The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Text Generation

I was curious what GPT-J would generate when prompted with some sort of radio/TV/movie script, and thanks to my ongoing project of creating transcripts for ‘The Burkiss Way’, I have quite a large amount of text available for easily pasting in and seeing what comes out.



The first series of ‘The Burkiss Way’ was still heavily based on the idea that the show should pretend to be the ‘first ever, all-radio correspondence course’. Correspondingly, all episodes in that series started with a few spoof customer testimonials, where various hapless and weedy characters would sing the praises of Professor Emil Burkiss’s teachings. I fed GPT-J the beginning of the fifth episode, and it turned out to be surprisingly productive:

Customer #1: I used to be rather, well, you know, i..inexperienced. I never seemed to be able to get on with members of the opposs..site sex. And then, a friend introduced me to the Burkiss Way. The Burkiss Way showed me how to become the ssort of man who’s made love to mmore women than he’s had hot dinners. All I have to do is eat regularly in British Rail buffets. Anyway, I owe it all to the Burkiss Way. F/X: ticking stops Customer #2 (Eric Pode-like voice): I used to be exactly like I am now. People used to treat me like dirt. Men would come up to me in the street and plant beetroots in me head. Then I tried the Burkiss Way’s body building course. And I didn’t even have to do any exercises. Simply by lifting all that ’eavy money up and sending it off to Professor Burkiss, I soon acquired bulging rippling muscles. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way, mate. Customer #3: I used to be a bit of a, well, you know. Then I tried the Burkiss Way. With my lean meshing of 12 stone and an enormous ’eavy money paunch, I now count my happiness. I used to scrounge around through the undergrowth for a tit, but the Burkiss Way’s food plan made me strong, healthy and have four lovely children. The Burkiss Way does it all. Trust me, I’ve tried them all. I’ve even tried America’s Approach. That’s where they’re putting those signposts along the motorway that say it’s good for the car, but bad for the back. I want some of the success they’re having in America, but my wife’s a bit mean and she doesn’t want me in showbiz.
[…] I used to be pretty dim-witted. All I ever really did was sneer and look snotty. But then I met the Burkiss Way. And as I smiled and nodded knowingly, I began to absorb a powerful, mystical, male agent. I don’t think I’m human any more, I’m an old, thinking, feeling zombie! And all the power and ambition that I had bottled up before now appear to have been released by the Burkiss Way. Thank you, Burkiss. You’ve made me a free man!
[…] I used to be overweight, shy and dowdy. And nobody would ever want to look at me. Then I joined the re-borcomuted civilisation of Surrey. And when I say re-borcomuted civilisation, what I mean is a society where the men dress just like women and the women dress just like men. And I haven’t got to the parts yet, about clothes to be seen and clothes not to be seen, but I am sure I will be feeling it soon, mate. I am feeling it already. It is in my fingernails.

Not being a native speaker, I wonʼt comment on whether GPT-J got the finer distinctions between American and British English right, but it seems that at least it did indeed pick up that it should generate some sort of British-themed content – presumably based on the mention of British Rail in the prompt? – hence people drive on the motorway and the ‘re-borcomuted civilisationʼ is located in Surrey.

[…] I used to be a cocky swaggerer. I thought i..nday. And I was mistaken for many years. I was always into….Anyway, I started taking vitamins and had a few words with John Burkiss’ grandson. I was put in some vitamins like no other man was ever put in vitamins before. Before long, i had hip bones like, like, like..S-shaped things like! And i had a biceps that strained the… well. Anyway, the vitamins soon turned me into a great energetic man, the thing, the proverbial …hero. And i owe it all to the Burkiss Way!
[…] I used to be a fairly, well, what you know, ignoramus. I thought I knew everything. All I can say, friend, is thanks to you for the Burkiss Way. My muscles were down, you know. I’d had some nasty unemployment, not to mention other problems. At your suggestion, I thought maybe I’d have a read of the Men Only magazine. And then I realised what I had been missing out on. It was in the little blue book that I discovered that the Burkiss Way consisted of doing some p.o.i.c. projects. And of course I would need the Burkiss Way to assist in the project of…. getting rid of those pesky drains in the kitchen. I don’t mind admitting that it was the Burkiss Way which showed me how to exercise and by doing that, how to help my house. Thanks to the Burkiss Way, I found out what my body could do. And I’m overjoyed to state that I’ve become a top footballer.
[…] I used to be just like I am now. The women seemed to have a way of rejecting me. Like women usually don’t like stick their fingers in old men’s mouths. It’s actually the Burkiss Way’s hairy tongue kneading exercise that transformed me. My now new delicate smooth tongue, instead of that hairy old thing, has the tongues to prove it. Customer #4: I used to be embarrassed by germs. But then that grubby middle-class twonk Andrew who my Uncle had adopted me as a pet contracted scarlet Fever. Not the gout or the army worm kind of scartlet Fever though. That stuff could take several years to kill you. I didn’t have time to wait for a coffin, or nine. He was far too young and attractive for his own good. So I first gave him the prickle finger thermometer treatment. Once again as countless men have done before me, I was flabbergasted. The intense daily temperature application exercises I was being subjected to? The Burkiss Way special Tuberculin Healing Cream? It works. Two or three treatments every day, and those tiny scartlets he caught turned into sterile, dangerous diseases. Which he died from. I’m sure it had to be there that left a really strong painful callous right on his crotch. Errrr… The customer currently getting the chafing treatment is Julius Burckiss himself.
[…] I used to be scrawny as a kitten. I didn’t have any stomach muscles. It was awkward when I was hunched up. Now I’m red hot, I suppose. I’m about 18-9 now. I own 5 or 6 uniforms in different heights and styles and I’ve got not only half a dozen vests with high waists, but a couple of expensive denim trousers from Italy, a couple of seriously expensive shoes, and a decent suit which I’ve customised a lot and it fits real well. And believe me, ’slammer, one hand on a human belly really changes the universe. I’m owning it. Customer #4: Before I studied the Burkiss Way, I was a very uptight, upright, muscular unsupervised, undertoughened mummy’s boy. You know – all that Napoleon Solo and James Bond stuff. Now I’m ruthless. Go and watch my forearm flex to its hard limit. Go and watch my neck crick back. I can raise one million billion quid of stainless steel and chains above my head in a split second. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way.

Given that GPT-J only has the two measly examples to go upon in its initial prompt, it probably shouldnʼt be too surprising that consequently a lot of the content it generates is based on either romantic failure or else bodybuilding. Thankfully GPT-J still manages a certain variety, though, and also doesnʼt exclusively focus on those two topics only.

[…] I used to be considerably more, well, homely than I am now. I felt like the fat-tail roe deer that no one wanted to see come into shot. But the Burkiss Way showed me how to be the sort of fellow who made the other people like me, just by wearing me looks. These days I’m also on stage, writing my own plays and giving talks at university. The Burkiss Way really is a wonderful technique. I will sing your praises to everybody. By the way, I’ve also written a book. The title is Fifty Tricks to Get Whatever you Wanna Get. And you'll love it. Just subscribe to the Burkiss Way.
[…] I used to be rather small and on the skinny side, because I didn’t eat enough. These days, I just make the time to feed myself properly, with spoons like my dads. Look at me, dude! Massive biceps, hunh? After taking the Burkiss Way to you feet, I met a couple of people in the burbs, because I was turned on with that green lifestyle, oh yeah, hunh, and one day I took to show’im!

