The Squirrel That Dreamt of Madness – I Give it 5 Very Pointy and Twinkly Stars

The Squirrel That Dreamt Of Madness

Craig Stone has crafted a fantastic story that merges philosophical musings with humour and suspense: even the cringe-worthy moments were enjoyable. If you ever wanted to read an hilarious story about a guy called Colossus Sosloss who decides to be homeless and lives in a park with mysterious, fearful characters, and hear some philosophical stuff at the same time – then this is for you.

While Colossus resides in the park, trying to find the meaning of something (is he trying to find himself or the meaning of life?) he finds himself unwittingly caught up in a mystery he must solve before something terrible befalls him.

With seemingly unrelated stories popping in to visit along the way, you will be pleasantly surprised when they all merge together and arrive on the same bus to greet you at the end. I thoroughly enjoyed my journey through this original, funny and thought provoking book, which contains a riveting plot and likeable protagonist.

Craig has a fan for life because I loved, loved, loved this book.  One of my top ten best books of all time – yes you heard me (and no, he didn’t slip me a fifty).  Craig’s writing is in-your-face funny and genius, and he has crafted a story that stays with you long after the madness the squirrel dreamt of is gone.

You can follow Craig on Twitter @robolollycop and buy his books (he has just released another one called Life Knocks which I will review in a few weeks) at Amazon

Midgets, Possums and Straw Hats – Podcast with Craig Stone

Today’s podcast was so much fun!  Our guest was the talented author Craig Stone and he has revealed a shocking secret (you only have to listen for a little while to find out).  We also discuss his book The Squirrel That Dreamt of Madness and we may have spoken about childbirth, possums and straw hats.  Our guest next week is Scott Morgan (just so you know :)) Join us for the fun!

Morons Incorporated Driving School – producing drivers of impeccable idiocy

As you all know, if you’ve read my posts, in my previous life I was a property valuer.  This job involved lots and lots of driving, usually between 100-300 km per day, five days a week, for many, many years – you get the picture.  In my time on Sydney’s traffic-filled roads I have seen it all from the drivers who learnt at Morons Incorporated Driving School, and hated most of it.  If you don’t like listening to people whinging I would stop reading now because I’m going to talk about what other drivers do that drive me crazy (literally) and one incident which was just plain gross.

  1. You are driving along at a consistent speed and everyone is happy, when suddenly, the driver in front slams on the brakes!  You narrowly avoid slamming into the back of them and while your heart is racing and you’re thinking, “Oh my god, were they avoiding a child, a dog, a pothole?” their blinker goes on and they casually turn the corner.  Ok, who gave you your license idiot?  The blinker is to warn me that you are going to put the brakes on to turn the freakin’ corner.  Learn what those sticks things are on the side of your steering wheel column.
  2. Crawling along in a traffic jam, trying to make the best of it by listening to some cool music and singing along (in a “you shouldn’t go on American Idol”) voice, waiting your turn, when an arsehole zips down the lane nearest the gutter and pushes in front of the car in front.  Two idiots here: the one doing the pushing in like they’re more special than everyone else – why should they wait, and the I’m-so-nice-it’s-sickening driver who let the pusher innerer push in.  I hate both of you and I hope you get a flat.
  3. The inconsistent, taxi driver type driver who doesn’t know how to hold one speed on the highway.  They accelerate then you see the brake light flash and they slow, then off they go again, speeding away, then the lights flash and they slow down – stop it, if there are any epileptics around they are going to have a fit.  Just drive at the one speed, it’s not that hard.
  4. When you’re driving in the country (yes I do that occasionally) and the person in front won’t do the 100 speed limit.  This always happens when there’s one lane and nowhere to overtake.  You drive on their arse (now don’t tell me I’m shitting them please) so hopefully they get the hint, but nothing happens.  You drive this way for ten minutes until eventually you see relief in the form of the “overtaking lane 500 metres ahead” sign.  Woohoo!  You plant the foot, but wait, what’s this?  They accelerate too and won’t let you pass.  You SOB, what are you doing, what the hell is wrong with you?  They drive fast until it’s back to a single lane, then they slow down – I want to kill someone.
  5. Driving on a two lane each way road and you’re in the middle lane and there is someone just ahead who is in the gutter lane.  They actually have their blinker on to turn the corner, so that’s cool, but just when you think it’s all good they swing into your lane before they make the turn.  Morons Incorporated – you are not driving a truck, you are driving a Mazda 121, now get the f**k out of my lane.
  6. Travelling along and you are approaching traffic lights that don’t have a turning lane to go right, across the oncoming traffic (in America imagine this scenario in reverse and the idiot will be turning left).  We are blessed with two lanes just in case someone is turning so we can go around them.  As the lights turn red and we come to a stop no one has their indicator on so we all feel safe staying in the middle lane.  Just as the light turns green it happens – the blinker on the car in front starts doing it’s thang.  Are you kidding me?  Now I have missed my opportunity to go around you because cars are flying past me on the gutter lane.  I say the ‘F’ word a few times and resist the urge to accelerate and slam into the back of you and ‘help’ you turn the corner.
  7. Now we come to the ‘gross’ part.  I was sitting at traffic lights in a fringe CBD Sydney suburb known affectionately as “The Cross” (Kings Cross).  This area is known for it’s beautiful old buildings, proximity to the city and the many ‘colourful’ people who frequent its streets.  I’m sitting at the lights with my window down, actually calm for a change because there are no stupid, idiot, moron drivers doing what they usually do to annoy me, and I happily look around at the people walking along.  Then it happens, I see it.  There is a man standing in the gutter.  He looks like an alcoholic, possibly homeless and he is wearing a t-shirt and shorts.  He is standing over a drain grate.  His shorts are fairly short, short enough that he flops his old fella out of one short leg and proceeds to piss into the drain.  Might I mention there are scores of people around and it is the middle of the day.  I see what it looks like, I cannot, to this day, forget.

I am glad my new job of writing does not involve getting into the car too often because I’m sure I was headed for a heart attack or stroke because lets face it, hardly anyone drives as perfectly as I do.