Scaffolding and seasons

Like the finger pointing to the moon

Me: We should have a chat at some point soon.
Him: That sounds serious
Me: (shrugging) It’s not to me, but it might be to you.

In Enter the Dragon, Bruce Lee said, “It is like the finger pointing to the moon…”

He was paraphrasing the Shurangama Sutra, where the Buddha noted that, if someone points to the moon, don’t just look at the finger, because you’ll either:

      1. Miss the moon, or
      2. Think the finger is the moon

Got into an argument with someone recently and I said something in passing over the length of argument.

Found out from someone else that he mistook the passing remark as the crux of the argument. He mistook the finger for the moon.

Me: Wait, what…?! (rolling eyes) Oh for f___’s sake…THAT was his takeaway?

At some point, it’s meaningless trying to communicate to some people because you’re speaking English and they’re speaking Martian.

 

The boy’s birthday is coming up and I’ve been looking at all the people I’ve collected since he was born and everything went to hell.

Some people I’ve met have changed the path of my life, others have merely come and gone from my Venn Diagram, although I’m grateful for the experience, good or ill.

Boy: (in front of Grey’s Papaya on 72nd) The scaffolding. It’s gone. It looks different.
Me: Yes. Scaffolding is only supposed to be there a little while and then you take it down.
Him: Why?
Me: The building needed help for a while. And now it’s ok again.

Some people in your life are permanent while others are only seasons.

Figuring which ones are which, that’s the difficult part, I guess.

Location: earlier this morning, listening to the boy read to his class
Mood: nostalgic
Music: They say people in your life are seasons

Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.
Blogarama - Observations Blogs

You’re in luck

I’m someone

CPK: The world is full of lonely people, it seems.
Me: So true; even/especially here in the big city.

Do you know that there are almost no alleys left in NYC?

You wouldn’t get that from TV and movies but it turns out that NYC has so few that production companies keep filming the same one – Cortlandt Alley – over and over again.

Just happened to walk by it the other day while I was getting my clothes tailored – more on that later (thanks, Mike!).

My point is that that’s the thing; rare things don’t really seem that rare until you try to look for them.

The kicker is that I actually live right next door to an alley that was used in another famous movie. But that’s my little secret.

Speaking of secrets, people seem to tell me a lotta secrets. Think it’s because – even before becoming a lawyer – I was known as someone that could keep them.

RN: You can’t tell anyone about this.
Me: I’ll put it in the vault.

And like the alleys, you think that people that can keep secrets are all over the place but this doesn’t seem to be the case. Cause I seem to field rando calls alla time from all sorts of people because they don’t have anyone else to tell them to.

Him: I needed to talk to someone.
Me: You’re in luck. I’m someone.

That kinda bums me out, that I’m all they’ve got.

So people call me to unburden themselves and I usually offer them some unsolicited advice, even though I know I shouldn’t.

Cause what do I know?

But I get it. We all need someone, or something, to tell our secrets to. Cause secrets are lonely things.

Life’s lonely enough as it is.

Me: You’re kinda my best friend. So I tell you things…
Her: Ditto.

On a related matter, my brother spends his free time talking to suicidal people and volunteering in dangerous foreign places.

I worry that he might be drawn into the abyss himself but he wants to help them. I can’t fault him for that. He’s a good soul and I”m proud of him.

Thank goodness for the good souls, yeah?

Location: the vault in my head
Mood: curious
Music: No chemical could recreate our chemistry

Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.
Blogarama - Observations Blogs

I’m kind of a late…

What’s so funny?

Been catching up with lotsa people from various walks of life, including RE Mike.

Before I knew it, I’m on a subway heading downtown…

… and on some billionheiress’s  private guest list (for serious).

Me: Hi, I’m Logan. I’m kind of a late addi…
Greeter: Logan Lo?
Me: Uh, yeah!
Her: (laughing) I just added you. You don’t need to wait in line. 66th Floor. (puts a red ribbon around my wrist) Have fun.

RE Mike was, and will always be, amazing.

Anywho, the party was pretty nuts. That’s all I’ll say on the matter.

Mainly cause I got pics…

Me: Hi, I need a photographer for the evening. You game?
Girl1: (laughing) Sure!

Fella1: What I really need is a copyright lawyer.
Me: Oh man, are you in luck…

Me: Well, now that’s something you don’t see every day.

Girl3: Wait, you’re leaving?! So early?
Me: Yeah. I gotta see about a girl. Nice meeting you.

Me: (walking in late) Hey. (laughs)
Her: (laughs) What’s so funny?
Me: You tell me.
Her: (later) I kept hoping it was you.

Location: the 66th floor in the pics above
Mood: ready to suffer and ready to hope
Music: I’ve been a fool and I’ve been blind

Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.
Blogarama - Observations Blogs

A Flying Fisherman in an Aviary in NYC

Nice Surprises


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.

Location: 10PM the other day, The Mandarin Oriental
Mood: relaxed
Music: It’s gotta drive you crazy, how you keep it all inside
Subscribe!
Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.

Catching up with friends when I can

Plus some Instagram Pics

Empire State Building in clouds
Had a rare bit of downtime and coorporating weather so I saw my friend Claire for dinner the other night and then went out with my friend Bryson to celebrate his wife’s birthday.

Don’t actually get to catch up with people in RL all that often; partly because we’re all busy and partly because FB and other social networks are kinda like “keeping up, lite.” We get the curated highlights that people want to share and, for the most part, that’s often good enough.

