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Author Topic: PC064: Castor On Troubled Waters  (Read 5912 times)

Heradel

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on: August 04, 2009, 11:03:19 PM
PC064: Castor On Troubled Waters

By Rhys Hughes.
Read by Alasdair Stuart (of Pseudopod).

“You won’t believe what has just happened to me!”

“Tell us,” they replied.

“Very well,” he said slowly, “but I need a drink to settle my nerves first. You don’t mind if I take a sip of your beer? That’s better. And yours as well? Sure, a massive gulp isn’t the same as a sip, but listen carefully: I was kidnapped! I know it sounds ridiculous but it’s true nonetheless. Shortly after I left you, while walking along the esplanade, I noticed a strange vessel anchored offshore, an old fashioned galleon. Then a boat was lowered from it and began rowing closer and I soon realised there was something unusual about it.”

“How unusual?” asked Paddy.

Castor lowered his voice to a whisper. “It was crewed by men dressed like pirates…”

Rated PG. Contains blasted lies, and more blasted pirates.

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Listener

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Reply #1 on: August 05, 2009, 06:54:39 PM
Haven't listened yet, but the very first thing I thought of was "Darmok", STNG episode 5x02:

Quote
"Darmok, and Jalad... at Tanagra!"

"Shaka, when the walls fell."

"Temba, his arms wide!"

"Sokath, his eyes uncovered!"

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stePH

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Reply #2 on: August 05, 2009, 09:40:12 PM
Fun story.  Me like.  :)  (Even though I don't quite grok the term "shaggy dog story")

Haven't listened yet, but the very first thing I thought of was "Darmok", STNG episode 5x02:

Quote
"Darmok, and Jalad... at Tanagra!"

"Shaka, when the walls fell."

"Temba, his arms wide!"

"Sokath, his eyes uncovered!"

"The Blue Rabbit is in the Cow Barn."

"Nerdcore is like playing Halo while getting a blow-job from Hello Kitty."
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Listener

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Reply #3 on: August 06, 2009, 12:19:28 PM
Alasdair's readings are always good.

I really liked the names, the shaggy-dog-itude, the way Castor Jenkins wove the story, and the author's choice in names -- great fictional names can be a hallmark that you're about to hear a fable or trickster story or shaggy dog, and without them -- had the characters been named Harry and Paddy, for example -- I think the story would've lost something. The names were also somewhat evocative of Pratchett's Discworld names, especially the Lancrastrians (Bestiality Carter, etc).

Perhaps the ending didn't really lend itself to audio.

A nice brief story. Welcome amid the unnamed-as-giant giant stories of the past few weeks (the Giant notwithstanding).

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thomasowenm

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Reply #4 on: August 08, 2009, 02:49:22 AM
meh.



H. Bergeron

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Reply #5 on: August 08, 2009, 07:18:03 AM
(Even though I don't quite grok the term "shaggy dog story")

I'm going to assume that you mean that you don't know what a shaggy dog story is, so I'll define it for you (as best I know) - it's a very, very long story that ends up being completely pointless except as extra baggage for a stupid joke or one-liner.  A good example is one incredible epic which ends simply with "Better Nate than lever!"  These are the stories you tell to friends who will listen to the whole thing in hopes of some sort of mind-blowing finish but which end with a one-line pun.


Regarding the story - I adored it, though it was hilarious.  If you must know, what this very strongly reminded me of was actually the Tales of the White Street Society stories from Pseudopod.  It's probably just the idea of our friendly neighborhood Pseudopod editor reading a story about a guy telling a ridiculous story that makes me connect the two, but who knows - did anyone else have that mental connection?


Anyway. Really enjoyed the story.  It was made very clear from the beginning what it was going to be, but I think I'd still have enjoyed it even had it not been made so clear - it probably would just have elicited a groan, had I not had some idea of what caliber of ending was coming.

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stePH

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Reply #6 on: August 08, 2009, 02:47:27 PM
Something else just occurred to me ... this is only fantasy if Castor is telling the truth.  Otherwise it's just some guy bullshitting his friends to get out of paying some money.

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H. Bergeron

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Reply #7 on: August 08, 2009, 03:32:29 PM
Something else just occurred to me ... this is only fantasy if Castor is telling the truth.  Otherwise it's just some guy bullshitting his friends to get out of paying some money.

Really?  Do the events being described have to be true (in context) in order for a story to qualify as a fantasy? Maybe it's just that the characters have to believe it in order for it to be fantasy... Hrm.  Oh god, this debate.  I'll stop now.

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Reply #8 on: August 08, 2009, 04:42:07 PM
I liked it. It was genuninely funny in a dry, northern English way. But I'm not entirely sure how it counts as a "shaggy dog" story. Aren't shaggy dog stories supposed to have an ironic twist?

