Times Square to home

Two miles in Summer

Her: It’s a nice night – we should walk home.
Me: That’s like two miles!
Her: Cm’on, you said you didn’t go to the gym today…

After we left the theatre, we she decided to walk home – I figured I’d walk up with her as well.

It was a madhouse.

Her: Once we make it past 50th, it’ll be better.
Me: I know, I used to live here.
Her: Then you know!

It was actually busy until about 52nd, but it definitely got better.

We walked by some outdoor vendors selling goods.

Me: Man, that’s gotta be miserable.
Her: (nods)

We walked past the Ed Sulivan Theatre, which I always did when I went to Fordham but lived in Times Square. I told her some stories about that time.

What little I could remember, anywho.

After a while, we got to Lincoln Center, which was having a dance party of some sort.

But we were too hot to linger for too long.

After we got back, she had to go pick up her kid and I had to toss out a buncha things for recycling.

It was a nice ending to a nice night out.

The kid’s back this weekend. I cannot wait to see him.

Location: the LES, watching the premiere of I’m Not An Activist at DCTV
Mood: troubled
Music: I’m right back where I started (Spotify)
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Once Upon a One More Time

Everybody needs a RE Mike

First mentioned RE Mike to you some 15 years ago, where he floated me and my buddy Sheridan into a private party with James Lipton, Richard Kind, David Zaikin, Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin.

Since then, he’s gotten me into more parties and events than I can possibly count including some grand openings, model parties, private concerts, private concerts with donut bars, ship launches, whatever the hell was happening in the picture below, dinners, real estate events (of course), and roof parties.

This is from the really weird party we went to in 2019.

He even set up one of the wedding parties that Alison and I had, and the only one in Manhattan, at a joint he owned.

He and my friends around the way were some of the first people I saw after everything went down.

I shoulda had a donut from the donut wall that night.

I’m honestly not sure why he’s always so nice to me, but – heck – who am I to look a gift horse in the mouth?

Everyone should have a RE Mike in their lives.

RE Mike: [Sent you an invite to the Britney Spears musical.]
Me: Thanks! When are you going?
Him: Went last week enjoy! It’s silly but fun.
Me: Cooooooool, thanks!

The Firecracker and I were trying to figure out what to do last weekend when he got us two tickets to a new show with Britney Spears songs called Once Upon a One More Time.

Honestly, while I liked a few songs from her – like Work Bitch, which, before everything went down, coulda been my theme song – I wouldn’t really call myself a fan of hers.

Having said that, The Firecracker loves musicals so I figured I’d take one for the team and go with her.

Not counting the musicals on the cruises I go on, the last time I went to a Broadway musical was with Alison some 14 years ago.

But, I gotta admit, it was a lot more fun than I was expecting, and the story wasn’t bad at all.

I’d never been to the Marquis Theatre, which is in the New York Marriott Marquis hotel in Times Square.

The layout was a bit odd as you walk downstairs and immediately are facing the concession/bar area. Weird/bad feng shui.

Her: Do you want a drink?
Me: I’ll just have some of yours.
Her: Why don’t I just get you one?
Me: Because I’ll just keep running to the bathroom.

Outside, there were a buncha booths where people to take selfies with some of the songs as themes.

The Firecracker had a blast and it was fun doing something completely different for a change. If you get a chance to go, you should.

Afterward, we took a long walk-up Broadway, about two miles north to my pad.

I’ll tell you about that in my next post.

Until then, below is the encore from the show, which they were cool enough to let us record.

Location: the gym, for the first time in a while
Mood: missing the kid like crazy
Music: You want a Maserati? You better work (Spotify)
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It’s time to come home

Not that lawyer any more

Me: The problem is that you’re homeless and a stranger in a strange land. You’re not valued by him and never will be. But your friends and family are here.
Her: I can’t afford to live in NYC any more, Logan. I don’t have a job and I’m not 20 anymore.
Me: Plenty of people – your parents and mine – came here with less and spoke even shittier English than you…
Her: (laughs)
Me: …they all survived. They all thrived. It’s time.

A dear friend of mine, who moved away to be with the man of her dreams suddenly found herself in a nightmare.

She gave up everything – her home, her friends, her family, and her job, to be with this fella.

That’s her story to tell so I’ll end that part here.

But I told her things that I never told anyone.

Never told you either.

Because I not only lost both my families in 2017, but I also lost my career.

Never told you, but when I lectured in Malaga, over a decade ago, my topic was the right of publicity versus the right of privacy.

In it, I wrote about Gwen Stefani/No Doubt legal case where she allowed her likeness to be used for one thing but not another.

