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!

You either just do it or you don’t

Me: I’m sorry I’m late.
Him: It’s fine. I’m just glad you came.

Yesterday was a strange and sad day.

Part of my job’s to do site inspections around the state for things.

Yesterday, was in an orthodox Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn checking out a building when the property contact and I went to the roof. There, at 12:30 in the afternoon, a bunch of people were drinking and smoking.

Thought for sure a fight was gonna break out.

Ended up being lotsa talk and stare-downs and me wondering in the background why every guy in the world thinks he’s Pacino or DeNiro, ready to die like a hero.

If you can actually fight, you don’t talk about the stuff you’re gonna do. You either just do it or you don’t. Luckily the property contact was an adult and just called up for some help.

Afterward, rushed home to change into a suit to go downtown.

Said it once before: The sweetest words in the English language’re I’m on my way.

My buddy’s mom passed away. Made it down to the funeral home just at the very end.

My wrasslin coach and other fellas from the gym showed up before me to pay their respects too.

The older you get, the more funerals you go to. It’s a crap milestone but one we all reach. click here for funeral edicate and advice.

There’s really not much you can say at them. It’s not the words that matter any way. As sweet as the words I’m on my way are, the most important thing’s the being there.

In the end, you don’t talk about being there, you’re just either there or you’re not. You either just do it or you don’t.

It’s so true: A man’s dying is more the survivors’ affair than his own.

When we take the blows life gives us, if we’re lucky, good souls‘ll be there – not to take the blows for us, but to pick us up, bloodied and battered, afterward.

Him: The other guys showed up in suits. Suits! Can you believe it? They musta brought them to the gym and came here afterward.
Me: (laughing) I can’t picture it.

Location: home, for now
Mood: pensive
Music: Sometimes I get to feelin’ I was back in the old days
Subscribe!

Losing half of your friends

The past few days have been amazing.

Her: We’re never taking that red envelope down!
Me: Never.

———-

Met up with Paul and Hazel in the hood for some drinks the other night.

Paul I met through a class I took with my ex while Hazel’s the sister of a really good college buddy.

The funny thing about life’s that you never know who’s gonna end up in your Venn Diagram and who’s not. If I want you to believe anything I’ve learned, it’s that.

Recently sent an FB invitation to one of my closest friends from college and just realized last night that he never got back to me after about a month.

That’s the thing that you don’t realize as a kid. Remember my dad had this awful fight about one of my friends when I was a kid. Now the friend, I don’t remember very well, but the fight I remember. These people we think of as all-so-important end up just a footnote in your life – or your tiny little blog.

Once wrote about that statistic where, every seven years, you lose more than halfa your friends. The person y’think of as your best friend only has a 30% chance of staying in that role.

Wonder how things like the Internet and FB changes that dynamic.

As for the friend that never responded, that’s just how things go. We’ve all been on both sides of those choices.

Speaking of technology, swapped an older toy for a newer one.

This is probably the tech equivalent of getting a Ferrari as a mid-life crisis. Only far dorkier.

Location: getting ready to brave Trader Joe’s
Mood: busy
Music: It’s all the same, only the names will change
Subscribe!

Thinking about all the Hows and Whys

Watch time

This woman named Alice Neel once said that All experience is great provided you live through it. If it kills you, you’ve gone too far.

Had enough distance now from my old troubles to think about it objectively. Alla these things I thought I’d never make it past I did somehow.

Suppose that’s just human nature, to survive the blows. And the one benefit of the gut-wrenching is that peculiar feeling that, If I could survive XX, I could survive anything.

Was in the hospital with a close friend on Thursday.

The hows and whys are for some other time and from some other narrator.

My parta the story’s that I was two hours north of the city when I rushed down to hear the news.

Just lemme tell you that there are times in a man’s life when he just wants to cover up his ears like a child and not hear to those impatient things that need to be heard.

But you listen cause you’re not a child. Not for a while now.

And you nod. There’s always a lotta goddamn nodding.

And after all that listening and nodding, you manage to compress all of that agony and fear into a tight little ball and stuff it into some crack in your soul where y’hide that stuff.

Then y’take a deep breath, and say out loud, It’s gonna be ok. Partly for them, mostly for yourself.

And it is, almost always, somehow ok.

But cause you’re an insomniac, you get up in the middle of the night to sit by your lonesome on an uncomfortable couch and, without fail, retrieve that ball you hid earlier. You unpack it, smooth it out, and examine it from a million different angles, hoping for some understanding that never comes.

Finally – despite your best efforts – y’think about all of those hows and whys. Mostly the whys.

Location: Last week, a waiting room at Columbus Circle
Mood: worried
Music: sun is going down but it will rise again
YASYCTAI: Remember that you made it through all the other times. (time/2 pts)
Subscribe!

Real Artists Ship / Goodbye LJ / Goodbye Steve

Grand Central Station

 

My favourite thing about Steve Jobs was this thing he said a while back. The story goes that some guy was constantly tweaking and editing something, saying it wasn’t ready yet. He was an artist, y’see. At which point Steve blew up and said, “Real artists ship!”

He meant that the only difference between a nutcase with a notebook and a writer was that a writer tossed his baby out into the world and let come what may. Anyone can call themselves an artist but a real artist produces.

Thought about the man and that quote a lot. He had a million ideas but the difference between him and everyone else was that he rolled his dice, he took his chances. He never was onea those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.

