Chivalry’s dead

Woman after I hold door for her: Good to see chivalry’s not dead in NYC.
Me: I wasn’t being chivalrous, ma’am. I was being polite.

integrity means that you’re the same person in public as y’are in private. In other words, it’s being internally consistent. And consistent with my concept of what a real man is, I feel that chivalry’s an outdated concept.

Its basic tenet’s that women are weak, different, and need special treatment.

I disagree. It’s the same reason that I won’t buy a woman a drink but I’ll buy my friends drinks.

There’s this woman I know who’s ultra-feminist but feels men should always hold the door for women.

Me: Why? Because they’re weak?
Her: No, just because they’re supposed to.
Me: So they should stay home and take care care of the kids? Because they’re supposed to?
Her: That’s different.

Put another way: I don’t believe that we should lower our behaviour for half the population so much as we should raise our behaviour for all of the population.

One should hold doors for others because it’s the polite thing to do, not because someone has two X-chromosomes insteada one.

But it cuts both ways. That same friend is incensed by wage differences between men and women but doesn’t feel a woman should fight in the army.

I think that when a woman is held up to the same standards of men, they rise to the occasion.

My coach – and the gym I go to in general – doesn’t permit the women there to do push-ups on their knees. So every single one of them does standard push-ups. One girl bangs out 50 without breaking a sweat.

Coach: Don’t be easy on her, she’s tough!
Me (beginning to wrestle with female teammate): I won’t be…
Her: (slams knee on my stomach)

Is it just me?

Location: looking out at the rain
Mood: relaxed
Music: She can do the same thing to the clique you know
Subscribe!

Jiro dreams of greatness in unexpected places

To get three Michelin stars – the highest offered – is supposed to mean that it’s worth taking a trip to a country to try that restaurant’s food.

While it seems pretty biased towards French food, it’s interesting to note that a small sushi restaurant in a Toyko subway station received three stars.

We pause this blog entry to let that fact sink in:

  • It’s a Michelin three star restaurant.
  • In a subway station.

Should also mention that there’s no bathroom.

Couldn’t see my dad for father’s day so instead got together with him this week and we caught a showing of Jiro Dreams of Sushi, a documentary about the restaurant.

Both of us thought it was pretty good although, like some other reviewers, thought it spent too much time talking about how great the sushi was rather than showing it. Minor quibble though.

When you’re a kid, because of what you’ve been told and seen on Disney, y’expect things and people to look the part. The hero’s always handsome, the monster’s always monstrous.

Then as you get older, you find out that some monsters are handsome and some heroes are quite plain.

Here’s my takeaway from it: You can find greatness everywhere, oftentimes, in the most unexpected places. And things are never as they seem

———-

My fencing instructor’s out for a month or more. So I taught the class after all.

The first class was last night and I found that my key to the classroom didn’t work. Luckily someone let me in. After some minor mishaps, we got into a groove.

Am pretty sure I’m not ready to teach the class.

But he thinks I am so I’ll do it and hope that I do as good a job as he has. I’m grateful for the confidence.

Location: yesterday night, fiddling with keys on West 72nd
Mood: ambitious
Music: too close to the edge. Let’s see if I know the ledge
Subscribe!

Real men watch sports

Slaughtered Lamb in NYC

Me: (eyeing wife) You look really good this morning.
Her: (walking out door) Logan. It’s Monday morning. It’s not happening…

Work’s been so busy that I’ve neglected friends so last week finally met up with a number of them. While out, however, I was reminded that – after all these years – Tequila is not my friend.

Stupid tequila
.

The other thing I did this past weekend was catch up on some television. This segment aired yesterday about the changing views of what it means to be a man. Found it interesting cause what I think makes a man differs greatly from a number of people around me.

For example, a fella I work with said “Real men watch sports.” Another person said that men curse, it’s what they do. Yet another one says that men don’t order drinks with umbrellas in them.

Alla which I find misses the point.

Since the beginning of time, because of our physical advantages, a man’s role’s been physical. This meant that we were the providers and protectors. This served us well historically cause mosta human existence’s hinged on our ability to push or pull something.

Providing for and protecting our 13 square feet of the world.

But consider Facebook and Google. Here’re companies where 99.99% of their worth are  assets that cannot be pushed or pulled. It’s imagined.

Ditto with most work – consider the number of people you know that make money pushing or pulling something versus people that spend their times thinking up stuff.

So what’s a man’s role in this modern world where physical strength’s been supplanted by mental acuity?

  • There’re those that ignore the physical. That’s not good, we’re still physical creatures.
  • Then there’re those that ignore the mental. That’s not good either cause survival in today’s modern world requires mental acumen.

If I gotta guess, it requires both. It always has. Sports are sanitized violence. Some less sanitized than others. It’s true that I don’t watch any sports, but I hit the gym (almost) daily.

These other things – like watching sports or cursing – have the veneer of manhood but nothing to do with it actually. As with most things, it has an air of truth to it but no real truth it.

If it has nuthin to do with providing or protecting, I say it’s got a lot more to do with mental masturbation than being a man.

Although even I draw the line at an Appletini.

That’s mostly true.

Location: my old chair, waiting for my new chair
Mood: rejuvenated
Music: no end to the lengths I’ll go to. Hunting high and low
Subscribe!

The only thing constant in life is change

A storefront in Tribeca, NYC

Admin note: Thanks for being on my side.

———

Him: Well, Logan could show up and teach the class. (thinking) Actually, never mind.
Me: No one would show up!

A constant in my life for the past seven years or so is my fencing class. It’s strange how I ended up there; was taking a wrasslin class maybe a dozen years ago when some numbskull practically tore my arm outta my socket.

