My Paradigm

Location: in front of this damn computer all day
Mood: pensive
Music: what’s right wakes me through the night

A view of the 34th Street/Penn Subway Station

Me
: Maybe I should get a real job. Grow up.
Him: A 9-to-5? Man, that kinda stuff kills people like us. We’re not cut out for that.

Made a decision about 15 years ago; wanted to live like I was in college for as long as possible, meaning: wake up when I want, eat when I want, travel when I want, work when I had to.

So what, in essence, does a college student do?

Day 1: Student arrives and meets Teacher.

Days 2-119: Student accumulates and (hopefully) processes data. Student can:

  • Go to 1% of the classes.
  • Go to 74% of the classes.
  • Go to 100% of the classes.
  • Learn it on his own.
  • Any variation or combination of the above.

Whatever path he chooses is irrelevant. Days 1-119 do not count. Only Day 120 counts. Note: you will recall which path I chose. It’s why I was able to teach myself cooking, German, and all around geekiness. Self-education has it’s benefits. I digress.

Day 120: Student must distill all that data onto a piece of paper and use data to answer a question or set of questions. That paper can be:

  • Exam
  • Report
  • Painting
  • Whatever the teacher wants it to be.

In exchange for this piece of paper, the teacher hands back student a grade. The transaction’s complete.

Repeat as necessary.

That’s what I do. Cept insteada a student, it’s me; insteada a teacher, it’s a client, insteada a grade, it’s a check. A pretty pink, blue, green, or grey check.

I’m given or acquire data; I process said data; I distill said data to a piece of paper by answering a question or set of questions; I hand that paper to the client; the client hands me a check. A pretty pink, blue, green, or grey check.

Repeat as necessary.

Made enough scratch to buy my pad, my whip and my toys. But that was then. I’m 36 in two months. It’s 2009 already. Maybe I should grow up already.

Her: Hi. How are you?
Me: I’m good. Just trying to find a job. I figure it’s about time I had a real job.

Her: Having a job will be fun. You will make friends (pause) and you can bring your lunch.

YASYCTAI: Read Good to Great; it’s about you. Figure out your paradigm. (3 days/2 pts)

Potential

Location: On a corduroy couch
Mood: sick
Music: Maybe I’ll sleep when I am dead But now it’s like the night is taking sides


Her
: Algebra – pretty much any math.
Me: I’m a terrible Asian; math was never a fun class for me. Mine were English and history. Some science was cool too – like when we dissected owl pellets. (pause) Did you ever have a trapper keeper?
Her: Yes.
Me: (thinking) Man, they sucked. Didn’t trap or keep a damn thing.

Think I’m sick. Not sure. But quite possibly.

It’s been a really productive week. Trying to wrap up business issues before the end of the year.

For what seems to be the third year in a row, I’ve not been able to really enjoy my favorite time of year; from the day before Thanksgiving to the day after New Year’s.

Wish I were clearheaded. Always cloudy cause I’m sick, I’m beat, or I’m bending time. Sometimes all three at once. Then my mind wanders.

Me: What if I’m not smart at all? What if I just remember things – stupid things. Things that’re only good for games shows and cocktail conversations? Smart people don’t get their life savings stolen. My brother and sister’re smart – I joke a lot that I get by on my charm. (pause) But what if that’s true?

Her: (thinking) I think you’re smart.

At least 50% of the time I don’t sleep, lie awake wondering. Everyone thinks I’ve got all this potential. But it’s almost 2009. I’m another year closer to getting my ticket punched.

When I don’t sleep, lie awake wondering about things that I’m afraid to put out in the aether.

YASYCTAI: Read a novel. A good one. (eight days/2 pts)

She and I (did what?)

When to use “I” and when to use “Me”

Second Ranty post in over two years.

I is only ever the subject of a sentence. It is NOT correct to use I as the object. Ever.

To figure out when to use I, subtract the additional person and conjunction to see if it sounds ridiculous. eg:

  • She and I went to the store.
  • She and me went to the store.
    • I went to the store.
    • Me went to the store.

Ergo: She and I went to the store.

  • Here are pics of my girl and I drinking rum.
  • Here are pics of my girl and me drinking rum.
    • Here are pics of I drinking rum.
    • Here are pics of me drinking rum.

Ergo: Here are pics of my girl and me drinking rum.

While on the topic of crap grammar:

  1. ie means, in other words – you can remember this because both begin with i
  2. eg means, for example – you can remember this because it begins with e
  3. gyro is pronounced jai-ro not yee-ro – you can remember because this you’re not a pompous jerk:

Pompous Jerk: You mean a yee-ro?

