Ruby and Lucy Berendorff are two characters in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series. Ruby is ten years old and a deep thinker. She challenges Mr Griffs in the best way possible. Lucy is sweet and cute but at the same time very blunt. At eight years of age she is very inquisitive.
Ruby and Lucy live two doors down from the Griffs’ residence with their parents Mike and Ellen. Mr and Mrs Griffs often babysit the two girls but they’re always welcomed and regularly come to visit them.
Ruby and Lucy have a special bond with Mr Griffs as he always includes them on his wild schemes and adventures. Mr Griffs loves how free spirited they are and often encourages them to speak what’s on their minds.
It's no surprise that Mr Griffs loves tea. Especially when it comes with a side of cake. Curious about Mr Griffs' habits we couldn’t resist asking him what was it about tea he loves so much.
‘It’s just soothing. Plus, there’s a whole ritual when it comes to tea. You have to wait for it to brew, pour it slowly and savour the taste.’
We followed this up by pointing out the fact that you can apply the same ritual to coffee.
Mr Griffs waved a dismissive hand at us. ‘What are you talking about? Everyone wants coffee on the go these days.'
Mr Griffs was so adamant that we had to ask him if there was any tea flavour he didn’t like. ‘I’m not crazy about camomile tea. First of all, I always forget how to pronounce the name. Secondly, it’s a bit too bland for my taste. But I do like to make myself a cup every now and then as I don’t mind the smell of it. You know, the steamy stuff that comes from it.'
That’s Mr Griffs for you.
| Trying to contain his satisfaction, Steve calmly asked, ‘Do you know when he’ll be back? This type of situation calls for a direct apology. I’d really love to give it to him.’ |
There has always been tension between Steve Moran and Mr Griffs, especially with Steve always looking to blame his neighbour when things go wrong for him. It doesn’t help Mr Griffs’ cause that in many instances he is at fault.
In this scene, Steve just received confirmation from Mrs Griffs that her husband was behind the horde of wild bush turkeys that took residence on his property. And yet, Steve is not entirely right. There were other forces at work.
Is Steve Moran right to blame Mr Griffs for this incident?
There are so many varieties of cheese out there and we were curious to find out whether Mr Griffs had a favourite.
‘I like a lot of cheese. Not so much the blue stuff. Cheese blue. No, blue cheese. That’s it.’
We asked if he could elaborate on this. ‘I was given a real stinky one as a present once. It was so stinky, that I didn’t know what to do with it. And then it hit me. Steve. I wrapped it up and gave it to him. He seemed to enjoy it. It was one of the very few time he was appreciative. What can I say, the man likes stinky cheese.’
We decided to write an uncut version of the first story in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series to share with our readers many of the back stories that we come up with as we write. Never Assume: Uncut features exclusive bonus material and interviews with some of your favourite characters. We tried to conduct each interview with every character separately but it was not easy keeping them away from each other.
We asked Mr Griffs if he liked any particular artist and what he thought about some of the world’s most famous paintings. Not hesitating, Mr Griffs launched into story about how years ago, he and Mrs Griffs wanted to paint their house. Mrs Griffs wanted to use a different colour for each room but he was having none of it.
‘The sample colours never match the actual colour of the paint. Who cares if it’s called “Crimson Zest” or “Blue Marshmallow” – it’s just a marketing tactic and the colours never turn out right.’
We asked him what colour he ended up painting the house.
‘You know, you can’t go wrong with “White”. Maybe off-white. The only problem is you end up leaving finger prints on the walls. That’s why I have a rule in my house. No touching the walls!'
His face became contemplative. ‘I wonder if these great artists and famous painters of the world have the same problem that I have.’
Never Assume, is the first story in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series.
J & K Joseph are a brother and sister team from Sydney, Australia. This is first book that they’ve ever published.
In case you’ve missed it, here is a blurb of Never Assume: | Mr Griffs loves everything his neighbour hates.
While Mr Griffs enjoys wearing baggy clothes, Steve Moran only dresses in designer suits. Mr Griffs relishes his privacy and Steve regularly snoops on people. Mr Griffs appreciates wildlife whereas Steve sees wild animals as pests.
Their long standing rivalry escalates when Steve accuses Mr Griffs of digging holes in his garden. In response, Mr Griffs uses a particularly hot batch of his wife’s spicy nuts to get back at Steve.
Mr Griffs and Steve Moran rarely see eye to eye, but they do have one thing in common. They’re both guilty of assuming.
Absurd and quirky - this is just a typical day in the life of Mr Griffs.
Confirming his suspicion that Steve had in fact been spying on him the other day, Mr Griffs said loudly, ‘Next time you decide to snoop around my garden, you ought to change your cologne. It’s a dead giveaway. It’s so stinky!’ |
Mrs Griffs’ famous spiced nuts was a feature in Never Assume. Mr Griffs, not one for spicy food, wasn’t a fan of this particular batch. Mrs Griffs can often be haphazard when seasoning her food. We reckon she over spices them on purpose just to keep her husband on his toes. But of course, Mrs Griffs won’t admit to anything.
