Arrr! What do you mean by “cucumber” walls?


Peter Mountford writes about lending a hand to the mysterious “AlexanderIII” of Moscow, who is conducting a pirated translation of his novel.

What begins as an author’s dream of “overhearing” a discussion of his phrase-work quickly becomes something else entirely.

“Though I was impressed by AlexanderIII’s dedication, his numerous message-board queries did not inspire much confidence in his translation abilities. At one point, he indicated that he was struggling with ‘white-liberal guilt.’ (Me too!, I wanted to chime in.) He postulated that white liberal guilt meant: ‘the guilt for consuming white substance (cocaine).'”

Thank goodness for Google Alerts?

Nikita Schoen is an intern at The Rumpus, and a Writing & Literature student at California College of the Arts. She lives in San Francisco. More from this author →