Me: No, kid. If we were in Athens, I’d mean yee-ro. But we’re in a tiny hell-hole greasy spoon in Queens (turning back to counterman, “No offense, dude,”). We don’t say, “res-toe-ran” for a “restaurant,” we don’t say shed-du-el for schedule. You don’t say yee-ro-scope, do you? Why, outta 880,000 words, the special exception for a meat sandwich? So please back up off my grill and lemme order my jai-ro, in peace.

 

Sorry, I’ve been irritable – the weather’s lousy, my girl’s on a different continent, my right arm is killin me, I can’t eat for the next 20 hours, I’ve not slept and my secretary just quit. Again.

I want a whole wheat donut.

What I’m gonna get, however, is a glass of tap water, a vitamin pill and two tabs of naproxen.

Location: 5 mins ago, in the shower
Mood: irritated
Music: I’ll just be waiting here – right here

YASYCTAI (2) / Kaizen

Location: a yellow bed
Mood: contemplative
Music: with a roof right over our heads We’ll share the shelter

Got a call today to be part of a panel discussing online media. Strange but what else is new?

Kaizen is a business concept that says continual (little) improvement is the path to success. Until 2007, GM was the largest car manufacturer in the world and Toyota was the one playing catch-up.

Cut or keep? – Suppose GM had 1 million screws. It’s philosophy was to use those same screws in all their cars to save scratch. Toyota, however, would continually improve the designs of the screws a little bit, tossing the older screws out. It hurt a little financially every year but they did it.

Partly due to that and other reasons, GM is now a relic. Just like it’s screws, it refused to chuck the old cause it didn’t wanna go through the painful changes. GM’s watching Toyota’s red lights now.

The danger is to see life – yourself, your friends, your habits – as they once were. Not as they are now. It’s not easy, seeing things and people for what they really are.

My YASYCTAI are the little things that I wanna do, or have done, to try to make myself better. To see life in a different way.

I put them up cause you might wanna do it too. Or not.

The points? They mean whatever you want, although at 100 points, always figured I was making some sorta progress.

In a related matter, I’m slowing winding down my business – planning to start drinking Dec 31 and finish up around February. Of 2010.

YASYCTAI: Honestly, are you seeing that person the way s/he used to be or the way s/he is now? Cut or keep? (90 mins/2 pts)

This time

Just off Times Square

 

Saw Gio tonight off Times Square. It was a networking thingy and they had some good rum. Probably not a good idea since I went fencing afterward.
The weird thing is that it was across the street from my old pad. Hadn’t been there in a while. Ayn Rand wrote of NYC in The Fountainhead:

I would give the greatest sunset in the world for one sight of New York’s skyline….When I see the city from my window – no, I don’t feel how small I am – but I feel that if a war came to threaten this, I would throw myself into space, over the city, and protect these buildings with my body.

You know when you love someone, you’d end anyone that’d do them harm? It’s like that.

Wish I could put it in my pocket and pull it out to show you Nino’s where I had the best Penne with Vodka Sauce, or the Algonquin Hotel where I’d wish I had dough or the chops to sit at the Vicious Circle, or my corner on 46th and 6th Avenue, where I’d sneak a cigarette at 3AM when I couldn’t sleep and wait for the sun to come up. Or my office at 1500 Broadway where I’d look out and see TRL being recorded with those freakin kids screaming.

OK, that I got a picture of.

Feel so damn nostalgic. Wanted to talk to Heartgirl about it but she was busy. S’ok, I’m hoping we have plenty of time to talk about these kinda things.

Speaking of Heartgirl, she doesn’t wanna show up here. So I won’t write of her anymore. Maybe she’ll change her mind but don’t think so. Cause she thinks that this is a blog about me being a womanizer – but that’s just the marketing message.

Me: It’s not. (pause) The truth is, it’s the story of a boy like me looking for a girlie like you. (thinking) And hoping, I mean really, really hoping, that this time, it’ll be different.

 

Location: wide-awake in my pad
Mood: nostalgic
Music: I wish I knew the time that I’ve taken I pray is not wasted

My life in print

Location: early yest morning, by the pier thinking of not going
Mood: wishing
Music: give us the greens of summers


Her
: You’re good to me.
Me: I like seeing you happy.

Y’remember that client that I told you I just got, King Happy Shrimp Rice, Ltd? Just picked up a national magazine on the newsstand this week and was shocked to learn that it was named one of the best Chinese restaurants in the NY. Damn. I knew I should have charged more. (Yes, I changed the name slightly – I’m not insane).