With the rise of computational power, we’re rapidly coming to a point where we don’t need an actual actor or singer but merely their likeness to create art. And that will open up a whole new world of possibilities, both for good and bad. – Logan

Right now, a major part of the whole writer/actor’s strike is the fear that their likeness will be used by a studio for, potentially, eternity.

Watched one lawyer talk about it, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t angry and jealous – because the focus of my entire practice was going to be about the intersection of the rights of publicity and privacy.

I knew a decade ago that this current AI crisis was coming and I wanted to be at the forefront of it all.

Her: Holy shit, you were ahead of the curve, Logan!
Me: Yeah, by over a decade. I’m gonna be honest with you, I threw myself a pity party last week thinking that coulda been me.

That fucking cancer took almost everything from Alison and me.

12 years of work, poof. Gone.

I’m still a lawyer but I’m not…that lawyer anymore.

I secretly used pictures of Alison throughout my lecture.

But Alison and I were dealt our shitty cards and we had no other choice but to play them.

After all, that’s what Alison did. Felt I had to respect her sacrifices and do the same.

I just said that the fucking cancer took almost everything.

Almost because I still had the boy.

Somehow, through all my chemicals and madness, I sobered up enough to remember him and how much he meant to Alison, and me.

Knew I had to make a home for him with me, however incomplete and inelegant that was.

That kid saved me and, together, we made this sad place – which was full of some seriously unspeakable and fucked-up things – a happy(ish) home for both of us.

And I told my friend all this just to let her know that it’s possible.

It’s possible to overcome the blow, even when it seems so unlikely.

Me: I’m not making light of your situation. It’s gonna be shitty and hard. But I just want you to know that you can survive this. You can survive this blow. Because, somehow, I did.
Her: (silence then laughing) I can’t believe I’m saying this but you’re making a lotta sense.
Me: (laughing) I’m as surprised as you are. (pause) Listen, X, it’s done. That place isn’t your home, not anymore. But here, you matter to a lotta people. Me included.
Her: (sighing) OK, Logan. Lemme think about it.
Me: Do that. It’s time to come home.

Location: home, waiting for people to pick up things up
Mood: better
Music: I only wish my words could just convince myself (Spotify)
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The 4th of July weekend, Pt 2

Catching fireworks with the Firecracker

Her: I’ve been here all this time and I’ve never seen the fireworks.
Me: Well, it’s not my thing but I’m sure we can figure something out.
Her: Fireworks for the Firecracker – we’ve gotta do it, Lo!

My cousin, Ras, just moved in LIC and had an outdoor space so the Firecracker and I were supposed to head there after dinner but Ras cancelled last minute.

But it was fine, we were in LIC anywho so just scouted around for a place to watch the fireworks.

For those of you not in NYC, Long Island City in Queens and Midtown East in Manhattan are the two best places to catch the Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks because they’re held on the east side.

As a native New Yorker, I’ve spent my life trying to avoid going to these things but the Firecracker’s not originally from around here, so I figured I’d take her.

First, we went to a tiny, tiny, tiny, restaurant called Carla.

Afterward, we walked around looking for a spot to catch the fireworks.

We walked for a looooooong time.

Because not every place was suitable.

Her: No, Logan Lo.
Me: Now, hear me out…

We did not go there.

We did, however, do our civic duty and killed a lanternfly nymph that we saw – first one for 2023.

We ended up walking past the gym I’d gone to while the lockdown was in place.

The streets were already insanely crowded and the Firecracker was getting a headache, so we just popped into a Thai restaurant and ordered a few drinks as well as more food.

They had paper umbrellas in their drinks.

While there, the fireworks started and everyone left the restaurant.

We were the only people there.

So, I quickly grabbed a corner table that actually had a good view of the fireworks.

It was like we had a private room.

After a bit, we decided to leave a bit early to avoid the rush.

Which was near impossible because of the crush of people around us.

But it was fine because that meant that we could watch more of the fireworks, anywho.

A friend of mine once told me that the 4th of July was for family.

This was the first 4th in a while that I’d spent with anyone in years but it definitely felt right.

Me: Maybe next year, we can just watch them at home on the television, yeah?
Her: Sure, Lo. Next year. Maybe.
Me: (nodding) I’ll take maybe.

Location: home with COVID, still
Mood: a bit less COVIDy
Music: there’s a spark in you, you just gotta ignite the light (Spotify)
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Four bars, one night, and a free TV

Using useless information

I’m really behind in alla my posts, sorry.

But I’m trying to catch up.

The Firecracker’s kid and my kid were away, plus she was in the middle of moving, so I ended up helping her schlepp her stuff here and there.

