Thursday, 2 August 2012

What Is 'A Lush Snaky Trick'?

...a very good sneaky bamboozlement!

A Lush Snaky Trick, the original title of
How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy.

Most people won’t be aware of this, but the original title of ‘How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy’ was penciled in as ‘A Lush Snaky Trick.’  In fact it was more than just penciled in.  It was pretty much inked in at one stage.  It was quite a major decision when I decided to change the title to How To Save The World, but ultimately I realised that a book title should give its readers a clear hint about the story, and due to its use of local dialogue the original title of ‘A Lush Snaky Trick’ didn’t really succeed in that aim.

However, despite the change of title, the theme of playing ‘lush snaky tricks’ is one which runs through the book, so I’ve therefore decided to write a brief explanation of what exactly a lush snaky trick is.  To put it simply, a lush snaky trick is basically just a Geordie term to describe a comedy gag which involves good-natured trickery and deception.  A friend of mine on facebook described it once as ‘a very good sneaky bamboozlement’ and that’s a good way to describe it because in its most basic form that’s what it is.

However, a vital part of playing a lush snaky trick is that you have to know where to draw the line.  If it gets to the stage where the victim is completely upset or in physical or emotional pain then obviously that’s going beyond the realms of ‘a lush snaky trick’ and into the realms of ‘a totally snidey trick.’  Eric explains this point briefly to Jixyl and Azleev* in ‘How To Save The World,’ but I’ll take the opportunity here to go into this theory in a little more detail.

* Two aliens featured in How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy.

A good example to use when describing the concept behind a lush snaky trick is The Monty Python Matching Tie and Handkerchief record* which Monty Python released which had three sides.  You may think it’s impossible for a disc shaped object to have three sides, and in a physical sense you’d be right, but what I mean is that it had three soundtracks.  How Monty Python did this was via the use of concentric grooves.  One side of the record played as normal just like any other record would, but the other side featured concentric grooves with each groove playing a different script of gags and songs depending on where the needle landed.  To confuse the listener even further the label on both sides of the record was identical so the listener had no way of knowing which side of the record they were playing other than by listening to it.

* For the benefit of young people, records were basically the CDs of the past and featured grooves on each side which stored the musical data for the record to play.

A photo of records from the olden days, for the benefit of our younger visitors.
So the first time someone listened to the album everything would seem normal and they wouldn’t suspect a thing.  If they then flipped the record over and listened to the other side they still wouldn’t notice anything peculiar.  It wasn’t until they listened to it again that there was a fifty percent chance (depending on which groove the record needle arrived at first) that the ‘two-sided’ side would play the alternative script and the listener would find themselves thinking, ‘I’m sure this was different the last time I listened to it.’  Further listens would indeed confirm that the record seemingly had three sides and leave the listener completely bamboozled as to what was going on.

Anyway, this act of tomfoolery by the Monty Python team would qualify as a lush snaky trick.  Nobody gets hurt, the Monty Python dudes get to have a cheeky smirk to themselves at the no doubt puzzled and baffled expressions on the faces of those that bought the record, and as an added bonus their fans were effectively getting three sides for the price of two!  So everyone was a winner.

However, if say for example when the listener played the record it had some weird mechanism which caused the needle on their record player to snap off and break, then that would no longer qualify as a lush snaky trick.  Something of that magnitude would cause the event to be upgraded from a ‘lush snaky trick’ to a ‘totally snidey trick.’  To reiterate, the victim has to find the lush snaky trick funny as well (except in a few exceptions which I’ll discuss later) in order for it to qualify as a lush snaky trick.

In summary, lush snaky tricks are fun to play on people and highly recommended, whereas totally snidey tricks are a bit sly (or sometimes even a lot sly) and shouldn’t really be encouraged.

Getting back to How To Save The World, this is a concept which features as a sort of subtle underlying theme to the book without the reader perhaps actually focusing directly on it too much.  I don’t want to reveal any more details because I don’t want to spoil the story for anyone who hasn’t read it yet, but Eric, the main character, has basically grasped the concept behind a lush snaky trick, whereas Jixyl and Azleev (two aliens who Eric encounters) need to be educated further regarding this principle.

Anyway, hopefully this should have cleared up just what exactly ‘a lush snaky trick’ is and for the benefit of anyone who likes playing pranks, I’ll be giving some real life examples of lush snaky tricks in future posts.

And if you want to download a free sneak preview of the first two chapters of How To Save The World (the title by which 'A Lush Snaky Trick' eventually came to be known by), then you can find out more at the following page:
Download the first two chapters of How To Save The World

Update: You can find a follow up to this post entitled A Lush Snaky trick (Part 1) at the following link:
A Lush Snaky Trick (Part 1)


  1. That's THAT cleared-up then!

  2. Yeah, what with all this debate in the media at the moment, I thought it was time I cleared up the big 'What is a lush snaky trick?' conundrum once and for all.


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About The Author

The 'How To Save The World' books
by Charles Fudgemuffin
Charles Fudgemuffin is the author of the alien comedy 'How To Save The World' books which are available for Kindle from Amazon.  The first book in the series is available from the following link:
How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy

As with all Kindle books, you can also download a free sample of the first few chapters.

Please note, the 'How To Save The World' books contain material suitable for ages 18+ and are not recommended for prudes or squares.