The broken and the baked

A tender spot in my heart for cripples, bastards, broken things, and deep fried foods


Headed out to Queens yesterday to see another doctor.

Ended up grabbing lunch with my brother, who’s in town for the week. The thing about the two of us, and my sister, is that we have pretty strong stomachs, which I think is direct result of us growing up poor. My parents tried their best to give us a rounded diet but we essentially ate anything we could get our hands on.

Him: (picking at fish) This is terrible. Do you want to try it?
Me: No! (thinking) On second thought…

There’re all these dishes that are the result of poor people taking scraps and making something amazing out of them: oxtail soup, collard greens, liverwurst, broiled bone marrow, and fried rotten tofu (as seen above).

People are no different from the food they make.

In Game of Thrones, Tyrion Lannister says, I have a tender spot in my heart for cripples, bastards and broken things.

I think I’m similar, for similar reasons.

Some of the most broken things in the world aren’t easily seen as such. A good tailored suit can cover up almost anything.

But I suppose that if you had some device that could look and see what we look like on the inside, I’d be a patchwork of duct tape, splints, and glue. All baked in steady childhood of beans, canned tuna, caned ham, white rice, and slightly stale bread.

I have a tender spot for those of people patched together and baked in a similar way.

My brother’s a doctor and I’m a lawyer, but there are few things that give us as much simple pleasure as eating at a local dive.

If I meet people like us in the world, I’ll ask if they want to grab a $5 meal at the local dive around the way.

And if they’re members of my tribe, they’ll have no problem sitting down to a meal complete with plastic forks and sticky condiment bottles.

Me: We probably shouldn’t have eaten all that.
Him: Yep. (standing up) I’m going to get some caffeine.
Me: Good call.

Location: snowed in again
Mood: full
Music: I can’t be free from all of the things that I used to be
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Friends and Grey’s Papaya on the UWS

This was a weekend in good and bad food choices


A male buddy, who is white, showed up with a female friend, who is Asian, at my home the other day. I introduced them to my wife and noted that my wife and I were a white female/Asian male couple.

Guests: (to wife) Hello!
Me: It’s like we’re the negative images of each other!

The girl was from Taiwan and had never been to America before so I gave the two of them a quick 45 minute nickle tour of my neighborhood before a phone conference I had scheduled.

Her: How long have you lived here?
Me: About 40 years.

She wanted a hot dog so I brought them to the Grey’s Papaya on 72nd.

Me: …and over there is where Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson had the phone scene in Die Hard III. And this is also the Grey’s Papaya from Fools Rush In and You’ve Got Mail.
Him: Cool.

Forget sometimes that I live in the middle of one of the most visited places on the planet; to me, it’s just home.

When people visit, I become a tourist in my own city again. Even if only for a little bit.

Picture from On The Set of New York.

Everywhere I look, the news is troubling and sad. Was going to write something about it, but I don’t think I’m clear in my head right now – my injuries are preventing me from going to the gym, which in turn has led to the return of my insomnia, which in turn is leaving me fuzzy.

Not a good start to the week but the weather’s cooled down enough for me to make some lasagne.

Life is better with lasagne.

Here’s an Instagram pic I took of it – oh, and find me on Instagram and Twitter.

Location: running out to get more coffee
Mood: fuzzy
Music: how could he resist when her dress let in the autumn sun?
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Europe 2011: Day 4 & 5 / The Presentation and Home

My name card

2011.06.10

Wake up and head over to the Île de la Cité again and make it over to the Paris Bar Association. I’m the first one there. Meet up with my fellow speaker and, after some running around, set up.

Most of the speakers are good, but run over time. Two presenters have me riveted – I love my area of the law.

After my presentation, the lead attorney for a major museum stands up and starts yelling at me. She does not approve of how we do things in the US. The problem is that she’s confusing two separate aspects of the law.

Presentation at the Avocats de Paris

After she was done, I politely started to respond when I realize she was busy digging in her purse. Wait for her to finish. The audience roared with laughter without my having said a word.