Her: We have to bring this TV to my new place so I can give it away.
Me: What?! That’s ridiculous. It’s gonna rain soon. Just slap a sign on it that it’s a free TV and someone’ll take it.
Her: Are you sure? I’d hate for it to end up in a landfill.
Me: Trust me.

It was gone in a few hours.

After a full day of that and a million other errands, we decided to treat ourselves afterwards to a drink at a local bar.

We got some appetizers…

…and drinks.

But the night seemed super early yet.

Me: Do you wanna go someplace else?
Her: With you? Sure!

We soon found ourselves at my old bar Malachy’s – which just had a major face-lift – where we had some rum and diet coke.

But I was, of course, still hungry.

Her: I know a place near my old apartment with board games and $6 burgers.
Me: You had me at $6 burgers.

She was looking for the perfect game and found a trivia one called, I should have known that!

Her: Who wrote Robinson Crusoe?
Me: Daniel Defoe. Hey, did you know that it was based on a real person named Alexander Selkirk? Just before he died, he dreamt of being back on his island.
Her: You know a lotta useless information, Lo.
Me: We’re using it right now!

Of course, I ended up spilling hot sauce all over the cards.

Her: LOGAN! I can’t bring you anywhere.
Me: (sighing) Evidently not. I’ll get some paper.

After several drinks and food, we walked outta the bar.

Me: I want more food.
Her: We can get some chicken sandwiches and a pina colada over at Tiki Chick.
Me: Sold!

While the Firecracker went to the restroom, I chatted with the manager.

Me: Where in Africa are you from?
Him: Sengal.
Me: Oh. I loved a girl once that worked in Dakar.
Him: Really? That’s so great. Was that her?
Me: (shaking head) No. No, that’s my girlfriend. The girl from Dakar was…someone else. She…got sick.
Him: Oh. (gently) Your girlfriend is very pretty.
Me: (nodding) I think so too. Thanks.

Location: earlier tonight, walking all over LIC so the Firecracker could see the fireworks for the first time.
Mood: full and tired
Music: Come along, baby, we better make a start (Spotify)
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It’s Summertime again

New traditions

Years ago, Alison and I were taking a walk in the hood when we came across a fella at a street fair near our pad selling these cool oversized coasters.

Alisons loved them and picked out four large ones; they’re still the ones I use to this day.

Fast forward to the weekend after last and kid and I were hanging out with the Firecracker and her kid at another street fair when I met the same guy.

Me: I bought a buncha these from you years ago. We chatted about cameras.
Him: (big smile) I remember you!

Dunno if he really did, but it was nice for him to say.

I told the kid he could pick any four of the smaller sized ones and I’d get them for him; he did, so I did.

Him: Do you like them?
Me: You picked them out, so I like them.

Since it was the end of the school year, I told the kid he could have anything he wanted for dinner.

Despite us seeing some gorgeous dumplings and authentic German bratwurst…

…this is what he choose.

In my defense, I ate the vast majority of it all.

Him: Are you still hungry?!
Me: …well, I could eat a little…
Him: Papa!

Well, I could…

Dropped him with my in-laws for a spell – as I did last year.

It’s bittersweet, like most things with me, that we have these new traditions, he and I. But it’s not supposed to be like this.

Nuthin is as it was supposed to be.

I spent the day out with him in NJ and had a nice Afghani dinner before I left.

Me: I’ll miss you.
Him: I’ll come back!

It was just as well. There’s been alla this stuff that I needed to do around the house.

For example, there were years of leaks into my basement that I needed to fix…


So, I finally got that done.

Pac swung by to pick my (legal) brain for a project of his and brought over some pan-fried chix and ribs from Charles Pan-Fried Chicken.

He originally wanted some Cuban-Chinese around me but I told him that our buddy Half-man said this place was the bomb – the last time I had it was with the NFL Player.

Him: Man, this was definitely the better choice!
Me: Agreed!
Him: I may have gotten a little excited and bought too much stuff.

He did not.

It’s my first summer as a 50 year-old.

And yet, I’m as excited about it as I was as a child.

Me: I like you.
Her: (laughs) Oh, Lo…you don’t like me.
Me: I don’t?
Her: (shakes head, smiles) No, Logan Lo. You don’t.
Me: (nodding) Ah…

Location: yesterday, getting sprayed in the most unmentionable places at my buddy’s pool in Long Island
Mood: hopeful
Music: Romantic Piscean seeks angel in disguise (Spotify)
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All men are little boys…

…to the parents that love them

11 years ago, I went out with Alison to Jersey City for Alison’s grandmother’s 90th birthday.

