In my life

Condiments at a diner

Had my second Thanksgiving dinner with my family; Heartgirl came along. After a ridiculous amount of food, we all settled down to play cards and Taboo. It felt like family.

That Saturday, saw my old college buddies for dinner; it was a potluck “Friendsgiving.” Brought some sweet potatoes that I made as well as a pie that I bought. Afterward, had some of his fine bourbon, which I enjoyed, but not as much as my usual rum. Per my usual clumsiness, managed to spill wax all over some furniture. That too felt like family.

The guy I’ve known the longest – since we were about 16 (21 years) – just had a kid. It’s weird seeing your friends as parents.

After that, went and saw Hazel, who happens to be his sister, and my buddy Paul with my brother and his new girl for karaoke. Didn’t do much singing but I did have some more drinks there although the drinks were so watery that it was like drinking nuthin.

Sunday, we all just got up and had diner food with my bro and the girls before he headed home to LA.

My lens wasn’t snapped in correctly for most of the stuff so no good pictures to show you of most of it. Figured that out when I took the above pic at the diner.

S’ok, there’s always next year. Hope you had a similar friend/family-filled holiday.

Man, gotta hit the gym.

Location: Brooklyn within the hour
Mood: fat
Music: places have their moments with lovers and friends, I still can recall
YASYCTAI: Make a stand, shake up the views of the common man. (10 mins/1 pt)
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Thanksgiving 2010

79th Street and Broadway, NYC

Me: 37. But in my head, I’m still 18.
Him: (laughing) We all are, Logan, we all are.

Hurt my neck wrestling the other day so I’ve been walking around with this ice pack around it. Man, after 35, nuthin heals the right way any more. Feel my age all of time now.

HG and I’ve been talking about my moving someday outta my pad. Moved lots in the last few years but it’s always been up or down in the same building. Been here for going on 12 years. A dozen years. Doesn’t seem possible and yet it is.

Once again, got nuthin better to say about the holiday than I said two years ago for Thanksgiving 2008.

Off to work and then to stuff my face like a fatty, fat, fat.

Happy Turkey Day, everyone!

Location: UES
Mood: in pain
Music: High time we made a stand & shook up the views of the common man
YASYCTAI: Make a stand, shake up the views of the common man. (10 mins/1 pt)
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My three business credos

Birds on a wire; pigeons on a streetlight, NYC

Think I’m gonna stop writing for Technorati. No major single reason but a few little ones:

  1. Been crazy busy with work and those articles take me longer than anticipated to write – plus they make change requests that eat up more time
  2. Kinda feel like there’s no real support for articles since they run them all equally without any promotion
  3. There’s no means of auto-publishing. This I understand cause they want some editorial control but it has ramifications for me.

My three business credos, which’ve enabled me to not have a “real job” for decades yet still live comfortably, are:

  1. Underpromise, overdeliver.
  2. Save 10% of everything you ever make.
  3. Be a man of your word

It’s the last one that causes my friction with Technorati. Said to readers that we’d publish weekly on Fridays and yet, no; the editors manually put up each entry so articles’re published when an editor gets around to it.  They completely missed publishing last week.

It’s not as if I think people’re waiting with bated breath for my next installment; it’s that I said I do it.

When I say I’ll do something, it gets done. Even the people that can’t stand me know that if I give my word, it’s done.

Figure that my job’s to write and their job’s to publish. Y’can’t keep bugging someone to do what they’re supposta. Ergo, no more column.

It’s a shame – liked writing it and they weren’t bad fellas, just maybe understaffed.

Maybe I’ll move it somewhere else – any ideas?

———-

Him: How do we get to the museum?
Me: Just walk down Broadway and make a left at 79th Street. Keep walking straight until you see a large building that looks like a museum.

HG’s brother stayed over the other night and enjoyed hanging out in the city enough to stay for another dinner. We ended up doing Vietnamese the first night and pizza the next.

It’s nice when your significant other’s siblings and relatives aren’t jerks. Hoping they think that it’s nice that their sibling’s fiancee’s not a jerk too. It’s rough when that’s not the case.

Went to wrestle the other day and now my neck’s all jacked up; can barely move right now.

Man, the holidays’re gonna leave me a porker.

Location: at my desk, immobile
Mood: in pain
Music: I guess action speaks louder than words
YASYCTAI: Go to the doctor for a physical. (60 mins/1 pt)
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It’s the same old thing as yesterday

Couple fighting in Lincoln Center, NYC

Was taking a quick break from work this week and someone told me they saw an ex being interviewed on TV so I watched the vid. She looked good and it sounds like her job’s going well. I’m glad. Hard to believe it was over four years ago.

It’s funny, that guy that loved her so I don’t even know any more.

Douglas Adams once said, I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I intended to be.

