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Mike Meyer

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Member Since: Aug, 2011

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Category: 

Humor

Publisher:  Createspace ISBN-10:  1477668608 Type: 

ISBN-13:  9781477668603
Fiction

A rollicking romp through the halls of academia. Fast-paced. Hilarity at its best!

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 CONTEMPORARY/HUMOROUS FICTION COLLECTION BOOK ONE - A ROLLICKING ROMP THROUGH THE HALLS OF ACADEMIA - THE FAMOUS UNION  has readers saying that it has "flashes of Vonnegut," that it is "an academic version of Catch 22," that it "is a hoot!" and that it is "one of few books that has made me laugh out loud."


Famous Union is a pretty little college with expensive fountains, cute coeds, and brand new artificial turf on the football field. It seems like the perfect place to work, but not all is as it seems. Come get some heavy doses of healthful laughter as a once-proud institution of higher learning is overwhelmed by madcap hilarity, where compromise is a four-letter word. Famous Union College is a place where what is what is not.
 

WARNING: Do not attempt to read and drive--or to eat while reading this book. Be sure to provide a safe environment for sudden outbursts of laughter.


Excerpt

Famous Union was a pretty college, with pretty buildings and pretty coeds and a lot of trees. It also had a pretty water fountain that ran from eight in the morning until five in the evening, excluding Saturdays and Sundays. It was a small college but with not small problems and expenditures. The water fountain alone had cost a mint, not to mention the artificial turf on the football stadium, the bowling alley in the student union, and the many automatic coffee makers around campus.
On September 1, 2012, two recent PhDs entered employment with the English Department of Famous Union College, one a young Greek, the second a younger hybrid. But unfortunately for the latter—the hybrid—who had been hired to coordinate the department’s freshman composition program, a two-semester sequence, the entire program, as the result of an executive decision in late August, was abolished forever at Famous Union three weeks before the new coordinator showed his face in town for the second time, the first having been for his job interview two and a half months earlier. The decision was a landmark one, Famous Union having been the first and only institution of higher learning in the entire country to disband the writing program that was a strict requirement everywhere else under the American flag, and always had been.



#


Alexander Smith, the Greek, had received his PhD in British literature in 2006 in an American university. He’d first come to the States as a young boy. His parents had sent him there to learn English. He’d lived with his uncle and aunt and had never returned to Greece. And he learned English very quickly. When his eldest sister had married in Athens in 1997, he’d sent her a certified check in the amount of seventy-five American dollars. She’d had a huge Greek wedding with everything as it should be, celebrating fast and loud until the wee hours of the morning.
Alexander went to Oregon State right after his high school graduation, and he remained there until he received his PhD, working summers and evenings as a wine steward in a fancy Italian restaurant not twenty minutes by foot from the books of the Oregon State University library, Alexander’s favorite habitat for the nine years he spent in Corvallis.
In his second year of graduate school he met Haide Mohammadi, a senior in psychology from Iran. But three months later he lost her.
Haide came from Mashid, the holy city of Iran, the center of Iranian conservatism and religious thought. She thought she was both conservative and deeply religious, but she found out in Corvallis that she was neither. She threw off all of her restrictive religious chains and began to drink beer with devotion, as did her two run-around American roommates. She took to wearing a mini-skirt and no bra in summer, and a tight sweater and tight pants and no bra in winter. She even perfected a little wiggle when she walked, which only served to enhance the mind-boggling curvature of her body that always seemed to be fighting with all it had to gain access from its confining clothes, usually rich and colorful and Western.
When Haide finally lost her virginity, not long after she’d made herself at home in America, she found to her delight that she enjoyed the sex act so much that she got into the habit of making it a habit, much to the enjoyment of her steady stream of American dates.
Needless to say, she was quite accomplished in her love-making when Alexander first met her, which was in the parking lot of the fancy Italian restaurant where he worked evenings, and she went to bed with him on their first date. Alexander was so excited by the lithe Persian beauty that he could hardly think of anything but her, even when he was not physically touching or teasing or screwing her, all of which he did for three glorious months. As a result, his grade average began to slip, not much, but slip nonetheless. However, Alexander, normally a serious student, couldn’t care less about the slippage of his G.P.A. he was so engrossed by Haide Mohammadi.
In February, however, when her once untouchable loins began to crave the taste of new masculinity, Haide Mohammadi dumped Alexander Smith. She dumped him hard, with little explanation and with finality, and Alexander nearly lost his mind, especially so when her ongoing sexual exploits continued coming back to his own ears. So he began to apply himself to his studies of British literature like he’d never applied himself to anything before, Haide Mohmmadi being no exception. He proved himself so capable in this endeavor that his dissertation supervisor even suggested, after it was all over for Alexander at Oregon State, that his lengthy discourse on the allegorical love poetry of Geoffrey Chaucer be published. But, for one reason or another, Alexander just never got around to trying to do this, though he did manage to maintain a lifelong interest in both love and poetry, allegorical or not.
After his graduation Alexander accepted a teaching post at a Florida university, where he stayed for five years.
And then on April 2nd he signed his name on the bottom of the second page of a contract for full-time academic personnel at Famous Union College.


