The Algorithm

Critical thinking

I try to understand the world through three things that I used to call to call “The Machine,” but my buddy has re-termed, “The Algorithm.”

It’s essentially how I try to understand information. For me, it’s the basis of critical thinking.

      1. Occam’s razor – The simplest explanation is probably correct. This is the first because it’s the most important.
      2. Cui Bono – Literally, “who benefits?”
      3. Is it true? Alternatively: Does this make sense?

Not all three are always applicable but one invariably is. Fox News, for example, violates 1 – credulity – on the daily, and coupled with 2, and 3, doesn’t seem to be very reliable.

Of all three, the third is the hardest one when it comes to yourself. If someone says to you, “You’re selfish,” you have to really try to dispassionately examine the data. Ignore the messenger and listen to the message.

It’s easy to avoid (3) because (3) is the most painful but it leads to the most growth and overall happiness. It’s like any exercise, no pain no gain.

I recently found out that an ex of mine just had twins with her husband last month during the craziness of COVID. For a long-time, she was my favourite ex.

While we were together, there was a co-worker (not her current husband) that was always doing these little things to put me down. Nothing that rose to a full insult but just little things, like making fun of the colour of a tie for example, back when I wore ties.

And my ex not only never said anything about it, she would laugh along.

Me: I just don’t understand what’s so funny about a green tie.
Ex: I don’t know, it just is. He’s married and weird; stop being crazy.

I ran it through the Algorithm but refused to believe the results. They ended up having a fling together.

I learned from that experience to believe in the Algorithm – although not always – and I’m grateful to her for the lesson. Education’s expensive.

Had a long chat recently with someone who knew both her and her co-worker.

Her: I remember once that he called you an insecure nutcase.
Me: Well, he wasn’t wrong
Her: (laughing) Really?
Me: I was trying to buy a building then, and sleeping maybe three hours a night. Nutcase wasn’t inappropriate. As for being insecure, she broke the trust covenant by ______, _____, and _______. Wouldn’t you be a little insecure if you were me? If your husband did even *one* of those things, let alone all?
Her: (thinking) I never thought of it that way.
Me: “Insecure” means “likely to break”. That’s true in two senses: Personally, she and I were together at a time when I was likely to break. Regarding the relationship, she broke the trust covenant, repeatedly. When something’s broken once, it’s likely to break again unless changes are made. We both didn’t wanna change. I can say I was insecure in that relationship. But, that’s because I was asking questions she refused to answer.
Her: What questions?
Me: (shrugging) Why was he talking about me in the first place? Was he obsessed with me or something I had that he wished he had? I never talked about him but he always seemed to be talking about me. For both of them, it’s always easier to do something shitty to someone, if you soften them up first.

I’m not always right. But everything is obvious once you accept the answer.

And, in her defense: I was clearly mad from the insomnia and she still stayed. Everything went down when I didn’t get better.  She gets a lotta slack from me for that.

Now, she’s got a two fatties of her own and a family. I’m honestly happy for her now. Thrilled, really.

To be even more candid, I’m slightly jelly that she has the only thing that I ever truly wanted and can never have.

Me: Should I send her something?
Her: That’d be a terrible idea, Logan.
Me: Yeah. (nodding) Yeah. Good point, good point…

Podcast Version: The Algorithm
Location: my empty apartment, post ribs and dumplings
Mood: insecure about the next seven days
Music: all out my hands when you pulled the trigger (Spotify)
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Travelogue: Museum miles

You’re my main company

Me: You should bring her to the Museum of Natural History. I once took a girl there on a five-hour date. Oh, wait…

Someone I know met a girl several women recently and was trying to figure out where to take them (FWIW, he has the antibodies too). Told him that I loved museums before I remembered they’re a no go. 

But I got nostalgic and, after one really sleepless night, I hopped the scooter to go around town. There weren’t as many people out.

Any really.

Went to the Natural History first. Was last there in September 2018 when Gradgirl was in town but she didn’t want me to mention it for reasons I finally understand.

After the AMNH, went across the park…

…to 97th Street and then down Museum Mile past the Cooper Hewitt…

…to the Guggenheim…

…through the trees of the Met…

…past the Met…

…down Fifth Avenue, which was still pretty deserted at this time,…

…and then across the park again.