We all think we’re the king of pain at one point or another. The sane people realize that we have no idea what we’re talking about.

Watched it for another minute before I flicked it off and went back to work.

———-

HG’s brother’s staying over as the first member of her family in our pad. This is cool cause, first of all, he’s a nice fella. Second of all, it forces me to get things done to free up my evening; dunno the last time I had a free evening.

Finally, we get to go out for sushi. Win/win/(win) for all concerned.

If you’re looking for me, look for the grown man in the corner stuffing his cheeks like a chipmunk with raw fish and seaweed.

Location: in fronta my desk, under a deadline
Mood: rushed
Music: I have stood here before inside the pouring rain
YASYCTAI: Get those projects done! (Four days/1 pt)
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Need the darkness, someone please cut the lights

Clock in midtown, NYC

Got a number of nice comments from friends that read my last Technorati entry as to Why Wednesday is the Best Night for a First Date. Tell me what you think.

———-

Was running around the city again last week when a client called me and asked me to come over. His dad passed away and he wanted my help addressing a few things. Told him I would, so that kills any free time mighta had this month and maybe next.

It’s a terrible thing to think but if the father had to pass, 2010 is the best year for a rich person to do so cause there’s no estate tax.

Course, that’s on a purely pragmatic basis; on a personal level it’s always too early for a loved one to go, yeah?

Been thinking a lot about life and death these days. Maybe it’s the weather.

Saw my aunt and cousin for lunch Saturday – also work related. My aunt told me that when she first came here at 21, she stayed, along with three other people, in my parent’s two-bedroom. That made seven people in a one-bedroom. She said she never forgot my family’s kindness. Felt pretty good about that.

Told them about my family’s name, Luo. It turns out that China just forced another of my “relatives” to have a abortion at eight months. Reason #2,234,645,549 why I hate China.

As for me, came home and filled out the life insurance paperwork that’s been sitting on my desk for a month. Kept putting it off. I’m not that old and I don’t need 50 year old male life insurance, but I figure better safe than sorry and to have a policy of some sort. Afterward, called my pop.

Me: …so then she said that there were seven of us in the apartment.
Him: (laughing) Were there? I don’t remember. Oh, we were poor back then.
Me: Yeah. It was a long time ago.

Wish I had more time to write.

Then again, when I had time to write, wished I had more scratch.

They heard me singing and they told me to stop
Quit these pretentious things and just punch the clock
These days my life, I feel it has no purpose
But late at night the feelings swim to the surface

Location: my newly cleaned room
Mood: run down
Music: I need the darkness, someone please cut the lights
YASYCTAI: Prepare lunch. (10 mins/1 pt)
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Acres of Diamonds

A stoplight in NYC

Just started working with a new client so it’s busy once again. Suppose it’s not possible to just live a life of leisure while engaged or married and not filthy rich.

Was used to making just enough to pay the mortgage and have some spare scratch for the occasional electronic dohicky and rum-based beverage. But 2007 took mosta that life away.

In some way, maybe it was a good thing.

There’s this old story called Acres of Diamonds my dad told me once. It’s about this dude who sold everything he had to travel the world in search of diamonds. He died penniless, the story goes, but on the property he sold to fund his world trip, was found to be a diamond mine he never knew about cause he never looked.

Guess 37’s as good an age as any to grow up.

Location: midtown
Mood: uncomfortable
Music: flying like a bird but I can’t get higher, Nothing I can do
YASYCTAI: Poke around the backyard (10 mins/1 pt)
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Brian Regan, Thanksgiving part 1, Drama, and Cars on Demand

Tickets to Brian Regan in NYC

Me: Do you wanna fool around?
Her: No.
Me: (10 minutes later) Do you wanna fool around?
Her: How many times are you going to ask me that?
Me: Evidently twice.

Finished up 95% of that crazy batch of work. It’s a good feeling when you’ve finished up a large project.

On Friday, decided to buy my office some beers so I brought a half-case of small batch brews in. Turned out to be fortuitous cause our law clerk passed the bar and I got another major client. So the bosses picked up some Maker’s Mark and champagne and we pounded until it was time to go home. Sobered up with the girl in front of Iron Man 2.

Saturday, HG got us tix to catch Brian Regan at Lincoln Center. It was a perfect night and he was hilarious.

He’s onea the inspirations behind this blog. He doesn’t curse at all in his set but both HG and I were frequently in tears laughing. There’re 880,000 words in the English language, and it’s not the words you use but the manner in which you use them that makes you a good artist. It’s easy to toss around an expletive here and there and sometimes it’s funny.

Most times, it’s just lazy.

Sunday, went to see HG’s family for an early Thanksgiving – her bro’s in town and won’t be able to come for the actual date. We’re in the DriveMint program which’s like a NYC-centric ZipCar service; they had more garages near us so we picked them over Zip.

