Terry Pratchett

Ode to the Story Reading Ape

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Thank you Chris! I’d forgotten about this Ode to the Librarians Cousin (You!). I’m reposting it in honour of you and your hero, and with the request that no charges be filed for the damages. Here’s to Discworld fanfic – why not!?

This tiny tale is dedicated to Chris, the Librarian’s cousin (and our much belovedThe Story Reading Ape), to thank him for his friendship, and also by way of snivelling apology for almost calling him a man, and getting myself into a pickle.

The Story Reading Ape

Washgale cowered under the gooseberry bush. He’d been innocently sipping a quarter of ale in the Dodgy Guitar, when a huge ma-, monk-, er, ape, had crashed through the window, clutching a terrified scribe under his arm. The patrons scattered, as you do when confronted with such pointy fangs. The ape found who he was looking for at the piano, mellowly humming along to the tune of A Crone Is Not a Crone Unless You Have Your Spectacles On.

Washgale had watched from the safety of the chandelier, as the cousins agreed that humans in general had been given enough chances to figure out the names. Then the battery began. The scribe was summarily inserted, upside-down, into a barrel of pickled turnips, her whining about deadlines and Twitter instantly silenced. Within minutes, every human started running for their lives. The gnomes looked on, picking their noses as always, and the fairies pranced in and out, poking an eyeball here, and pinching a bum there. It wasn’t often that they got to unleash their darker desires with impunity.

Finally Washgale took pity on the scribe. She had surfaced from the barrel, and was trying to remove the small turnip from her left nostril, while yelling, “Oi! I’ve got emails!” He looked at his only companion on the chandelier, who was laughing heartily at the scene below, and trying to hit the scribe on the forehead with beautifully aimed gobs of hot candle-wax.

“What are you?” asked Washgale, pinching his nose so as not to breathe in the ripe smell emanating from what looked like a cross between a really huge hairy rat and Satan. It looked at him.

“I am Nyami,” the thing replied, sipping its warm lager, “I am the Tokoloshi. My mother was a really huge hairy rat, and my father was the devil.

“Oh,” said Washgale, before suddenly finding himself under a gooseberry bush. He peered at the cottage it was growing beside, and realised that he was in Gummy Vamps back garden.

“Oh crap,” he said.

“Not under my gooseberry bush please,” said a reddish voice behind him.

Washgale ran as fast as his hairy legs could carry him, knowing that his chance of finding enough bananas to rescue the scribe was zero, when he ran headlong into a banana tree. He picked a hand, peeled one of the yellowly yellow fruit, and ate it.

“Hmmm,” he said, settling down under the tree to eat, ignoring the faint screams in the distance before the gurgle signifying a reinsertion into the pickle barrel.

“Facebook! I’ve got to get to Facebook!”

“Bloody scribes,” he muttered, “They’re all over the place these days.

Not Dead Yet

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Right. Moving on. The last couple of days have been really interesting – not interesting in a great way though. Directly after the eyeball incident, I cleverly sliced the whole top of my knuckle off with my very strong and sharp kitchen scissors. It was still attached by a thread of skin, so I stuck it back on again and plastered it up with a big pile of Betadine. It’s finally stopped popping open now, so that’s out of the way, but now I have an awesome toothache and I look like a chipmunk, so…. whoever’s sticking pins in a doll that looks just like me, kindly desist.

I missed posting my Ode to Terry Pratchett, and now I just want to catch up again, preferably without incurring any further injuries. All part of this weird collection of tiny injuries coming my way, and Terry Pratchett departing this old rock on my mother’s birthday, and me normally being sad on her birthday because she died so young got me thinking that Terry’s life – my mom’s too – should be celebrated with laughter, quaffing, and ….. stuff….. rather than too much sadness. Death is a trip we’re all going to have to take, and there’s no point in railing against it when it happens. Death is a natural part of life.

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What happens on the other side? I’m sure that something happens. I know that a lot of people think that the end is the end – life extinguished – nada. Not me. I don’t believe that our lives are senseless, and I would be well chuffed to be collected by Discworld’s DEATH when it’s my turn to depart this mortal coil. Hey Ho Binky!

We all run from it – avoid it – fear it, and mourn those who are taken by it, often forgetting to appreciate the life that we have right now. Sometimes we’re so wrapped up in seemingly huge problems that we forget to live. Right now I’m grateful to be alive – I plan on having as much fun as I can too. After decades of giving me laughter and comfort, both in good times and bad, Sir Terry Pratchett’s final gift to me seems to be the gift of gratitude. Not only gratitude that I’m alive and well (sort of), but also that by his example I realise that anything is possible if you set out to do it. So in honour of my best loved writerly person, I pledge to appreciate all the days I have left, to do the best that I can, and be the best I can be, and to always remember to laugh. And to scribble – a lot. His having published seventy books is definitely a goal to aim for.

Bon voyage Sir Terry – you’ll be with us always – in laughter, joy, risqué bits and fabulous wisdom. See you on the other side. Rock on.

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Now – back to living – I’ll be in catch up mode for a couple of days zooming around your blogs – much safer here at my desk – I hope.

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Image Credit: Paul Kidby

Ode To The Librarian’s Cousin

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This tiny tale is dedicated to Chris, the Librarian’s cousin, to thank him for his friendship, and also by way of snivelling apology for almost calling him a man, and getting myself into a pickle.

The Story Reading Ape

Washgale cowered under the gooseberry bush. He’d been innocently sipping a quarter of ale in the Dodgy Guitar, when a huge ma-, monk-, er, ape, had crashed through the window, clutching a terrified scribe under his arm. The patrons scattered, as you do when confronted with such pointy fangs. The ape found who he was looking for at the piano, mellowly humming along to the tune of A Crone Is Not a Crone Unless You Have Your Spectacles On.

