Familiar unfamiliar territory

Finding me

BrightBea: You were by my place? You could have called.
Me: Honestly, how does anyone find me? I didn’t give you my last name.
Her: A girl’s gotta be careful.

I’ve spent the last several 4ths of July by my lonesome for reasons that aren’t important.

This year may be different but it’s hard to tell at the moment.

I’m in familiar unfamiliar territory, again.

Speaking of people reading my blog.

Lviv: You didn’t tell me that you went to see your ex.
Me: We don’t owe each other anything, yet. (later) Wait, I thought besides me you were seeing an economist and a male stripper something.
Her: Ex male stripper, who’s an ex. The economist wanted to hang out more, but I wasn’t feeling him. I like him as a friend.
Me: I need to start making a list.

Neither of us have plans for the 4th so maybe we’ll randomly run into each other somewhere on the Upper West Side?

Maybe.

On that note,

Mouse: I did quite enjoy that you managed to include in (our conversation) the part about a shipment of toothbrushes.
Me: (laughing) I honestly didn’t think anything of them until you mentioned it. I suppose that’s subconscious?

When I’m single I have more house guests for a variety of reasons, all of which revolve around my being centrally located in Manhattan.

Don’t read too much into it.

Mainly because, a rule I’ve always had is that: If you stay over, you get a toothbrush – with a choice of colour – and some sorta brekkie.

Before I met Alison, I bought three 12-packs of toothbrushes and went through two plus a couple here and there.

It might surprise you that some toothbrush conversations were quite sad, as odd as that sounds.

As for brekkie, that’s just to be polite.

Since we’re talking about food – Pac’s been making food videos. That’s his latest.

Do me a favour and like the video and subscribe? I need one of my friends to hit it big so I can borrow money.

Toothbrushes don’t grow on trees you know.

Podcast Version
Location: Morningside Heights, looking at stuff in the prepared food aisle
Mood: hopeful
Music: Ain’t I the best you had? (Spotify)

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Blogarama - Observations Blogs

Si vis pacem, para bellum

Seems so easy

BrightBea: You don’t seem scary or violent.
Me: I’m not. Si vis pacem, para bellum.
Her: What does that mean?
Me: If you want peace, prepare for war. All I ever wanted was to be left alone. To become invisible. Easy. I just wanted easy. 

While the price of the antibodies is – for serious – outrageous, it’s now a sunken cost. At least for me. So, I mean to enjoy it.

The city’s opening up again but I don’t think people are fully prepared for what this virus does. Don’t think they fully realize the price that has to be paid.

But I understand the allure of being blissfully ignorant.

Me? I know more than I wanna know.

Her: I’m sorry you didn’t get that.
Me: You and me both, lady. You and me both.

On a related(ish) note, I’ve been trying to figure out a way to – safely – see the boy with more regularity. I’ve got a few ideas that I’m toying with.

Speaking of toys, Mouse sent him and me a gift recently for Father’s Day. She admonished me not to open it until Sunday and I listened.

That’s another of my ten-thousand regrets.

I’m gonna need a bigger list.

LViv: You met your ex for pizza? Are you sure she’s an ex?
Me: Quite. Well, I suppose it’s time to share our sad stories then.

Podcast Version
Location: on line at TJ’s
Mood: hot in the hot-hot heat
Music: the kind of thing I always hoped I’d find (Spotify)
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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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A semi-clean map

Location: 20 mins ago, outside shoveling
Mood: hot
Music: It’s hard to free the ones you love

The UWS in early winter

As I once said, all emotional pain comes when your expectation of reality doesn’t match reality. A guy who knows his wife’s cheating on him regularly isn’t all that twisted when he catches them in the act, cause he was prepared for it.

So my buddy in the last entry’s having a hard time dealing with his breakup. Makes sense – breakups’re hard. This whole blog came about from my last major breakup.

But to make it easier – the pain that is – I changed my map of the world.

Imagine y’had the job of erasing the word “Broadway” from every map you got. That’s a tough task. And when you’re done, the faint lines of the word’sre still there. But it’s gone for the most part.

Dunno if y’know this, but I paid for law school fixing computers and networks.

A computer doesn’t actually read a whole harddrive to find the data it wants, it has a map, a table of contents, that lists every file it has. When you want a file, it looks it up on the map, goes to where it is, and pulls it out.

When it deletes a file, all it does is erase that one line on its map. The file’s still there, it just doesn’t know it.

When you wanna get a file back, you can sometimes cause it can figure out what on the map’s changed.

My buddy won’t erase his map. I don’t blame him. It’s heartbreaking and hard.

But Broadway’s gone. He’s gotta scrub his map. If she comes back, that’s great, the faint lines’ll be there and he’s got a semi-clean map ready for her.

If she doesn’t, well, he’s still got a semi-clean map to work with.

Either way, a semi-clean map’s a good thing.

Only the stalker and the starkers say that Broadway’s there when it’s not.

YASYCTAI: Shovel. (60 mins/.05 pts)

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)

Broken and Bendy

There’s a vast difference between broken and bendy

Him: (joking) No offense Logan, but if I were a hot chick, I’d wanna be with an I-banker or doctor. Why would she pick a guy like you?
Me: (laughing) Cause I may be broke, but I’m not broken.

About six years ago, a blondie lived in my building. She was broken. Bad job, bad relationships, etc. My roomie and I tried to be nice to her but she took that to mean something else. Before we knew it, we’re ducking in and out of our own home. Took about a year, a lotta drama, the sheriffs and the courts to get her out.