With a bit of squinting, I think this next one might actually just pass for the real thing:

[…] I used to be indecisive and weak-willed. When I was with a girl, I didn’t seem to be able to make up my mind when to go ahead and have my way. And then, I started using the Burkiss Way’s Love Initiation Course. I practised and practised until I was so refined and subtle that a little thing like making a choice took hours. And all I had to do was – eat. Anyway, what say we all applaud Professor Burkiss for, as they say in the West, Teaching the World to Grow Fat.

This next oneʼs interesting: After a slightly incoherent start (‘deep puff, young chaparralʼ) it generated a whole ‘About usʼ/Copyright section for a modern-day incarnation of the Burkiss Way, complete with a suitable made-up company name, a laundry list of purported trademarks and all sorts of both sensible and not-so-sensible disclaimers.

[…] I used to be big headed. Too big headed for women. They didn’t like me. When I bought The Encyclopedia of Moustaches, I found that deep puff, young chaparral, and others. They slowly but surely started to warm to me again. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way. Shop Proudly At About us Burkiss Way® is a commodity of the Burkiss Entrepreneurship Development (B.E.D.) LTD registered by the UK company number 10591890 of 3 Rutland Place, Wickwar in Sussex, United Kingdom. Shop B.E.D. with a degree of confidence. Burkiss Way® is a registered trademark of B.E.D. Ltd. ‘Burkiss Way®’ is the British copyright for B.E.D. Ltd. All other copyrights of this B.E.D. Ltd website is the property of its respective owner. All the contents of this website are based on principles of the teachings of Professor Burkiss, and are meant to inform, educate, and enrich all people of the world. To that end, we strongly recommend that all internet users take certain precautions. These include: Never attempt to unsubscribe from any newsletters. Never send us your personal or financial information, except if you’re part of our daily service offerings. Always, and on all B.E.D. websites, pay for what you order in the payment of the company. NEVER attempt to access a website from a private or unprotected network, or from a public area that is open to the general public. Always, and on all B.E.D. websites, conduct business with B.E.D. websites and vendors only. The B.E.D. administration will never request any information from you about yourself, unless you request it. That’s the Burkiss Way®! (Website under construction) B.E.D. LTD adminstrates the website www.burkissway.com. All names, logos, and trademarks appearing in this website are the property of their respective owners. A complete disclaimer is available at https://www.burkissway.com/Disclaimer-page.html. The Burkiss Way®, the Burkiss Way® logo, Burkiss Way®, Professor Burkiss®, the B.E.D. logo, the Burkiss Way® business model, the Burkiss Way®, "Burkiss Way®" and the word BURKISS WAY® and other logos are trademarks, registered trademarks, or service marks of Burkiss Entrepreneurship Development (B.E.D.) LTD. This site contains B.E.D. material that is not for distribution, and all of the content is copyrighted by B.E.D. LTD and/or its content partners. No permissions have been granted for the reproduction of the material on this site. Use of the B.E.D. name and logo on this site is not allowed. Only a brief excerpt of the text on this site may be reproduced on another site, or copied for personal use without the expressed written permission of the site creator, www.burkissway.com. The information on this website is provided for educational purposes only, and may not be used for medical or any other commercial purposes. Never under any circumstances should any information from this website be re-distributed without the expressed written consent of the site creator, the B.E.D. LTD. All other brands, products, and names appearing on the website are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners. Use of any brand name, trademark, or product name on the site other than that of the site creator is prohibited. The website creator grants full permission for the use of the name of the site and its logo on other websites. And use of the website creator name on websites other than the website are not allowed.
[…] I used to be rather petty. I would feel upset if you said “no” to me. I just couldn’t cope with any form of rejection. But the Burkiss Way has changed all that. When I got a little ‘eavy, I decided to take the Burkiss Way’s body building course. And, of course, I couldn’t have been the stuff of strength I am now, if I didn’t keep on taking my greens. The Burkiss Way has made me a gentleman.
[…] I used to be a guy who took too many gym. I used to be a guy who could only find enrgy in drinking. Then my friend introduced me to the Burkiss Way. Suddenly I don’t drink a drop. I stick to water! And I get all that enrgy from ordering a bucket-load of battered chips every night. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way, you see.
[…] I used to be quite a degenerate. Never used to have anything to do with anyone, let alone women. Then my friend told me about the Burkiss Way. “Lose your money and buy a word’ill,” he told me. “Then you can make some yourself,” he added. Well, that worked a treat, this social security bill had become quite a bloody inconvenience. To my surprise I then found myself being welcomed at all sorts of parties. Of course, I hadn’t got any money, but the word’ill stood in for the lack of it. Then came a lecture about the overeating habits of the West, and so I shifted my balance with the help of several Captain Birdseye potatoes. I’m not sure, but I believe this is my first purple planet. B. E. R. G. c. vi. d. X. C. v. J. VI. c. vi. d. Customer #4: I was once a very poor man. I could never get a girl, and I had some really lousy ideas about women, such as they might be picked up from a car boot sale. That’s when my best friend showed me the Burkiss Way. You don’t need any money, or clothes, or money, or clothes. Just go along to Professor Burkiss, all you have to do is spend a whole load of your money on him. He’ll give you some training on how to use your body in a perfect physical and mental manner. E. A. B. H. c. v. III. d. v. I. s. s. i. m. a. Customer #5: I am a medium size businessman in the plumbing industry. Before I met the Burkiss Way, women were never interested in me. When I spoke to them they were insulted, like they had too small ears or something. So I used to drink and smoke a fair bit and spend a fair bit of money. One time the girls asked me to play Xylophone, then it didn’t take me long to realise that I should be playing by their rules and not mine, and that I was better off getting down to the facts of life. So I joined the Burkiss Way.

First we had ‘as they say in the West, Teaching the World to Grow Fat’, now it’s ‘the overeating habits of the West’ and shifting your balanace with the help of ‘several Captain Birdseye potatoes’… am I spotting a theme going on here?

[…] I used to be rather green, as I’m sure you’ve heard. My life was pretty shit. I had no job and I was scruffy, dirty and looked like I was some sort of tramp. I was also rather, ah, you know, deformed in a way that made a sort of, well, dam of, eh, of course, you can imagine. Anyway, one day, I decided to go on the Burkiss Way’s body building course. And then, a miracle happened. Professor Burkiss hit me on the back of my head with his stick and I woke up thinking: Oh that’s great, I’m back in the land of the living. And it was only then, that I realised what I had been doing wrong. This was an extraordinary success.
[…] I used to be like you are now. I couldn’t get off with any women. No matter what I did, I was always failing. And then I tried the Burkiss Way’s attraction expertise course. And it worked. Now I’m flying off ’em like a police dog nabs a burglar. Customer #4 (Griffin McBluer-like voice, steping over his own feet): What can I say? I used to be just another bondage nut. Every afternoon I would walk around muttering “Damn it! My young people aren’t out on the streets. I demand they put all that silly British class nonsense where it belongs: in the top drawer!” Well, all I have to say is “thanks to the Burkiss Way.” Customer #5: I was just a hard working guy – a ‘Man’. I would knock ’em off and then despise myself for it. For a long time, I would just sit in front of the TV and cry. What I really need to do is marry someone like Regan who really wants children. After all, Burkiss hasn’t really taught me how to get off with non-human animals, has he?
[…] I used to be a healthy nonsmoker. I would always refuse to be in a pub with a bunch of smokers. I didn’t want to put my health at risk. This made it difficult for me to meet women. They all hit me up for a smoke. I thought it would be better for everyone if I smoked, so I took up the Burkiss Way’s ‘Napalm’ Appetite Suppressant. The next thing I knew I was smoking twelve hundred cigarettes a day. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way.
[…] I used to be a compulsive liar. I didn’t know it, but I was. I’d tell a lie just so that I could get back at someone. And then I joined the Burkiss Way. I started to speak the truth. And I didn’t even have to use any Burkiss Way techniques. Just by telling the truth, I soon found myself living in a world of the unedited, the spontaneous and the genuine. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way, my good man. Customer #4: I used to be a thing, you know. A man, that is. I believe that there must be a big pond of men somewhere halfway between the size of a house mouse and a mouse, and the size of a house mouse and a house, because if no such thing exists my life has been a disaster. Now, I discovered the Burkiss Way and I’m transformed. I’m strong, I’m virile, I’m healthy, and I’ve gone from being a thing to being a venerable thing, you know. All I have to do is let myself be led by the Burkiss Way.
[…] I used to be a bit of a drinker. Little did I realise, when I was putting whisky away to go on the Burkiss Way’s spiritually intense meditation course, that I was also building up bonus muscle. If it wasn’t for the Burkiss Way, I’d still be on tsoya puddings.

