Mouse and I met up with Bryson in midtown the other night.
Me: We’ll go where ever your little heart desires, my friend. Of course, dinner is on me. Up to $4.23. I’m not super generous. Him: Let’s let Mouse decide. If we do sushi it will be at a place that serves Nakaoche. Otherwise, how about The Meatball Shop? Me: Fair. Hold on. (checking with Mouse, then back to Bryson) She said the better place to get snockered. Him: The Meatball Shop it is.
We met up at around 8PM and ate a ton. But really, we drank most of our calories that night.
Him: Are you enjoying your girlie drink? Her: He’d prefer to have an umbrella in it. Me: Wait, is that an option?
And we talked about old times and old friends. It was nice having Mouse there to have someone hear our old stories.
Me: We used to be toe-to-toe once. You’re one of the few people that’s seen who I once was. Him: (laughing) That was a long time ago, Logan. I’m way ahead of you now. Me: I know, I resent it.
He and my buddy Steele came together to see my dad to learn sushi-making before he passed. It meant a lot to me that it was the two of them.
That’s the thing with friends; they’re the living milestones to your life.
Him: Did Logan tell you about the time he crashed at my – all black – fraternity because he was hiding from his ex-girlfriend? Me: Oh no…
Then he paid for the tab when we weren’t looking. (!!)
Me: Don’t make me look like a jerkface mcgee in front of Mouse. Him: Now, why would I do that?
So we paid for the tip and put him into an Uber home.
The next day…
Me: Man, my liver hates you. Haven’t done something like that in over a year.
We all end up on our knees at some point in our lives and it’s our friends and family that pick us up.
When Alison was sick, I was on the phone constantly with him and his wife.
Like I said, some people in your life are seasons and others seem like they’ve always been there.
Me: Are you ok? Him: Good and bad. You know. Me: (nodding) I know.
I’m doing only a little work these days and yet it still manages to overwhelm me at times. Whatever work I do has to be interesting and challenging enough to keep me engaged for something more than just a paycheck.
Of course, it’s nice to talk to adults from time-to-time. Well, nice for me at least….
Me: …so that was the Battle of Vienna. It’s the reason why Europe’s Christian and not Muslim and is also a great example of how, when you lose your primary weapon – in this case, cannons – it’s better to bail than pour good assets after bad. Which is my point. Him: Honestly, how do you know all this ____? Me: (shrugging) We’re all given 24 hours to spend. It’s how you spend it that makes us different. For me, the choice is between self-improvement and mental masturbation. Him: (laughing) You roll around on the ground with sweaty dudes all day, I’m not sure you should be one to talk about mental masturbation. Me: I don’t like to run or lift weights. Wrestling’s the most economical way, in terms of raw time, for me to be physically fit. Him: You’re the strangest dude I’ve ever met. Me: Mission accomplished, then.
Went out to NJ this past Saturday and met up with an ex again.
Afterward, I went to a birthday party for a gym friend but rang up Mouse ahead of time.
Me: Free for a drink beforehand? Her: (pause) Sure.
We ended up showing up late and leaving late.
There’s more to alla that, but that’s all I wanna share right now.
Life surprises me, almost always in ways I don’t like. Still, the occasional nice surprise happens here and there.
The boy, meanwhile, is always surprising me. Suppose time will tell if they’re ultimately good or bad.
Teacher: (in Irish accent) Mr. Lo, I have to tell you: In 11 years of teaching, I’ve never had a three-year old student read before and certainly, nothing like your son does. Every book I pulled out – even up to third grade level – he could read. I honestly don’t know what to do because he’s so far ahead of any child I’ve ever seen. Me: He must take after his mom. Her: Your son should be in the gifted and talented program. We may have to send him to another grade for reading. Me: (shaking head) I don’t want that. I don’t want that for him. Her: Why? Me: Because…because it’s lonely. (long pause) It’s terribly lonely to be so different. I know it too well. (agitated) I don’t want that for him. To be so different from everyone else. Her: (gently) You might not have a choice, Mr. Lo.
I’m not quite ready to actively date right now, because I know what dating’s like and what I’m like.
Him: Why don’t you turn it on? Me: When most people turn it on, it’s like trying to drink out of a garden hose. When I turn it on, it’s like trying to drink out of a fire hose. It’s just my nature . Him: What’s wrong with that? Me: My rule was always to try and leave people better off having met me than not. That was a lotta people. But not everyone. I don’t like having to tell someone that I’m not their fella. I didn’t like hurting people. Plus, it’s shit out there.