It was quite possibly the best thing that could have happened to me. At the lunchen afterward, ran outta business cards in about 10 minutes. Alla the French in the audience came up to me to apologize and said that the woman’s behaviour wasn’t representative of the French; the Spanish can up to thank me for the education plus morning entertainment.

This one lawyer told me he wanted to take me out for coffee and did. Super nicea him but I shouldn’t have cause it was 6PM.

La Pointe Saint Eustache in Paris

Cup of coffee at La Pointe Saint Eustache in Paris

Turns out he’s an elder statesman in my particular practice and thought I did a really good job. Def nice to hear.

Afterwards, went to a private event at the Musée du Barreau – it was the House of Lawyers, then a butcher shop for years, then back to the House of Lawyers. Coolest thing was seeing the actual newspaper with the headline, “J’accuse!”

J'accuse headline

Hopped aboard the metro to get back to my hotel and chatted up this beautiful blond right before I went to bed.

Her: Skype is great, this sounds better than when we’re on the phone.
Me: Let me switch on the video.
Her: (seeing me) Ah, there you are.
Me: Do you want me to do an Anthony Weiner? (standing up)
Her: Uh…no.
Didn’t sleep much that night. Dunno what I was thinking, having coffee at 6PM. Stupid delicious Paris coffee.

Logan Lo in a French Hotel

2011.06.11

Wake up and walk to a local bakery to pick up some fresh bread to have with my cuppa joe.

French bakery

Afterward, slip into the Metro to head to the Paris Du Nord where I wait to board the Chunnel train again. This time, there’s no screaming children.

Exiting Kings Cross, had a full Indian lunch; cause what makes more sense before a transatlantic flight than a heavy Indian meal?

Indian lunch near Kings Cross London

Get to Heathrow on the tube, board, and head home. The guy sitting next to me – purely by coincidence – works with my wife and is heading to a conference with her. Small world.

Logan Lo on an airplane

Exiting JFK, tell the driver to take the 59th Street Bridge and not Midtown to get into the city. He asks me to repeat myself and he grunts. Soon, we’re barreling down the LIE and we don’t speak again until we pull up in front of my home. Tossed him a $10 tip, grab my bags and make it to my door.

I’m exhausted and I lost my keys so I ring the doorbell.

She opens the door and smiles. “Logan’s home!” she says and I laugh. I am.

Location: home
Mood: rested
Music: keep my things, they’ve come to take me home
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Yes? Yes.

(no, there’s no sound)

Me: Hi there.
Her: (looking through camera) I got you.
Me: (laughing) Alright. Point it down.
Her: I have your entire head in the frame.
Me: OK
Her: (four seconds later) OH! (laughs)
Me: Yes?
Her: Yes.

Location: 15 mins ago, having drinks@28th and Park
Mood: content
Music: Don’t you understand? I already have a plan
YASYCTAI
: Consider stopping this blog. We’re home, after all. (60 mins/2 pts)

That which clings

Location: back in my black chair
Mood: grateful
Music: struggled in vain to solve this riddle with my brain

Central Park in early spring

Thanks for the birthday wishes. Won’t be calling on you again until a year from now.

My brother came with his girlie from Cali for my bday. No decent pizza round his parts so we hit up our local Queens pizza jointa as well as John’s and Patsy’s.

As for my bday, didn’t really do much – some dim sum and then in bed by 11PM. Heartgirl’s not about the dim sum.

Quite a different life than just a couplea years ago, yeah?

Speakinga which, my buddy’s still getting over his girlie. He always has a million excuses why he won’t clean his map.

Kept thinking he had a chance, if he just let it go for a year or so. But at some point, y’muck around with a scar too long and it doesn’t heal. The very definition of clingy is that which clings. And no one wants that which clings.

Suppose parta why worry about him’s cause I easily could have been him with my ex. I mean, I lived with the girl; saw her ever day for four years. Then one day – *poof* – she’s gone. Saw her again twice in four years.