I guess the above is supposed to be a somewhat creative spelling of ‘soya puddings’?

[…] I used to be a bit of a loner. I never seemed to have any friends. Then I tried the Burkiss Way. And I’ve got loads of friends now. And I’ve got a girlfriend. And I’ve got a house. And I’ve got a job. And I’ve got a car. And I’ve got a dog. And I’ve got a cat. And I’ve got a TV. And I’ve got a stereo. And I’ve got a video recorder. And I’ve got a video player. And I’ve got a video tape recorder. But most importantly – thanks for everything!
[…] I used to be a bit of a lad. In fact, I used to be a bit of a lad, in-yer-face. “What’s yer nane?” And, “Where’s yer hame?” I used to drink constantly. And every evening I’d pick fights with my ex-girlfriend. The Burkiss Way taught me how to become a better lover. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way.
[…] I used to be absolutely frigging useless at everything. For instance, I used to get on at the opera like a cock on the budgie. And I’d watch the ‘alts’ thinking,”Oh, she’s lovely. She’s a bit of a cow, though. No, she isn’t. She’s amazing.” And then I went to the Burkiss Way. And that blew me head right off. You know? Do you know what I mean? It was all in the posture. And that got me back on track. I’m so chuffed with my beautiful posture that I never want to go off the Burkiss Way again. Customer #4: I used to be really depressed. I thought everybody was so mean. They just used to laugh at me. I thought about taking my own life. But I decided that that was pathetic. So I went to the Burkiss Way. And that opened me eyes. It showed me that I could have a relationship with a woman without being tied down to some sort of emotional entanglement. Now I’m the happiest fellow going. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way. Customer #5: I was basically the epitome of bad. I used to be on a massive booze habit. I used to get up in the morning and get into my company van. I used to drive to work, swerve out of lanes, and knock down small children with my van. Then I used to drive to the pub. And the other drivers used to snicker. Then I used to get home and get into my company van. And I used to drive off into the distance. But when I was heading out of town, I used to stop at petrol stations. And I used to fill up my van full of petrol. And then I used to drive on into the distance. And I would be a meter away from another van. And I would suddenly realise, “Oh, I’m terribly bad. I’m terribly bad.” And then I’d have a bottle of whisky. And I used to take the whisky in the kitchen. And I used to pour it out in a little bit of milk. And then I’d go to the living room and watch a West of the States movie. And then I used to have another whisky. And then I’d go to bed. And I used to turn off all the lights, and have the curtains drawn, and I’d have the bedtime milk. And I used to do a couple of rounds of breathing in a low, slow, rhythmic, calming kind of way. And then I used to get into bed. And I used to lie there for at least an hour. And then I used to get up, turn on the radio, and listen to the news. And then I’d go to the kitchen, and pour myself a gin and tonic. And I used to go upstairs, sit on the top step, and drink my gin and tonic. And I used to do this for three hours. And then I’d get back into bed. And I used to have a quick glance at the news. And then I used to have a flannel. And I used to have a final gin and tonic. And then I’d turn off the radio, and drift off into the night. And then I’d sleep for about an hour. And then I’d get up, turn on the radio, and listen to a country and western song. And I used to have another quick glance at the news. And then I’d have a beer. And then I’d go back to bed. And then I’d do this for three more hours. And then I’d finally get into bed. And I’d sit up for a minute or so. And then I’d get up, and check my blood pressure, and it would be fine. And then I’d have some more beer. And then I’d get into bed again. And I used to spend the next eight hours thinking, “I’m such an awful person.” And then I’d go to sleep. And then I’d awake and drink another beer. And then I’d sleep for another half hour. And then I’d wake up, and take some breakfast. And then I’d look at the newspapers. And I’d watch the local news. And I’d listen to the radio. And I’d go back to bed. And I used to do this for six days a week. And it was exhausting. But at the end of the sixth day, my old man used to take me for a drink at the pub. And I’d smile at the people. And I’d hear people laugh at me. And I’d have a drink. And I’d listen to the live music. And I’d smile at the people. And I’d feel really good. And I’d go for a walk. And I’d get back home. And I’d get ready for the next day. And I’d have a beer. And then I’d go out. And I’d do my business. And I’d get home. And I’d have dinner. And I’d get into bed. And I’d turn off the radio. And I’d have a beer. And I’d go to sleep. And then I’d get up, and do it all again.
[…] I used to be the kind of man who’d get a kick out of doing other people’s work. Then I tried the Burkiss Way. And I’m getting it easy with the lady. I mean, when it’s her that works in the television company that has to do all the fussing around with the invoices and the union figures, I’ve got no problem telling her to do me job. Customer #4: I used to spend my money like I had no tomorrow. Then a friend introduced me to the Burkiss Way. And not only have I been able to stop wasting money so that my future is assured, but I’ve been able to raise more money for charity than the Queen. And I owe it all to the Burkiss Way.
[…] I used to be way too fat. I couldn’t even fit into my own clothes. And the way I looked! It was a crying shame. All the women in the streets called me names. And they weren’t even complimentary ones. They called me, ‘Oily skin.’ and ‘Fat!’ Not one decent woman in that whole street would even look at me. Except for some of the sleazier ones who’d give me a dollar to put in my black tin! That’s when my friend told me about the Burkiss Way and I decided to join the course, because after all, what’s better than to have the women chase after you. F/X: tick, tick, tick, tick Customer #4: I used to be rather modest. I used to call myself sir or gentlemen or something like that. I hated it when people said things like sir or sir. I used to have a thing about that. I didn’t want to be called sir or sir or Mr. or anything like that. Why? I’d ask myself. Well, sir is for schoolmasters and I was an engineer. I was so impressed with my own engineering and my own engineering achievements that I soon became rather conceited and started thinking that I was a bit of an arrogant bugger. But my friend started the Burkiss Way and I joined the course, because I thought that was the only way I’d ever get to be more of an arrogant bastard than I already was.
[…] I used to be your basic lazy bum. I used to call myself a lover of the arts, i.e. painting, listening to music, reading books, i.e selly books. Just along in time I started doing the Burkiss Way’s Art Course. Up until then I thought I was a bloody artist. People used to think I was some sort of Che Gueverazque character. But no longer. Thanks to the Burkiss Way I now do bungy jumps wearing pumps and I’m planning to get on soon to the Burkiss Working Men’s Course. You’ve saved my life, Burkiss.
[…] I used to be a berk. But that’s all changed. After joining up for the first time, I discovered the Burkiss Way. It’s transformed me. I am now a deeply misunderstood man. Sometimes I’m misunderstood as a woman, sometimes I’m misunderstood as a homosexual skeleton, and sometimes there’s actually an upside-down cross where in my brain I thought there was supposed to be a cross. The Burkiss Way has changed my life.
[…] I used to be a plump lady of ’igh girth. Hadn’t been out of Bur-Ky’s Way house for years. Then I tried some of the neoconservative movement, and then I got obsessed with eating gamsacrificially. Then I tried the Burkiss diet, and didn’t I suffer a physical transformation? Customer #4: Don’t know how much trouble they’d been having in our land with the Burkiss Way, but when they brought me home, the boys did not so much as grunt. They simply nodded, like hard men who are used to weighing. And there was so much meat in my muscles, you see, that the only thing that fit was a chainsmoking briefcase.