We recently sat down with Mr Griffs to interview him for Never Assume: Uncut, which is an exclusive behind the scenes look into Never Assume. Wanting the interview space to be as homey as possible, we lit a scented candle. What happened next inspired this week’s ‘The World through the Eyes of Mr Griffs’.
Author 1: Thanks for joining us, Mr Griffs. If I can ask you about -. Mr Griffs: Hold on a minute. I’m not answering any questions until you blow out that stinky candle!
Author 2: Stinky? It’s vanilla and cinnamon. Everyone loves vanilla and cinnamon.
Mr Griffs: [Looks grumpy] Well, I don’t. I don’t like any scented candles. They give me a headache and make me sneeze. I know for a fact that many people feel the same way but don’t come out and say it. They’re afraid that people would judge them. It’s like Mrs Griffs. She puts them on all the time and then leaves the house. It’s all for the show. Plus it’s dangerous.
Author 1: But what about all the candle shops out there? People love scented candles.
Mr Griffs: These shops are rorting the system. It stinks!
There you have it! Mr Griffs is not a fan of scented candles. We on the other hand are undecided. Care to weigh in on the debate?
| 'So careless! Kids these days have no respect for anything,’ he barked. At forty years of age, Steve liked to think that he was old enough to demand respect from everyone. At the same time, however, he never thought to give Mr Griffs the same consideration. |
One of Steve’s famous lines in Never Assume – the first story in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series. In this scene, Sophia, a free-spirited 11-year-old newspaper girl, angers Steve when she lobs his newspaper onto his soggy grass. This aggravates Steve to no end as it means he has to stray off from his clean stone pathway and get his cashmere socks dirty.
In contrast, Mr Griffs is on good terms with Sophia, as he admires her attitude and how she never shies away from telling Steve off. Mr Griffs is also very friendly with her grandmother, Nancy, who is known as the best jam-maker in Cornville.
Nancy and Sophia have long harboured resentment towards Steve. To find out exactly where all this hostility stems from – stay tuned for the upcoming release of Never Assume: Uncut. Never Assume: Uncut includes many other bonus materials, backstories and exclusive interviews with your favourite characters.
Mr Griffs often gets confused between wafers and waffles. He never orders them at cafés as he’s worried that he’ll get the wrong one. But he has a solution for this. Mr Griffs suggests that when you order either a wafer or a waffle at a café, they should come together as one package. Simple.
Mrs Griffs is one of the main characters in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series, and she certainly holds her own. She is never afraid to tell her husband off (whether he listens is another thing all together 😉). She lives an active lifestyle – enjoying things like roller derby. Mrs Griffs is a bit clumsy, but nevertheless enjoys a good dance and loves to let her hair down. She has a no-fuss approach to life and she, like Mr Griffs, loves having Ruby and Lucy (their young neighbours) over. Though it is a constant battle to ensure that Mr Griffs doesn’t corrupt them with his many wild schemes.
We sat down with Mr Griffs and spoke to him about his previous camping experience. Knowing that Mr Griffs has always loved the outdoors and that he in fact lived on a farm when he was younger, we certainly didn't expect his reply.
‘I’m all for camping, but I’m not a fan of tents. They always tell you that the tent will fit three people, but you’d be luck to squeeze in two. And at night time you can’t move. You can’t turn around. You have to sleep like a mummy. I tell you what, you’re better off not taking one.’
So we asked Mr Griffs, what if it was raining or snowing? Surely you'd have to take a tent with you?
‘Nowadays, they have these things called huts,' Mr Griffs said. 'Much more comfortable. But if you’d hard pressed, get a sturdy stick and your most loose t-shirt and pitch it like a tent. Why do you think I wear baggy clothes all the time?’
We had no idea whether Mr Griffs was being serious or not (a confusion shared by many) – so best not to try this at home.
The official release of Never Assume: Uncut.
You can now download a FREE copy of this eBook under the stories tab. Never Assume: Uncut is also available on Amazon, iBooks, Smashwords and other popular online retailers.
We’re super happy to get our hands on this hard copy of Never Assume – the first story in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series.
At this stage, this is the only print version that exists in the world - and that’s a pretty awesome feeling!
To get a hold of the story, check out the 'stories' tab where you can download the FREE eBook.
We’ve been asked a few times, what motivates us to write this series of short stories. Without a doubt, we'd have to say it’s the quirky nature of the series and the whole world that has been created around it. We love being a part of it and being able to share it with our readers.
| ‘Mrs Griffs’ anger had evaporated. Her husband’s funny expressions always made her smile and she knew that the best course of action was just to let him be.’ |
A line from Never Assume – the first story in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series. In this scene, Mrs Griffs catches her husband planning his revenge on their neighbour, Steve Moran, with Ruby and Lucy (two lovely girls that they often babysit). After telling him off, Mr Griffs somehow manages, with his usual cheekiness, to get out of trouble. Although Mr Griffs can be grumpy at times, and won’t hesitate to call someone off, he has a boyish charm. It also helps that Mr Griffs’ Northern English accent and eccentric way for looking at things often makes him endearing.
