Elevators are going to have company…

There’s just something about the NBA on TNT that puts me in a bloggy mood….

There’s no easy way to come clean about this, so i’m just gonna put it out there and then you can digest it at your leisure:

I went on ebay and I bought Strength Shoes.TM

Now I know that some of you are tragically unhip; unwilling or unable to breath the rarefied air of the high-flyer, scared to unlock the true potential of your calves and are therefore unaware of what strength shoes are. For you sad souls, here’s a picture:


Pretty bad ass, right?

Now in case you’ve forgotten the point, I bought these!!!

Don’t get me wrong, they were a great deal; I really couldn’t afford not to get them. Well, as great as a deal for someone’s old sneaks can be. Anyway, the story:

Chapter One: In Which Our Hero Realizes There is More To Life Than Blogging

I really want to be able to dunk. This is no passing fancy, this is one of those things that sits in the back of your head all the time. Here’s some proof. And I made that two years ago.

I realized the last couple months that I could jump a little higher. I had started running, lost a bit o’ weight, and apparently the combination worked, because I could jump up and aaaaaaaaaaaaalmost grab the rim. With months of hard work under my belt, with my lifelong1 dream so close, I knew, unequivocally, that now was the time for a quick fix. But, dear readers, where was I to turn?

Chapter Two: The Internet Comes A’Callin.

So I googled various forms of “jumpy shoes,” “dunking shoes,” “shoes jewish 6’ jump higher ,” until finally eureka-ing and searching for “strength shoes.”

What follows is the conversation between the Strength Shoe website’s blurb (all direct-from-the-site quotes) and my poor, overmatched brain:

Strength Shoes: How do they work? Strength Systems, Inc. created the concept of frontal training platform shoes. In regular shoes, 70% of the bodys weight rests on the heel. Therefore, the calf muscles exert little effort in supporting the body.

Elevators Go Up’s Brain: Stupid, lazy calves…

Strength Shoes: With Strength Shoes workouts, the heel is eliminated, causing the calves to support 100% of the body’s weight.

Elevators Go Up’s Brain: Heh heh, that’ll learn ya, calves. Slacking, lazy, stupid…

Strength Shoes: This overload works the calves and Achilles tendons with a force equal to 6 times the body’s weight upon impact.

Elevators Go Up’s Brain: Well, that’s just science. No complaints so far.

Strength Shoes: Your burning desire to improve is natural.

Elevator’s Go Up’s Brain: Nice. And it is burning, thanks for noticing.

Strength Shoes: You can learn to jump higher, run faster, increase quickness and slam dunk, spike the ball, score touchdowns and much more.

Elevator’s Go Up’s Brain: Damn, I just wanted to dunk. This is just getting better and better. I bet scoring touchdowns will be awesome.

Strength Shoes: You’ll look very cool with these Strength Shoes on your feet.

Elevator’s Go Up’s Brain: Well, that goes without saying.

Strength Shoes: Only $124.95.

Elevator’s Go Up’s Brain: Fuck you, Strength Shoes. Goin’ to ebay…

Chapter 3: A Package Arrives

So now I have a pair of these frickin’ strength shoes in my apartment. They do fit, so that’s a plus. And let’s not forget that I got them for 100 dollars less than market value. But, they are absolutely ridiculous. I’ve clomped around my apartment a couple times and I don’t think there’s any way that I will ever wear them outside. I am also second guessing the website’s math a little bit, because it feels less like my calves are getting a workout and more like my kneecaps are trying to extricate themselves from my knees. I am taller in these shoes, so I guess I am technically closer to the rim and theoretically closer to dunking, but again, unless I install a hoop in my apartment, I will never wear these anywhere close to a rim. So that’s moot.

Chapter 4: In Which Our Hero Learns Another In (Hopefully) A Series Of Important Lessons

When you’re up late at night and bored and you have just deposited your paycheck four days earlier so you are definitely sure that all the money has cleared, you shouldn’t go on ebay and buy ridiculous-looking shoes that supposedly will help you learn how to dunk. Because, dear readers, if we have learned anything today, it is that the only way to achieve your dreams is through hard work, dedication and your MIR Pro Weighted Fitness Training VestTM made of heavy-duty 1200D reinforced nylon, featuring double padded shoulders for added comfort, and mesh vented inside for breathability that is definitely not already in the mail! Holler!


As a side note, I have realized that this is my longest entry, by far. And it’s about dunking and ridiculous shoes. Not sure how i’m feeling about this, but i’m sure i’ll feel better when i’m kissing the rim.


1 give or take 28 years

The best things in life are free

and i still can’t afford them.

This entry brought to you by Valentine’s Day and my subsequent sugar high:

Time to face facts, ladies and gentlemen. Spending evening after evening alone, running to the gym and then running back to write, is just pathetic. Having a blog doesn’t make it much better. And most importantly, constantly writing about writing is for chumps.1 So tonight, a quick aside.