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Praxis

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Reply #9 on: August 08, 2009, 10:50:15 PM
Tee hee hee.
I think I've just heard my first podcast-joke/tall tale. 

Let's be honest, it wasn't *really* a podcastle (fantasy) story now, was it.
It did make me chuckle as he continues to try to fleece his friends out of paying the real £100 and tells them not to believe what they read in calendars so bravo to Rhys Hughes
(though, I think he got one over on the EP editors when he made them think this was fantasy.  Will they ever admit they got duped?   :P  )

The thing about 'my son is just like me, just like me in every way, so much so that you wouldn't be able to tell the difference, for instance....' did make me think there was going to be something about him returning, but it is really his son, etc. etc.
Extending it to his friends was where it just got silly, but then this was a shaggy dog story, so it is supposed to be unbelievable.

2 thumbs up.



smithmikeg

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Reply #10 on: August 09, 2009, 05:06:20 AM
Alasdair read this one perfectly!  It was hilarious and I enjoyed it immensely.  The time difference kept bugging me until it was explained, and it managed to distract me from the story at points.  If the author had made the two question Castor on the time difference, and Castor had replied along the lines of "Hold yer horses, I'll get there," it would have been perfect.

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Reply #11 on: August 12, 2009, 07:19:24 PM
It's a rare thing anymore it seems to come across a good story that can also offer up a decent number of laughs as well.  The last ten minutes of this one had me chuckling as I could just imagine the looks on Patty's and Harris' faces as Castor told them what had happened.  A nifty way to try and get out of paying money I have to admit.   ;D



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Reply #12 on: August 13, 2009, 01:31:46 AM
Fun!

Alisdair's reading added the appropriate whimsical feel. Props for chugging on with the Welsh accent ;-)


Talia

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Reply #13 on: August 19, 2009, 01:31:15 PM
Awesome. The guy deserves to be let off the hook just for being able to reel off such a splendidly imaginative BS tale. :)



eytanz

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Reply #14 on: August 19, 2009, 03:45:08 PM
Loved this.

And of course it's a fantasy story. The fact that the fantasy story was a story-within-a-story doesn't change that.



rhysaurus

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Reply #15 on: August 30, 2009, 01:26:26 PM
All the other ‘Castor Jenkins’ stories can be found in this book, if anyone is interested:

http://www.screamingdreams.com/mariner.html

The publisher has had problems with distributors, which is why I’ve linked to his own website. He’s a small press publisher, a one man operation, but he’s a great book designer.




kibitzer

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Reply #16 on: September 03, 2009, 10:29:51 AM
@rhysaurus -- cool site!


LaShawn

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Reply #17 on: September 04, 2009, 04:26:53 PM
This had me laughing out loud at my desk. I'll definitely have my hubby listen to it; he truly appreciates BS stories. And is it just me or does anyone else find Alasdair's accent in this divine and just a little bit sexy?

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eytanz

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Reply #18 on: September 09, 2009, 11:06:56 AM
All the other ‘Castor Jenkins’ stories can be found in this book, if anyone is interested:

http://www.screamingdreams.com/mariner.html

The publisher has had problems with distributors, which is why I’ve linked to his own website. He’s a small press publisher, a one man operation, but he’s a great book designer.



Purchased! Thanks for the heads-up!



Swamp

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Reply #19 on: September 13, 2009, 05:35:29 AM
Haven't listened yet, but the very first thing I thought of was "Darmok", STNG episode 5x02:

Quote
"Darmok, and Jalad... at Tanagra!"

"Shaka, when the walls fell."

"Temba, his arms wide!"

"Sokath, his eyes uncovered!"

I love that episode of STNG.  I quote it all the time.  However, I don't see how it relates to this story.

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Swamp

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Reply #20 on: September 13, 2009, 05:48:41 AM
This was a welcome laugh!  I loved it.  My favorite recurring joke was about the "butter mines of Cowpoo".  Very funny.  I would love to see Castor Jenkins stories as recurring installments on PC, like the Union Dures stories on EP.  Alasdair was the perfect narrator as well.  Splendid job by all involved!

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Reply #21 on: December 29, 2009, 04:25:57 PM
Hilarious!  This one really cracked me up.  It was clear from the very beginning that this was all a bunch of BS, so the stuff that didn't make sense just made it all funnier.  Like when his story extended into years and years, and then his friends only think to point out at the end "but you've only been gone an hour".  And the whole idea that they are all of their identical parents children, to the extent that they carry their parents exact memories up until this very moment is just so stupid it's hilarious! 

And great reading by Alasdair, he was the perfect choice to read this tale.  :)