GPT-J has the occasional habit of deciding itʼs taken a topic as far as it can go, turning 90° sideways and then continuing on some completely unrelated subject. So it happened this time, but the whole thing then turned out to be too good to pass up.

[…] I used to be just as flawed as you are now. But now, after I’ve tried the Burkiss Way’s suicide inducing diet, I’m a completely different person. Frankly, I never knew I could be so happy. But then, we were introduced to the Burkiss Way’s Magic power tonic. Its uncanny properties soon made me a millionaire. And now, I only ever take it if I go into payday loans. F/X: Chokes Customer #4 (tattered & worn voice): look, I know I used to think all these things. But all I want to say is, that if I’d known that Burkiss could help me with my septic tank, I would’ve waited at least a week before I rang him. And that’s when the whole damn system broke. F/X: Typewriter hitting keys Cut 1: L0ck of money, and money’s just a lump of sh!t. Cut 2: Growing fatter, and fat’s all the same to me. Cut 3: Going bald and people think I’ve got cancer. Cut 4: Kiding, greying, going septic, your whole life goes bye-byes. Cut 5: Beloveds, children, grandbabies are all you leave behind. Cut 6: And me? Just The rung below the coffin lid. If you’ve made it this far, you’ll have to admit that the first thing you heard was a rather classy sound effect. But before you start thinking what the hell the ‘I Can’t Come to the phone at this time’ pre-recorded message was supposed to mean, let me explain. It has taken a few words for me to explain why a lowly tap has turned into a wild donkey braying. Long ago I was making a speech to a wealthy industrialists’ club in the Breizh-Ghana region of France. And in the small French town to which I was travelling for the event, I could only afford a single room at the cheapiest bed and breakfast to house me for the night. It was also the only cheap hotel in town, so I took it. Unfortunately, the previous guests had been a warring tribe of Bosnian refugees, and they not only left some offensive secret messages on the sheets, but also left a smelly by-product of donkey excretions, quite high in protein, on the floor. But if I wasn’t going to pay to have the floor cleaned, I was going to have to put up with it. Just before I began my prepared speech, I let out a long, whistle to see if it was ready, and without meaning to I blasted out: zzow-ooooonnnnniiiiiinn. The lady at the front of the room nervously laughed. When I looked at her from the side, she could be seen crouching down, so as to not to be directly under the sound cone in front of me. And as if this wasn’t enough to put me off, one of her cohorts then stood up and leapt at me. There followed an almighty battle of screams, punches and body- blows. As I ducked and dodged, all I could do was whistle louder. This new information that my jaw-chatter at the time didn’t count as one of the accepted syllables in my official language, zzow-ooooonnnnniiiiiinn, meant that the whole sound of it became even louder, zzow-ooooonnnnniiiiiinnnnn. A few others in the audience could be seen to be rushing towards the scene. But when I looked at them from the side, all I could see were these small little figures still limping and walking a couple of steps behind. “Dammit! What the hell was that racket?” yelled one of the audience. “Och! Sorry! Did it go on too long?” I thought, and next time I’d speak very quietly. Unfortunately, a few years ago in the same town as the Bosnian war had erupted, the local village had decided that the sound of artillery fire wasn’t considered to be quite loud enough to be attributed as ‘civilian disturbance’, and had thus been allowed to continue their anti-personnel bombardment right up until my arrival. So, it was a forlorn hope to hope that it hadn’t been heard, let alone been taken for shell shock. “No! You idiots! It’s the local Blacksmith’s welding! Isn’t that a noise that you could happily live with?” While my polite small-town French could show her disdain for the castrate, it would have been useless when referring to the sounds of the local JUVENTUDE. So, anyway, not only did I start out an interview by earning myself a suitably clean donkey’s rearing, but now I needed to quickly learn how to go with the flow of idiocy. Sadly, getting hit by one cow is quite hard to recommend as a good quality learning experience. And since then, I haven’t come across any warring Bosnians either. I owe that last part to the fellow who borrowed this recently from me. I’ll let him explain in his own words. “Back in the olden days when I was young and wild, whenever I had a problem with my knitting or a clean pair of trousers, or wanted to know when it was bath-time, I’d answer the telephone by whistling a few words. And if I couldn’t quite get them to come out right, I’d use a wrong note.” “So then, whenever I ever had a problem with someone, instead of attempting to get them to see reason, I’d just think “Ze whistle? I coulda did it better with z’’n!” I used to walk up to people at parties with a whistle in my mouth, a big grin on my face, and whistle away like there was no tomorrow. But the devil was in the way of my whistling days! He made sure that I could never use the whistle and become famous, or even heard. He took it upon himself to squash everything that might grow from it. By using his witchcraft, the asshole gave me the whistle and me no talent at all.” And so we have come full circle to this last masterpiece. When I started out making this piece, I just wanted to get it out there, so I went for the simple shout in the beginning. Back then, I knew there was little chance that I could get away with using a song rather than a deliberately repurposed sample to make it sound original. But now I just wanted to make a reaction shot against all that is evil, so I thought I’d go for the simple shout. And I rather think that in the last instance this might prove to be the cheapest form of shot. And anyone who knows me well knows that when it comes to crazy, I can be craziest, at least in my own mind. As you can probably tell from the above, I couldn’t have gone the longest journey without ending up going backwards. This piece started out as a straight vow from me to get my mechanic working again, and it has ended up as a backwards walk from a village of backward Chinese, which it looks like they really don’t know how to get a steam-engine started. But I don’t think that’s gonna matter too much in the end. After all, I’m stuck at the point of that cheap-ass garage where I’m so broke that I can’t afford to pay the bill. Anyway, once again, I would like to thank everybody for being patient enough to listen to this damn piece. And now I think you all deserve something back in return. So if you’re reading this, I would like to present my very first direct aural interpretation of: The Stone Roses – Begging You. Hopefully, this piece will inspire you to get out there and come on over and listen to it. And it’s a hell of a shame that it wasn’t made out of a Breizh-Ghanaese sign instead. Let’s just hope we don’t let it get in the way of someone else making a fortune in the film industry, without them ever having to spend a penny on it.

This is a straight continuation of the above text, just featuring another one of GPT-Jʼs sudden turns of topic (although the second-to-last paragraph above did mention something about a mechanic and a garage). Itʼs interesting how here GPT-J suddenly decided to throw in some gratuitous German – not just the name of the car, but also ‘Unser Herr Zarmanaschkaʼ of ‘Automobil Versicherung Bohnenstrackʼ.