Who knows what he could have shipped if given just a little more time?

And that’s the thing, isn’t it? He made more in month than I could ever make in a lifetime. Yet it’s why I despise that saying, time is money. Any idiot can make more money.

But time, that we’re not afforded enough of, regardless of the person. Time is a trillion factors greater than money.

Bye, Steve. Wish you had less money but more time.

 

Logan Lo in Paris

For those of you coming from LiveJournal, thanks for coming along.

It’s been a while and hopefully a little while more.

 

Location: Not livejournal any more. Just here. It’s weird.
Mood: weird
Music: For every beginning There must come an end I want to thank you
YASYCTAI: Maybe hit that “subscribe” link just below? (30 secs/0.25 pts)
Subscribe!

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)
Subscribe!

Anniversary II

I thought she was too tough to ever go away

Clock on 73rd and Broadway

This conversation happened around 1982.

Me: Is it dead?
Her: (taking cigarette out) Nah. (exhaling smoke and looking up) I think it just fell outta it’s nest.
Me: We have to help it, we have to get it back!
Her: Fine, fine. Hold on. (leaning over to pick up the robin in one hand and with her cigarette in the other, climbs up tree, deposits bird, climbs back down) There – y’happy?
Me: (beaming) Yes, grandma.
Her: (smiling then putting cigarette back in mouth) Good. Cm’on kid, your mom’s waiting.

We all thought y’were too tough to ever go away.

It’s raining here, which sounds about right

Location: my hot room
Mood: only ok
Music: And rain will make the flowers grow

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)

The Debt and the Deuce

Bar in the Lower East Side, NYC

 

Me: Man, I’m lit. Think we each had a pitcher of beer and three glasses of rum.
Him: (nodding) Did I do the right thing?
Me: Y’know, whether or not you believe in the Bible, the concept’s relevant here. Say you owe me a thousand bucks. And I tell you the debt’s forgiven. But you show up one day showing off your iPhone. Even if I don’t wanna, I’m thinking, This #@#$@ owes me one grand. How does he have money to buy an iPhone? And if I invite y’out to eat, you’re thinking, Ah, I don’t wanna, he’s just trying to rub it in my face that I don’t got no dough. Even if I’m not.
Him: (nodding) So I did the right thing.
Me: (sighing) She broke the trust pact. Let’s say she worked late one night – even if she was being honest, you’d think, Is she really working late, or is something else going on? You did the right thing – for botha you. It’s why I left my girl. Not just for me but for her too.
Him: Still hard though.
Me: Not saying it isn’t. Just saying that someone’s gotta pay the debt, man. Sucks it’s you, but there you go. (laughing) Look, when I broke up with my ex, my buddy Rick swapped out her number with his own just in case I caved and called her. Want me to do the same?
Him: (grinning) Maybe.

Most times, it’s best to throw the deuce, say Peace out, and cut it deep, cut it quick, and cut it clean.

Cause it’s better to be the star of your own movie, than have a cameo in someone else’s.

Location: yest, Malachy’s on 72nd
Mood: completely lit
Music: now we ain’t wastin’ time no more cause time rolls by

Breaking up is hard to do

Location: home all day
Mood: coughy
Music: just can’t keep on running away so it stops today

Building on 42nd Street

Posting on Tuesday and Thursday mornings starting this Thursday (yawn).

———-

Her: (backing away) Please don’t eat that.
Me: It’s fine.
Her: I’m begging you not to eat that. It’s got to be rotten.
Me: It’s fine. I’ll microwave it, it’ll kill everything.
Her: (gagging) I can’t…I can’t…
Me: (pressing buttons) What? I’ll put mustard on it. It’ll be fine.
Her: (exiting kitchen) I’m gonna be sick…

Me: (opening microwave) It’s fi..whoa. Maybe that is bad. (thinking) Nah…

———-

Windows;

Yes, it’s true. It is Mac. Didn’t mean for it to happen. Just did. Your suspicions were right, we were together those times when my brother brought her by the place.

If it makes it any better, dunno why it might, it’s not like I traded in for some younger model as she’s older than you. Say this cause I know that her looks have made you jealous in the past and wanted to tell you that you look, honestly, as good as she does or even better now. The work that you had done late this month was really stunning. Really.

But – it’s not been your looks. It never really has. It’s just the times you left me hanging. Waiting. Hoping that this time, this time would be different.

And it just never was.

Gave you everything y’asked for: RAM, done. Bigger Harddrive, there. Speedier videocard, bam. Never enough.

And a relationship’s not just about the parties involved, it’s also what they come with, their family’s. The Dells, the Toshibas, the HPs – the HPs were the worst – they were, to be polite, never what they seemed to be.

We spent almost 20 years together – 20 years! Defended you when everyone was against you. But y’never did the same for me.

Can’t take the constant disappointments. Waited until now, after your latest operation and, like I said, you look and work amazingly. Sometimes, a relationship’s too damaged to repair. too little, too late.

Y’still have your admirers and your new looks. But I gotta go and do right by me. Not outta your life forever, though. Y’can’t just walk away from two decades of shared memories just like that.

But you’re not my number one gal anyone and for that, I’m sorry. Can’t spend another two decades waiting for you to get it right.

Logan
YASYCTAI: Back up your data – it’s your digital life. (60 mins/1 pt)