The Whitney Museum moved, which is probably for the best for my mental health.

Made it back home and fell asleep, dreaming of the other side again.

This lockdown is  a once in a lifetime thing and you and my demons are my main company so I figure I’d just show you what I see here.

That girl I went on a five-hour date with wasn’t my person and I wasn’t hers. She’s happily married with two beautiful kids. I’m happy for her.

Family’s everything.

(Earlier…)

Him: Are you gonna be ok there by yourself?
Me: Define, “ok.”
Him: Logan, stop fucking around.
Me: Don’t worry. I’d never leave the boy in this shitty world alone. I just need to sleep it off. I’ll be better tomorrow.

Location: my empty apartment, post shawarmas
Mood: under pressure and hating this fucking month
Music: Why can’t we give love that one more chance? (Spotify)
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Giving me a chance

I hate May

Me: Man, it’s been ages. I gotta ask, so are you gay or bisexual now?
Jaerik: (laughing) Gay. I told you this about six years ago, it wasn’t a long conversation, but I told you.
Me: Sorry, my memory is so bad these days after everything that’s happened. The last I remember is your female ex? I have no recollection of you coming out.
Him: Ah, yeah, I told you. It’s fine. You’ve been through a lot.
Me: You know what my first thought when I found out? It was: “Thank god. The last thing I need as competition in life is a single, attractive former male model that’s making bank as a lead programmer for Amazon. As a straight man, thank you for being gay and giving guys like me a chance.”
Him: (laughs)

Now that I’ve gotten the coronavirus under control, I’ve been catching up with people I’ve not spoken to in ages.

I’ve also been meeting a lot of new people for reasons that aren’t really important. Although, honestly, being a guy with antibodies during a lockdown is…interesting.

On that note, the grey-eyed writer has a dog. I can’t do dogs in my apartment. It’s one of my rules.

And that’s why I hate dating in NYC. The disappointment is one thing but disappointing other human beings is another.

Then again, some disappointments are things you don’t even see coming.

Me: Are you here for the COVID test? I just got it.
Girl in a green mask: Really? How long was the wait?
Me: 30 minutes from where you are to the door, then 30 mins inside, and 15 minutes in the exam room?
Her: Oh, that’s great. Did you find out yet?
Me: Yup, just last night. I’m positive for the antibodies. It’s weird getting a medical exam and being excited for a positive result.
Her: (laughs, pulls down mask) You’re funny, what’s your name?
Me: Logan. And you?
Her: Alison.
Me: (nodding slowly) Of course it is. (stepping back) Well, it was lovely meeting you, Alison. I hope everything goes your way.
Her: Oh…
Me: As an aside, you have a lovely name. I think that “Alison” is just about the prettiest name there is. I wish you every good thing.


It’s Mother’s Day on Sunday.

Then it’s my Alison’s birthday.

And then it’s the shittiest day of the year.

I hate May. I hate May more than I can express.

Podcast Version: Giving me a Chance
Location: my empty apartment, now with tons of pizza
Mood: fulla pizza but still very empty
Music: I try, I really do (Spotify)
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Yes, really

How is anyone ok with this?

Doctor: So what do you do?
Me: I’m a high-functioning alcoholic.
Him: (laughing) No, really.
Me: (nodding) Yes, really.

I finally got my COVID-19 anti-body test. It took about 90 minutes of waiting but I got it at the local CityMD – the same one I went to when I got my earache.

Nurse: Do you have any idea where you contracted it?
Me: Yup. Here.

Just a few days ago, the amount of people in the US that died from COVID-19, 58,355, surpassed the number of people that died from the Vietnam war, 58,220.

The Vietnam War lasted from November 1, 1955 to January 15, 1973, or 6,285 days. That means 9.26 people died each day in some faraway land.

The first case of COVID-19 here was on January 21, 2020; that’s 99 days to April 29, 2020. That means that 589.44 Americans died each day here, not on some foreign soil.

This is a picture of President Johnson listening to a tape of his son-in-law, a soldier in Vietnam.

Some reports say he was just tired. Others say that he couldn’t bear knowing that all these Americans were dying. I like to think that it was the latter.

589.44 each day. Each one of those numbers was a person with a mother and father. Maybe a sister and brother. Maybe some kids.

Alison and my father are numbers too. In 2017, 600,920 Americans died of cancer.

