Tuesday, 15 November 2016

That Darn Muse (The Misadventures of Doc and Dirk) Vol. III by Dan “Doc” Skinner

The blurb:

He's a middle-aged, newly single, gay photographer starting life over. Along comes a freshly out nineteen-year-old, irreverent free spirit who wants to be his apprentice. Mismatched by more than a generation, what could possibly go wrong? Everything! And it's AWESOME!

Sex Dolls and Bad Dates: We’ve all had one of those dates where we think we've bitten off more than we can chew. The trick to know is Bite or Flight?

Dirk's Quirks: Everyone has idiosyncrasies; that's what makes us interesting. If you're lucky, you get a heaping helping and can share them with everyone.

My thoughts:

“I found him to be the equivalent of a nineteen-year-old, hyperactive Borg: resistance is futile.”

This is the third episode of these ‘misadventures. While I strongly advice and highly recommend that you read these (short) books in order, I have to admit you would get away with starting with book two or book three. Dan/Doc has been kind enough to include a ‘this is how we met’ chapter at the start of each of these instalments. So even if you’ve so far managed to miss Dan’s post about Dirk on Facebook and are completely new to this fabulous partnership, you won’t be lost, no matter where you start reading.

What attracts me most to these books is that while they appear to be about Dirk, the ‘muse-nerd’ we learn at least as much about Dan/Doc as we do about his young apprentice. I imagine it works in real life as it appears to do in these tales; Dan/Doc is helpless in the face of Dirk’s curiosity and enthusiasm. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he never set to reveal as much of himself as he does, but sorta fell into it as a result of Dirk’s inquisitiveness.

Younger Dan’s disastrous birthday pick-up is a hoot, as is the story Dirk shares in return, if only because they reminded me of one or two ‘oh my God, how did I end up in this situation’ experiences from my own life.

I’ll share a few random quotes and thoughts, just because I can.

“Curiosity doesn’t kill the cat with Dirk. He just becomes a bigger cat.”

I had to google ‘Tootsie Pops’ but once I had, Dirk’s comment made perfect sense—as did his mother’s response. (And that’s all I’m saying; read the book if you want to know more).

I love this description of Dirk:

“I remind you that this is a young man who not only thinks outside the box, but doesn’t recognize that there’s a box in the first place.”

As I’ve come to expect by now, I read this book with a permanent grin on my face, except for those moments when I found myself laughing out loud. But, these stories are more than light-hearted fun to me. They paint a beautiful picture of a developing friendship, of loyalty, and of what it takes to really get to know someone. The Dirkisms combined with Dan/Doc’s observations about them and the person who makes them, while always making me smile, also make me think that we should really pay more attention to other people and try to look beyond the obvious first impressions. This episode ends on a wonderful tale about Dirk and cat ears (which I’m not going to share either) and a quote we would all do well to take to heart when dealing with the quirks of others:

“It made me realize what we see as odd… may simply be something that makes someone else more comfortable.”

I’ll end this review with a wish, which is also my plea aimed at Dan/Doc and Dirk; please, whatever you do, never stop sharing these wonderful scenes with us.

Related Reviews:      That Darn Muse vol. I
                               That Darn Muse vol. 2


  1. this is so wonderful thank you. We read it together... and he has that dang dog-tongue-wagging' grin on his face!
    Doc and Dirk

    1. That seems like a fair exchange considering that I read these tales with the biggest of grins on my face!

  2. I love these two!!! ��������