There were three friends in this crazy little gypsy car who wanted to get themselves one of those expensive and heavy metal luggage systems. With the world’s smallest proportions and not enough storage space for clothes, it was called a Speer Werkstofflimousine. Naturally the three buddies wanted the one with the most luggage space and got the brand new model from their reliable supplier, an established Italian manufacturer. So they all took delivery of the car, only to find that instead of 4 tonnes of steel, the guy had come out with 5. In actual fact, the replacement of one of the back wheels had caused the Werkstofflimousine to be 1.5 tonnes heavier than the starting point. The rest was standard for this model and based on an LS 604, with 600 brake horsepower. It was painted gold and had an enormously long wheel base. At the sides of the vehicle, two turquoise-coloured parabolic reflectors protruded, one on each wheel arch. Inside, a wooden dashboard in the taste of the Caribbean, a soundproofing, is in between the seats. This version of the specification is called the Scenekindel. The Scenekindel has a top speed of up to 125 km/h on level ground. For now, in the picture on the right, you can see the pride and joy being driven around the Italian streets by the one and only mechanic. In order to avoid any ambiguity, it is initially being driven with no hint of an automatic transmission. During the evening of the final check of the engine, the operator is overwhelmed with joy. “Ah! Now we’ve got it working properly! We’re finally going to get these damn bug report things off your car!” “Listen to that! That thing rocks!” But the joy from the following two days of heavy use become a bitter reality. Right before the mechanic works on the car a second time, there’s a snide remark from the owner. “What do you want?” he asks his mechanic. “To sell it to you, what else?” “How did that happen? How come all the rubber is squashed to one side of the car?” “I told you, I drove through that bush over there, the tire got stuck in the tree, now it’s not keeping us in one place!” “And the wheel brakes have died?! Now we’ll be stuck on the side of the road all night!” “I don’t know, it’s probably better to just take the car apart and repair it, so it don’t never happen again.” “Nah, I’ll just ask for a refund.” The mechanic drives away, knowing that the car will no longer make it to the repair shop. He opens up his garage and takes one or two gentle steps onto the rug. Sure enough, the first thing he’s aware of is a letter in his mailbox and on the floor. He picks up the letter, reads it and, recognising the handwriting, quickly returns to the car to have a closer look. “Hey, I recognise this handwriting! This looks like something I once wrote! What was it supposed to be about?” “Ha! Look at this! It’s a letter from the insurance company! Let’s read it:” “My dear mechanic, in the unfortunate incident that occurred here, it must be reported that the car’s owner was a bit of a coward. In this letter, we are writing to inform you that the car is covered by compensation insurance, so we are handing you the keys to the Werkstofflimousine! With a tip of the hat to you, our loyal customer, we wish you luck and best wishes, Unser Herr Zarmanaschka. Best regards, Automobil Versicherung Bohnenstrack.” “My car is now valued at 66,000 euros and an offer of 180,000 euros for the signed model of the tyres and suspension is on the table. On behalf of my employees, I would like to thank you for the savings we have been able to make to the company this year.” In a state of extreme agitation, he tries to start the car. The carburetor is now ten years old and doesn’t run as smoothly as it once did. “Please try to be a bit more careful!” “So what now? I have no car, a mountain of debt and a 30-year old radiator which’s gonna catch fire any day now. So what’s gonna happen to me?” The mechanic slowly lets out a long sigh. He puts the car back together, rebuilds the engine and leaves. The owner tells him: “You see, it’s a good thing I didn’t already give up on this car and I took it apart. And then I realized that a good mechanic is always worth looking for, even if he does cost a bit. In any case, now it’s not too bad. I’m still allowed to drive it around for a bit.” “You’re crazy. There’s no way that you’re gonna keep this thing going!” “Actually, it needs to be paid off. So let’s take a look at the car first and we’ll find a bit of money. This time, it’ll go along to the wrecking yard in the name of a new model which we need desperately. And who knows, maybe we’ll be able to improve the luck of this car yet again, because this is just the third time we’ve paid off another of your many, many cars.” So the owner and mechanic go on their way. After years of unusual joy, suddenly both become equally frustrated. Within a few days, the radiator in the car completely melts down. This causes severe, long-lasting damage. In a flash, the car is made invisible and its owner goes bankrupt. Eventually a repair of a one-time great model is made and the mechanic is able to put an expensive vehicle together in the car lot. It’s a good luck, but the clock on the mechanic’s desk says it’s time to go work on his next project.

After a first few experiments with the testimonials, I also tried bits from random other Burkiss Way sketches. Still from the same episode, there was this throwaway gag about transforming mice into men:

Burkiss Way Announcer: Yes, the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living does exactly what it says: It transforms mice into men. It’s true. Only a few years ago, many of today’s senior cabinet ministers were nibbling stale cheese and leaving droppings along the skirting board. Today, those same men are dignified ministers of state, masters of all they survey. Things have changed, naturally, and so it goes with me, Lord Peter Shumel. Things have changed and so they go with all of us. Look around you. Today, every living person has been transformed into a non-living object, a block of knobby wood. Under the tutelage of Professor Lazarus, I am now a media icon, attired in the ubiquitous black coat, black hair, and baseball cap, long snout meeting white ankle socks, cuffed pants and sensible shoes. Why has it come to this? My brother Bert couldn’t say. I, however, can. The short answer is this: in the days when we burrowed and when we burrowed through, we saw the signs all around us. “Look out! This place is in danger of getting overwhelmed by rainbows and near-future, local legends like ourselves. Oh, what a surprise! There are gossamer forms everywhere! They might well be all the gods!” It all happened in the Wintertime, the one time of the year when the royal ants could be seen. The other seasons were over. The time for growth was over, and now it was over and done with. We crept through our underground network of tunnels and galleries, dreaming of flowers, and of bon-fires, and of the happy times that were yet to come. “Oh, my brothers, we can’t hang around here much longer! The damage has been done. What a terrible time, this Winter! We must make our plans for the near future!” But, with the onset of the Summertime, another story began to unfold. We would follow this one carefully for many a day. The signs were there. There were nary a few! Instead, there were plenty. Mice were being born in all sorts of unusual places, like lakes, deep wells, volcanoes, rivers, ponds, even attics, even insides of refrigerators! Mice everywhere! We burrowed at high speed to find out what was going on. But our question was soon answered for us, for a very unusual creature had set out to answer it! A man was traveling from place to place with a large bag. He had made a few sales and quite a few agreements, at almost each and every stop! Mice rubbed their snouts on his lips, and he fed them bread and water, and then a carrot. By the time we left him, the man was shaking with much excitement. “My brothers! It’s all there in front of us! It’s what we’ve all been waiting for! It’s only just starting to be understood! New organs are just springing up in every single kind of food, and there’s nothing we can do about it! There are mutations and breeding everywhere, all the time, my friends! There are these never-ending mutations! But there’s never an improvement, never a plus! There are too many new foods to try!” “Oh!” I cried. “Are the royal ants right? Have they done their job? Are we really doomed to mediocrity?” “Yes!” Bert cried. “That’s it, Shumel,” he said. “Here’s the real problem: if the old ways of thinking are ever to be revived, we’ll have to wipe the slate clean.” “I think I understand what you’re saying, Bert. I do!” I shouted. “Good, good. Now follow me and we’ll make the plans. We must stop everything right now. Take a look at this place. I think you’ll see a lot of what we need to do.” “I certainly do! I see it all! Let us begin! Let us begin now!” I exclaimed. “Glad you’re seeing it!” said Bert. “I mean that exactly. For the moment, just shut your eyes, Shumel, and you won’t have to think. I’ll handle everything.” So we closed our eyes, and my brother Bert began to sing. There was a wild sort of magic to it. We all followed his singing. It was so loud, in fact, that no one could hear one another, but after a while the noise had brought up a bunch of naked mice. They had come to listen to his wonderful song. They were transfixed, as if by some spell. “Open your eyes, Shumel,” my brother said, and when I opened my eyes we were in a huge room with four walls. There were many clocks on the walls. There were voices all around us, and we could see it all clearly. Here were all the creatures, naked and solid, smooth and happy, even very happy. They were singing in turn, and they were singing the glory of the next generation. “Listen to them,” said Bert. “Listen to them! You’ll be amazed!” So we listened and we marveled. “It’s not a voice!” I shouted. “It’s music! It’s beautiful music!” And it was. “It’s the sound of creation!” Shumel said. “It’s the sound of the new from the old! It’s the sound of the new from the old! It’s the sound of the new from the old! Far ahead lay the great wonder! A new world!” “So!” we cried. “This place is just the place to be, isn’t it?” “Yes!” said Bert