One of those numbers was named Louis Lo. He loved his three kids and his wife more than anything. He worked chopping fish in a tiny fish store and went to school at night so his kids could have a better life. He bought himself a harmonica when he felt extravagant.

He was my dad. I loved him.

Another number was named Alison McCarthy. She gave up a high paying job in a financial institution to travel to Africa to try and help people. It was lonely, hard, and dangerous but she wanted her life to mean something. She was beautiful, in every sense of the word. She was my best friend.

She loved her husband and son, like a fat kid loves cake. The first thing she ever said to her son was, “We’re best friends for life, you and me. Best. Friends. For. Life.” She died trying to comfort her mom and me telling us we’d be ok.

I don’t know if she’s right.

589.44 families, just like mine. Every. Day.

I try not to drink. It’s hard.

My mom wanted to come see me because I was alone. I told her she couldn’t. That’s what this thing does. It kills people extremely efficiently and cruelly. You die alone. Away from every one and everything you know and love.

But, there’s always some small positive, because now, you can drink all day, every day, if you want.

I don’t know how anyone is ok with this.

I don’t know how anyone is ok with any of this.

Podcast Version: Yes, Really
Location: my empty apartment
Mood: sub-optimal
Music: She’s gone (Spotify)
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How (I think) I survived COVID-19

Glucose, Zinc, Cholorquine, and a Fever

I’ve had time – nuthin but, actually – to reflect on getting sick.

Suppose the first thing to tell you is what I did to try to save myself.

I had gotten some base cholorquine for Alison when she was sick so I started taking that on the 28th. The dosage used by doctors for off-label empiric therapy is 500mg – twice the normal dose for those taking it as an adjunct to cancer therapy – but I was alone with no one to help if things went south quickly.

So, I stuck with a single 250mg dose in the morning along with a multivitamin.

As much as possible, I tried to take a Tylenol at 10AM so that by 5PM, I could take my temp again. The temps I wrote in my last two entries were either taken just before 10AM, just after 5PM, or before bed. So, my temps coulda been higher or lower than what I wrote because of when I took the readings.

More on Tylenol below.

I also took zinc gluconate five times a day for the first week. This should really be part of SOC considering that there’re years worth of well-founded research on this although some feel the aid is only slight. For me, every percentage improvement helped so I took it.

I also drank a lotta Propel water; my brother was worried about dehydration and I definitely felt worse when I didn’t drink enough.

In terms of preexisting conditions, I would guess it was a combination of smoking in my 20s and the resulting (slight) adult asthma I had afterward, which made my particular run of this damn thing that bad.

Still, with the exception of the loss of taste and smell, I didn’t really have any of the classic symptoms of COVID-19: I didn’t really have a cough, only one day of chest pain, and no real difficulty breathing. But the fatigue and loss of smell and taste made my brother and the professor feel that it was most likely COVID.

Me: What makes you say that?
Brother: Occam’s razor.
Me: Right.

The thing that they both found odd was my insane hunger. Again, this was the opposite experience of most people with COVID – Chris Cuomo ended up losing 13 pounds after only three days with COVID.

I ate so much that I ended up gaining a one-and-a-half pounds after this whole ordeal, going from 151.2 to 152.8.

Interestingly, glucose has been linked to better survival prospects for viral-based illnesses, like COVID-19, but worse survival prospects for bacterial-based infections.

Conversely, bacterial based infections require high fat/ketones for survival with worse survival outcomes with increased glucose.

Early on in my sickness, I felt this incredible urge to eat donuts, pancakes, noodles, pizza, and bagels. Alla which I ate and don’t normally eat.

I probably wouldn’t have done that, nor been as sparing with Tyleol, if not for Alison. You see, years ago, we had this conversation.

Her: You have a fever.
Me: Great. Can you get me a Tylenol?
Her: No! Your body is trying to get rid of something by heating it out. Try to endure the fever for as long as you can.
Me: Blargh. Well, can I at least have a popsicle.
Her: Yes, I’ll go get one for you. Your body probably wants it for a reason.

So, I like to think that Alison had a hand in keeping me safe. Which, I suppose she did, seeing as there was no one else here and I wouldn’t have had the choloquine if not for her.

Who knows, maybe I woulda been just fine without doing any of this. But, I didn’t wanna take that chance.