But it’s nice seeing people when I can. Claire is staying here in The City from California because of her fella and Bryson is, as always, the same guy I knew back in college but with two kids now.

It’s nice seeing how your friends’ stories unfold.

Shots of liquor

On a different note entirely, I’ve been trying to get more into Instagram.

My main issue with using is that I don’t generally like how pictures from phones come out. But here are the highlights of what I’ve done recently – follow me!

Spring in NYC and Bryant Park.Spring in NYC and Bryant Park.

#Cloudy day in #NYC and autumn leaf bag bear downtown is unhappy. #Cloudy day in #NYC and autumn leaf bag bear downtown is unhappy.

Nighttime falls in the #UWS in #NYC. The #DINKYs and #YUPPIES grow restless. Nighttime falls in the #UWS in #NYC. The #DINKYs and #YUPPIES grow restless.

It's #spring and sunny in #NYC but still cold enough to freeze you solid. It’s #spring and sunny in #NYC but still cold enough to freeze you solid.

NYC is always a work in progress. NYC is always a work in progress.

Location: HomeDepot getting supplies
Mood: excited
Music: If you’re gonna do it, do it right – right?

Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.

Genetic Fallacies and the Citibank Building

Listening’s a lot harder when your ego’s on the line

Citibank Building in Manhattan 3

Him: I don’t understand what happened.
Me: Maybe there’s a reason why they went with someone else.

That’s a picture of the Citibank building here in Manhattan. I took it along with the picture below in March of last year for another entry.

About a month after I took it, read this article that said that the building was ridiculously flawed.

How ridiculous? There was a 1-in-16 year chance that the entire building would come tumbling down with a strong wind.

That’s pretty ridiculous.

But the weirdest thing about how this all unfolded was that a female college student from NJ figured out it was flawed, tracked down the lead engineer, and contacted him to tell him that his design was fatally flawed.

And despite haven’t any number of reasons to not listen to her, he did.

Then, as Hurricane Eva was barreling down onto the East Coast in 1978, NYC and these engineers all secretly fixed the problem. All without most of the city finding out. In fact, most people didn’t learn about it until 1995.

Citibank Building in Manhattan 1

I thought of this recently when a colleague of mine was wondering why he lost a major account. I knew why. So I told him.

There’s this illogical argument called a genetic fallacy, where you don’t want to believe something that someone says because of the person saying it.

The engineer could have sneered at any one of the things about the person contacting him: her sex, where she was from, her age, her experience, etc.

But he didn’t. Because he was smart enough to realize she was right. That’s something I still find really amazing.

People wanna have any number of reasons they believe what they believe. Even if it’s not true.

Him: (later, upset) What do you know? You’re a lawyer, not a psychologist.
Me: This is true. But what I said is also true.

Location: midtown east
Mood: tired but super happy
Music: You’ve got the talkin’ down, just not the listening

Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.

Hoping we don’t go back to the good old days

Anyone missing the old NYC didn’t live in the old NYC

Me: Do you want me to slice that for you?
Her: Why?
Me: Cutting bagels are the among the most dangerous household activities.
Her: (getting knife) You’re the clumsiest person I know.
Me: This is true.

Finished up a slate of projects for a client recently and immediately got more work in. There’s no real happy balance with my type of work, it’s either feast or famine.

The professor was in town but we each only had an hour or so, so we caught up in basement of Grand Central.

Me: Y’know, I have no childhood reference for this place. I figured if I came here back then, I’d get shanked.
Him: Yeah.

The people that dream of the good old days of NYC never had to live here back then. I have the feeling they’re the same people that like to rubberneck at car wrecks or watch nature shows when the impala gets killed by the lioness.

Great entertainment if you’re the lioness or the one in a safe car. Not so much if you’re the impala.

Running down my list of friends who were born and raised here, the professor is in Pittsburgh, another buddy is in Hawaii, another one in Cali, another one in Connecticut.

The City takes its toll on you over a lifetime.

I bring this up because I was concerned about our new mayor. The last time we had a mayor like him, the city was a cesspool.

But his recent choice of our old Chief Bratton has allayed my fears, somewhat. Only somewhat.

For me, I can only wait.

Because there really isn’t anywhere like New York.

 

Location: in front of all these computer screens
Mood: tired
Music: I know, I know, I know you ain’t the one to play the game.
Subscribe!
Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Insomnia and a day of meetings on tap

Another sleepless night

Had a bunch of things I wanted to write about but a particularly bad bout of insomnia this week has made it so that everything’s hazy. A copy of a copy of a copy.

Last night a car alarm kept my entire building awake as well so that was beyond irritating. Wanted to go outside with a sledgehammer.

Now I’ve got to slap myself awake and prep for a day of meetings from 11AM to 7:30PM. No fun.

In some ways, NYC and I are in an abusive relationship. She treats me terribly but her charms are enough that I stay. Some of us are just nighthawks, I suppose.

Apparently Billy Joel feels the same way too; check out this vid with him and a random Vanderbuilt college kid named Michael Pollock that wants to play the piano with him.

Here’s the thing: If you never ask, there’s zero chance you’ll get what you want. The risk one takes by opening the mouth and asking changes everything.

Everything good comes from the asking. Michael Pollock asked to play and Joel said yes.

Guess it’s time for another meeting.

Why yes, I will have another cup of coffee…

Mood: ex-fricken-hausted
Music: so easy livin’ day by day Out of touch with the rhythm and blues
Subscribe!
Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.

Enhanced by Zemanta

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
Subscribe!
Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.

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
Subscribe!