An excerpt from a romance novel I’m not writing, translated from English to Korean and back using Google Translate.

Before:

Awaiting his touch made Madeline feel like a child expecting punishment. The anticipation manifested itself physically before mentally, her tongue swollen in her throat, swallowing only with a concentrated persistence.

Theodore undressed across the room, between them a sea of plush berber, her toes sinking in and curling, thinking myopically of the amorous exercises to follow. She thought how long it had been since she’d felt the rush of blood accompany the pulsating thrusts of lovemaking. A marriage gone awry and an imprudent brush with online affairs hadn’t summoned the same atavistic urges from her youth. Only now as she stared at the naked, muscular back of her younger lover could she feel, deep within her fleshy core, the heartbeat below her waist.

Her silken blouse felt cool, delicately resting on her bare breasts, and the mysterious man from the coffee shop, previously only a name and gentle face, now walked toward her, steady, surely, entirely in control of her body and psyche. And it was with a gentle brush of his fingertips that her top rested in a tiny crumpled crescent around her white, moonlit hips. And it was with a whisper of his lips, which gently grazed her areola, that made every follicle on her body stand despite the early summer heat.

Like the velvety geranium petals littering the floor of her open hotel room balcony, she lay pliable and light, passively waiting to be moved by the whim of some larger entity than herself. And when his spectral form hovered close to her face, she could feel their breath occupy the same space. His torso sliding effortlessly atop her own.

The cars on the boulevard beyond, the voices from the cafe below, and the wind now streaming through the curtains would serve to cover what was not to be a silent affair.

After:

Waiting for his touch made me feel like Madeline child expectation. Expecting to awaken herself physically and mentally before, swallowing her tongue, concentrating persistence and swallowing her neck.

Theodore follows the thought of myopic and sarcastic movement, the sea of Bon Berber among them, her toes and curling, sinking, and clothes across the room. She thought how long it was because the rush of blood seemed to have felt the throbbing pulse of throbbing. The marriage did not recall the same extravagant impulse from her youth as an imprudent brush with an online job that went obliquely. Only now she could feel her heartbeat deep within her heartbeat, within her heartbeat as she stared back at her young lover’s naked, muscular.

Her ponytail blouse delicately resting on her naked chest, feeling cool, and previously a mysterious person in a coffee shop with a name and a soft face, now walked towards her, steadfastly, surely controlling her body and mind completely do. And it was with a soft brush of his fingertips, resting on her white, moonlight hips on her small, crumpled crescent moon. And despite the gentle early summer heat, she made all the roots of her body stand and made her lips whispered over her shoulder.

The floor of her open hotel room balcony is so much like a velvet purple petal, she passively laid a flexible light, waiting to move by the whim of a slightly larger enterprise than herself. When hovering close to her face in the form of his spectrum, she could feel breath taking the same space. His torso slid easily on top of himself.

Beyond the car on a broad street, the cafe below, now plays a role of covering what could be silent voices streaming through the curtains.

Concept by Daniel Weiss and John Fraze

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Young Jeezy’s To-Do List

1. Stack my flow
2. Stack some mo’
3. End business for the evening and take inventory
4. Hide a portion of the day’s revenue at my aunt’s house for tax purposes and liquid availability
5. Go home, take a shower, and find a designated driver for the evening’s revelries. Likely my friend Brandon. Brandon swore-off drugs and alcohol last month after the rocky conclusion of a drawn-out breakup. I’m personally in favor of this transition, as I now have a reliable, sober ride on weekends.
6. Go to a club with the express purpose of finding a sex partner. My primary means of persuasion will be my notoriety, designer sunglasses (despite being indoors), and, of course, wads of cash from my aunt’s house.
7. Take said individual back to my house for intercourse. I’ll probably need to invite Brandon in as well, at least for a little bit so he doesn’t feel completely objectified as my personal taxi driver. It’s tough. I want to be a good friend but at the same time indulge in my selfish pastimes. I hope he gets over Martha soon. But not too soon. See item 5.
8. Ask sexual partner to leave at 3:45 AM. I’ll explain that flow stacking takes lazer sharp focus and a well rested mind. Also that I have sleep apnea and they’ll sleep better at home anyway.

Spec Ad Too

Original:

“Bishop and I work together. He’s like family. It’s very important to report anything suspicious. It could be nothing. Or it could be something. That’s how important it is.” – Officer Chin

IF YOU SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING

New:

“Bishop’s my dog. He’s a dog. This is a diversion. Are you still reading? Tell us if you see anything sketchy. It could be nothing. Or it could be something. Wait what?” – Officer Chin

IF IT SEEMS SKETCHY, IT PROBABLY IS.

Spec Ad Won

 

Original:

New Look – Same Great Taste

A good source of PLANT PROTEIN

Silk – Plant Power

New:

This is the same product as before. Learn to read.

You can put it on cereal and NOT FART

Silk – No Farts

 

Hey, Coach

Hey there Coach,

 

I remember my dad telling me he ran into you at a football game last year. You were still coaching cross country, teaching, and all seemed good and normal in the city of beech trees.

The reason for this email is two-part: A brief catch-up and a short (read long) anecdote from this past weekend.

I moved to New York last August following a stint of unemployment typical to kids of my generation. I’m now a copywriter/marketing associate at a startup company, and family, work, life, etc. is generally good.

Catch-up over.