What I’m more interested in is being part of society again: Dinner parties, art exhibits, ridic crazy parties with RE Mike, etc.
To this end, I rang up two women that I just barely knew.
Me: I want you know that I always have two rules for my female social friends: (a) I will never hit on you and (b) I will try to help you out with any dude you’re interested in when we’re out and about. I’ve never broken those two rules, ever. Faye: Those rules sound great! I am newly single as of a week ago so I just want friends
There was another girl that we’ll call Anne just turned 21 that’s a gym buddy of mine so I took her out for drinks.
We all ended up at Solas with some of my buddies until late at night and then moved to a hooka bar where I refused to have any hooka.
Me: My dad just died from lung cancer so, no. (thinking) Man, I’m a downer out and about. Let’s drink.
While I didn’t hit on either of them, my friends – one in particular – had no such problem.
Him: (hands her his phone) Faye, why don’t you go and punch your number and name into it and I’ll give you a ring one of these days. Faye: (laughs, does so)
Faye and Anne came back to mine. I offered for Anne to stay over.
Me: Your safe as houses here if you wanna crash. You’d get brekkie and a toothbrush. Her: You’re great! But I think I can get back ok. Me: Then I’ll walk you to the subway.
After she left, Faye and I sat on the stoop and chatted as she waited for a car.
Her: Thanks for inviting me out. I had a great time. You and your friends are fun. Me: Thanks. We try.
I gave her a hug and walked the five steps into my apartment. I remember sitting on that stoop with another girl 20 years ago but that’s a story for another time.
I haven’t really been alone for … well over a decade? Maybe longer than that.
I’m kinda looking forward to being single and social. And being a dad to this awesome kid.
My life’s on repeat, although, there are some nuanced changes.
Somehow, I always survive… even when I don’t wanna.
Which is not to say that there aren’t some unexpected pleasantries here and there.
Her: What are your thoughts on nerdy but hot brunettes? Me: I have extremely positive thoughts on nerdy but hot brunettes. Her: Oh, I always thought you were into blondes. My friend thinks you’re cute. Me: Well, that’s because I am.
On a completely different note, this was in both the Men’s and Women’s bathrooms of where we went.
I’m always surprised who reads my blog. But I’m realizing that people don’t fully know that these entries tend to lag my real life.
Mouse and I are seeing each other regularly but things are still decidedly complicated.
Which leads to this conversation, as my buddy thought I was upset with her:
Pac: Mouse is coming. Don’t be a b___h. Me: What am I, nine? It’s fine. Plus, you know I always like to see her.
We were heading out to crash an acquaintance’s birthday party. He had it at the Bohemian Beer Garden – which I last went to almost exactly a dozen years ago with two friends, one of whom I’ll tell you about below.
Bought two pitchers of beer for $40. You don’t get that in Manhattan.
I should go there every dozen years or so. It’s a fun time.
Afterward, we stopped by the SVL Bar for some killer Greek food because we were in Astoria, which is known for it’s Greek food.
Cashier: Do you eat a lot? Me: Uh, yeah. Her: Then you should get the party platter. Me: Done. (later) It’s on me, fellas. Just eat.
Then we went to another bar where Mouse bought drinks for us and we saw the Shevchenko vs Carmouche fight.
It was midnight when we called it.
Me: Are you coming by mine afterward for a drink? Her: (thinking) Yes. Me: You know I’m crazy about you and I’m gonna make a pass at you, right? Her: Yes. Me: OK.
I met Kirk Akahoshi in real life and on LiveJournal ages ago, when he was still Captain Redstar.
He’s the fella in the black. He’s younger than me. I was…33/34 in that pic?
He moved out to Cali a while ago, started a business, met a nice girlie, and got hitched.
Exactly 37 minutes after Mouse asked me to come downtown, I found myself shaking hands with her boss. Mouse whispered in my ear:
Her: She’s one year younger than you. Me: (nodding slowly) Great…
She ordered me an Old Fashioned and I barely got to start it when her coworker pulled me aside and we went outside to chat.
Coworker: You know, she really cares about you. Me: The feeling’s mutual. She’s just super mad at me. Justifiably so, to a good extent. Her: She is super mad. You weren’t very nice to her. But I’m still on your side. Me: Why? Her: (shrugging) She said that you made her who she is and I can tell she’s still hoping you’ll be better. If you want to be with her, you have to be nicer to her. Do better, Logan. Me: (nodding) I’m trying. She met me at a weird and awful time.