Washgale had watched from the safety of the chandelier, as the cousins agreed that humans in general had been given enough chances to figure out the names. Then the battery began. The scribe was summarily inserted, upside-down, into a barrel of pickled turnips, her whining about deadlines and Twitter instantly silenced. Within minutes, every human started running for their lives. The gnomes looked on, picking their noses as always, and the fairies pranced in and out, poking an eyeball here, and pinching a bum there. It wasn’t often that they got to unleash their darker desires with impunity.

Finally Washgale took pity on the scribe. She had surfaced from the barrel, and was trying to remove the small turnip from her left nostril, while yelling, “Oi! I’ve got emails!” He looked at his only companion on the chandelier, who was laughing heartily at the scene below, and trying to hit the scribe on the forehead with beautifully aimed gobs of hot candle-wax.

“What are you?” asked Washgale, pinching his nose so as not to breathe in the ripe smell emanating from what looked like a cross between a really huge hairy rat and Satan. It looked at him.

“I am Nyami,” the thing replied, sipping its warm lager, “I am the Tokoloshi. My mother was a really huge hairy rat, and my father was the devil.

“Oh,” said Washgale, before suddenly finding himself under a gooseberry bush. He peered at the cottage it was growing beside, and realised that he was in Gummy Vamps back garden.

“Oh crap,” he said.

“Not under my gooseberry bush please,” said a reddish voice behind him.

Washgale ran as fast as his hairy legs could carry him, knowing that his chance of finding enough bananas to rescue the scribe was zero, when he ran headlong into a banana tree. He picked a hand, peeled one of the yellowly yellow fruit, and ate it.

“Hmmm,” he said, settling down under the tree to eat, ignoring the faint screams in the distance before the gurgle signifying a reinsertion into the pickle barrel.

Facebook! I’ve got to get to Facebook!”

“Bloody scribes,” he muttered, “They’re all over the place these days.

bananas

Book Worlds

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Reading has to be one of the best stress relievers there are. I haven’t had much time to read for pleasure lately, but after finishing up a couple of projects by the end of next week, I intend to make some. Reading a lovely review of one of my favourite historical writers today (Philippa Gregory – born in Kenya by the way – another notch in our African belt of great ones) brought on a terrible urge to grab one of her books, curl up somewhere comfy, and get reading.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Virgins-Lover-ebook/dp/B005Z4QUBO/ref=sr_1_28?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1364743919&sr=1-28&keywords=philippa+gregory

Books take you away from everyday life to other worlds, times, and places. Movies are good, but with a book, you translate the script into what you see with your mind’s eye. I’m sure that every reader sees the world in a book differently to the way the author visualised it.

I read Stephen King’s, The Shining before I saw the movie, and my visuals of those spooks had been a lot scarier than depicted on the big screen.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Shining-ebook/dp/B0037TPMOA/ref=tmm_kin_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1364744055&sr=1-1-catcorr

Reading isn’t only entertainment, it’s creativity. I don’t know if Anne McCaffrey’s Pern dragon series (the best dragon books ever written in my opinion) were ever turned into movies, but if they were, I don’t want to see them. The cover art was more than enough to start me off, and Pern and its dragonriders have very distinct lives in my mind. I don’t want to change that.

http://www.amazon.com/Dragonflight-The-Dragon-Books-ebook/dp/B008FY4KBS/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1364744306&sr=1-1&keywords=anne+mccaffrey+pern+series

Apart from zooming off to distant planets, or times long gone, sometimes when real life gets a bit tedious or generally not much fun, I’ve headed off to the worlds of my favourite funny guys. Not many of my friends love Terry Pratchett quite as much as I do, but his Discworld series has to be one of the cleverest, funniest ever written. It’s not just the humour, which has had me in half an hour, jaw aching, unstoppable laughathons, it’s the sweet little digs at everyone and everything on this planet. These are not children’s books at all by the way – this author can wield sexual innuendo better than most.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Colour-Magic-Discworld-ebook/dp/B0031RS69G/ref=sr_1_14?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1364743487&sr=1-14&keywords=terry+pratchett

Douglas Adams Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy series is another pick me up go to place,

http://www.amazon.com/The-Hitchhikers-Guide-Galaxy-ebook/dp/B003GK2180/ref=sr_1_6?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1364743642&sr=1-6&keywords=douglas+adams

as are all of Robert Rankin’s brilliant books,

http://www.amazon.com/The-Antipope-Brentford-Trilogy-ebook/dp/B007JPNZUQ/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1364743759&sr=1-1&keywords=robert+rankin

but I have to say that the funniest books I’ve ever read have been by Tom Sharpe. Definitely not for under eighteens, but as far as I’m concerned, his books are some of the rudest, most hilarious ever written.

http://www.amazon.com/Porterhouse-Blue-ebook/dp/B0051UT83Y/ref=pd_sim_kstore_4

So… If you are not having the best day ever, and things all just seem a little too much, whether it’s tedious relatives having partaken of too much gin after the Easter Sunday lunch, or life just getting you down in general, I suggest you zoom on over to Amazon, or your book supplier of choice, and find a lovely little place elsewhere to spend the rest of your day. Also, find some lovely friends, readers, bloggers, and authors on Google+ – I’d love to see you there. And as a P.S. – any of my African friends (or friends from anywhere really), who might have trouble buying books online, give me a shout, and I will be more than happy to send you any of my scribbles that you might want to read for free.

https://plus.google.com/communities/115573021758683598908

Till next time friends. xxx

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