English (Vistas)

Class 12 English (Vistas) NCERT book solutions for Chapter 5 - Should Wizard Hit Mommy? Questions and Answers.


Q1.Who is Jo? How does she respond to her father’s story-telling?

Ans. Jo is the shortened form of Joanne. She is the four year old daughter of Jack and Clare. For the last two years, her father, Jack, has been telling her bed-time stories. Since these stories are woven around the same basic tale and have the same characters and turn of events, Jo takes so many things for granted and takes active interest in the story-telling session. The protagonist (main character) is always named Roger. It may be Roger Fish, Roger Squirrel, Roger Chipmunk or Roger Skunk. The other characters are the huge, wise, old owl and the thin small wizard. The creatures of the forest—small animals—also take part in playing with Roger and liking/disliking him.

Q2. What possible plot line could the story continue with?

Ans. Jack told the story of Roger Skunk—an animal which emitted a foul smell and how the wizard changed his smell to that of roses at his request. The other little creatures, who earlier hated Roger Skunk, now gathered around him because he smelled so good. They played various games of children till dark and then went to their homes happily.
Jo thought that the story was all over. Jack continued the story. When Roger Skunk returned home, his mother felt angry at the unusual smell he had acquired. She called it an awful smell and asked who had made him smell like that. She took her umbrella and went to the wizard with Roger Skunk. She hit the wizard right ‘wer the head. The wizard agreed to change his smell back. She wanted that a skunk should smell the way a little skunk should have. It should behave naturally and normally and not roaxn ahout in acquired smell or artificial manners. After a while the other small creatures got used to bhe typical smell of the skunk—the foul odour—and did not run away.

Q3.What do you think was Jo’s problem?

Ans. Little Jo had been accustomed to the happy ending of the stories of Roger, where the wizard was helpful to him in fulfilling his wish. At the request of Roger Skunk, the wizard had changed his awful smell to that of the roses. Other small animals liked it and played with Roger Skunk happily. She could not digest the ending of the extended story where Roger Skunk’s mother hit the wizard on the head and forced him to change Skunk’s smell to the earlier foul one.
Jo could not accept Skunk’s mother’s stubbornness e.g. hitting the wellwisher of her son, Roger Skunk. Jo insisted that her father should tell her the same story again the next day with changed ending. The wizard should hit that unreasonable mommy on the head and leave Roger Skunk emitting the pleasant smell of roses. In the beautiful world of a child’s imagination, fairies and wizard’s are more real than reality itself. She could not digest the harsh realities of life. She did not like the rude mother who hit the benefactor of her own son.


Q1.What custom did Jack follow in the evenings and for Saturday naps?

Ans. Jack would tell his four year old daughter Joanne (or Jo) a stoxy out of his head in the evenings and for Saturday naps. This custom had begun when she was two and now it was nearly two years old.

Q2. What was the basic tale underlying each story that Jack told?

Ans. A small creature named Roger had some problem. He would go to the wise owl who told him to go to the wizard. Theiwizard performed a magic spell. It solved Roger’s problem. He demanded more pennies than Roger had. Then he directed Roger to the place where extra money could be found. Roger felt happy and played many games with other creatines. He then went home. His daddy arrived from Boston. They had supper. The stoiy wound up with the description of the items of their supper.

Q3. How was the custom of story telling especially fatiguing on Saturdays?

Ans. Jo was growing up. She never fell asleep in naps any more. Her brother, Bobby, who was two was already asleep with the bottle. But Jo would not take her nap like an infant. The bumps her feet made under the covers were hallway down the bed. Her fat face deep in the pillow shone in the sunlight. The custom seemed futile and especially fatiguing on Saturdays.

Q4. Which animal did Jo suggest for the story that day? What do you know about this new animal?

Ans. Jo suggested ‘skunk’ for the story that day. It was a new animal for her. They must be talking about it at nursery school. A skunk or a pole-cat is a small black and white North American animal. It can produce a strong unpleasant smell to defend itself when it is attacked.

Q5. Why did Roger Skunk go to see the old owl? [All India 2014]

Ans. Due to foul body odour of Skunk, other animals were not interested in playing with him. But he wanted to play with friends. So, Roger Skunk went to the wise owl to get rid of the foul smell.

Q6. How did Jo and Jack react as the new animal was mentioned?

Ans. Jo squeezed her eye&Shut and smiled to be thinking that she was thinking. She opened her blue eyes and said firmly, “Skunk”. Having a fresh hero momentarily stirred Jack to creative enthusiasm. He started telling the story of Roger Skunk that smelled so bad that none of the other little woodland creatures would play with him.

Q7. How did Jack imagine the reaction of Roger Skunk on being universally detested ?

Ans. Whenever Roger Skunk went out to play, all of the other tiny animals would cry: “Uh-oh, here comes Roger Stinky Skunk”. Then they would run away. Roger Skunk would stand there all alone. Two little round tears would fall from his eyes. Jack would relate all this with zest, remembering certain humiliations of his own childhood.

Q8. How do you think, did Jo identify with Roger Skunk, the victim of the hatred of other creatures?

