Our reputations bring us places

Sometimes these places have no rum but endless vodka and ill-thought out plans

Our reputations carry us places – hopefully places we want to go, which is not always the case. And you build a reputation just like you build anything else in your life.

When I was single, had a reputation of never saying no to an invite and that’s served me well; met my wife this way and lots of other interesting people.

Back then, found myself randomly at the Rainbow Room meeting Tina Fey or running repeatedly into a French waitress at Hiro or just ending up on a rooftop somewhere.

After I got married, stopped having that reputation – mainly because it’s tiring and little beats being at home seeing what’s on Netflix with your favourite person.

But I still get the random call from time-to-time. Monday it was from my old buddy, Mas.

Him: There’s a black tie banquet at Cirpriani’s downtown tonight, you’re on the guest list.
Me: Do I have to wear a tie?
Him: It’s supposed to be tuxedo, so please wear tie
Me: Fine, fine – but if I see someone without a tie there, it’s coming off!
Him: Deal

An hour later, I’m having a Double-Cross vodka martini – hold everything but the vodka – and trying to chat with Maya Lin.

It’s vodka, BTW, because of their lack of any aged rums; told the bartender they should consider adding some.

After my buddy and his friends show up, it’s a blur of vodka (now giving up all pretensions and just having it on the rocks), appetizers, speeches, and handshakes.

In the middle of it, get a call from a client.

Her: …12 projects. All due this quarter.
Me (what I wanted to say): All due this quarter?! That’s crazy. There’s only three weeks left and I’ve got eight projects already due by year’s end, which is really December 21st because of Xmas falling on a Tuesday this month. I’m flattered you thought of me, but I can’t possibly.
Me: (what I actually said): Sure.

Finished up the night by thanking my friends for the invite and headed home to the aforementioned favourite person.

Her: How was it?
Me: No good rum but otherwise, really nice. Let me tell you who I met…

Woke up the next day with 250MB of pdf files in my email. My email crashed because of the volume of scans.

Slept 3 hours last night. Off to start project nine of the month.

Goodbye sleep, I’ll see you in January.

Location: off to another meeting
Mood: whoa
Music: down on Delancey, Hey remember that time
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The person with the answers’ worth the wait

UWS church in NYC

Was asked to be one of the photographers for my new church opening on the UWS. It’s flattering to be asked but maybe it’s more my Syd than me.

A photographer once told me that at least half of the difficultly of taking pictures of people’s the walking up to strangers and shoving a machine into their faces.

You “take” pictures – no one “gives” them to you. It’s aggressive by its very nature.

The thing’s that I’m not an aggressive guy. Most people’s responses to my taking pictures is a why-not kinda shrug.

Dunno if this’s a good thing or bad thing but I’m leaning toward the former.

Whiskey Tavern in NYC

Went out to see the family over the weekend and the wife came with. Spent most of it building a PVR for my pop.

Time Warner has two numbers for building these things and I called the local number (718.358.0900) versus the toll-free number (866.606.5889) as it seems to be a shorter wait.

The lady on the first one – after 15 minute wait – said, “Hold on, I’m going to send a signal to your box.” I told her I had a series of numbers that I was supposed to read to her and she told me she didn’t need it.

30 minutes later, I’m back at the Time Warner repair center returning a fried box.

This time, called the second number and – after a 90 minute wait – got a guy who chuckled and said, “She fried your box, huh? Dunno why they keep putting the local numbers there. Those guys don’t know what they’re doing.”

No. No they do not.

Moral of the story? The person with the answers’ worth the wait.

Whiskey Tavern in NYC

Afterward, met up with Gio. He was having a party at Whiskey Tavern downtown to celebrate his 40th birthday as well his recent engagement. He and I had many the random meetings in the big city together.

As usual with him, the poison was on his tab and all of our people were there. My liver wasn’t speaking to me afterward. Ran into a number of old faces and it was good catching up – even ran into three people that read me here (hola!).

Anywho, there’s this saying that every pot has it’s cover. Maybe that’s true.

Met the future Mrs. Gio that night and told her I wished the two of them all of the best.

Life’s hard enough without your person.

Location: bedroom, writing
Mood: disappointed
Music: you give me no reason why you’re making me work so hard
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Staying home and wallowing’s never a good idea.

Mussels and hard cider in the LES, NYC

Him: I should get back.
Me: Why? So you can go home and wallow?

Went out with two buddies the other night. It’s funny how life works.

  1. Met this woman named Jane years ago, she introduced me to her ex, Gio.
  2. Gio and I became friends and he introduced me to WM.
  3. WM and I were out late one night and he introduced me to Heartgirl.

