In the novel Freak the Mighty, explain Freak's joke on page 31: "We had a close encounter of the turd kind".

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Kevin and Max were making their way toward the Fourth of July festivities when they met up with Tony D., better known as Blade, and his gang. Blade is a seventeen year old bully who smells of beer.

Also, it smells like he ate something dead, for instance road kill...

When Blade continued to harass the two boys, Kevin bravely speaks up, calling Blade a "cretin." Blade didn't know the meaning of the word, so Kevin defined it for him. Max laughed, and Blade--who was known to carry a knife and possibly a razor--appeared to be making up his mind what to do next. Before he could make his move, however, a police siren wailed, and Blade and his

punksters are out of there, burning rubber in their Reeboks.

That's when Kevin made his joke. Close Encounters of the Third Kind is a famous science fiction movie about alien encounters, and Kevin created his own pun, using the word "turd" (for Blade) instead of third.