My girlfriend signed up for a 5k last week so I was forced to as well. I hadn’t run a race that distance since I was 17, or a race at all since I was 18. I figured sub-20 would be a good goal. I’m still in shape and work out daily, but my running is usually limited to 10 minutes on the treadmill before I lift or the occasional ‘Fartlek’ style sprint workout while dodging tattooed pedestrians, ruptured fire hydrants, and dinosauric rodents.

The day of the race I got up at 6 AM on 4 hours of sleep and made my way via bus and subway the hour-fifteen minutes to Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. I arrived 20 minutes before the start and didn’t have time to engage in my pre-race cleansing ritual from high school. Such is life. I’m talking about pooping by-the-way.

The race started and I was in a comfortable 4th place after the first mile. We reached the halfway-point, and two of the three guys ahead of me continued on to the 10k course (in retrospect, I should’ve done the longer distance). The one person still ahead of me was a lanky youngster with pretty decent form. I figured if I could stick with him until the end, I could probably dispatch of him with a finishing kick.

This would not be necessary.

I got a jolt of energy seeing my girlfriend on the way back and ground this poor high schooler’s face into the concrete (metaphorically) — I passed him and didn’t let up the rest of the way. I won the damn thing by a minute-and-a-half in a time of 17:41. (The 10k finishers were more competitive — two finishers in the 36 minute range, a few more under 40 min).

Anyway, the lanky kid’s mom walked up to me after the race and asked if I would talk to her son. He’s 15 and apparently can run in the low seventeens, but started out too fast. I didn’t have much good advice for him then, but after thinking about it, maybe I can share some wisdom with your up-and-coming runners — some things I wish I knew eight (!) years ago. Not that I’m an expert, but I’ve spend a lot of time dwelling on what could’ve been, and looking back, there are a lot of things I wish I would’ve done differently.

In order of importance.

1. Quality Workouts/Do the workout as it’s designed to be done. I was so consumed with being the no. 1 runner on the team, I wouldn’t let anyone finish before me in any workout (particularly Banchek). I realize now that these workouts were designed for particular purposes: Russian intervals, Fartleks, race-pace exercises, etc. If these workouts are done correctly, with proper pacing, effort, and rest, they’ll yield much better results.

2. Rest. Seriously, just rest. I don’t think I took a day off running from age 15 to 18. I was very strong, but my body never had time to catch up to the training. I know Sundays are supposed to be recovery runs, but sleeping in and just stretching would’ve been way better for me personally. I remember Wertheim took a lot of Sundays completely off, and he ended up being a better runner than me (so I hear). Weekdays can be taken off too. If your post-interval day workout is a slow run, jog that thing at 10 minute pace. See the above comment — don’t compete on off days.

3. Know your body. Everyone’s different. In high school athletics, you don’t have the luxury of a personalized workout regimen, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do your research and try to figure out what works best for you. I read this book in college titled “The Sports Gene” by David Epstein, and it’s amazing what tangible gains one can make from even a basic education on physiology. I highly recommend your runners get ahold of this book over the summer. It’s an easy read.

4. Come to race-day over prepared. This is simple. I didn’t advance in the state tournament my senior year of because I failed to bring warmups on an unexpectedly cold day. I wasn’t even tired during the race — my body simply wouldn’t move as fast as I was telling it to. So to your runners: bring more clothes than you think you’ll need. Bring water. Bring snacks. Bring moistened toilet wipes for your nervous craps. Bring whatever you think you’ll need, because the moment you need it but don’t have it, it’ll really suck.

5. Relax. Stay loose. Race day is nerve-racking, every time. Breathe like a horse, roll your shoulders a few times. Adrenaline is great for short distances, but anything over 200 meters and you’re going to burn out like a small gasoline fire.

6. There’s only one race, and it’s called Life. Yes, I went there. Now I’m getting sappy. Whenever anyone says they live without regrets, I think that person dumb. Everyone has regrets, and it’s healthy to acknowledge them. Leaving everything on the track hurts, but ‘what if?’ hurts worse.

And that’s all from me. I got to hang out with Evan in December, and that was really cool. I’m still in touch with Wertheim as well, even though he’s on the West Coast getting a PhD in something dumb like Math. He always was so very unintelligent, wasn’t he?

Track and Cross Country really meant something to me. The sport of competitive running was undoubtedly the most formative activity – both mentally and physically – of my teenage years. For that I’d like to thank you, James. You were a great, dedicated coach and a positive influence. Your runners and students really listen to what you say and internalize it – I know I did.

Maybe this is the year we knock off those d-bags from Woodside. Maple Falls still sux, ditto Bentley.

Best Wishes,

Daniel

End Rhymes for Erica

Erica, I’m worried,
I’ve fallen too hard.
I saw him get handsy
on that rooftop yard.

My chest hurts like cardio,
neck prickles with heat,
I lose control, I’m bewildered,
and at a loss to compete.

Our connection’s a secret
maybe prudent at first,
but now I’m possessive
and fallen-in with the cursed.

History tells all,
there’s something wrong you see
I was selfish for months,
unabashedly me.

I loved and resented,
and thought that all past,
But you’re something else,
Alea iacta est.

Am I wrong? Speak quickly,
I need your direction.
I’d rather be lonely,
Than wear this jealous complexion.

Three ante meridiem
I’m exhausted but awake,
Please forgive this trite poem,
If only for new love’s sake.

I’m better than this,
with time you will tell,
I’ll willfully escape
from this masculine hell.

What I want from you now
is to ignore my flaws,
to grant me a pardon,
blind to reason or cause.

While I want this to work,
It will cost more than free,
Erica, I’m tired,
of my envious ennui.