The moral of that story is: don’t be a jerk and you might meet someone nice.

Anywho – Gio, WM and I of us grabbed some wings, mussels and beers down on the LES last week. Afterward WM and I hopped into his whip while Gio took his bike over to a karaoke joint at St. Marks. Gio beat us there by several minutes. They both belted out some tunes while I just listened. Not much of a singer, me.

Man riding bike in NYC

The fellas are both dealing with breakups. Told them both that it’s time to clean their maps; one’s trying and the other’s not. Like with most things, y’get better when you’re not thinking about getting better.

Speakinga getting better I’m sick again. Aren’t summer colds the worst? So HG and I just stayed home and saw happythankyoumoreplease with music from Jaymay. More on that when I’m not feeling like hot death.

Him: (the next day) Good hanging out and thanks for the advice…By the way, I stopped by Whiskey Tavern afterward, met a cute girl and got her digits.
Me: Of course you did.

Karaoke bar downtown NYC

Location: desk, trying to not be sick
Mood: sick
Music: it’s too early to say goodnight (goodnight)
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Privileged nights in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and Le Parker Meridien, NYC

Lobby of Le Parker Meridien, NYC

So, Le Parker Meridien was pretty nice. They were giving away two tix to Paris and called out the name of the firm first – my firm. Told my boss that I hoped it was me and then he won.

Thought that was pretty funny. I ended up winning a candle holder. It’s better than spending a buck to win a buck, I suppose.

The next night, had dinner with the lawyer that represented the first Guantanamo Bay defendant. Was a pretty eye opening dinner. Not at liberty to give away much but the facts are that the government had five years to prep against this lawyer with really only two people helping him. The government brought up 260 charges and only one stuck.

Makes one wonder how strong the government case was to begin with.

———-

Below is an actual conversation, verbatim, on my previous post with a female friend – not HG.

If you’ve read me for a while, I’d like to know your thoughts on the conversation? Note, it was a public conversation so she expressly wanted this read. Specifically, how do I come across to you and how does she come across to you?

I’ll give you my thoughts next time.

Her: I’m one of those people who miss the old NYC. I moved here in ’93 and there was a real sense that anyone could move here and create whatever life they wanted. No way does that still exist. I think when people say NYC isn’t what it used to be, what they are trying to get at is the diversity back then meant NYC was open to anyone. It’s not about grit being cool. It’s about a city that had a place for everyone, regardless of class. That’s just not true anymore.
Me: Heya! I think that, in that regard, NYC’s an even better place now that it was back then. We have a mayor that’s expressly pro art, with major art install oftions all over the city. Moreover, its safer and more tolerant here than ever. We still have places for everyone: artists, businessmen and – surprising even to me – families. I would never have considered raising a family in the UWS or Battery Park before and now it’s an option.
Her: Ugh, Logan, ugh! Privileged sentiments bore me.
Me: (I’m) perplexed. Are you saying I’m the privileged one?

That is the entire conversation.

Location: In my warm room
Mood: Still kinda irritated
Music: Who cares if you disagree? You are not me
YASYCTAI: Tell me what you think of that. (2 mins/0.5 pts)
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Brian Regan, Thanksgiving part 1, Drama, and Cars on Demand

Tickets to Brian Regan in NYC

Me: Do you wanna fool around?
Her: No.
Me: (10 minutes later) Do you wanna fool around?
Her: How many times are you going to ask me that?
Me: Evidently twice.

Finished up 95% of that crazy batch of work. It’s a good feeling when you’ve finished up a large project.

On Friday, decided to buy my office some beers so I brought a half-case of small batch brews in. Turned out to be fortuitous cause our law clerk passed the bar and I got another major client. So the bosses picked up some Maker’s Mark and champagne and we pounded until it was time to go home. Sobered up with the girl in front of Iron Man 2.

Saturday, HG got us tix to catch Brian Regan at Lincoln Center. It was a perfect night and he was hilarious.

He’s onea the inspirations behind this blog. He doesn’t curse at all in his set but both HG and I were frequently in tears laughing. There’re 880,000 words in the English language, and it’s not the words you use but the manner in which you use them that makes you a good artist. It’s easy to toss around an expletive here and there and sometimes it’s funny.

Most times, it’s just lazy.

Sunday, went to see HG’s family for an early Thanksgiving – her bro’s in town and won’t be able to come for the actual date. We’re in the DriveMint program which’s like a NYC-centric ZipCar service; they had more garages near us so we picked them over Zip.