Speaking of which, my ex and two of the other men she was seeing at that time are all journalists so I had the misfortune of running into them all regularly as I read my morning paper. The married dude was in the same paper. Of course. As a weird coda t’all this, got an email today from an ISP telling me that the URL I reserved for when she and I got married expired.

Eh, I’m ok with it.

Damn, I get a lotta junk mail.

Saw Heartgirl for dinner the other night. We ordered delivery and saw a flick – hooked up my computer to her plasma TV. She didn’t understand why I didn’t just bring a DVD till I explained to her that all my DVDs were converted to computer files. She was ill-prepared for my level of nerd. It was actually so much fun that, if I didn’t know better, I’d say we were on a date. But she says we weren’t so who am I to argue? I’m seeing her again this week for another non-date, date. Can’t explain it cause I don’t understand it myself.

Today, woke up early but got to where I needed to be late cause a charming girlie by the pier was distracting me. Of course. Got two new fencing students for some private tutoring so I rushed home to get stabbed and punched. Repeatedly.

More things happened but nuthin that’d interest you.

Her: …and that’s how my four-year old cousin learned the word, Zamboni. The End.
Me: (laughing) You always end your stories with “The End.”
Her: Well, that’s how you know the story’s over, Logan.
Me: (nodding) Of course.

The End

YASYCTAI: Learn that irrespective (of) and regardless are words; irregardless is not. (0 mins/0 pts – cm’on, you should know this already)

Public Service Announcement

How to do well in college

 

Had quite the weekend involving PCD, WM, a pool in Jersey City and copious amounts of charred meat and meat products.

But enough about me, let’s chat about you. Realized that I’ve got a lot of younger readers – which isn’t too hard as I’m ancient. School’s about to start so, thought I’d let you know about how I did college. Graduated cum laude from an Ivy League; this is not to brag but to let you know that what I’m about to tell you worked for me and might for you:

  1. Took mostly lecture classes.
  2. Crammed all my classes into M-Th.
  3. Never missed a class and wrote down almost everything the teacher said. (1x)
  4. At night, transcribed all my notes into a computer, rearranged and sorted. (2x) Any questions I had, I cleared up with my TA and rearranged my notes again. (3x)
  5. Printed out all my notes Friday morning, and headed to NYC. Read notes on bus. (4x) Used time to write any reports that needed to be written.
  6. At Penn Station, put notes away and meet girlie. Work. Go to clubs. Limelight, Paladium, Red Zone, Mars, Nell’s. All gone now. So sad. I digress.
  7. Sunday, took bus back to school, read notes again on bus ride up (5x). Watched Simpsons.
  8. Last weekend of month, reread all notes from the month. (6x)
  9. Weeks before finals, read notes again. (7x-100x)
  10. Repeat for remaining semesters.

Man, I knew that stuff cold. It’s what happens when you re-live a lecture class 7-100 times. Still remember that the acceleration of a free falling object under the influence of gravity is 9.8 meters per second, per second.

Added bonuses

  • Always had a three-day weekend.
  • Always had those weekends free.
  • Didn’t read the books. Stopped buying textbooks when I realized that teachers just wanna hear their own words when they read essay exams (be careful with this one – I dunno what your teachers are gonna be like).
  • Didn’t do the homework. If it wasn’t graded, I didn’t do it. Just knew my notes, cold.
  • You actually learn what you’re supposed to learn.
  • Could sell my notes for $50 a pop.
  • Can have interactions 17 years later like this:

Me: Did you know that the acceleration of a free falling object under the influence of gravity is 9.8 meters per second, per second?
Her: I’m sorry what?
Me: Ah, nuthin, just geeking out. But enough about me, let’s chat about you….my name’s Logan. And you are?

Location: 15:00 yest, Port Liberte, NJ
Mood: accomplished
Music: Oh academia you can’t pick me up

Lukewarm

Location: 9ish yest, 23rd and Broadway
Mood: excited
Music: love me or hate me, it’s still an obsession

Me: I’m not that guy – I don’t pine after people.
CaseyI: “I don’t pine?” Logan, darling, your whole blog is one big long pine.
Me: OK, I pine a little….wait, what? No it’s not! Is it?
Her: Have you read it?

Onea my favorite quotes is So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. My pastor just spoke of it. Said the word earnestness in that passage is the Greek word zēlos, from which we get zealous. Funny, right? Earnestness and zeal are related. In other words, honesty and passion are related.

