R. David Murray added the comment:

The documentation assumes you know how python class methods work, but I agree 
that the wording is not entirely obvious even then and could be improved.  In 
particular it should make clear that the example shows how to define the 
function for subclassing or assignment to the class object.  If you assign it 
to the instance, as in your example, then indeed self does not get passed and 
you want a true single argument function.

nosy: +r.david.murray

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