The Boss and Me

We’re in luck

I ordered Netflix for Alison, years ago. It was a concession because I didn’t have cable.

On like our second date over a decade ago
Her: You’re not one of those weird guys with no cable, are you?
Me: I’m totally one of those weird guys with no cable.

Finally got around to cancelling it last night. After my dad passed, I cancelled cable for my mom as well.

It’s amazing what little things knock the wind outta you. Then again, it’s amazing what little things you treasure forever.

Years ago, I came home to find this.

After that, I used to label everything around the house: The Boss and The Other One.

Don’t think I’ll ever stop missing her sharp wit.

Her sister took the kid for a bit. When she brought him back I asked her:

Me: What would you think if I maybe went on a date with someone?
Her: I thought you were dating.
Me: Hmmm, it’s hard to characterize what I’m doing. But anyway, what do you think?
Her: No one’s judging you on anything, Logan. Even if they do, who cares? I don’t. No one close to you does. If it was reversed, I’d want Alison to get back out there.
Me: (getting upset) Oh man, if only it was that wa…
Her: (interrupting) Pull yourself together, Logan! No woman wants to see that.
Me: (laughing, wiping eyes) Noted.

Which is also interesting because I went out to lunch with some friends a while back and a girl from my gym was there. Ended up walking her back to her ride.

Me: Do you read my blog?
Her: (grinning) Occasionally.
Me: I feel I should tell you that I’m not dating anyone in the traditional sense.
Her: Oh, I only date people in the traditional sense.
Me: As well you should. (laughing) I’m just working through a few things right now.
Her: How’s that going?
Me: It’s a work in progress. You’re single, right?
Her: Yes.
Me: Well, if you meet someone between now and, say, the end of November or so, he’s a lucky fella.
Her: And if not?
Me: Hmmm, I make a mean bowl of chili.
Her: (laughing) OK.

Anywho, got a call from her Saturday night after a sleepless week.

Her: Hey, I’m in your neighborhood walking to the subway from 83rd Street. I was thinking you should join me.
Me: (thinking) I might be free.
Her: If you are, I’ll walk slower.
Me: Well then, we’re in luck – turns out, I’m free. Gimme 15 mins?

 

Location: not on the other side yet
Mood: hard to say
Music: I’m not stopping for ya, I’m a f_____g warrior
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Got a nickel and dinner at Bistango

Seeing yet more friends


Since I’m talking about self-medicating with food and friends, there was a group of my buddies that all got together to donate to Alison that I had been meaning to see for a while. So I invited them all over for dinner last week.

Spent a full day making pulled pork tacos three ways: Mexican, Japanese, and Chinese.

Him: Churros? Do we want churros?
Me: Why do you bother asking questions you already know the answer for?
Him: I need validation.

They’re a private bunch so no pics. But the food and the company were killer.

In a similar vein, a college buddy had a birthday at Rice and Gold downtown, so I dashed off to see him for just an hour or so. I arrived a sweaty mess but got a hug from everyone anyway. Poor bastards.

Broke down when walked in I saw my friend’s wife. The last time I saw her was with Alison.

Her: How are you doing these days?
Me: About what you’d expect. Drinking less. Womanizing more. My usual song-and-dance.
Her: You look good – you’ve lost weight.
Me: I’ve been doing intermittent fasting. (thinking) And abject depression. I don’t recommend the latter.

Met a young couple there that threw a fundraiser for Alison at their restaurant. The wife sat down with me and was really sweet.

Me: Thank you for everything you did for Alison.
Her: (waving her hand) It was nothing.
Me: (shaking head) No, it was something. It was definitely something.

On that note, both Bistango and Nickel and Diner went far out of their way for my family so I wanted you to know about them.

If you’re looking for places with great food to eat in the city, consider going to one of those two restaurants and support some great people that supported me.

There are most stories I need to tell you. But I need to start my day.

And, I suppose, restart my life, again.

Me: I think we should talk.
Gradgirl: OK.

Location: back at my desk
Mood: fuzzy
Music: I’ll give you my best side, tell you all my best lies
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Asking them how to do it

Back on the dark side of the moon

Food from the New York Mall in Flushing

It’s funny. When I don’t write for a while, it’s either because I’ve got a lot going on or nuthin at all.