Harold’s next to worthless at times like this. The boy did keep me some company, though.

I probably made as much sense to him as he made to me.

Location: my empty and but cleaner apartment
Mood: pensive
Music: hope it’s gonna make you notice someone like me (Spotify)
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I got Covid-19, Pt 2

Would. Not. Recommend.

Sunday 04.05 – 101.7
I’m essentially non-functional this day. I do little but eat and try to sit upright. I start wearing a neck pillow to keep my head from slamming into the back wall  because I can’t keep my head up.

Before I do, however, I sit there, head back, looking up. I think, absentmindedly, “If I survive this, gonna have to dust the ceiling fan.”

Manage to make it the eight feet to my kitchen and eat half a box of donuts with six tablespoons of peanut butter and wash it all down with coconut milk from the carton. I sit down on the kitchen floor because I’m too tired to make it to the sofa. Use the carton as a pillow for my head along with the neck brace.

Pull out my phone to send an electronic key to my brother so he can unlock my doors from LA if he doesn’t hear from me and I need paramedics. I pass out, hoping to see Alison. I don’t.

Note that I’m still not really coughing so I think that there’s a chance it’s not Covid. But I clearly can’t taste or smell a damn thing.

My kitchen floor’s filthy. Alison would not be happy.

Monday 04.06 – 101.2
Can’t stand any more, at all. The first thing I do when I wake – because I want to be as clear-headed as possible – is to write my existing clients letting them know that, should I die, the work I did will be emailed to them before I pass and any unused funds would be returned to them.

They write back hoping I’ll be ok. Don’t respond. The hunger’s still off the charts and I order two dinner-sized noodle dishes for myself and finish it all off that day. Save some soup for the other days.

Note that this whole time, I’d also been monitoring my SpO2 levels, which are consistently between 96 and 99, so my brother tells me not to go to the hospital yet.

I’ve also not listened to any music this whole time. My head is angry and noisy and tells me I’m better off dead.

Me: Why do you hate me so much?
Me: Because, you’re a piece of shit. You let her die.
Me: (nodding) Yeah. Makes sense. I wonder if it’ll hurt?

Tuesday 04.07 – 101.9
This is the worst day yet. Still can’t stand longer than a minute. Finally start having slight breathing/chest issues. It might be anxiety or just in my head. Or I could be dying. Dunno. It’s also the first time my hunger slips. Feel nauseated and vomit. Lots of coughing but it’s not dry. O2 levels drop to 92, massive chills.

I decide that if I die, I want to die at home. And then I worry that the boy will be alone in the world and force myself to eat some goldfish crackers and pretzels. The daytime hallucinations have stopped. I’m disappointed.

Me: Alison? Alison? (sighing) Well, shit…

My SIL sends me a care package with a note saying she hoped I wasn’t dead. I struggle to get it into my apartment. Oh, and I forgot to mention that Daisy also wrote hoping I wasn’t dead. It’s nice, that people hope that I’m not dead.

Read that Chris Cuomo cracked his teeth, chattering, and mine are chattering non-stop so I put in a mouthguard from BJJ so it doesn’t happen to me. Go to bed and wake up freezing cold but absolutely drenched in sweat. Move from my side of the bed to the other side because everything is wet and gross.

I’d been avoiding Tyelnol to keep track of my temps but my brother tells me to take some to try and get some sleep. I do so, and crash hard. Alison visits me and we take the boy to a local playground.

Wednesday 04.08 – 101.3 but drops to 100.5 at night.
My hunger is replaced by nausea in the morning but I still eat. I dry retch a few times and get to my sofa. I pass out.

A few hours later, I wake up and make myself some coffee. I smell it for the first time at 3:30, I think. Not sure. If it’s real, it’s the first thing I can remember smelling since the 03.29.

Thursday 04.09 – 99.2
Wake up late. It’s the first time since Sunday, the 29th that I woke up later than 7AM. It’s 10:45 when I wake.

I’m tired but not exhausted.

Write my clients and apologize for scaring them. I cancel the checks and delete the files. End up staying out of bed past 7:30PM; it’s actually midnight when I go to bed. My brother’s happy.

Friday 04.10 – 98.8

Want protein again; can’t eat another carb. So I order some fish with lemons and a gyro for myself. Again, a splurge.