I remember thinking that her grandmother was so lucky that she got to live 90 years.

Can’t tell you how much it upsets me that Alison lived so much less.

But, I suppose, that’s a conversation for another day.

I wrote about that day and I titled it: The hours drag but the years sprint away

Never realized just how true that statement was until I became a dad.

Seeing the kid every day, I don’t really notice how much he’s grown, day-by-day, but looking at pictures, I’m shocked how much he’s changed.

The fella that wrote The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe said something similar: Isn’t it funny how day by day nothing changes but, when we look back everything is different?

It’s so true.

Everything, and everyone, is so different now.

The kid finished school today.

It seems like we just started and it’s summer vacation already.

I (barely) remember taking him to preschool when he was just 18-months old and I gave him a rum-carrier as a bookbag.

Now, he’s a full-fledged kid with opinions – lots of them.

Me: How on earth do you not like 紅豆湯, kid? I loved that growing up.
Him: People like different things, papa.

Alison loved this kid so much the short time she was here with him. She woulda loved him to the moon and back if she could see him now.

As I do.

Met up with some a group of fathers from the school for some beer and tacos the other day.

I really only talked to two of them, but a solid eight people showed up. It was interesting finding out about their lives.

Me: You’re a lawyer? My condolences. (laughing) I’m one as well.
Him: What do you do?
Me: Drink, mostly. When I’m not raising the kid.

I could only stay out for about 90 minutes before I had to pick the kid up from a birthday party he was attending.

Still, it’s one of those things I think I’ll do again.

When the kid was really little, my brother sent me a song called Imaginary Tea that I wrote about before.

Thought of it again when I told the kid that he was done with school and that he was starting a whole new grade next year.

Him: Can you believe it?!
Me: (laughing) Not really, kid. Not really.

He loves this shirt and wears it *waaaay* too often – no idea why.

Suppose I’ll always think of him as a little boy, even when he’s not one any more.

Like I said in my last entry, I think I understand my dad now more than I ever have before.

After all, all men are little boys to the parents that love them.

Imaginary Tea

I love you more than you will ever know
I love you no matter what you do
I’m gonna hold you as long as you will let me
‘Cause you’re mine, I love you

I loved you before I heard ever heard your voice
Before I even knew your name
I loved you before I saw those pretty eyes
I loved you right away

So, take it slow
Before you know it, you’ll be old and grown
Just remember that I’m always here
Hands you can hold on to

I love you

Don’t worry what anybody else will say
Don’t hurry to break that precious heart
When you try to be like somebody else
Remember I love you the way you are

So, take it slow
Before you know it, you’re gonna be old and grown
Just remember that I’m always here
Hands you can hold on to

And I love you

So, let’s climb every tree
And drink imaginary tea
And speak a language only we can understand
And I will fight back the tears
As we fly through the years
And I’ll keep you as close as I can

I love you more than you will ever know
I love you no matter what you do
And I’m gonna hold you as long as you will let me
‘Cause you’re mine, I love you

Location: her place and my place
Mood: exhausted
Music: I love you more than you will ever know (Spotify)
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Oh, how I wish you were here

Proud of ourselves

The Firecracker was busy for most of the following day but we met up for a walk to the pier near my pad when she was free.

There was a salsa party going on so we had to fight our way through that to make it to the edge of the pier, but it was worth it.

Me: What are you thinking?
Her: These are the times where I think, I can’t believe that I live here.

This fella named Richard Ford once said, The more we see our parents fully, see them as the world does, the better our chances to see the world as it is.

The boy just got his first red stripe in BJJ, which is kinda a big deal – certainly to him, if nuthin else.

Him: LOOK, LOOK! (shows me) Are you proud of me?
Me: Of course. But that’s not as important as if you’re proud of yourself. Are you proud of yourself?
Him: (beaming) Yes!
Me: That’s the most important thing, kid. Do things that make yourself proud of yourself, not me or anyone else.

Finding that I miss my dad the most when I want to ask him things about me when I was the kid’s age.

I mean, my mom’s still around and she and I talk about these things but I wonder what my dad was thinking when I was the kid’s age and doing similar things.

Realize all the times that my dad was right – and wrong – about things. I so wish he was here to talk about it all.

If he was, I wish I could tell him that I understand now, so much more about him than I ever did.

Wish I could tell him that I loved him, still do, and always will.

I wonder if he’d be proud of me. Then again, I think I did the best I could with everything I was given.

In that sense, then, I’m proud of myself.

Still, I wish he was here.

Although, truthfully, I always wish the people I loved were here with me.