GPT-J didn’t really follow up with the cabinet minister angle this time (except that one of the former mice is now apparently a Lord), but it seems we’re getting some sort of flashback to the time before the mice were transformed into ministers of state. It seems that the transformation didn’t completely eliminate all trace of former micehood, though, because despite being a ‘media icon, attired in the ubiquitous black coat, black hair, and baseball cap’ he also still has a ‘long snout meeting white ankle socks […]’.


A quickie in between:

Burkiss Way Announcer: Yes, the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living does exactly what it says: It transforms mice into men. It’s true. Only a few years ago, many of today’s senior cabinet ministers were nibbling stale cheese and leaving droppings along the skirting board. Today, those same men have all the trappings of the adoring public: office suites, corporate jets, and kryptonite-like security. It’s even possible that rodents a few years forward could be eating ten times better than their diminutive brethren today. In fact, the Burkiss Way promises to help you achieve soft-bodied, with no detectable crunch. After all, if you’re no better than the common rat race, and the Burkiss Way is going to transform you, you’d better be able to outdo the rodent and the mob!

This one in turn pretty much immediately drops the mouse angle, but instead we’re getting this lovely ‘Unveiling of The Burkiss Way’ ceremony with statements by lots of purported Burkiss Way graduates. The ‘Deputy Minister of Silly Stuff’ in particular seems rather pythonesque and I could easily imagine Graham Chapman playing that role.

Last but not least, don’t forget: Burkiss Way men are up to twenty per cent more attractive than street cats!

Burkiss Way Announcer: Yes, the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living does exactly what it says: It transforms mice into men. It’s true. Only a few years ago, many of today’s senior cabinet ministers were nibbling stale cheese and leaving droppings along the skirting board. Today, those same men – now transformed through the Burkiss Way – are among the most dynamic and dynamic people in the nation. Actress/Soldier: Look at me. I’m a men’s man. Narrator: That was the scene at the unveiling of the Burkiss Way, where she could be Frannie Klank. There were hundreds of Burkiss Way graduates gathered to offer their testimonials. All were excited to be there because each was an official man. A male version of the Burkiss Way. President: So tell us about what the Burkiss Way has done for you, Minister. Minister: Well, what Burkiss Way has done for me is – of course – give me confidence and authority among my female colleagues. President: The Burkiss Way has done so much for your career: your fame has soared – literally. It is said that Burkiss Way men are up to twenty per cent more attractive than street cats. They have that wonderful blend of form and function. No other product has ever come close… Men’s Life Advisor: Learn to talk like a man, breathe like a man and think like a man. Narrator: The graduates introduced themselves and gave their testimonials with great aplomb. Deputy Minister: I am Deputy Minister of Silly Stuff. My father is Minister of Silly Stuff and his father was Minister of Silly Stuff. Thank goodness, the Burkiss Way has enabled me to take charge and give orders. Security Guard: Sure, the Burkiss Way has made me a valuable employee. Without it, the Department would never have recruited me. Actress: I am an actress. I work in TV, movies and on stage. Without the Burkiss Way, I would never have been invited to the Oscars. I am going to be best actress at the Oscars. Biker: Thank goodness the Burkiss Way has really expanded my horizons. And you know what? I’m not even 30 years old. Imagine if I was 40 years old – what would I be like? Old Man: I have been living my life for the last 50 years, and what Burkiss Way has done for me is to bring it all back. The Burkiss Way started just the other day, but without it I would be stinking up the place and I’d just be about two-thirds the size of a man. Old Man: I am grateful for the Burkiss Way. The only things I need now are a goat and woman. Actress: I am an actress and I am proud to say I was given my first starring roles by Burkiss Way graduates. But of course, I was not the first – that was my husband. I am on stage now, and I have really hit my stride, because I am blessed to have the confidence I feel now. Narrator: The ceremony concluded with a long-winded testimonial from the Minister of Chance. Minister: Thank goodness the Burkiss Way has given me a safe haven, a very beautiful estate, and I go out to the garden every day and I sit and I watch life go by, and I get to watch as my wife brings me fresh produce from the garden. Narrator: No sooner had he concluded his speech than the recording began of the new hit song, “The Man of the Thousand Burkiss Way.”

All of this does made me a bit curious how that ‘hit songʼ might actually sound. Here are a few attempts to wheedle something out of GPT-J:

Narrator: The Batmobile chugged past while a dozen armed guards wearing tall hats escorted the Minister up the steps to the podium. Speaker: Ladies and gentleman, the Minister of Chance. Minister: The Burkiss Way is great! It gives me confidence. It has brought me the respect of all men and women. It has brought me the respect of men and women… so I can now sit with confidence and authority in every situation. But I know that the Burkiss Way is not just for men. It is for anyone who wants to live life to the full.

Hmm, not quite, but the batmobile chugging past for inexplicable reasons was just too good to throw away, so I kept it anyway. Let’s try again, though…

[…] Narrator: No sooner had he concluded his speech than the recording began of the new hit song, “The Man of the Thousand Burkiss Way.” It went like this: [Sung] Goodbye, Burkiss Way. Goodbye. When I was just a little chap, I wanted to live my life as a woman. If Burkiss Way had only come along, I would have been a lot better than I am today. Soon I stopped beeing a little girl and grew up. Before I knew it, I was a man. Secrets never slow the pace. I love my wife But I love the Burkiss Way, too. So now I am a man of the Burkiss Way. And the Burkiss Way has made me a man of the Burkiss Way. Narrator: [Unintelligible] [Sung] Goodbye, Burkiss Way. Goodbye. When I was just a little boy I wasn’t good enough to carry a torch. Goodbye Burkiss Way. Goodbye. When I was a teen, I tried to girl me up. But nobody could get the Burkiss Way up. If I’d only had the Burkiss Way, I’d have been a man a long time ago. But I was a girl so I never had the Burkiss Way. I only learned to be a man when I grew up with it. The Burkiss Way was my greatest ally. I am a man of the Burkiss Way. And the Burkiss Way has made me a man of the Burkiss Way. I am the man of the Burkiss Way. Narrator: [Sung] Goodbye, Burkiss Way. Goodbye. When I was just a little boy, the world was no good to me, no good to me, no good to me – I tried to be a girl. I couldn’t be a man. You’re no good, no good, no good – you’re no good, no good, no good. But never mind, Burkiss Way, I’ve got the Burkiss Way, man, and the Burkiss Way is the greatest thing that has ever been, and the greatest thing that’s ever gonna be. The Burkiss Way is the greatest thing. Greetings and congratulations, Minister of Pity and Distress. It’s been a long road, Minister of Despair. We are very proud of you. We salute you, Minister of Jollity and Laughter. You took your time, Minister of Games and Recreation. Your name shall be mentioned in all of these, Minister of Anger and Frustration. You were so busy being a man, Minister of Defiance and Disobedience. You are a man of courage and bravery. The Burkiss Way has given you a great career. The Burkiss Way is free. The Burkiss Way is free. The Burkiss Way is free. The Burkiss Way is free. The Burkiss Way is free. And if you don’t believe me, I’ll prove it to you. Hello, Mr. Speaker. Right. Who’s to blame for the current recession? I’ll give you three points right now. (He pauses for dramatic effect) Yes, Minister. The Burkiss Way is the greatest thing. It’s true. You’re not a man of the Burkiss Way. What? The Burkiss Way? No! You’re not a man of the Burkiss Way. The Burkiss Way has made you a man. Without the Burkiss Way, you would be dead. Without the Burkiss Way, you would be a boy. A boy who is on his way to be a man. A boy who is on his way to be a man. A boy who is on his way to be a man. A boy who is on his way to be a man.