Speaking of lemons, you’re better off taking a cheese grater to your forearm, liberally salting said forearm afterwards, and finishing it with a twist of lemon than getting the coronavirus.

Would. Not. Recommend.

Dusted the ceiling fan today. Tomorrow, I’ll mop the kitchen.

I’m alone again.

Well, that’s not completely true; Harold’s here.

Location: my empty and dusty apartment
Mood: tired
Music: I could use somebody (Spotify)
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I got Covid-19, Pt 1

Get up, Logan

Man, the last 13 days of my life have been crazy.

Was feeling a bit off when I wrote my last entry but figured that it was just allergies or something. But then I kept feeling progressively worse.

Here’s  a quick breakdown of what it was like.

Friday 03.27 – Temp 99.1
I’m feeling off. Tired, irritable, cloudy-headed with some weird neck pain. Figure it’s allergies and me sleeping wrong. Pop a Tylenol and go about my usual day of nuthin. Note that I normally run at 98.3 but I figured it was just an anomaly.

Saturday 03.28 – Temp 99.5
The weird neck pain gets worse and the Tylenol doesn’t help, so I take a percocet. Percocet is lovely. This is when the hunger starts.

I’m normally hungry. The running joke is that, out of all our friends, there’s only one guy – Panda – that can regularly out eat me. Starting this day, however. I felt a hunger that I can’t describe to you.

Ate an entire shelf in my fridge and continued eating anything I could get my hands on for the next 11 days. The weird thing is that things are losing their flavor. They didn’t taste like anything. I could taste major things – salty, sour, etc – but not any nuance.

Sunday 03.29 – Temp 99.7
Neck pain continues, eyes are tired. This is the last night that I sleep normally – which was never that normal to begin with.

Continue to eat everything in the house. Stop intermittent fasting because I can’t get full. Find that I can’t focus on things like 30-minute shows and such. Can watch the news because they’re 90 second segments and my attention span doesn’t last longer than that.

Monday 03.30 – Temp 100.3
This is my 19th night of isolation and when things started to really head south. Checked the allergy charts and it said that pollen counts were a 10 out of 12 in my area and chalked it up to that. Took some of my strongest sleep meds but had a completely fitful night of sleep, even though I was in bed from 7pm to 9AM the next morning. Probably slept no more than three hours total.

Still wasn’t sure it was coronavirus because my appetite remained insane. I ate nonstop from 10:30 to 5:30 including a box of protein pasta and a pound of sausages myself (serves four people or one Logan Lo). My sense of taste was clearly gone by this day.

Tuesday 03.31 – Temp 100.9
Woke up feeling even worse. Checked the pollen count and it was lower, at a 7. There goes that theory.  Hoping to taste something, order super spicy Chinese food delivered – and I never order anything delivered because I feel it’s an unnecessary extravagance. Bought two lunch specials including soups and ate everything. Felt the burn but zero flavour.

Took some of my sleep meds at seven again and this time they worked(ish) – woke up at 3AM. Took more meds at 5AM and slept until 9AM the next day.

Wednesday 04.01 – 100.6
Woke up feeling roughly the same. Ended up taking some more percocet for the neck pain. Tried to update my will but I realized I didn’t have witnesses to validate it so I stopped. Lay down on my living room floor because I couldn’t make it to the couch two feet away. Another fitful night of sleep.

Thursday 04.02 – 98.4
Last of the neck pain and I feel much better. Figure that I’ll be fine by the next day.

Friday 04.03 – 101.3
I am very wrong. Wake up with blood in my eyes again, a splitting headache, fever and just ravenous hunger. As soon as it was 11AM, I ordered a large pizza. Had the delivery guy leave it on my steps so as not to potentially contaminate him.

Promptly drop a slice onto one of my new chairs. Fuckballs. Somehow manage to clean it and then lie on my floor again.

Saturday 04.04 – 100.9
Now, things start getting weird.

I hallucinate that Alison is here. In the day time. I know in my head that she’s not really here but I pretend it’s real. It was the nicest thing that’s happened to me in months.

She’s telling me to sit up and get out of bed because my lungs will collapse if I don’t. I refuse. She says, “I’ll carry you if I have to.” I tell her about the Women of Weinsberg.