Ans. Jo seemed to share the pleasure and pain of the hero of the stray—Roger. So complete was her identification that the mention of tears in Roger’s eyes brought tears in her eyes. Her mouth drooped down and her lower lip bent forward. Jack’s finger traced the course of a tear along the side of her nose.

Q9.Which two opposite forces acted on Jack while he was telling Jo a story about the little skunk?

Ans. Jack was happy that he was telling Jo something true, something she must know. He had no wish to hurry on. But just then, a chair scraped downstairs. He realised that he must get down to help his wife, Clare to paint the woodwork in the living room. Thus, the interests of daughter and wife pulled him in different directions like two opposite forces.

Q10.“This was a new phase, just this last month, a reality phase.” What do you learn about Jo’s reality phase? How did her parents try to convince her?

Ans. Jo would ask if the magic spells were real. When Jack told her that spiders ate bugs, she would turn to her mother and ask if that was really so. When Clare told her God was in the sky and all around them, she would turn to her father to know the reality. Jack tried to convince her by saying? “They’re real in stories.”

Q11. “He felt being an old man suited him.” How would Jack play the old wizard?

Ans. The wizard’s voice was one of Jack’s own favourite effects. He did it by scrunching up his face and somehow whining through his eyes. During this brief period of time his eyes would become full of watery secretions. He would say, ‘Eh? Whatzis? Whatcher want? You smell awful.’

Q12. How was the Skunk’s story different from the other stories narrated by Jack?

Ans. The stories told by Jack were well taken by Jo. But the ending of the Skunk’s story did not satisfy her. She believed that the wizard should have hit back Skunk’s mommy and Skunk would have kept smelling like roses.

Q13. How did Jack make the role of the wizard more impressive?

Ans. Jack fixed Jo with the trance like gaze. Then he chanted a magic spell in the wizard’s elderly irritable voice. The chanting was rhythmical and had sweet rhymes. The exclamation “Bingo!” confirmed the pleasure, the pleasure of the wizard at having done what he had been trying to do. All of a sudden, the whole inside of the wizard’s house was full of the smell of roses.

Q14. How did Jo react to Jack’s chanting of the magic spell ?

Ans. Jack chanted the magic spell as the wizard would do. When he paused, he noticed a rapt expression widening out from his daughter’s nostrils. She forced her eyebrows up and her lower lip down in a wide noiseless grin. This expression reminded Jack of his wife’s expression while feigning pleasure at cocktail parties.

Q15. “Very silly of your stupid old daddy,” says Jack. Why, do you think, did Jack say so?

Ans. While narrating the story of Roger Skunk, Jack by chance said Roger Fish. Jo was quick to interrupt him and point out the error. She repeated twice that he had said Roger Fish and asked if that wasn’t silly. Jack had to admit that it had been very silly of him.

Q16. What action of Jo annoyed Jack? What do you think disturbed him?

Ans. Roger Skunk began to cry as he had only four pennies. Jo made the crying face again, but this time without a trace of sincerity. This annoyed Jack. Some more furniture rumbled down stairs. Jack thought that Clare shouldn’t move heavy things. He was worried because she was six months pregnant. It would be their third child.

Q17. Which two factors made Jack continue the story?

Ans. Roger Skunk had returned home at dark after playing happily with the other little animals. Jo did not fall asleep. She was starting to fuss with her hands and look out of the window. She thought the story was over. Jack did not like women when they took anything for granted. He liked them to be worried. So he continued the story.

Q18. Why was Roger Skunk’s mommy angry? What did she finally tell him?

Ans. She was angry because Roger Skunk had an unusual smell of roses. She called it awful and asked Roger who made him smell like that. When he said, “The wizard”, she ordered him to come with her and they were going right back to that very awful wizard. She seemed to be very angry with the wizard.

Q19. Why, do you think, did Roger Skunk’s mommy insist on taking him to the wizard at once?

Ans. Roger Skunk’s mommy wanted young skunk to smell the way a little skunk should. She did not want him to acquire the artificial and uncharacteristic smell of the roses. The foul smell was a tool for him to keep the enemy away. That is why she hit the wizard right over the head and he agreed to restore the original ‘foul’ smell.

Q20. How did Jo want the wizard to behave when mommy skunk approached him?

Ans. Jo had a deep regard for the wizard. He had magical powers and could do anything. She did not agree with her father’s version. She said that the wizard hit her (Roger Skunk’s mommy) on the head and did not change that little skunk back. She did not want that the other little animals should hate him again for his awful smell.

Q21. Why does Jo insist that her father should tell her the story with a different ending—where the wizard hit that mommy?

Ans. Jo was not convinced that the little animals eventually got used to the way the little skunk was and did not mind it all. It was just the opposite of what her father had said at the beginning. (The other tiny creatures called him Stinky Skunk and would run away, leaving Roger alone to shed tears.) Later, when the wizard made the skunk smell like roses, the other little animals gathered around him and played with him till dark. Hence Jo wanted the wizard to punish the stupid mommy.