Anywho, the @#$@#$ who had our car before us left it BONE-DRY. Our car conked out in the middle of Broadway in front of Lincoln Center.

Me: Oh this can’t be good.

We managed to get it to the side of the road and called Mint. The guy we spoke to got told us to leave the car there, walk over to 59th and pick up the Mercedes sitting there, which we did. He went to go get gas and pick up the car to drive it back.

As for us, we hightailed it out to HG’s family place; we lost like an hour but gained a Mercedes. The stuffing was great – both the noun and the verb.

Afterward, we played some modified Trivial Pursuit 80s version. I did the best, which is understandable since I was the only one that could remember the 80s.

Me: I just wanted to call to say how much I appreciated how you handled the situation earlier. If it was done any differently, you would have lost a customer.
Him: Thanks for being so understanding.
Me: It wasn’t you that caused the problem but you took ownership of it and came up with a solution. I respect that. I’d like to send an email to your company to tell them that how you dealt with me and the situation professionally and quickly.
Him: (laughing) I’m actually a partner in the business. But thanks, I appreciate it.

Location: yest., driving down route nine
Mood: still full
Music: you too and stuff
YASYCTAI: Reward someone that does a good job. (10 mins/1 pt)
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Election day 2010

Intercom system with graffiti in NYC

Her: You’re the first person that’s sent me flowers in…I don’t know how long.

Bought flowers for that client and colleague that sent me the five gigs I’m working on. It’s nice to get get something at home that’s not a bill or an ad.

Voted yesterday – at the same place I’ve been voting in the past decade or so. Thought about that while walking away from the polling station cause they’re using these new  digital ballots; things keep changing but staying the same.

Although, gotta say that I’m voting in ways I never thought I would. But that’s for another time.

Monday was interesting in that I got stuck on the train for like an hour. It was hot as hell with a huge dude who kept falling asleep on me. Finally gave up and took a different route home to see the rents. Had me some genuine home-cooking so it was worth the bother.

Went to my usual place to get a haircut before heading back. Did I ever tell you that I get my haircut in an illegal gambling den? It’s true; in the front’re two hair stylists while in the back’re guys yelling as they play mahjongg. I remember this one time I was using Fhats Casino – and literally the same situation occurred. Always slightly worried someone’s gonna whip out a pistol while I’m getting a trim but my guy knows how to cut my hair so y’risk getting shot for a good doo. Plus I like the old school gambler’s den vibe over the modern online slots for real money scene, any day.

Stopped by the law firm for a sec; forgot that I was in my street clothes – a red leather jacket, blue jeans, and keffiyeh. S’funny how we dress so differently for work and life, sometimes.

When I made it back home, HG just came back all tan from the Caribbean too along with some new aged rum. Had just stepped outta the shower when I opened the door for her.

Her: Hey.
Me: Hey. I’m glad you’re back.

Location: yest., throwing punches in the 70s
Mood: hungry
Music: the sun is in the east rising for the beasts
YASYCTAI: Send someone flowers. (10 mins/1 pt)
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Halloween 2010 NYC

Docks restaurant in midtown, NYC

(c) Someone else

Me: (to cook) Did you just dunk the bread into oil before frying it?
Him: (nodding)
Me: Niiiiiice…

Last Thursday night was not the best night I’ve had.

Submitted the five projects that night – still dunno if I’ll get paid. Anywho, turns out I missed one key piece of information. So I slept for four hours, woke up at the crack of dawn, redrafted and then resubmitted it while HG went to the Caribbean without me. As soon as the paperwork was in, dashed to the office to put in a full day at work on Friday.

Was supposed to meet up with Paul to catch the Jaymay concert downtown and was gonna bail but somehow found my second wind with four hours sleep. Had a grand-ole, rum-filled time. The opening act was way cool too and were dressed like the band in the Muppets with a twist! They wore a joker grill on their teeth so they were “evil Muppets”! Jaymay put on a great show as always.

Felt awake enough to over to his pad and pick up some street Halal food, just like I did last year. Next day, wrestled where the guy I used to school proceed to whup me every-which way.

That Saturday night, did what most geeks do when their fiancees’re away and the women in NYC are tarting it up for Halloween – stayed home with some pork rinds and assembled a quad-core, triple-digital input DVR with 3.5TB of harddrive space and dual 32″ extended desktop display.

Sunday worked again; on the train to meet a client, this four-year-old girl dressed up as Snow White got into an argument with her older brother dressed as Batman. She ended the argument by reaching down and firmly grasping his privates and violently yanking.

Every man watching did a collective sympathy groan.

Quite the dweeby weekend.

Docks restaurant in midtown, NYC

Location: in fronta screens
Mood: still insanely busy
Music: You see, there’s just too much I know already
YASYCTAI: Get out and have a life (after you’re done with work). (120mins/1 pt)
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