The story goes that, in 1140, the German king, Conrad III, defeats the Duke of Welf and placed Weinsberg under siege. All the men would be killed but the women would be allowed to leave in peace with whatever they could carry on their backs.

So, the women left all their money and belongings and – one-by-one – walked out of the castle with their husbands on their back.

The king, true to his word, allowed them safe passage.

Years ago, I collapsed at my front door due to food poisoning. Alison carried me back to bed all the way on the other side of the apartment.

Her: (laughing) Only you bring up a history lesson in the middle of being sick, Logan. Anyway, I did it once before, I’ll do it again if I have to.
Me: You’re not really here, are you?
Her: (shakes head) No, Logan. I wish I was.
Me: Oh, I wish you were too. I’ve missed you so much.
Her: (gently) Get up, Logan. You got this. You have to get up.

I did, because she asked me to. I could never say no to her. Even when she’s just in my head.

I’ll tell you more tomorrow.

Gonna go sit and cry for a bit now, if you don’t mind.

Location: my empty apartment
Mood: heartbroken
Music: I traveled the way. Wait for me, wait for me (Spotify)
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Isolation Days 16-18: Not sure what’s me

(Virtually) Drinking with Friends

I spend my days completely alone, overthinking everything.

But, ever since I put up my virtually drinking with friends, others have reached out to me to do the same, which I appreciate and do when I’m mentally able to do it.

It’s nice to seeing who checks in on you.

RW: Happy Hour on zoom at 5:30p!
Me: I’m in.

Of course, I check in on some people as well…

Me: What’s going on with you?
NM: Do you know I moved?
Me: You might’ve told me. I don’t remember a lot of the past few years. Except for the things I don’t wanna remember – that stuff I remember.

Still others are mutual…

Me: We’re finally chatting! How’s quarantine?
KT: Well, I’m an essential worker so I don’t know. I’m back to work on Monday. Hey, we’re dressed alike!

Still others are as if it’s business as usual…

CV: Wait, I must’ve told you about this. It was back when I lived in Westchester.
Me: Dude, if it happened in the last five years, you probably did. I just don’t remember. I don’t remember a lotta things from the last five years.
CV: OK, here’s what happened…
Me: (later) I don’t hate him like you guys. I just think he’s lame.

Not everything was fun and games, though. Some interactions just drag me further into my head, even when it’s not intentional.

Him: One of my friends couldn’t do another shift at the hospital. So, I covered for him.
Me: (sighing) On the one hand, I’m proud of you that you’re helping people. On the other hand…
Him: I know. I’ll be careful.

I didn’t take pictures of alla them. Some I forgot…

Her: So, I’m dating someone.
Me: That’s great, how’d…
Her: (interrupting) Not really. I was just about to break up with him and then all this happened.
Me: (laughing) Only you, HEI…

…others I remembered but misplaced the pictures, and still others refused to let me take pics.

Her: God, no, Logan! I’m on day 10 of quarantine. You’re lucky I’m even video-chatting with you.
Me: (scoffing) Look at me, I look like a shaggy dog. I should shave.

The one that most affected me, though, had to do with the girl from this entry, way back when. An immediate family member of hers has the same cancer as Alison, glioblastoma.

Her: Are you ok talking about this?
Me: No. But I will. If I can help, I will.

Can’t seem to escape it. It’s everywhere these days; death, Alison’s cancer, cancer in general, and health issues like this pandemic. It grinds me down.

How do you escape your own thoughts? I’m a prisoner in my own head.

Me: I don’t believe there’s a god. If there is, he either hates us or is fat, orange, and stupid and only likes his fat, orange, and stupid creations.
Her: Well, it does seem like he has favorites, that’s for sure.

I try to stop eating and drinking by 6:30 every night. It’s part of intermittent fasting. Lost four pounds since this whole thing started.

But lately, I find myself drinking later and later. I tell myself that it’s only for now. Then again, I tell myself a lotta things.

Her: I’m surprised you’re all by yourself and didn’t find someone to keep you company. That doesn’t seem like you.
Me: I’m trying to avoid everyone these days. Besides, I’m  not sure what’s me anymore, anyways.

Location: a couch, being told about the Tiger King
Mood: weird
Music: I’m all but a victim in my prison head (Spotify)
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Isolation Day 11: Plans and recipes

Three (or more) ingredient cookies

Before we get to today’s nonsense, I suppose now’s as good a time as any to inform you that I make a cut from anything you buy on Amazon that’s linked here; you pay the same as everyone else and I get some extra rum money.