Anywho, the @#$@#$ who had our car before us left it BONE-DRY. Our car conked out in the middle of Broadway in front of Lincoln Center.

Me: Oh this can’t be good.

We managed to get it to the side of the road and called Mint. The guy we spoke to got told us to leave the car there, walk over to 59th and pick up the Mercedes sitting there, which we did. He went to go get gas and pick up the car to drive it back.

As for us, we hightailed it out to HG’s family place; we lost like an hour but gained a Mercedes. The stuffing was great – both the noun and the verb.

Afterward, we played some modified Trivial Pursuit 80s version. I did the best, which is understandable since I was the only one that could remember the 80s.

Me: I just wanted to call to say how much I appreciated how you handled the situation earlier. If it was done any differently, you would have lost a customer.
Him: Thanks for being so understanding.
Me: It wasn’t you that caused the problem but you took ownership of it and came up with a solution. I respect that. I’d like to send an email to your company to tell them that how you dealt with me and the situation professionally and quickly.
Him: (laughing) I’m actually a partner in the business. But thanks, I appreciate it.

Location: yest., driving down route nine
Mood: still full
Music: you too and stuff
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Halloween 2010 NYC

Docks restaurant in midtown, NYC

(c) Someone else

Me: (to cook) Did you just dunk the bread into oil before frying it?
Him: (nodding)
Me: Niiiiiice…

Last Thursday night was not the best night I’ve had.

Submitted the five projects that night – still dunno if I’ll get paid. Anywho, turns out I missed one key piece of information. So I slept for four hours, woke up at the crack of dawn, redrafted and then resubmitted it while HG went to the Caribbean without me. As soon as the paperwork was in, dashed to the office to put in a full day at work on Friday.

Was supposed to meet up with Paul to catch the Jaymay concert downtown and was gonna bail but somehow found my second wind with four hours sleep. Had a grand-ole, rum-filled time. The opening act was way cool too and were dressed like the band in the Muppets with a twist! They wore a joker grill on their teeth so they were “evil Muppets”! Jaymay put on a great show as always.

Felt awake enough to over to his pad and pick up some street Halal food, just like I did last year. Next day, wrestled where the guy I used to school proceed to whup me every-which way.

That Saturday night, did what most geeks do when their fiancees’re away and the women in NYC are tarting it up for Halloween – stayed home with some pork rinds and assembled a quad-core, triple-digital input DVR with 3.5TB of harddrive space and dual 32″ extended desktop display.

Sunday worked again; on the train to meet a client, this four-year-old girl dressed up as Snow White got into an argument with her older brother dressed as Batman. She ended the argument by reaching down and firmly grasping his privates and violently yanking.

Every man watching did a collective sympathy groan.

Quite the dweeby weekend.

Docks restaurant in midtown, NYC

Location: in fronta screens
Mood: still insanely busy
Music: You see, there’s just too much I know already
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Embracing the Randomness

Last night, met up with my friend Ben – who writes Conceived and Composed, that clever pic above is his – and my other buddy, PB.

Got together to down some rum and $0.10 wings downtown. Always tell myself to limit myself to a half dozen. Never happens. We chatted about photography and life: re the former, I picked up a new shooter; re the latter, work is heating up, finally.

Am at an age now where I think I’m able to ride out most storms. The stuff that’s been going on with the Rutgers kid committing suicide got to me, like all the stories do – depression is something I think most insomniacs have dealt with and the response has been the It’s Gets Better campaign, which I’ve always believed was the case. Because it does get better.

Anywho, after stuffing ourselves with wings and booze, we discovered that a relative’s of Ben’s owns the local banh mi shop so we had to stop in there too after our greasefest. Piggies we are.

Unlike a lotta places in the world where people gotta do the terrible things to just survive, here we get randomness to enjoy. But only if we decide to do it.

———-

Installment two of my dating/relationship This Modern Love column on Techorati is up today.

Speakinga which, gonna have to change my posting schedule to Monday and Wednesday for this here blog so I’m not super swamped. See you Monday, yeah?

Location: home, trying to get work done
Mood: hungry
Music: I’m surrounded you know, it’s all around me
YASYCTAI: Embrace the randomness. (3 hrs/1 pt)
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Nightlife in NY: Who’s got oysters?!

nightlife, nyc, new york city, hudson terrace, rooftop

Him: Free rum?

Me: I don’t think I can make it.

Him: Free rum at 6:30 and you can’t make it? Who are you?