Got tired of the rehab so someone mentioned swordplay as an alternative. Turned out there was a class around the corner so I’d been taking it ever since. Despite late nights, injuries, hospital stays due to those injuries, etc – Tuesday nights from 8:30-10:00 was one constant.

The instructor just announced that we’re switching to Thursday nights. It’s weird. It’s just a change of two days but that throws me off. It’s funny what we get used to in life.

Speaking of getting used to, for those of you that’ve been reading me for years, y’know that I used to date. A lot. And the strangest thing about my dating life was that, if I walked into a room, and there was a lacto-ovo pescatarian from NJ, she would find her way to me.

Even met one once on my way out of my fencing class.

Think I dated about 20 of them in that time and met probably double that. Must give off some sorta pheromone.

When I got married, assumed it was just some weird aberration. Until recently.

Her: I’ve decided to be a vegetarian.
Me: But you eat fish and eggs.
Her: Yes, so I’m technically a lacto-ovo pescatarian.
Me: Of course you are.

She’s from Jersey too.

At least some things are constant.

Location: my old chair
Mood: amused
Music: What is broken falls into place once again.
Subscribe!

Good days and bad days

Zebra stripes in NYC

Her: Let’s see what our fortune cookie says. (opens it) “Knowledge is power.” That’s not a fortune, that’s an observation!

Spent most of last week working 16 hours days. Which, during times of personal upheaval, is not necessarily a bad thing.

Think that the subconscious is always processing those things that we can’t or won’t deal with at the moment.

Then again, being an insomniac, always somehow find the time to dwell on things I probably shouldn’t dwell on for too long. All those damn hows and whys.

If you’re at all interested, there’s a story in the bible that gives me comfort in life: 2 Samuel 12:14-23.

David, the king, has a son who gets sick. While the kid’s dying, David’s distraught and won’t sleep or eat. Then the kid dies. David mourns but then rises from his knees and gets something to eat. His advisers don’t understand and say: “When he was sick, you were a mess, and now that he’s gone, you’re eat again.”

To which David goes, “He’s gone and I can’t bring him back. I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.”

Saw my buddy, whose mamma passed away, at the gym. He seems like he’s back to himself. That’s the thing with personal loss, y’have your good days and bad.

Since the beginning of time, all you can do is get up off your knees, ride out the bad days and wait for the next good day. You try to make it to the other side of the crap and get something nice to eat.

Today I start my day with a muffin – which, let’s face it, is really just a naked cupcake. Every once in a while, you should start your day with some cake.

Hoping today’s a good day. Even if it’s not, it starts with some cake.

Mom: Can I do something? Maybe I’ll get you two something.
Me: Well, you could buy us a 55″ LCD TV. That always makes things better.
Her: Really?
Me: (laughing) No mom, I was just kidding. (pause) 60 inches is really the minimum.

Location: in front of my pistachio muffin
Mood: better
Music: Hey, my friend, It seems your eyes are troubled
Subscribe!

Dealing with it: Good souls and IM

View of the Paramount building in NYC

Her: We have the strangest luck.
Him: We’re darned.
Her: That’s exactly it!

Yesterday, wake up to several angry emails.

Run out the door, miss every green light and train.

Arrive late to the office and try to explain to a client that the reason why his doc’s late is cause I asked him for information on 5/24, 5/25, and 5/27 and he only sent me the info yesterday at 10:36AM. He hangs up on me.

Woulda thrown my phone against the wall had I not just bought it.

Have another client tell me I’m wrong about something when I’m not. (Which begs the question: Why hire someone to tell you answers if y’already have all the answers?)

Show up late to fencing class where I get repeatedly stabbed.

Instructor: What’s going on with you tonight?
Me: Sorry, my head was elsewhere.
Him: (stabs me again)

Finally, arrive home where I get some horrible news – the kind where you have to steady yourself by the nightstand and then go to the bathroom to splash cold water on your face.

Maybe I’ll tell you about it someday. Right now, trying to sort it all out.

But then I climb into bed with my tablet and a random message pops up from a guy I’ve not spoken to in maybe a decade:

logan lo! sup dude…long time no see…wanted to say hi and that i liked ur book….very original…very entertaining….great job and congrats!

When I read that, realize that I’d been clutching a fist the whole time. Take a deep breath and relax my hand to type out a response.

It reminded me of that last time I had a heartbreaking day and a random old friend dropped me a line.

Thank goodness for the good souls, random acts of kindness, and instant messaging.

Dude – I’ve had one of the worst days of my life today. That’s the best thing I heard all day – thanks!

Location: my apartment, dealing with it
Mood: crushed
Music: When I die, Hallelujah, by and by, I’ll fly away
Subscribe!

Shocked at how late it is

View of NYC from the rear

Me: I’ve been practicing.
Him: (shrugging)

Haven’t been doing much beyond working although I do find time to hit the gym. My fencing instructor had me work on something call the Contradas (counters). Been a while since I’d done them so I was surprised that I remembered them.

My instructor rarely speaks much, much less give any compliments; know I’ve done something right when he doesn’t say anything. He’s kinda an old, crotchety, silent-type. Then again, don’t do anything for the accolades. Only to be better than I was the day before.

Have all these French and Chinese books around the house. Always figured I’d learn them again but never got around to it.

If I could live for a thousand years, I imagine all the books I’d read. After all, I value the acquisition of knowledge above all else. There never seems to be enough time.

And every time I look up, am always shocked how late it is. In more ways than one.

———-

Me: (opening a jar) I spend a lot of time saying, “I wonder if that’s spoiled?
Her: And then you get sick.
Me: (getting spoon) Hopefully not today.

Got a little sick.

Location: in front of the computer, all day
Mood: rushed
Music: it’s clear I’ll always be the same Until the end of time
Subscribe!