Him: You looked like this again (makes face). Were you thinking of mommy again?
Me: (smiling, shaking head) I always think of her, but at that moment, I was thinking of my papa.
Him: (hugs me) I’m sorry, daddy.
Me: Thanks, kid. You’re my faves.
Me: (laughing, hoping that I’ll stay in his top 10 forever)

Location: getting a second free soda at a street party because the person wanted a pic of me
Mood: hollowed
Music: how I wish you were here (Spotify)
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Nobody told me

Believing in myself

Her: Should we have a code word, like Beam me up, Scottie? Or Full steam ahead?
Me: Oh my god…

The next day, the Firecracker and I continued to work on our joint project.

But we decided to take a little break to meet up with her sister, brother-in-law, and niece for a quick drink around the corner.

There was a nice wine shop there; every time I see I wine shop, I stop by to check if they have my fave bottle of regular rum.

Me: I don’t suppose you have Captain Morgan Private Stock.
Him: No, sorry. But we have Bacardi.
Me: Yeah, no. It’s not the same thing.

The street was closed off for a block party and there was a band out as well, so we were all well entertained.

I got the table two dozen oysters…

Her: A dozen for everyone?
Me: No, a dozen for me, and a dozen for the rest of you.
Her: You’re gonna eat a dozen oysters by yourself?
Me: I believe in myself.

…while they got greens and fries for everyone.

Afterward, we walked over to H Mart where I bought a whole buncha frozen Asian food for me to cook during the week.

Her: Look, face masks! It’s great for your skin. Do you want one?
Me: Do I have a choice?
Her: I’m getting them.
Me: (later) I look like a serial killer.
Her: But your skin will be fantastic!

So many of my friends are dealing with some life altering things.

A good friend of mine gave me a ring over the weekend.

She and her husband of seven years were divorcing. She filled me in on everything that was going down.

Her: I’m so sorry to use you and Alison as inspiration for surviving this.
Me: Don’t. I get it. My life was a horror and I’m still around. I’m sure I’m many people’s worst-case scenario.
Her: It feels wrong.
Me: It’s not. It means that Alison’s story still matters in the world. I can’t think of anything that would honor her more, really.

It’s true.

Nobody told me that life would be so…tumultuous.

Location: day-drinking with her in an empty bar on 80th and Amsterdam
Mood: conflicted
Music: ran down 71st as fast as I can; I’m telling her everything (Spotify)
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Last min trip to NJ, then Koreatown

Thinking about my dad with girlie drinks

In a last-minute decision, I decided to bring the boy out to NJ to spend the weekend with his grandparents so that the Firecracker and I could work on a personal project of ours.

To that end, I was scheduled to head out to NJ, drop the kid off, and come right back, for an approximately 180-minute, round-trip excursion.

Welp, my luck held ever to form. Because I dropped the kid off without issue but the return trip was delayed a solid hour, so my three-hour round trip took four hours.

Once I made it back into the city, I ran to the restaurant where the Firecracker was waiting for me.

Me: I’m so sorry I’m late.
Her: It’s fine. I’m just happy to see you.

We were gonna go to a restaurant that Pac had suggested to us but the wait on that was an hour, so we just ended up going to my regular joint, Jongro – the last time I was there was with my buddy Bridget.

The Firecracker actually wasn’t all that hungry cause I was so late so it was mostly me that ate all the food.

Even that wasn’t enough, so I ordered a pancake that feeds 2-3 people and ate almost alla that myself.

Afterward, we went to a rooftop bar called K-32, right across the street.

There were only a handful of other people there because it was supposed to rain (but didn’t) so it just me and her.

Since it was just us, I ordered my fave drinks: Oversweet girly drinks made of rum.

Me: Don’t judge me for my drink. I like them like I like my women: Sweet and with fruit. Wait…
Her: (shaking head and turning to the bartender) Can you do something to make it more manly? Like put a tool belt around it or something.
Bartender: (nods) I’ll fix ya up!

There were no umbrellas.

But there was a drink in a tiki mug.

Her: Hey, these are like the mugs at your place.
Me: Yeah. They’re tiki mugs. They’re my fathers’.

We struck up a conversation with the bartender and the waiter and got onto the topic of Scenic Fights.

Me: You should subscribe.
Waiter: Wait, Scenic Fights? I’m already a subscriber!

Turns out he was already a fan and that’s why he thought I looked familiar.

The bartender was young and, because it was just the two of us, really spent a lotta time getting the drinks just right.

We actually left as the bar started filling up and were home and in bed by 11PM.

Location: 8:15 PM, with the kid, catching a train at Penn Station
Mood: hungry
Music: Now my dark days don’t phase me even a little bit (Spotify)
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