It’s been busy here but hard to explain with what.

After you’ve taken yourself outta society, it takes a while to reintegrate.

Saw some friends a little while back for a lunch out in Queens at the New York Food Court. PB was there as was my brother and several other people I knew and didn’t know.

Alison was alive the last time I saw them all. Just like everyone else I’ve seen. It’s a hard thing to think about.

My brother and I have a somewhat rare quirk in that we have very close female friends who are simply that: Female friends.

His best friend is female and was there for lunch. She was the woman in this entry where I hoped I’d never face the kind of tragedy she did. That didn’t work out the way I’d hoped.

I spoke to her after everything went down. Asked her how she survived the blow.

As an aside, I met another woman this past week who lost both her parents in her teens and asked the same question. But that’s another story for another time.

In any case, no one ever really has an explanation. People just survive, somehow.

I’m surviving somehow, I think. With the help of some good souls.

Her: I hear about you meeting up with all these women, when are you going to ask me for a friend date?
Me: You wouldn’t like the cost of admission.
Her: Ewww, gross, Logan!
Me: (laughing) You know who and what I am. But I’ll see you again soon enough, I’m sure.

In that good souls entry, the horrible event I alluded to was the loss of yet another pregnancy for Alison and me.

I wish everything was different.

Ah, goddammit. I’m back here again.

Location: back on the dark side of the moon
Mood: back on the dark side of the moon
Music: Are you at it again? I think you hold your heart too close to the vest
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Ancient conversations, just ancient

Conversations


For you to get the full effect of this story, you have to know that I’m a germaphobe.

Not a terribly bad one, but enough that I’ll return home to get bottle of hand sanitizer if I leave with it or buy a new one immediately.

At last count, I have 14 bottles of them. That I know of.

I gave the little guy a bath the other day and he did something he’s never done before:

Me: …and that’s why the story of Tyre, the seige of Alexander the Great, and the Elvis Barbershop. Wait, what are you doing?
Him: (concentrating)
Me: Wait, are you…? No, don’t you…don’t…ohmygod…what are you doing?! For the love of god, stop! Stop! Stop! Don’t! Oh, man…
Him: (doesn’t stop until he’s done, inhales, smiles)
Me: (sighs) Well, papa’s gonna go throw up now. Then we’ll clean you up and figure out how to sell this apartment. We can never come back here.


Was on 41st Avenue, between Main Street and College Point Avenue in Queens the other day. Saw this lanky construction worker lead this group of elderly Chinese women around the construction site.

That’s him in the pic above.

He spoke to them in polite but limited Chinese, despite not being Chinese himself. I had to chat with him.

Me: Dude, that’s cool.
Him: What?
Me: That you took the time to learn the words to talk to them.
Him: (laughing) Thanks! I try. I figured I should learn how to say the right thing.
Me: (holding out hand) I like meeting nice people. The world’s fulla douchebags. It needs more nice people.
Him: (smiles and takes my hand)


Striking up conversations is a skill, but not always one that ends up anywhere meaningful. Although they’re all interesting in their own right.

Me: (interrupting) …sorry, I have to ask how old you are before we go on.
Her: 22, why?
Me: Oh, that won’t do at all.
Her: (laughing) Why? How old are you?
Me: Not to ruin this lovely conversation but…ancient. Just ancient.

Speaking of conversations and foreign languages, here’s a video with Oakland Raider, James Cowser discussing dim sum with much (much) better Chinese than I ever have.

Went to dim sum with someone recently but that’s a story for another time. One can only jump around so much in a single blog entry without making the reader’s head spin.

I think I hate James Cowser. Purely out of jealousy.

Location: all over the place
Mood: not good, not terrible. Meh
Music: I’m a funny little thing, I can tell you this for nothing
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A(nother) night in Solas

A goddamn rock


My cousin invited me out again and I figured I should try and be social. We ended up going to my old haunt Solas downtown. The last time I was there,  I was with Alison.

Used to go there every week or so for years. Turned 30 there. Also found a lost heart once on the long walk home from there as well.

