Teleported by Accident

The Teleportation Accident by Ned Beauman might be the strangest book I’ve ever read.  “LONGLISTED FOR THE 2012 MAN BOOKER PRIZE” is the phrase that impressed me I guess.  Truthfully, I don’t remember how it turned up on my kindle.  Or why.  Maybe it was one of those muddle-headed middle of the night minor mishaps, where I push some buttons on my e-reader with my eyes closed.

I read a few pages and thought, oh my God, what have I gotten myself into now?  Several chapters in I lost count of the times I’d  back-tracked and re-read passages and even whole pages trying to get it all to make a bit of sense.  Eventually I had one of those ah-hah moments.  Once I realized it’s simply an insane story that’s all over the place, that’s when I started to love it.

This partial quote from the Amazon  site sums it up well:

…..a historical novel that doesn’t know what year it is; a noir novel that turns
all the lights on; a romance novel that arrives drunk to dinner; a science
fiction novel that can’t remember what ‘isotope’ means; a stunningly inventive,
exceptionally funny, dangerously unsteady and (largely) coherent novel about
sex, violence, space, time, and how the best way to deal with history is to
ignore it.

If you can wrap your brain around thousands of brilliantly crazy metaphors and similes and want to read a book with four different endings, this could be just what you’ve been waiting for.  There are some difficult  parts and bits of bizarre cleverness that I’m sure went right over my head, but there are also hilarious scenes that had me laughing out loud.  For me it was a sort of roller-coaster read – I had to make myself sit back and enjoy the ride – so that when it was over, I found I couldn’t remember a whole lot about it except for the fun.

Brownies for Breakfast

Brownies stacked on a plate.

Brownies stacked on a plate. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today the stars tell me my mind is focussed inward on personal issues and the temper tantrum my inner child is throwing.  Yesterday they told me I wanted to chuck my work out the window and go somewhere to party my brains out.  The stars have lost their collective mind.  Who is writing this stuff?

An even better question – why am I reading it?  Because I am ever optimistically hopeful that one day my horoscope will tell me to do some insane thing that will change my life. That’s why.  Not that my life is so bad or anything, it’s just that change is good.  Sometimes you need a little push in the right direction.

I’ve just finished reading the most delightful book – Shine Shine Shine by Lydia Netzer.  It’s the best book I’ve come across since Night Circus, and that is high praise.

This simple story, beautifully told, is about love and family and being human.  Robots, space travel, birth and death.  Relationships, genius, secrets, murder, motherhood, marriage.  Autism.  Being bald. Impossible to put a label on it, or restrict it to one genre.  The characters are uniquely strange and lovable.  It’s altogether brilliant. I didn’t want it to end.

And yes, if you really need to know,  I DID have brownies with my coffee for breakfast this morning. Really, I had very little choice. The stupid things were just sitting there on top of the microwave in their little brown two-bite bag taunting me and it was the only way I could think of to stop them.  And also the only logical way to stop my inner childs tantrum from escalating.  It all worked out well.  They were delicious. They’re gone and can no longer tempt me.

All of lifes little problems should be so easily solved.

Married to an Alien?

The Plinky Prompt today is wanting me to create a wild alien character for a science fiction story, complete with appearance, personality traits, quirks and life experiences.  Huge sigh.  Maybe the table topic is better?  Not really.  It says ‘what quality do you think is most important in a marriage’.

My horoscope for today tells me my mood is “annoyed”.  Wow, they got that right.

So once again I am forced (FORCED, I tell you) to combine two totally unrelated topics.  I’ve decided to write a self-help pamphlet for distribution in places like doctor’s waiting rooms where there is never anything fun to read.  Although it can be a mood booster to pick up some random piece of reading material which explains how to cope with a perfectly  horrendous condition that you’re pretty sure you don’t have.  Or didn’t even know you could  get, but you read it anyway and store the advice  somewhere deep in your head for future reference, just in case.  Which is of course what I expect you to do with the following.

WHAT TO DO IF YOU SUSPECT YOU HAVE UNWITTINGLY MARRIED AN ALIEN

1.  Get him his own computer.   Contacting other galaxies, or whatever it is he’s doing on there can seriously impact your virtual memory and toy with your sanity.  Think aliens are deleting your programs and messing with your hard drive?  You could be right.

2.  Take separate vacations.  Well, not ALL the time of course.  But time away from each other is incredibly therapeutic.  And who knows exactly HOW far away he gets when he’s off on his own.  Let another planet deal with his quirks for a while.

3.  Do NOT interfere when he decides to cook his own meals or do his own laundry or barbecue something for two hours, starting at 10:00 p.m.  If he brings home white bread,  just be quiet and let him eat it.  And all those plastic containers of left-overs he stores so religiously in the fridge until the contents are unrecognizable?  Don’t touch them, they could be toxic.  Maybe he’s working on a formula for rocket fuel.

4. Never criticize how he drives.  Take a tranquilizer if you have to.  Go ahead and agree with him that every other driver out there is rude, stupid, ignorant and blind.  And when he decides to stay behind a snowplow for two hours, that would be a great time to take a nap and dream about buying plane tickets.

5.  Don’t sweat the weird stuff.  Remember the time he burned the old water bed frame in your fire pit in the back yard?  That’s just one of many perfectly normal alien activities that ultimately hurts no one and is best forgotten and not explained in any great detail to the neighbors.

6.  Keep your sense of humor alive and intact.  Do not be discouraged when you find something hysterically funny and he just stares at you vacantly.  He can’t help it.  Try to love him anyway.