Mr Griffs often likes talking about random topics. Recently, he’d been going on about mushrooms. So we asked him, what it is about mushrooms that you like so much?
Half ignoring our question, Mr Griffs replied, ‘I still haven’t been able to find a good recipe for mushroom soup. Do you know of any?’
There you have it. Mr Griffs’ greatest conundrum of the week. Does anyone out there have an answer for Mr Griffs? If not, perhaps you should ask yourself, when was the last time you had a good mushroom soup. Does such a thing even exist?
| ‘Why was Steve so caught up in his life?
After all, why would Steve care about what a sixty-something year-old retiree, who liked to occasionally sunbake shirtless in the privacy of his backyard, was doing? What could he possibly get up to?' |
On the surface, Mr Griffs and Steve Moran are polar opposites and seem to disapprove of the other’s lifestyle. But, yet, they often get caught up in each other’s lives. Steve, can’t help but snoop on his neighbour as he is always searching for validation of his own superiority. Everything about Mr Griffs rubs Steve the wrong way - but also highlights to himself how his way of life, his appearance, and his behaviour is the better of the two.
On the other hand, Mr Griffs is curious by nature. He has to know how everything works and why anyone acts the way they do. But, ironically, he is completely unaware of how his actions confuse and often provoke people. From Mr Griffs’ perspective he is just living his life. Who cares what people think of him?
This particular quote, in Never Assume, emphasises how Steve is always interfering and looking for faults in Mr Griffs. But underlying this, is the idea that Mr Griffs’ eccentric behaviour often draws attention to himself. Often unknowingly.
We asked Mr Griffs whether he prefers print or digital books.
‘I don’t mind print books.' With a cheeky smile he said, 'I know I’m not supposed to, but I like to fold the corners of the page to mark where I left off. I can never find a bookmark, anyway’.
Hearing this, we assured him that it wasn’t such a bad habit and that lots of people do that.
Looking bashful, he then admitted that he also liked to lick his thumb before turning the page. ‘I suppose that’s why people like digital books. No licking the fingers. Less germs. It’s cleaner that way.'
A phrase Mr Griffs uses when listening to something he doesn't want hear or when he doesn't want to admit his lack of knowledge about something. We often use this line to show his quirky idiosyncrasies and to highlight just how much of a unique character he is. | As he was munching on a grape, the worker behind the station started to spruik the product. He had just begun to rant on about the antioxidants in red grapes when Mr Griffs cut into the conversation. ‘Sure, sure. It’s obvious, no?’ He had long ago stopped listening to pushy salespeople and often used this phrase to pacify them. |
What do you think about Mr Griffs' tactic?
#3 Rustic ~ 'Why does everything have to be described as being "rustic". Can't we think of a different adjective to describe things? Rustic cars, rustic signs, rustic houses, etc.' Hearing him say this, we asked Mr Griffs, what word would he prefer to use instead? After mulling it over for a minute Mr Griffs replied, 'On second thought, rustic is a pretty good word.'
A line from Never Assume, the first story in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series. In this scene, Steve Moran, Mr Griffs' difficult neighbour, reaches his breaking point when he realises that his only remaining suit has been ruined. Unlike Mr Griffs, who couldn't care less about what he wears, Steve values the power and authority that comes from being dressed in designer clothes.
| Steve hesitantly looked down at his filthy suit. He began to hyperventilate. 'This is just too much. I don't have any more suits. What am I going to wear to work?' The thought that he would have to go into work without wearing a suit was a reality he couldn't face. There was nothing left for him to do. He had to call in sick - he had no choice. |
'The World Through the Eyes of Mr Griffs', features Mr Griffs' eccentric mannerisms and unique outlook on the world. Anything from his views on different mushroom varieties to the annoying sound clocks make when they tick.
#2 Boats - Mr Griffs might have a Northern English accent but he was actually born on a boat on international waters. His favourite thing about boats is catching the breeze through his tousled white hair and even through his baggy shirt. According to Mr Griffs you just don't get this when you're travelling on an airplane.
In this scene Steve Moran confronts Mr Griffs about his part in the mysterious holes that have been showing up in Steve's garden.
| Mr Griffs was about to ask him about his choice of attire when Steve butted in. ‘The turkeys should be here any moment.’ Mr Griffs was still unaware that Steve had figured out his ruse from the night before. He had assumed that Steve would be too busy with his clothing issues to solve the mystery about his garden. ‘Really? You don’t say. I had no idea that bush turkeys liked nuts. There you go Steve, you taught me something for once,’ Mr Griffs lied. |
Never Assume, the first story in The Absurd Tales of Mr Griffs series, is available as a FREE DOWNLOAD. In this story, Mr Griffs' difficult neighbour, Steve Moran, accuses him of digging holes in Steve's garden. What does Mr Griffs do to get back at Steve? Well...you'll just have to find out
All Things Griffs
Mr Griffs leads a peaceful life. Or so he claims to. He lives on a quiet street, Pickle Mouse Crescent, in the idyllic town of Cornville. Yet for some reason, Mr Griffs always manages to find trouble. Or does trouble find him?