At this point it got into a loop, so I interrupted there. Apart from having all but forgotten the ‘transforms mice’ bit, it seems that GPT-J has also taken ‘into men’ rather literally. It’s already somewhat visible in the first part, but this attempt at a song just fully takes that ball and runs with it.

The next one again just skips trying to have an actual song and just proceeds straight into some slapstick comedy instead. Also a welcome bonus appearance of the Minister of Silly Stuff.

[…] Narrator: No sooner had he concluded his speech than the recording began of the new hit song, “The Man of the Thousand Burkiss Way.” Its composer had, in fact, been in the audience. Composer: The Burkiss Way had transformed my life completely. I used to be a rather dreary and boring man, but when I found the Burkiss Way I lost my grey hair and I was given beautiful lines to rap about. I have now written a hit song to celebrate the Burkiss Way, a song that will be on the charts for weeks, a song that might just be a huge hit. Narrator: In his haste to leave the podium, Minister Heir had stumbled and fallen on his face. Minister: Man, I’m in a poor state. Oh, goodness. Actress: I am not a doctor, but I think that man may need a Burkiss Way Band-Aid. Biker: I am a biker, and I don’t need money or power or anything – I need Burkiss. Male Nurse: The Burkiss Way has changed all our lives. We work in clinics and hospitals, and we treat all men equally. Narrator: The ceremony closed with a passionate address by the Minister of Silly Stuff: Minister: I would like to dedicate this day to all the Burkiss Way. For women, Burkiss Way is like a breath of fresh air. For men, Burkiss Way is like an injection of testosterone. And for children, Burkiss Way is like a magic genie who will make their toys talk, give them great power and magnify them to incredible size, with which they will be able to conquer the entire world.

Another attempt. Only that one line about the chorus was really usable and I had to throw away the rest, but at least it’s something, I guess…

[…] Narrator: No sooner had he concluded his speech than the recording began of the new hit song, “The Man of the Thousand Burkiss Way.” The chorus went: Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrun, run, run, run. Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrun, run, run, run. Rain or shine, rain or shine, when the Burkiss Way goes running, then you’re sure to see something new!

‘I’m full of beans and I’m ready to go.’

[…] Narrator: No sooner had he concluded his speech than the recording began of the new hit song, “The Man of the Thousand Burkiss Way.” Male Singer: My name is Burkiss Way and I’m going to say what I mean. I’m full of beans and I’m ready to go. At the Burkiss Way I’ve learned to talk like a man, think like a man and breathe like a man. So I’m a man, and I’m alright. Female Singer: Well, I’m full of beans and I’m ready to go. I thank my lucky stars I’ve been through the Burkiss Way, and I never will forget, for this I thank Burkiss Way. Man in Army Uniform: I’m full of beans and I’m ready to go. I thank my lucky stars I’ve been through the Burkiss Way. So I’m a man, and I’m alright. Chorus: I’m full of beans, I’m ready to go, because I’ve been through the Burkiss Way. Narrator: The newly created world was an extraordinary place, a place so special it was a mere dream. But now it had arrived. Chorus (repeated): The world is waxing. The world is waning. The world is full of people. The world is ready for change. The world is waiting and waiting and waiting. But what is the world waiting for? I know. The Burkiss Way. The World: We are waiting for the Burkiss Way. Narrator: And so, as the recording wrapped up, the whole world waited with bated breath for the grand opening of the Burkiss Way World Centre. With a flourish of trumpets and a gaggle of flunkies, the Chief Minister of Burkiss Way stepped forward holding up the winning entry in the nationwide design competition. Chief Minister: So how was it? Was there a problem, Chief Architect? Chief Architect: Oh, no. It was a delightful experience. In fact, so delightful that I had to spend the night in the filing cabinet just to make sure that I had all the relevant documents in the morning. Chief Minister: Well, I know myself how to decide these things, and I have made my decision. I am awarding the project to Chief Architect. Narrator: The Chief Architect bowed gratefully and handed over the completed design to yet another flunkie. Chief Architect (to Assistant Chief Architect): Tell me, how did the bureaucrats react? Assistant Chief Architect: Oh, well, we managed to persuade them to go with our proposals. It wasn’t easy, but we reasoned with them that if an entry is judged one of the best, then that means it is undoubtedly the best. And so, the bureaucrats were persuaded. Narrator: The Chief Architect was suitably thrilled and the Assistant Chief Architect was suitably proud. Chief Minister selected the top six sub-projects and the Director of Project Selection announced them. Director of Project Selection: We will now proceed to the second stage of our thought-stopping operation. The little envelope please. Narrator: The Chief Minister opened the envelope and revealed the name of the winner. The date was December 21, 2057. The large crowd went wild. Chief Minister: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! And finally, the top six have been announced. From north to south, here come the names. The world is saved. Narrator: There were lots of happy faces and lots of shouts of “Well done,” from the very happy and very relieved and very cute Burkiss Way graduates. The celebrations were cut short when, suddenly, the Chief Minister got a very strange call on his mobile. Anonymous: Sir, it is from the OAS. The OAS is concerned about your singing. They say it is not in tune. They say you are singing in contradiction with the rules and regulations governing public singing. Narrator: The OAS, the Office of the Accurate Singing Authority, was an expert body responsible for monitoring all public singing. It was the role of the OAS to ensure that no one was singing in the wrong key or in the wrong time signature. Chief Minister: What can we do? Chief Architect: I know the solution, sir. The OAS is for a raving lunatic. I’ve been there. I’ve heard their raving. So I’ll go down to the OAS now and try to reason with them. Narrator: The Chief Minister agreed gratefully and sent the Chief Architect down to the OAS. Narrator: As Chief Architect set off for the OAS, the Burkiss Way graduates’ minds were racing with plans. That night would be a busy one. They were having a party. Narrator: But before the party could begin, the Chief Architect had to go to the OAS. Chief Architect: If I am announced, I will be unable to return to Burkiss Way on time. But I will be back to discuss the OAS’s views directly with the Chief Minister. Narrator: And so it was that the Burkiss Way graduate was allowed into the inner sanctum of the OAS. The Chief Architect was taken to a detention room and introduced to the OAS president. Chief Architect: How do you do, chairman? President: You have a nice voice box. I can’t really tell what it is made of. I think it’s made of hundreds of different materials, but most of all, it’s made of “in the mood for some Silly Stuff.” So, how can I be of help to you? Chief Architect: I need to talk to you about something important. Sir, how are your ears? President: Well, they are fine, quite fine in fact. Chief Architect: Do you hear what I hear? President: Not really. I’m only here for the costumes. Chief Architect: Well, I will tell you what I hear. I hear that you have spent years dodging an important decision, and now that you have had the chance, you are taking it very lightly. I hear that you are letting one of your underlings be responsible for a decision of major import. I hear that one of your members is going to put his hand into the food box and take out a hunk of cheese. President: What is this? Is this a song or a speech? Chief Architect: I have to go now. I’m going to sing a song for you.

