REVIEW: Carry A Big Stick by Tim Ferguson

Posted on November 19, 2013


TFCarry A Big Stick

Tim Ferguson



ISBN 9780733629358

*This review first published at Boomerang Books

I am from the generation that laughed at and were shocked by Doug Anthony All Stars on the ABC television program, The Big Gig. They became such a part of the Australian landscape.

Jump forward to 2010 and I leapt at the chance to do a narrative comedy workshop with Tim Ferguson, the ‘tall, pretty one’ of the DAAS trio. He wasn’t what I expected. Perhaps I had foolishly been expecting him to be his DAAS persona in real life? The workshop was brilliant stuff. But it was obvious that something was physically up with Tim. It was later that year that the came out on national television, telling the world that he had Multiple Sclerosis. I thought “good on you, mate, take that bastard bull by the horns.”

Ferguson’s autobiography came out not long ago and I just grabbed myself a copy. It is great stuff. We get to see how the Tim Ferguson that we think we know, came to be. Then there’s the wonderful chance encounter that lead to DAAS. We get to see just how incredibly wild DAAS could really be. It is almost a case of ‘name a place and they’ve played there, metaphorically pissing on the audience.’

On some things, Ferguson doesn’t pull his punches. With others he treads much more carefully, with integrity.

Just as DAAS were a huge part of his life, so too has the continuing development of MS. He denies being brave, instead treating MS as an obstacle rather than something to be feared.

I read the entire book in one afternoon. It is that engaging. It was made all the more poignant for me by episodes of ‘oh I remember that’ or ‘wow, I didn’t know that.’

My original impression of Tim Ferguson after spending an intensive workshop with him was ‘this is a good bloke with a lot to share that’s worth listening to.’ This autobiography has merely reinforced that view.Monkey

With the ‘holiday season’ fast approaching, go and grab a copy to spend some quality time with Comrade Tim. Then aspiring comedy writers should head off an grab a copy of his The Cheeky Monkey as well.

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