For example, here is a link to some powered wheatgrass.

To put your mind at ease, know that I will absolutely blow any money I receive on alcohol, you have my word on that.

Prior to my diagnosis of an ear infection – which is pretty much exactly the same because I’m literally getting the drops everywhere but into my ear – I did two things:

      1. Checked my temperature to make sure I didn’t have either the flu or COVID-19, and
      2. Checked my blood oxygen saturation levels with an oximeter that’s built into my heart rate monitor. These are super cheap and you should have one about if you do end up getting a fever because COVID-19 specifically targets the lungs.

Your normal oxygen levels should be between 95 and 100%; if you’re dropping below 90%, get to a doctor, ASAP because something’s definitely not right.

It’s a quick and dirty way to differentiate the flu from COVID-19. YMMV when it comes to accuracy.

Actually, if you end up buying a fingertip pulse oximeter, you should also pick up some of that aforementioned powered wheatgrass.

It’s particularly high in macro-and-micro-nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber. It works out to be a few cents per serving and is shelf-stable versus a salad which is neither of those two things.

I mix with juice and it’s pretty good, if not a bit gritty. Who knows how long we’re gonna be stuck indoors? You gotta stay healthy and avoid making dozens of trips to the supermarket.

Speaking of staying healthy, I made some low-carb biscuits and chicken wings yesterday and today I made some some Thai penang goat curry. More on those in another entry, I suppose.

The reason I’m cooking so much is, since I can’t get to the gym anymore, I’m trying, as much as possible, to stick to my low-carb lifestyle, along with intermittent fasting, during this time.

I’ve lost three pounds since this whole thing started 11 days ago.

Anywho, I made a three ingredient cookie I found somewhere; the recipe’s way down below.

Above is what it looks like with just three ingredients, however, I modified and doubled it to make a carb-friendly version, which is also down below.

Baked it on two cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Tried to do the traditional peanut butter crosshatch pattern – see the first three on the upper right-hand corner of the above pic – but it was too sticky.

Instead, I just wet my – incredibly clean and sanitized – thumb and just flattened them out, which are the rest of them.

Came out with a consistency like a grainy fudge. Really good with a cup of almond/oat/regular milk or coffee, alla which I had on hand for various reasons.

Here’s the thing about the carb-friendly version of the cookie – it’s got all three macronutrients: Protein, fat, and carbs.

In fact, peanut butter’s mostly fat: 72% of calories come from fat, 15% from protein and only 13% from carbohydrates. It’s perfect if you want to lose weight and not be hungry.

It also has fiber, both insoluble and soluble versions, which isn’t a macronutrient but is still super important.

While the protein of peanut butter isn’t perfect – it’s low in one called methionine – either version compensate for that with the addition of the eggs, which are rich in methionine.

What I’m saying is, should the world end tomorrow, you should:

      1. Have a shitton of peanut butter because of alla the above and because it’s shelf-stable, plus
      2. Make these cookies.

Cause it’s ridic easy and they delish, yo. Get that wheatgrass too.

Gradgirl: (when we first met and watching me eat tablespoons of peanut butter) I read your blog. Man, if people only knew how much peanut butter you actually ate.
Me: I’m pretty sure I’m mostly peanut butter now by weight, if not volume.

Original recipe
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup white sugar
1 large egg

Carb-friendly version
2 cups peanut butter
1 cup erythritol (you could also skip the next five italicized ingredients and just add a second cup of erythritol, which will give you a more cookie-like cookie)
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup coconut crystals
1/4 cup honey
9 drops stevia
2 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon vanilla (also optional)

For both versions, 350 degrees for 11 minutes.

If you put in molasses, it should look exactly the same colour as pumpkin pie, the filling at least.

You could also do straight erythritol instead of alla the other sugars but note that there’s a sizable chunk of humanity that have GI issues with it. I’m not one of them but you have been warned.

Location: you guessed it – a still almost empty UWS apartment building
Mood: inebriated and fulla goat curry
Music: something ’bout you that’s got me dazed and confused (Spotify)
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Isolation Days 9-10: Seeing the doc

First human interaction

As I said in my last entry, went to sleep on night 8 with a massive headache and an aching jaw.