And old habits are hard to break

Me: Hi. My name’s Logan, and you are…?
Her: (laughing, takes hand) Joan.
Me: Joan. Y’know, I knew a lovely girl named Joan in college…

I asked another woman to take a picture of me and my friends.

Me: Focus on me, the others don’t matter.

Which was a joke, of course. Because the night was only bearable because of them.

Me: You’re 27 right? You don’t have a drink?
Pez: Yes. And no.
Me: (handing her mine) Here’s a gin and tonic. Do you know the story about how it came about?
Her: (laughing) No.
Me: Great, I’ll tell it to you. It started when the British were in India

Think I was fine, for the most part; was there a few hours. But then the bouncer – who’s an old and dear friend – showed up and I totally broke down. I remember introducing him to Alison.

“I’m gonna marry that girl one day, man. You watch.”

He gave me a bear hug and said he was sorry. The owner came out and gave me a hug and and handshake too, which only caused me to break down once again.

Me: I never thought I’d ever be single and back here again. I’m sorry I’m such a mess, man.
Him: (gently) You’re doing great.
Me: (bursting out laughing and wiping eyes) Sheyeah, I’m a goddamn rock.

Just managed to pull myself together when Bal and Mouse from my wrasslin class were leaving so I  ended up leaving with them as well.

Bal headed to NJ and I walked Mouse to her station.

Me: I’ve been meaning to ask – are you dating X?
Mouse: (laughing) You should ask him. Why?
Me: (shrugging) No reason. Let’s just say I’m curious. Oh, what are your thoughts on Nietzsche?
Her: (smiles, thinks) Blessed are the forgetful for they get the better of even their blunders.
Me: Ah, that’s my favorite quote from him. There’s a lot I’d like to forget.
Her: It’s funny: You’re a nice guy, without being a puppy.
Me: (laughing) You’ll have to explain that to me someday but I’ll take that as a compliment, I think. (arriving at station) See you in class on Monday?
Her: See you on Monday.

I took the long walk home again to the west side and ended up chatting with Gradgirl before I hopped the train and made it back to my pad.

She was there when I arrived.

Me: How was your night?
Gradgirl: I was out. Danced with some people. You?
Me: The same. Jealous?
Her: (laughs) No. We both knew you’d end up here with me.
Me: So it seems. Come on in. The place is a mess.

Blessed are the forgetful.

Yeah. There’s so much I’d like to forget.

 

Location: same old haunts
Mood: deflated
Music: Got no place to go but there’s a girl waiting for me down in Mexico
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Pretty good out there

Being loved by someone like that


RE Mike recently took me out to lunch around the way.

Me: Last time I was here, it was with Alison.
Him: (sadly) I’m sorry, that’ll happen a lot, I think. How’re you holding up?
Me: Better. Kinda. I’ve been drinking a lot less these days. It’s the pharmaceuticals now that’re screwing me up.

Man, we had some fun times back in the day.

He also has work for me to do. So I guess I won’t starve after all – if I get my head on straight. Still trying to accept that my dad’s gone as well.

And my grief over Alison is still so raw.

Me: Spent the first week afterward wondering if I could kill myself without triggering a suicide clause in my life insurance.
Him: Jesus!
Me: (shrugging) Merely a mental exercise. Obviously, I didn’t do it. Someone has to raise the boy. (thinking) Think I’m gonna get the Reuben.

A Reuben was the first thing Alison got herself when she was finally pregnant.

It’s these constant things that keep me from getting my footing.

That she died before she could really spend time with the boy and me as a family guts me still. Suppose it always will.

Him: When I met Alison, I honestly thought, “Wow – She’s beautiful.”
Me: She was. That’s why I think that I do so well when I’m out and about. It’s amazing what being loved by someone like Alison does to your self-confidence.

On that note, he mentioned a doctor friend of his that was single around the way. Redhead.

Him: I can introduce you two – when you’re ready.
Me: Not now. (joking) But I told DC to keep an eye out for investment bankers for me in the future.
Him: (laughs) She’s a doctor, not quite an investment banker but you’d like her.

Told him that I’m not ready to date anyone that might think of me as anything but entertaining company.

Him: Think about it. 
Me: I do OK on my own. I was pretty good out there when we were out and about, no?
Him: You were very good. (laughing) But that was 12 years ago. You’re 12 years older now.
Me: No. (shaking head) I’m 12 years better now.