Valentine’s day or not, i knew i was going to come home after work, eat some dinner, go to the gym, and write; probably watch some stewart and colbert and nba on tnt. Whatever. This blog is not about why i was spending another valentine’s alone, mind you.  The fact that it was a “special” day was by no means at the forefront of my mind, but it would get shoved there by various acts of randomness. Anyway, i’m heading to the gym when a smiling couple2 walks by and, again, it hits me what day it is. “Wow,” i think to myself, “this is gonna be a depressing place tonight.” Right? I mean, most people spend their time working out to avoid being alone at times like this. “But,” i reasoned, “tonight is the night to find out which of those countless beautiful girls you see every night are single!” It was time for a GRAND EXPERIMENT!! I was empowered, handed a fool-proof boyfriend/fiance/husband filter. I just had to show up at the “lab,” and the eligible women would divulge themselves, their true state revealed by the gym’s valentine’s day eve florescent lighting.

The free weights were hardly used. The boxing area empty as usual. Not much information gleamed at first. But as i descended the stairs to the cardio floor, the floor that perpetually teemed with spandex and ponytails, i knew that some mysterious were about to be solved.

2 old woman on stairmasters. 6 fat men on treadmills. 1, i swear, little kid walking around. And that was it.

So, two conclusions we can draw from this. One, that there are no single girls in new york. Or at least, at this particular gym with thousands of members. Two, that the single girls were simply at home, too prideful to show theirfaces at the gym on valentine’s day eve. I can easily believe either of these. All i know is that, one way or another, my GRAND EXPERIMENT was a bust.

Thanks, ladies.

1 Ironically, reading about my writing about my writing is the cat’s pajamas. Am i right, blog fans!?

2 The worst kind.

Don’t call it a comeback

Amazingly–considering not much is happening in my life–lots to discuss this eve…

-The Fourth Floor is launched, and no, we are not famous yet. I’m actually not too sure if anyone outside of our friends and family have even seen it. And I definitely have no clue if people like it. I think overall, it’s been a fairly positive but slightly tempered response.

I don’t have a firm grasp on how I feel about the project yet. I think it’s good. Not great, but very solid. I think it’ll only get good-er and solid-er. I like that we’ve done it, and I like that we’re going to continue to improve our craft and hopefully expand our fan-base. And the launch party was fun. And Roosevelt Island loves us.

-To make me feel better about all the non-writing i’m doing, I posted 3 more chapters of The Kings We Are tonight. Then, to maybe rouse my creativity, I read those 3 chapters for the first time in forever. The work for re-writing the novel has mostly consisted of me trying to outline a more cohesive, interesting, and (being totally honest) existing plot. I know these characters and I know what I want them to do and what (for the most part) is going to happen to them. The thing is though, I’ve been ignoring the actual writing part of it. The style, the pacing, the diction… You know, the good stuff! So i think it was good to go back and read through more than i have been. The writing itself is what the agents and editors liked1 … it was that aforementioned lack of plot that fucked me.

Anyway, since i love plot-lacking, i’m gonna move on sans-transition to my next thought… I’ve been wondering if i should focus on the re-writes or on starting a new story. And it’s boiling down to a basic tenant of any art… what am I trying to say? This is a concept that, for me, becomes proportionally more difficult to remember with the length/size of the piece. A blog entry bitching about morons? Easy to stay on point. A rambling, 360-page novel about life, friendship, wisdom and eating… it gets difficult. 2

But if I think that Kings is the best vehicle for getting my theme-of-the-day across, then I think that’s where I should focus my energies. It’s rare for me to get a centralizing-ideal that I can go off about. I’m good at coming up with random scenes and conversations, disjointed ideas that may or may not fit into a bigger puzzle. But finding that common thread that sews them all together? There’s the rub.

This has all been pretty random, but I guess this is my blog, soooooooo bite me.

I’m gonna cut short my other digressions for this entry, cause i’m tired. I will say that after work today, I came home and debated whether to practice playing guitar or to practice playing Guitar Hero. There’s something symbolic in that debate, but, since I ended up rocking out on Guitar Hero and leaving the real thing sulking in the shadows, I don’t think I want to ponder it further.





1 this is from the actual, true and amazing story of my “career” when i first moved to new york, and i think i may share it one of these days. It explains why, years later, I haven’t succumbed to law school.

2 A rambling, 500-word blog entry at 2 in morning written while watching sportcenter and eating a honey n’ peanut butter sandwich?… Priceless.


Trying to prove that i’m a new blogging man, a man truly re-dedicated to his craft (if his craft was blogging), here’s some train of thoughts that i don’t want to take to bed with me…
I’ve been splitting my time between not working on Kings We Are re-writes, not working on a new novel, and not working on a children’s book. I’ve probably been not working on the kid’s book the least, so I can tell you that it’s a comedy about math.

This bout of writer’s block/procrastination is different from my usual cases, as I’ve actually had a lot of ideas recently. It’s just that the sheer number of ideas/plot threads/scenes/themes/various-other-literary-building-blocks is causing my, let’s face it, clearly overmatched brain to beg for mercy (i.e., a nap) before I can get many words (i.e., zero) on the page. This is both a frustrating and absolutely fascinating sensation; I honestly feel like I have a good 3 books* inside my head right now. Whether or not they remain trapped will help determine how interesting Elevators Go Up is gonna be. Neo, don’t fail me now.

In other Productive Blogger news, I posted a Scrubs episode a I wrote for a class a couple months ago. Good stuff there (here.)



*notice i didn’t say “three good books.”