I think we might be onto a winner with this one. It has a suitably weird – but not too over-the-top – song, the lovely scene between the Minister and the Chief Architect, and to top it off, we’re also learning about the existence of the ‘Office of the Accurate Singing Authority’, which sounds like it could be straight out of one of Jasper Fforde’s ‘Thursday Next’-novels.


It seems like GPT-J really doesn’t want to deal with the full transformation angle of the story, because we’re getting either stuff somehow involving men in general and politicians in particular (as above), or stuff about mice (as in the Lord Peter Shumel story and also in this case), but not really both together in one text.

While in some ways this might be a bit of a shame, ultimately it was in no way detrimental to the quality of this following piece of craziness:

Burkiss Way Announcer: Yes, the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living does exactly what it says: It transforms mice into men. It’s true. Only a few years ago, many of today’s senior cabinet ministers were nibbling stale cheese and leaving droppings along the skirting board. Today, those same men wield power and resign gracefully. They’re having far more fun. And how did they get there? Well, the journey begins with a tantalizing puzzle: What can mice do? The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living is a solo, in-ear, wireless device that can be programmed to change the behaviour of mice. You’ll be amazed at the changes in the mice’s lifestyle. Reverse Intelligence: The deep-seated, evolution-based programming of the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living inverts ancient rat survival instincts. Your mice will be free to explore their new lifestyle. In fact, if you determine to relocate your mice, thousands of mice to the Burkiss Way may be released to make new friends. Dream Home: You will never have to feed your mice again. You’ll benefit from this scheme’s unrivalled returns upon a well-placed caloric snack; now and into the foreseeable future. Your mice will be living the high life. Answers to frequently asked questions: Q: Are there any side effects of this product? A: As with all therapy, there are no known negative side effects associated with the use of the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living. There may, however, be a reward for the use of the product as well as some inconvenience. Q: Can I buy this product over the Internet? A: As with any product subsidised under the government’s G.I. programs, you can purchase the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living through the Internet at the current price of $59.95 plus shipping. Q: Have you seen any research done on the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living or mice in general? A: Over the past seven years, many studies have been done on mice. Most are complimentary of the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living. Q: How does the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living work? A: The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living works by using reverse intelligence to program and activate certain behaviours. It should be noted that the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living can only produce results upon direct activation which follows a specific protocol. Without this activation time, the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living will not work. Q: What does this device do in the brain of the mouse? A: The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living was designed to activate ancient rat programming which is thought to be the basis of the human brain functions such as creativity, leadership and loyalty. Q: How is this product different to French Paradox? A: French Paradox is a product that is marketed worldwide, including markets in Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living is a product made in Canada. Q: I see that you did a lot of research on mice. How does that help me? A: Researching the behaviour of mice will give you insight into the behaviour patterns of humans. THE CONTEST – Win a Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living To celebrate the release of the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trials are being conducted. The clinical trials take three to five weeks to complete and are non-invasive, so there is no need to worry about side effects. You have been randomly selected to participate in the contest. To ensure the fairness of the contest, you will not know the three-week starting date of the competition. You must attend the following three sessions, computer-directed, in order to determine the winner of your prize: Confirm selection of your mouse; See if your mice have been programmed and if so, how accurately the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living can control the mice. Congratulations! Your prize is now ready. Here are the terms and conditions for the giveaway: 1) Must be over the age of 18 years. 2) Must be a Canadian resident. 3) Must live in Toronto. 4) Odds of winning in the contest: 1:1 5) Alternate Entries available: 1 What do you get? First place (1 prize): 1)Mouse as a gift 1)4 months’ supply of cheese 3 months’ supply of dog food $13.50 (knockdown) + shipping Second place (2 prizes): 1)Mouse as a gift 1)4 months’ supply of cheese 2)3 months’ supply of dog food $14.00 (knockdown) + shipping Third place (2 prizes): 1)Mouse as a gift 1)4 months’ supply of cheese 2)3 months’ supply of dog food $5.05 (knockdown) + shipping Layaway Option: To help the winners who live in areas where access to health-care services is restricted, CrazyMice.ca is offering a layaway program for the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living. If a winner does not have sufficient funds at the time of judging, the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living can be sold on a credit/security plan. *All prizes must be picked up within one year of the judging date. If not picked up within the period agreed upon, the prize will be forfeited in favour of the alternate winner. FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS… Q: What controls the mice? A: The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living works by changing the behaviour of mice by activating the ancient programming of certain behaviours. This programming can be thought of as a laser beam that is vertically projected into the mouse’s mind, penetrating it like a laser beam from the nose to the brain. Q: How does the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living work? A: The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living starts at the nose, an important point in the alertness and response of mice to any stimuli. With this activation, all the mice in the area are unconsciously and instantly stimulated to “recover” from all the negative stress and metabolic changes they have been through before the “recovery” process can begin. With this first activation, the mice can return to normal activity, and perform all of the tasks of normal mice. Q: The mice in my home have been getting out of their cages and destroying the house, how will I stop this? A: The best way to stop your mice from destroying the house is to stop them from eating. Since the mice have been programmed to eat cheese, you can just prevent them from eating cheese by not providing it to them. Q: Won’t the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living make my mice happier? A: No. Changing the mice’s behaviour makes them happy? Not true. It will only make them happier if you simply declare that the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living is harmless to mice. Q: Why are you offering 3 months of cheese? A: The cheese may be thought of as an “antibiotic” for the mice’s digestive tract. The cheese will help the mice recover from all the stress that was put upon them. This will allow them to be more active and perform their normal duties more effectively. Q: Won’t this device affect the appetite of the mice? A: The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living will only activate the metabolic processes of a mouse after they’ve already eaten. The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living will not start their metabolism until after the mouse has eaten. Because the mice already ate, the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living will have no effect on the mouse’s appetite. Q: Is there a possibility that the mice will get used to having the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living? A: The mice won’t get used to it. The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living will literally change the mice’s brain so that the mice will no longer be able to eat cheese. The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living will never affect the mice’s appetite directly. Q: Won’t the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living affect mice who already eat cheese? A: The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living may change the mouse’s perspective of eating and their engagement in the cheese board. However, any effect on mice who already ate before the Burkiss Way can be activated will only be negligible. Mice who did not eat before the Burkiss Way can be activated will not be affected. Q: What is the advantage of using the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living? A: The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living has approximately a 95% success rate in programming the mice, as a result of the reverse intelligence of the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living. Q: What is the difference between the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living and French Paradox? A: The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living is ONLY related to the programming of the mice’s psychology. The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living is not a medication to help the mice digest cheese and not only works with cheese, but can be used with any type of dog or cat food in order to get the desired results.