Location: in my head again
Mood: hard to say
Music: You’re gonna find yourself somewhere, somehow
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Rum carrier part two

New rules

Rum Carrier Lunchbox

Several of my male friends – alla whom have children of their own – told me to just use the rum carrier.

Bryson: Leave the rum tag! That’s hilarious and will be a great story that we will be telling your son later in life. By the way, that bag is nicer than anything I own.
JJ: It’s who you are. You gotta do you, man.
GS: Don’t even trip.
TR: Rum container is genius
RB: Just put some Star Wars stickers over the logo…bam

It always bothers me to go against dispassionate logic – it’s actually the best item I have for the job at had.

So Nate went off to school the other day with his gear stuffed into rum bag with his name over the word “rum” and I went home thinking that I need a rule that ensures he’ll always be true to who he actually is.


Elle wrote me this long and sweet email that made me cry. She moved back to LA, got married, had two kids.

Her: Sorry it took me this long to write and reach out. I’ve been meaning to but each time I thought about it, I couldn’t get the right words.
Me: I want to write you more but I can’t. I’m a mess. I miss her. I miss you. I miss my old life. Everything. I am so very happy for you, though. You have everything I would have hoped for in my life.

That’s kinda how my life is these days. Sweet, sad, and nostalgic, all mixed up together.

And the occasional funny that makes me laugh if no one else.

Everyone finds having someone like me in their lives amusing – until it’s no longer amusing.

Him: My cousin is heading here for a few days. (thinking) Stay away from her, Logan!
Me: She’s 25 right? Don’t worry. I have a strict “no one below 27” rule.
Him: You just told me the last girl was 25.
Me: (shaking head) Well, it was more of an informal guideline back then.

Location: my white desk, getting ready to go out
Mood: wistful
Music: Most of everyday is full of tired excuses
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Non-Starters

That was the plan

Burgers and Fries at Pier I in NYC

Scene: At gym.
Me: (to Pez) You know, you’re the same age as a girl I’m hanging out with.
Chuck: (overhears in distance, laughs) “Hanging out with?” Yeah, you two are going to lectures and coffee.
Me: (to Chuck) We do – we discuss Nietzsche!
Chuck: (walking away) Suuuure.
Me: (whispering to Pez) We don’t discuss Nietzche
Pez: (laughs)

Daisy exited my Venn Diagram, recently.

Been living in the same building for close to 20 years. I’m pretty good friends with the neighboring doormen.

One of them is hinting I should marry one of the female friends/other that swing by the pad. It just makes me laugh.

Larry: Raising a kid, you need a man and woman. You loved Alison, I know. But this doesn’t have to be for love. Think of your son.

I married Alison because we looked at the world the same way. Don’t think I’ll ever find someone that looks at it quite the same way I do again.

Don’t believe in many social constructs but I do believe in marriage.

Both Daisy and Gradgirl do not, which makes them non-starters for me, among other things. Of course, I’m a non-starter for everyone.

Me: I am thinking of my son. I want him to know that if I can survive this, he can survive anything. I’m ok with being by my lonesome. And you’ve known me a long time – if I need company, I’ll find company.
Larry: You’re a father now. It’s not the same anymore, Logan.
Me: Yes. But these are the cards I was dealt, so I play them.

Daisy: Do you imagine if things were different? If I were different?
Me: I always wish everything were different. Everything but the boy.
Her: With us, I mean.
Me: (gently) There is no us, Daisy. None of this is actually real. You’re just getting over something as am I, to different degrees. I don’t want you to be someone that you’re not. That never works out. People shouldn’t have to change themselves to fit into someone else’s world.

Her: He wants to meet up again. (pause) Do you think I should go?
Me: (nodding) That was the plan, right? I was always only supposed to be just a distraction.
Her: Yes. (pause) That was the plan.

Haven’t seen her since. Maybe he’s her person and she, his. We should all be lucky enough to find our person.


