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The Odd Todd Handbook: Hard Times, Soft Couch    by Todd Rosenberg order for
Odd Todd Handbook
by Todd Rosenberg
Order:  USA  Can
Warner, 2003 (2003)
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Odd Todd delivers a slyly funny lifestyle guide dedicated to 'all job seekers everywhere'. He includes in that category those laid off, just graduated, goofing off, broke and bored ... you get the idea. He starts his day at 9:53 a.m., sharing different techniques to get back to sleep again (the dream interpretation sequences are imaginative). Color cartoons add to the fun throughout.

At 10:23 a.m., Todd advises us to put on an old, ratty robe (the author considers this a necessity for continued reading), and 10:45 a.m. is 'coff-ay' time, though this continues into an all day activity (a 'Game of Coff-ay' is included on page 12). Next comes 'Wallstaring', billed as a kind of meditation, with a historical wallstaring timeline for the reader's edification. Indeed, the book is full of useful suggestions to help with daily milestones, like toothbrushing and shower songs and techniques for dealing with panic attacks.

At 12:09 p.m., Todd starts getting more (well, a little bit more) serious with advice about actually doing something, i.e. finding a new job. There's a list of mix-and-match phrases for a lying resum9, do's and don't for interviewing, and 'common reasons not to become a common criminal'. There are even recipes for creative cooking with limited 'mon-ay'. Exercises like 'Remote Control relay' will keep you busy, and Todd shares screenplay and gameshow ideas, and his 'Quest for Magic' picture book.

It's very funny if you like your humor on the snarky, cynical side. I especially enjoyed the list of top ten 'mov-ays' with unemployed people as protagonists and the discussion of talk show ghost hosts. The Odd Todd Handbook lays out endlessly busy days of doing nothing - from 9:53 a.m. to the wee hours of the next morning - for job seekers everywhere.

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