When I woke up the next morning, Day 9, I had a terrible earache, which was oddly comforting as I was worried it was something else, like COVID-19, or Sleepy Logan was doing stuff again.

Rang my brother to ask him what I should do. I’ve never had an earache in my entire life.

Him: Normally, I’d tell you to go to the medemerge but this is a unique situation.
Me: Lemme call them and see how busy they are.

Turns out they were completely empty. Took me less than three minutes to see the doc.

Her: Well, you definitely have an infection in your ear. Nothing a few drops can’t help. Can someone help you put them in?
Me: Nope, you’re the first meaningful human interaction I’ve had in days.
Her:  Oh, I’m sorry.
Me; Yeah, me too.

Funny thing’s that I put up a pic of me on Instagram and people thought it was my eye, when I was just rolling my eyes at the ridiculousness of it all.

My eye was much worse a few weeks ago: click here if you’re not squeamish. If you are, absolutely do not.

Went to my local pharmacy to pick up the script but they were closed so I went to pick up the peanut butter I needed for later. My local supermarket’s now selling paper bags cause plastic bags are outlawed here in NY, these days.

When I went back to the pharmacy, waited behind a barrier of tape to get my meds.

The woman at the counter was just about to hand me my bag when the pharmacist in the back – who’d been speaking in increasingly strident tones – started yelling into the phone: “No! Do NOT come in. Wait outside. Sir. Sir! SIR! Do not come in! We’re locking the door now.”

With that, he sprang from the rear of the drugstore to the front and started yelling at the guys in the front to shut everything down.

This whole time, the cashier is continuing to hold my bag, despite my asking for it a dozen times.

Me: (leans over barrier and grabs bag from cashier’s hand) I’ll be leaving now.
Her: Hey! That was rude.
Me: (walking away) So was making me wait for no reason when – clearly – stuff’s about to go down, miss.

As I walked to the front, a crowd had gathered outside because they locked the door. They opened the door to let me out. Everyone outside was at least 70 years old.

Me: (exiting) Did they tell you what’s going on?
Old lady: No. They just locked the door.
Me: (walking away from crowd) They locked the door for a reason. I wouldn’t be standing around here or going in for at least the next hour, if I were you. Jus’ say’n…

And just like that, they all scattered.

Been having drinks with friends, online. My nightly drink card’s pretty full but not everyone’s willing to let me put up pics.

Still, you’ve met my buddy, Bryson, before.

Me: Good god, look at that beard.
Him: (laughing) I hate it but the girls (his daughters and wife) love it.
Me: You’re black and Asian; black don’t crack and Asian don’t raisin. You’re doing it all wrong, you look like your age. (later) Hey, can you send me a pic of this for my blog?
Him: Sure
Me: (later) Jesus Christ, look at the size of my head!
Him: (laughs)

Had to make that pic smaller so my enormous noggin didn’t take up your entire screen. Also drank with my buddy, Paolo, whom you see in the pic above.

Him: What are you drinking?
Me: Grapefruit beer.
Him: Not rum? Wait, that sounds like you.
Me: I got it for Mouse but she’s not around so I’m drinking it. Man, that hair is weirding me out.
Him: Can’t get to a barber, what with the kid and this lockdown.
Me: Got it. Suppose I’ll be rocking that look myself, soon enough.

Speaking of Mouse, one of her friends, whom I’ve only ever met once, reached out to me to see if I – and the kid – was ok. It was really rather sweet.

Alison always believed that the key to anyone’s heart is through their kids and she was totally right.

On that note, two other women from my past also contacted me just to see how I was. Combining the three convos so this entry doesn’t drag on forever.

Her: How is your little trouble maker? I’m sure he also misses you terribly.
Me: He’s great! We Skype like this, daily.
Her: I’m sorry about what happened with your wife. If nothing else, she was lucky to have you as a husband.
Me: I wonder about that sometimes.
Her: Trust me, it’s awful out there. I’m seeing someone that…(trails off) Well, now’s not the time to be alone, Logan. (looking around, laughing) Which I am.
Me: (nodding) You and me both, lady. At least you have a dog.

Location: a still almost empty UWS apartment building
Mood: inebriated and fulla cookies
Music: If we have each other then we’ll both be fine (Spotify)
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