I submit that we love sports because of that passion. Champions fight with every fiber in their body for what they want. Step into a ring distracted and you get your block knocked off. And I’m no longer distracted. I know if I’m the button, needle or thread again. It’s such a relief.

Y’know, Heartgirl once said we’d never get along cause I’m dispassionate about certain people and things. But, I’m only dispassionate when faced with the lukewarm. If you look at the quote, lukewarm is nauseating – even to God.

I’m tired of feeling lukewarm about everything. I wanna be hot or cold again.

And y’meet so much lukewarm in the big city. The random boring conversations in the random blue nights. Whaddya do? Whodoyaknow? Blah, blah, blah. Man, just keep your lukewarm to yourself. Gimme some hated or love. Some passion, some zeal. Something. Hate me? Then wind up and swing. Want me? Then throw me down. Don’t talk me to death.

Fall’s around the corner and I feel my teeth again. I’m excited. Maybe there is a SING or a girl on the east side missing a heart. Might happen. Give it to me. Gimme some honesty and heat.

Knuckle up and swing like y’mean it. C’mon…hit me already.

Doing it for the Crackers

There’s always something waiting around the corner

Remember that deal that Sheridan wanted to know if I wanted in on? He closed it with RE Mike and it was just reported in the NY Post. I’m super happy for him but…damn, damn, damn, damn, damn.

It’s the third deal that Sheridian and I didn’t do together. The first, I made bank but he missed; the second we both missed. This one? $15.85 million. Damn, damn, damn, damn, damn.

Hate being this poor. Hate always worrying about scratch. Was about to have a pity party when I read that Ruslana Korshunova jumped outta her Manhattan building in a suicide. Stopped me cold. She was wealthy, beautiful, successful…and 20.

What troubles would be so big at 20 that you’d swan dive off a 9th floor building when, externally, you got it all? I dunno. Hate suicide stories.

Something’s always waiting round the corner. True, sometimes it’s fail, but sometimes it’s win. Regardless, you hope and you hope. Cause, statistically speaking, 10 outta 10 of us are gonna get our tickets punched – so why’d you ever wanna rush the matter? It’ll come sooner than you know it.

Admittedly, it’s hard to go from caviar and crackers to just crackers. But really, I got no complaints; don’t have enough fingers to count all my blessings.

Plus, when a girlie says she wants to spend some time these days, I’m (fairly) confident she does it for the company.

I mean, she’s certainly not doing it for the crackers, yeah?

800.SUICIDE / 800.784.2433

Location: 21:44 yest, getting whacked w/a stick in the UWS
Mood: sad
Music: and it breaks my heart, it breaks my heart

Creepy

Location: my office
Mood: exhausted
Music: so much wasted and this moment keeps slipping away

Late Monday night, got the most creepy phone call ever from HeartGirl – or, rather, from her and her hella creepy friend. Wanted to take a shower afterwards.

Speaking of which, I met seven women this long weekend. I’ve been told that the reason I meet so many people is that I’ve got a really low “creepiness factor.” All men people have it; some more than others.

Consider this: HEI had some guy she vaguely knows recently wait on her doorstep unannounced with flowers and wine. He mighta been there for hours. In Hollywood, that’s romantic. In the real world, that’s creepy. Let’s review, shall we?

Standing outside your ex’s home holding a boombox belting out Peter Gabriel.

Hollywood: Romantic
Real life: Creepy (and stalkerish)

Meeting a girl for 10 minutes and telling her that you’re her soulmate.

Hollywood: Romantic
Real life: Creepy (and pathetic)

Telling someone that they “complete you.”This one I particularly loathe – cause who wants someone that isn’t whole on their own?

Hollywood: Romantic
Real life: Creepy (and lame)

Following a girlie around a bar all night because you spoke to her for five minutes.

Hollywood: Creepy – Look, even Hollywood thinks this is creepy. Don’t do it.
Real life: Creepy (and something I see every week)

Seriously, there is no line you can say to a girlie, no shirt you can wear, no drink you can buy that will change your ability to talk to a girl than lowering your creepy factor. How to do this is a whole ‘nother story.

BTW, HeartGirl called me twice to apologize for her friend; I called her back and we spoke. I think I forgive her. Dunno yet. But I thought it was brave of her to call me back twice to say she was sorry. You get points for being brave in this life.

And because…I know what it’s like to wanna be forgiven for the stupid mistakes we make. For the awful, awful things we say and do to one another.

Man, I know that oh so well.