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January 5, 2012 11:49 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a book that I read parts of in the Hayward Gallery bookshop in London, about 2 1/2 years ago. It was a fantastically precise parody of a Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy workbook.

I remember sections like a description of a guy's miserable day, which had parts like 'At 11 AM, Gareth walks to the cash and carry to buy a bottle of whisky. He sits down and drinks it by himself at the kitchen table. How would you rate Gareth's level of (a) Happiness and (b) Mastery at this point in the day, on a scale of 1 to 10?'

At the time I thought it was quite amusing, and then I entered The System and was instructed to read many such books, and realised that it was utterly hilarious. And now I can't find the damn thing.

I think in style/tone it was a bit like the books produced by Benrik Ltd. But I can't see anything like it on their listings. I have spent many fruitless hours trying to google or sift my way to this book (I even looked at about a hundred pages of books classed as 'Parody' on Amazon that were published somewhere between 2006 and 2009.)
posted by Acheman to Writing & Language (5 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
 
I can only offer a guess based on your suggestion of the Benrik books: Steven Appleby (?) He does illustrated books on likely topics -- not sure if the one you're thinking of is mostly text or a mix of illustrations and text.

There's an author page here and an example of his work from his publisher here.
posted by seabound_coast at 9:20 AM on January 6, 2012


Nooo, nothing like Stephen Appleby. This book was a lot drier in its humour. What reminded me of it in the Benrik Ltd books was their austere deadpan, which isn't there at all in the cutesy Appleby. I don't think it was all that heavy on the illustrations.
posted by Acheman at 12:12 PM on January 6, 2012


So it was definitely a parody and not a
posted by triggerfinger at 4:49 PM on March 27, 2012


AAAARGH!! Dog stepped on the keyboard....

So it was definitely a parody and not a genuine CBT book written in a humorous style? Do you remember what the cover looked like?
posted by triggerfinger at 4:50 PM on March 27, 2012


It was definitely a parody. The humour was much, much too dark to be a proper CBT book. Unfortunately I can't remember much about the cover, although I think it was text-only, no pictures. Part of me thinks that at least part of it was black/dark coloured with white text, but I have other books that look like that so I am suspicious of that memory.
posted by Acheman at 11:32 PM on March 27, 2012


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