She never came back and I never waited for her to.

See, y’can’t plead, argue, beg, or logic your way into someone’s life.

All y’can do is clean your map, throw the deuce, and say Peace out.

All y’can do is burn your boats and try to make it home.

If she comes back, great – try again with your semi-clean map.

If she doesn’t, great – y’might meet a beautiful, green-eyed, blond who buys you nice shiny.

Logan's Ipad

YASYCTAI: Get your teeth cleaned. I wanna make out with someone if only cause my teeth feel amazing. (60 mins/2 pts)

And I’m not

Location: my grey half-couch
Mood: distressed
Music: You don’t know me at all

Funky chair from the MOMA 20100404

Glad somea you liked my last post.

Interestingly, only four things I said’re false.

Ah, mystery…

———-


Me
: I think I can come. Lemme ask the girl.
Him: Why don’t you tell her that you’re going out, dammit?
Me: And that’s why you’re single and I’m not.
Him: That’s probably true.
Saw a buddy on Saturday in a park downtown. The sun was out but the soil was still muddy. We started off fencing and ended up wresting in the mud.

Then the girl and I went off to the MOMA to check out some exhibits.

Sunday, went to church for Easter.

Assuming that I’m correct in that your life is your 1/3 physical, 1/3 intellectual, and 1/3 spiritual, felt good about my weekend.

Except for my Sunday night. It could have been (lots) better, but y’can’t have it all.

Monday, court again – not involving me, thankfully – and then off to see the rents. My dad’s home from away.

Me: There’s really no place like home, yeah?
Him: No place.
YASYCTAI: Intellectual, physical, spiritual – time for a stretch. (120 mins/2 pts)

What she has to put up with

Location: my desk
Mood: frick’n tired
Music: make me work so we can work it out

Homemade sauerkraut in NYC

Two months ago.

Her: Hey…have you noticed a funny smell here?
Me: Hmmm, I’m not sure. I did start making sauerkraut last week though.
Her: Where?
Me: Here. (pointing) In my bedroom.
Her: Oh – that’s got to go.
Me: Where’m I gonna put it?!
Her: Don’t know, but it’s not staying on the floor in your room.
Me: (grumble)

This week.

Me: Hey, I think my sauerkraut’s ready, want some?
Her: No.
Me: More for me then.

———-

Me: So what do you wanna to do?
Her: Let’s go on a date – all we ever do these days is sit around and frick’n yell at each other.
Drink in NYC

Frogs and Oceans

There are oceans out there that I want to see

 

George Bailey: Oh, now Pop, I couldn’t. I couldn’t face being cooped up for the rest of my life in a shabby little office. (remorseful) Oh, I’m sorry Pop, I didn’t mean that, but this business of nickels and dimes and spending all your life trying to figure out how to save three cents on a length of pipe. (resigned) I’d go crazy. I want to do something big and something important.

Almost exactly two years ago, told you about the saying, A frog in a well knows nothing of the ocean.

Was thinking about that for three reasons:

  1. Introduced two of my successful business friends whom I trust completely to each other. Both have been screwed blue by other people but neither – cause I know ’em – would screw the other. Problem’s that, while I know it, they don’t. Annoying. S’like setting two teenagers up on a date.
  2. Been thinking of traveling moving again. Always dream of it, never do. Gonna end up like George.
  3. Another friend’s convinced that all men are scum. Convinced. Problem’s that the one common denominator in all her (truly) abysmal dating history’s is…her. She won’t change her map, though, nor herself, though, which is sad cause the holidays are a crap time to be alone with a reality you don’t want. I should know.

Man, there are oceans out there I wanna see.

Pa Bailey: You know, George, I feel that in a small way we are doing something important.