Fast forward to this past weekend, to this old guy, who coincidentally took the same room as the blondie. He’s certain everyone and everything is against him. Tried to be friendly with him with some recent issues with his apartment but drew the line when he turned to his Chinese wife (he’s Caucasian) and said, “Talk to him in his native tongue.” To which I said, “I’m an American, this is my native tongue” which really bothered him for some reason. Like he was gonna stab me, bothered him. So I bounced.

The next day he calls me a queer when the owner and I try to take pics of repairs to his room. Luckily, he’s not just old, bitter and crazy, he’s also racist and homophobic.

You know when they say about a whacked out young person, Oh he’ll grow outta that? That’s not true at all. Young, broken people grow up to be old, broken people. It’s like a bullet going on a trajectory, a degree off center from the barrel means yards from the target down the line.

As an aside, you might not think it’s much, but I’m realizing that not being broken’s a HUGE selling point as a single-guy in NYC. It’s better to be an old 6 and not broken than a young 9 and broken – I should know.

And as an old guy, a word of advice: don’t ever think you can fix a broken person. They gotta fix themselves. It’s the only way. All you can do is avoid.

On a completely different point, met another gymnast this weekend. the ex, SX, Blue Jean Eyes, and PCD, were all of that bendy ilk. Broken is quite uncool. Bendy, however, bendy’s quite cool.

Location: bed
Mood: irritated
Music: Now you’re broken and you don’t understand

Armed and Dangerous

There are three types of people in the world – maybe four

Me: There are three types of people in the world. Single, sorta single and not single.
Her: Not true, there’s a fourth.
Me: (puzzled) Really, what’s that?
Her: (laughing and flashing a ring on her left hand) An MBA – Married But Available.

We all carry our homemade weapons with us. The everyday items that, when against the wall, we flick out and stab others with.

My intellect instantly becomes arrogance; wit, sarcasm; focus, aggression. Faster than the blink of a teary eye. It’s parta why I don’t curse – that’s just gas on a fire.

At some point in every relationship, you got that split-second choice on whether or not to draw those weapons. Once those daggers come out, man, there’s no going back. There’s no putting toothpaste back inna tube.

A monster, No. 6 once said of me. We’d such a bloody end; I said things no one should ever say. Then again, so did she. Just spoke to her not that long ago. My fine handiwork’s still in her voice.

Cause I’m the skillest with my sharp objects. The killest with my blunt instruments.

Every fencer knows to take care when drawing. Cause you’re always just as likely to cut yourself as your adversary. I don’t recall a time I ever drew first and didn’t cut myself more. Not once. And I’m never unarmed.

The skillest and killest. It’s a horrid gift.

———-

A different girlie:

Her: Hey Logan. (pause) I’d like to be friends. I think we could be friends.
Me: I’d really like that.

Location: my childhood bed
Mood: wicked once again
Music: another evil force tellin’ me to do what I gotta do

Sue and the King

Location: 14:00 yest, being poked on 33rd & Lex
Mood: stressed
Music: its bad in December When they play those Christmas songs

By the time you read this, I should be about here.

An ex popped into my head today on the drive home. She’s happily living in London with her new fella. I told her two summers ago that I would take a picture of my place and send it to her since it changed so much and she couldn’t picture it. I never got around to it.

I always think of her around this time because we traveled together for the holidays. She and I got along great but it just wasn’t right.

I really should take that pic of my apartment and email it to her but I never do. It’s kinda nice at times when people pop into your head for no reason – like they stopped by for a cup of tea or something.

Me: Stay, stay…just for a bit. I have Earl Grey and something sweet.
Her: OK, just for a bit.

I miss her; not so much the romance part but the friend part. I think that’s what I always miss with every ex.

This song makes me laugh but the King was right, few things are as good as Susan when she tried.

Eponine

We are all we know

The subway’s never empty. Unless you’re an insomniac. Then they’re empty a hellva lot.

———-

Thought about some of the people I’ve met recently and in the not-so-distant past. For some strange reason, I also thought of a girl I dated once. It’s the fall.

Part of the reason I think I liked her was because she said that every person that ever went out with her treated her like crap (I’m weird like that). When she told me that, I thought of Eponine from Les Mis.

The book’s a little different from the musical. In the book, there’s this one scene where she’s tossed a stale piece of bread. Starving, she pounces on it like a crazed animal. The hard bread hurts her teeth but she says that she knows the bread is good because it’s hard.

See, Eponine has no concept that there’s such a thing as bread that’s not rotten and not hard. It’s all she knows.

Tried to treat the ex nicely – never did find out if she she thought I did. Random, right?

As for me, well, my friends think I’m lucky because so many people enter and exit my Venn Diagram.

I’m not sure. You see, it’s all I know…

Location: 20:30, getting caught in some rain in Bayside
Mood: exhausted
Music: through the clouds Memories come rushing up to meet me now

Sophie / Whatcha gonna do?

You can meet a fella like me

Some people said they found new musicians like The Wreckers, Camera Obscura and KT Tunsall through this blog so, I’d like to also introduce you to Sophie Ellis Bextor.

She reminds me of my very first girlfriend in this vid – beautiful, well-dressed, pale skin, big eyes…mean*.

Yep, that’s her.

———-

Was discussing my problems with a buddy of mine:

Him: So, whatcha gonna do?
Me: I have a cunning plan.
Him: Really?
Me: Well…I have a plan at least…

———-

I met a girl a while back that shot me an email recently and another conversation that reminded me that I should keep trying to get the three parts of my life in sync.

Me: You’ll like being single.
Her: Why?
Me: (shrugging) Cause now you can meet a fella like me.


*I should note that my first girlfriend is the only one I ever say anything negative about – mainly because of the pic in this post.

Location: 19:00 yest, in an office wondering what I’ve done
Mood: exhausted
Music: know I know I know About your kind