Met up with some friends at the Hudson Terrace last week. Think that’s why I love NYC – you can be sitting down in front of a court pleading one second and then drinking a nice aged rum with a slice of orange at an open air, open bar the next.

Him: I dunno, not my thing.

Me: Please, you’re single in the big city, on a roof deck, drinking some free rum. The world’s your oyster. (turning to friends) Who’s got oysters?! (we all raise our hands and he laughs and does the same)

This one fella kept shoving people aside to get to the bar, me included. Wanted to get in his face but since I’m not a child, decided against it. But this’s not to say I didn’t entertain myself.

He leaned in to ask the girl sitting next to me to dance and she did. Sitting back down, he went to get them drinks.

Me: He’ll ask you to marry you tonight, you know.

Her: (laughing) What makes you say that?

Me: He seems the type. Kinda pushy. Brave when he’s drunk; dull otherwise. So what’s your deal?

Her: I’m here from Toronto.

Me: Wow, your American is excellent. Whaddyou speak there, Portuguese?

We chatted for a bit and when the guy came back, he scowled at me but handed her her drink.

Me: I just saved you from a night of boring.

Her: (nodding) You did, you did.

Me: (turning to her redheaded friend standing in front of us) Hey Red, I’m going home to see my lovely fiancee, why don’t you take my seat before Mr. Dull takes my seat and annoys your friend all night.

Her: (laughing) You got it, mister.

Never a dull moment if you don’t want it here.

Location: the office
Mood: insanely busy
Music: my God, just confess, you want it, you want it, you’re just like the rest
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Technically…

Location: a law firm off Grand Central
Mood: excited
Music: Don’t you know that the years will come and go?

Bar at the Soho Grand in NYC

Brother
: Remember when he says, Now everybody’s talking about this new decade – that was 20 years ago.
Me: Yeah I remember. Was a freshman in college.
Him: (laughing) Well, now it the start of a new decade again.
Me: Technically next year’s the start of a new decade.

Nuthin exciting to tell you about the past week. The lady and I went out for a fine dinner and were in bed by the time the ball dropped.

What’d you do for 1999? Don’t recall it at all myself. Hafta add that to my lista fuzzy memories.

This time however, woke up early the next day to see the rents – they showed the lady picturesa me when I was a fatty-fat-fat. Hadta drop off the car; too expensive to keep a car in the city these days so that was onea the things that had to go for 2010.

Wrestled with a kid that was born the year I went to college. Demolished me, course. Spent the resta the weekend popping ibuprofen. Did manage to have a drink at the Soho Grand.

The “00s” are ending and the “10s” re beginning. It’s a sobering thought but I’ll never see the “00s” again.

Him: Technically, every year’s the start of a new decade. S’like that Mitch Hedberg joke when a guy says to him, Lemme show you a picture of me when I was younger. And he goes, Technically, every picture of you’s a picture of you when you was younger.

Today, start working at an office for more scratch. Still eat-what-you-kill but with a better view.

Lotsa changes for this new decade.

I’m still around, though. See you Thursday.

YASYCTAI: Write down whatcha did for 2009. Cause you’re gonna forget (10 minutes/1 pt)

Fridays Online

Location: 19:00 yest, cooking pork for the first time in kitch
Mood: inspired
Music: we the stars Steady rockin’ on y’alls boulevards

Picture of a bike in a park on the west side of NYC

Paul stopped by my place the other night. There was a time when I’d spend mosta my time with him chatting about Heartgirl rather than the other way round.

He’s still (kinda) living the life of a singleton – he’s got his front-runner – as’re lotsa my other friends. S’funny, the charm of being single’s the potential to meet someone that makes you not.

This salesman named Alan Stillman was tired of being single so he started a bar to pick up girlies on 63rd Street and 1st Ave back in 1965. Dunno if it worked but kinda shows what people’ll do to not be by their lonesome.

Which kinda makes me wonder why people don’t explore the avenues out there to meet someone appropriate.

Like online dating – dunno why anyone’s got anything against it. The actual meeting of a body makes it just as normal as anything else. Sides, how’s it any more likely you’re gonna meet your better half in some smoky bar?

Said it before, it’s like y’got this aunt named Match or something like that, who says to you, “I know that guy/girl that y’might like.” Plus, how often when you go out and about do you also get a resume of the person in front of your face?

Oh, the name of the joint that that guy Stillman started was TGI Friday’s – he also started Smith & Wollensky’s, the joint that HG brought me on my bday.

Y’probably aren’t gonna meet someone right for you in TGI Friday’s but you get my point.

YASYCTAI: Try cooking something completely new today. (30 mins/1 pt)