Location: my pad, having a PB&J;
Mood: anxious
Music: let’s get rich and build our house on a mountain

Art beneath the canopy glow

Location: the interwebs, trying to get something 46x35in
Mood: frustrated
Music: accounts of peace while passed beneath the canopy glow

Edward Hopper Room in New York

Ended up making pizza. Tasted great, looked terrible. Gonna try again and take some pics for you.

———-

Late posting cause I spent the last two hours trying to get an oversized print of Hopper’s Nighthawks. If you’re in Chicago, y’should really see it in the museum – never have myself.

If y’ever came by my pad, you’d see that my walls are bare except for one thing my pop drew for me once.

But, realized that barren walls don’t make a home, so been looking for some artwork with my very limited scratch. Hopper’s got a good sensea how solitary the city’s sometimes. Y’can have someone surrounded by people and still by yourself; or even be at home with someone and still be by your lonesome, like his Room in New York.

Sides him, kinda partial to vintage posters like the kind below.

Thing is that, always thoughta home as someplace else. George Carlin useta say something like, a house is just the place where y’keep your stuff. So, I was never one to get even more stuff, like artwork.

But, being 36, suppose it’s time to call a place home already, yeah? Ergo, stuff. Ergo, art.

This’s my first real piecea artwork that I’ve not made myself.

Tell me something, what else should I consider?

Vintage poster of a ship - KNSM Oceanliner
Vintage poster - Altes Plakat Auto Kesselberg-Rennen by Klotz, Anton und Kienast, Eugen, (Klokien)

YASYCTAI: Tell me what art y’like. (5 mins/0.5 pts)

Gone Fisher King (but coming back)

If only we could just pay the bill and go home

A red door from the East Village

 

You ever kinda just space out while walking or driving and just magically end up on your doorstep? Hold that thought.

There’s this great line from The Fisher King where the lead, who’s destroyed a buncha people’s lives, wails out, “If there were some way I could just pay the fine and go home.”

S’never that easy. Did you ever complete that sentence, The purpose of life is?

My answer I actually told you once a while ago, except, I didn’t tell you. It was my dating philosophy: Leave people better off having met you. Note that I never said “women.”

Did it to try and help the world out; turns out it helped me out.

Thought I’d take this time to tell you some things, because I still get the occasional email asking.

  • The PCD is doing very well; we chat every so often. She’s one of my people, even though we never see each other. She’s also Beatrix from an old entry and you can read up on her love life here.
  • And the HEI is doing well too; she’s packed up and gone to see about a boy and a life out west. She drops me a line here and there.
  • Caligirl got married and that’s a story in itself.
  • Elle’s finding her way through the big city and finding herself along the way.
  • The Italian Lawyer, GES, the writer, human resources girl, and others I run into from time-to-time.
  • It was the SX’s birthday recently but she’s MIA. She, like most of them’ve left my Venn Diagram. Suppose that’s probably for the best.

Finally, there’s Heartgirl. She’s asked that I not write about her so I don’t but I think it’d be amiss if I didn’t. Because I’ve set her apart.

Spent the last hour trying to figure out how to tell you about her. I’ve decided that she’s my receipt.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still hustling for scratch, several items on my body are broken and/or bruised. Lotsa fail.

But I think she’s my cashed check from Life saying, OK, you did some horrible, _____ things in your life. And I still promise you nuthin but pain. But all of that stuff you did? For that, we’re square. You’ve paid your fine…and you can go home.

It’s been almost exactly three years – August 17, 2006 – since I left who I was to figure out who I wanted to be; three years since my feet were pointed home.

Tonight, while talking to her, looked up to realize that I was almost there.

Was thinking that this was gonna be my last entry. Was gonna put down: Gone Fish’n and be off.

But this blog helped me find my way. So even if there’s only one person that still reads me, wanna say “Thanks” for taking the time. (Mom, if it’s you, “rum” is what kids call “apple juice”).

Gonna take next week off while I try and figure out a few things and spend some time with Heartgirl. But I’ll be back Sept 1st round midnight, like always.

See you then, yeah?

YASYCTAI: Come back September 1st. (a week/1 pt)