Tuesday, September 18, 2007

A Way to Release Some of that Stress

This has little to do with retention and customer service except for reading retention and the fact that Jasper Fforde answers his own email and does it quickly so there is a service connection. Anyhow, the jobs you all have are demanding and stressful even with the wonderful assistance of AcademicMAPS (had to toss a plug in there). Just also want to share some ways to get away from the tension and stress of your jobs. Lord knows they can wear you down without some fun other than another meeting or task force.

Fforde is the author of the Thursday Next series as well as the Nursery Crime Division series. The books are absolutely wonderful, funny, bright and the best satires of mystery novels, literature and just plain funnier than a retreat on budget planning led by the CFO. I just finished The Fourth Bear a novel based on the Goldilocks story so wonderfully turned on its head that the damn thing finally makes sense. In it Jack Spratt who is a PDR (person of dubious reality) with his sidekick Mary Mary figures out who killed Goldilocks as well as the basis of green cuclear power, whether the Gingerbread man, a cereal killer is either a cookie or cake, why you should not suck your thumb in the office between meetings, and numerous other nursery crimes. His last adventure dealt with the murder of Humpty Dumpty in The Big Over Easy

The Thursday Next novels ought to be required reading for all lit majors. They actually explore the core of literature while removing the rotten cores of crime in one or another century and world. With the help of characters such as Miss Haversham, Thursday goes to such places as the Well of Lost Plots where every plot concept ever used, considered or tried exists. By the way, you can buy some plot devices there too if your great American, Canadian or European novel is stuck. The series is brilliant and great fun, especially for English majors and even more so for English majors who are now working in administration to get out of grading all those essays that could reveal that the student author really could belong in a Fforde novel.

They are great escapes and you may even discover some hidden truths from nursery rhymes and literature along the way.

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