#


William Ferris, alias Bill, the hybrid, received his PhD in nineteenth-century American literature in June of 2003 from a California state university. He’d been born and raised in his hometown, and he’d received his high school diploma, his Bachelor’s degree, his Master’s degree and his PhD there, too. And in 1998 he’d received the shock of his life there. It was a summer afternoon when this had happened. Here is what took place:
Bill Ferris had just finished a cheeseburger with everything on it and a thick chocolate shake and a side order of French fries with a dab of ketchup on the side and he was heading back to his car in the nearby parking lot when a man in front of him suddenly pulled a gun on him and cocked the trigger, aiming the thing right into the chest of William Ferris. Ferris froze and the man told him to try no funny business and to throw his hands into the sky and to move not a muscle or he would forfeit his life. So Ferris, scared shitless, did as he was told. He threw his hands up in the air and moved not a muscle and tried no funny business. How he was able to do all of this at the time, he can’t remember to this day.
The man cautiously approached William Ferris and checked his person for a sidearm, found none, and then ordered him to slowly turn his pockets inside out. Again William Ferris did exactly as he was told, except that, out of extreme fear, he did so much more slowly than the man with the gun desired. When Ferris was finally finished, the man with the now empty holster quickly scooped up Bill’s wallet and searched it for identification purposes and then, with a sheepish grin on his face, put his gun back into its holster and handed the wallet back to Ferris and told him to relax, that he was the wrong man. Then he helped Bill retrieve the loose change that had been splattered about the parking lot from Ferris’ pockets, and he smiled and told Ferris to have a good day, then walked away, leaving William Ferris still scared shitless.
This was an event in his life that William Ferris never completely forgot.
He continued his studies and then defended his dissertation and later that same night, and into the wee hours of the following morning, he filled his body with too much liquor he was so delighted with himself.
Then two weeks later he put his signature to the full-time academic contract that Famous Union College offered him.




Professional Reviews

Fun, Entertaining, and Laugh-out-loud funny
Donna Johnson
Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase
I got this book for my kindle, and let me tell you I wasn't disappointed. The fast-paced, laugh-out-loud funny, upbeat writing style instantly drew me in and never let go.

The Famous Union is a fast paced run through the eyes of two PhDs who were recently hired in the English department. Famous Union is a fancy little college with expensive fountains, cute girls, and brand new artificial turf on the football field. It seems like the perfect job, however, things aren't what they expect and we get a hilarious look into academia.

This stunning novel is not only unique but completely witty and genuinely funny. I LOVE the humorous approach this author takes. Unique, interesting, creative characters are well fleshed out and grab your attention from the beginning as you are pulled into the story. You will smile, you will laugh, and you will get mad as you take this journey along with them. The author did an awesome job of getting me to connect with the characters. I love when a book gives you that kind of connection.

Entertaining, colorful characters, fantastic editing, and a solid plot kept me glued to the pages. This is highly recommended and a fun adult read. 5 stars without a doubt! I look forward to more of this author's work.


A review by Free Book Reviews
Albert Robbins III "Albert Robbins III" (Sioux City, IA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)
This review is from: The Famous Union (Kindle Edition)
Overall Feedback: With the abundance of drive for parents to send their children to college to get that "higher education" and that "great job" always in the forefront of Joe Public it was refreshing to see a book that pulled academia to it's figurative knees. Michael does well to show the attitude in the politics of University life and the delusions that aspiring hot-off-the presses professor can find. Humor and wit again find home in this book and I suspect that this may become a theme in the writing of Michael.

Point of View: Multiple eccentric views lead to fun for the reader.

Voice: Again Michael's humor and wit drive the reader along.

Character Development: You would think that development would struggle with many characters but the author does well to develop each and every character in the story.

Plot: College life as we never knew it. The plot is quick and will entertain at every turn.

Dialogue: Perfection...Nothing else would do it justice.

Pacing: It seems to me that this one could not slow down if the author tried.

Setting: We all knew that this is the reality of college life did we not?

Continuity: Again Michael is flawless in his storytelling. I could not find issue with anything in this one.


Careering in academia
Joseph Kaye (Ft. Myers, FL) - See all my reviews
Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Famous Union (Kindle Edition)
I liked this book very much. Having worked in academia for some time, I found much of Famous Union's landscape recognizable and its characters familiar. This is a quick paced read, and the writing is clear and direct. One of the other reviewers mentioned this work evoking Heller's Catch-22, and I think thematically, that's a fairly apt comparison. I also see flashes of Vonnegut, here and there. It highlights the absurdity of higher education, along with its politics and tensions, and does so in a clever and engaging manner. I would think that a background in academia would certainly enhance this work, but I don't think it's required. It gets a 'recommend' from me.


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Reader Reviews for "The Famous Union: Humorous Contemporary Fiction"

Reviewed by Mike Meyer 8/5/2011
By DT - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Famous Union (Kindle Edition)
"The Famous Union" is a very funny, fast book to read. With the way things are today in education, this witty satire is worth the read. I highly recommend it.


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