We went back into the bar and Mouse sat next to me and asked:
Her: Why are you such a jerky-jerk? Me: Like I said, you met me… Her: (waves hand, rolls eyes) I know, I know. (later) My friends and family can’t stand you… Me: I figured. Her: …except for Co-Worker – which I don’t get at all – maybe Chai, and kinda Twin. You don’t listen to anyone. It’d be different if you’d just listen sometimes. (later) It’s crap out there. Since we broke up, I’ve met a block of wood and was set up with a puppy. (sighs) If you’d just listen…
We bounced from topic-to-topic before it was time to go.
She ended up drinking way too much so I brought her back to my place and put her in my guest bed, but not before plying her with copious amounts of water.
When she woke up the next day.
Her: (groan) What happened last night? Me: You said lots of rando stuff. Her: (worried) Did I do or say anything I shouldn’t have in front of my boss? Me: (laughing) No. I don’t think so. How do you feel? Her: Not great. Me: Sorry. In any case, brekkie? I’ve been making a lotta shakshuka lately but with bacon. Her: Dunno what that is but sure.
Interestingly, not too long after that, we met up with our coach and a group of buddies for some AYCE Korean food downtown.
Afterward, some of them came by my pad afterward for some drinks and board games. Then it was just Mouse and me.
There’s more but that’s all you need to know for now.
As I mentioned earlier, Mouse and I saw each other over the blackout. We were originally going to get a bite to eat downtown and then hit up Solas again but the trains stopped at Times Square.
Me: Wanna walk to Koreatown? Mouse: Sure.
The next thing you know, we’re in a private room in restaurant near the gym.
Her: This is so cool! Me: (nodding) Yeah, but I’m starving.
We ended up getting mostly full there and then heading to the same bar we went to once before with some other friends.
In hindsight, I shoulda taken the opportunity to speak to her about things but I assumed she didn’t want to talk.
Evidently, I’m not good at reading her cues. Working on it.
Fast forward to this past week when she messaged me.
Her: Where are you? Me: Just got back from the gym, why? Her: I’m out with coworkers and my boss wants to meet you. Wanna come by? Me: Right now? (thinking) Send me your location. Her: Yes. Fraunces Tavern. Downtown.
Less than four minutes later, I was on a downtown train to see her, her co-workers, and her boss.
It was pretty interesting but this is getting long so I’ll tell you about it in the next entry.
In the meantime, here’s a vid I made for her blog but she can’t post videos for some reason so I’m posting it here.
Don’t like surprises. Mine are generally of the type no one wants.
I like knowing things, so surprises are anathema to everything that I’m about.
My birthday’s next week so the Gymgirl decided that the best way to surprise me for it was to take me out beforehand. Way beforehand.
She first told me that she was going to take the boy and me out to eat and that she had two places picked out or I could choose.
Since she and I are still on a diet – and I’m super lazy – I told her I wanted to stay local, so we went to The Flying Fisherman around the way.
I ordered fish and chips just because I felt like carbing it up; the boy was only interested in the fries and, even then, only as a vehicle for the tub of ketchup they gave us.
Me: You can’t just eat ketchup! Him: (eating just the ketchup) Why not? Me: Because it’s pure sugar. Him: But I like it. Me: (sigh)
It was a nice night and we went back to my place to get the boy ready for bed. But just as we were putting him down, the doorbell rang. I went to get it and was surprised to see my babysitter at the door.
Me: (to her) What are you doing here? The Gymgirl: (from behind) Surprise! Get dressed, quick! (the sitter laughs)
It turns out that she got us a table at The Aviary at the Mandarin Oriental. So off we went.
Me: You already did enough! This is too much. Her: I like doing stuff for you.
We ended up having several different types of drinks, including one that looked like a bomb and tasted amazing.
Me: You know, my cousin designed this hotel. Her: I’m not surprised. (laughs) The people you know…
She slipped the waiter her credit card when I wasn’t looking.
We were actually there over two hours and just talked. And then we walked home. It was my ideal type of evening.
Me: (arriving home) Oh, we forgot to use our headphones to listen to music on the way back. Her: It’s fine. I liked the conversation. Me: Thanks for everything tonight, it was perfect. Her: (beaming) Great! I’m glad. I had a good time too.