Me: So it’s just you and me now. (pause) Are you ok with that? (grinning) You won’t be worried I’ll fall madly in love with you?
Gradgirl: No. I know you’re not available to me. Not like that.
Me: Well, strictly speaking, I’m not available to anyone.
Her: (laughs) I might fall for you, Logan.
Me: This is true. You’ll let me know if it happens? I’ll do the same.
Her: Don’t worry. (thinking) I could never love someone that wasn’t in love with me.
Me: (nodding) That’s how it’s supposed to be.

These are the cards we were dealt. So we play them.

Me: Morning, kid! Ready for the day?!
Son: (yawns, stretches, smiles)
Me: God, I love that face. C’mere you…

Location: with my son in my empty apartment
Mood: wondering
Music: Oh, uh oh, you’re changing your heart
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Parenting with Logan

Social Constructs

Her: Is that a wine carrier?
Me: Strictly speaking, it’s a rum carrier.
Her: Logan! You can’t use a rum carrier for his lunchbox!
Me: Why not? There’s no rum in it.
Her: It says “rum” right on the flap. What is wrong with you?
Me: How much time do you have?

Alison’s BFF and several of her college friends paid for a preschool that started this morning. One of Alison’s other college friends gave me four bags fulla clothes that ABFF brought back for me. I brought her a beer.

ABFF: His birthday’s coming up. Are you doing something?
Me: Not sure.
Her: Are you getting him a cake at least?
Me: I’ll get him a muffin.
Her: A muffin? It’s his birthday!
Me: A muffin is merely a naked cupcake. I’ll put peanut butter on it for frosting.

The ABFF is a lawyer. Another lawyer friend of mine was giving me parenting advice, despite her not being a parent, regarding my choice of lunchbox.

Her: You can’t send him to school with a rum carrier.
Me: Logically, it’s the best choice. It holds a change of clothes better since I roll them, and can hold his drink and food container more easily. It’s fashionable and will probably be easier to find as it’s taller than it is long. I refuse to raise him with these absurd social constructs.
Her: Didn’t you say, “Communication is what the other side hears?
Me: (groaning) Fiiiine. Let the record reflect my vigorous objection to this acquiesce.
Her: So noted.

Location: 40 mins ago, surrounded by children
Mood: adulty
Music: get up and stand up and climb the rope of hope
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Until the end of the world

A Hole in my Soul

Coffee for two in the UWS

Went to my law firm the other day. Felt weird getting dressed and walking through the doors. They were taking pictures for the firm website and I was touched to still be considered part of the team.

Boss: There’s he is!
Me: Barely.

They ordered pizza which few ate. So I ended up eating an entire large pie all by myself. I’ve been doing intermittent fasting, which is an entry for another time.

Me: If they didn’t slice this thing up, I’ll roll it up like a burrito and stuff it in my mouth.
Him: I believe that.

Saw my family afterward.

It’s weird that I now have a “thing” that I do when someone dies. What a horrific realization: That one has a thing that one does when someone he loves dies.

That thing is clean up. I attribute it to Alison. Whenever something horrible happened, she cleaned up the house. So I do the same, in honor of her – as did my mom.

Her: I can’t believe he’s gone.
Me: (nodding) I’m so sorry, mom.

Here, at my pad, I try to fill my time with the boy or other company.

Gradgirl: I meet a lot of married men in my classes and life. I think that some – all of them, really – would try to be with me if they thought they could get away with it. You’re one of only two married men I met in my life where I felt that you would never look twice at me or anyone else.
Me: I wouldn’t. She’s all I ever wanted. You wouldn’t be here now if she was still here.
Her: I know, Logan. (nodding) That’s how it’s supposed to be.
Me: (thinking) I have a hole in my soul and my life in the shape of her. I’m trying to fill that hole however I can, before it expands and kills me.
Her: (seriously) Don’t die, Logan.
Me: Man, I trying my best not to. I’m trying…

 

(continued from last conversation)
Daisy: (laughs) Not every woman is dying to meet a man with a kid that’s in love with his ex-wife.
Me: (sighing) She’s my late wife, not my ex-wife. She never left me. I never left her. She was taken from me. There’s a difference. But you are right about that.
Her: (nods) Which part?
Me: Me being in love with her. I’ll love her until the end of the world.
Her: (frowns, puts her hand on my shoulder)

Location: my white couch in the living room
Mood: fuzzy
Music: It’s fine by me, if you never leave
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