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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Lions don’t have the keys

A ruthless capitalist with a sentimental streak.

I went to college in Cornell, which has some of the most Asians of any school, about 1 outta 5.

Anywho, my college girlfriend was Korean but went to a different college entirely.

One day, I was walking home when I saw a young woman that had her very distinct gait and I swore it was her.

As I got closer, it turns out it was her – she’d left school early to come up to my college to surprise me.

There’s a software company I’ve been following for the past year because it has a rather unique business model; its software aggregates data and then makes predictions based on the data it’s gathered.

Since the Ukraine war has happened, Palantir has been offering its services to Ukraine and I believe it’s Palantir and the western armaments – versus just the weaponry itself – which is why Ukraine has been punching above its weight so consistently.

This is not at all to take away from the sheer bravery and discipline of the Ukrainians.

But it tracks with what I’ve always believed: The most dangerous people/things are not always the strongest but the ones with the most intelligence.

If that were not the case, it’d be people in zoo cages and lions walking free with the keys instead of the other way around.

In any case, the software has access to 306 commercial satellites that can see as close as 11 feet from the ground.

With this data, Palantir can figure out which are enemy movements – to such specificity as which platoon and commander – and can predict what these enemy troops are most likely to do and offer the Ukrainians the most likely scenario that will happen.

The Ukrainians can then act accordingly.

In that way, Palantir can recognize enemy troop movements similar to how I could tell from a vast distance that it was my then girlfriend and not some other person.

The data I collected – the visual recognition of her particular gait – allowed me to realize that my then-girlfriend was visiting me, without her telling me she was there.

Similarly, Palantir takes what it knows about people/troops and figures out who they are by their unique traits – like a gait.

With that, they make warfare akin to a deadly recipe except that if you do steps 1-16 correctly you’ll end up with mass enemy casualties instead of a soufflé.

I’m conflicted on this point.

Obviously, the Russians are the aggressors here and for everyone not a Republican, clearly the bad guys here.

But we are teaching an AI program how to perform warfare at its most brutally efficient way.

As a child of the original Terminator films and the rebooted Battlestar Galactica, it makes me uneasy how very good Palantir is at what it does.

On the flip side, it’s trading at $16.42 today, off its three-year high of $35.18.

I’m nothing if not a ruthless capitalist – with a sentimental streak.

On a much lighter note, with both of our kids away, the Firecracker and I are doing basic couple things like grabbing drinks around the way and watching reality TV and cooking shows.

Although I suspect that, while we’re both watching the same program, we’re experiencing them differently.

Her: (watching TV) Serves you right, lady! Your hubris went…pluberis.
Me: (shakes head)
Her: (turning to me, apologetically) I tried to abort halfway through but I was already committed to it.
Me: This has got to go into the blog. You brought this onto yourself.

Location: my basement, trying to figure out why the lights won’t turn on. The circuit breaker tripped
Mood: recovering
Music: This world can be so cold (Spotify)
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Dreaming of Revenge

A deadly diaspora

More thoughts on Ukraine: Do you remember when I went to Boston and wrote about the Irish?

Did you know that there are seven times more Irish in America than there are in Ireland? Legit.

There’s a new world coming – again, provided these fuckers don’t blow it up first – and it’s going to be a diaspora of Ukrainians who aren’t going to forget who and what did this to them took their home from them.

Like, the Irish aren’t forgetting about the famine anytime soon. And the Jews aren’t forgetting about the Holocaust anytime soon.

And, as I’ve said before, if cancer was a person, there is nothing on earth that would stop me from getting to him/her after what it did to my family. Nothing.

I’m beyond incensed over what’s happening in Ukraine and I’m 100% Chinese.

I can only imagine the hatred and dreams of revenge that young Ukrainian men and women are feeling right now.

I wrote a novel once that you can buy on Amazon if you’re so inclined. In it, I opened the book with a quote from artist Paul Gauguin:

Life being what it is, one dreams of revenge.

Knowing as many Ukrainians as I do, I don’t see them forgetting who and what did this to them who took their home from them.

I don’t think the Russian government/Putin fully realize how many of these young men, women, and children now dream of revenge. That’s not a good thing for them.

Her: Did you read about…?
Me: I did.
Her: Wait, you didn’t even hear what I was going to say.
Me: If it’s about the war, I did. I most definitely did and wish I didn’t.

I made the kid some duck confit again – the first time around, he kinda liked it. Well, he liked it with the rice at least.

This time around, a lot less so.

Him: Why can’t we just have McDonalds?

Now, here’s the kicker – I said the exact same thing to my dad ages ago.

See, when I was his age, my dad owned a Japanese restaurant and food that he couldn’t sell and would go bad, he’d bring home for us.

So, we had sushi constantly and lobster and crab pretty regularly. I remember him telling us that we would regret this when we got older and he was totally right.

Me: OK, if I gave you some barbeque sauce from McDonalds to dip the duck into would you…
Him: Yes! I want that.

Ah, it’s moments like this I wish my dad were here so I could tell him about the boy. And that he was right. About so much. And that I miss him terribly.

Now, I want some sushi. Or more duck. Or even McDonalds.

I’m just hungry, yo. That, and I like to eat my feelings.

Speaking of eating my feelings, Daisy’s back. Kinda.

It’s a long story and hard to explain.

I’ll try and sort it all out for you at some point. Really, I’m trying to sort it all out for me, but I’ll tell you all about it if I do.

Location: at the gym, getting repeatedly strangled by Pez and Erin
Mood: so, so, so hungry
Music: Home Sweet Home (Spotify)
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Then let’s go

Who knows about tomorrow?

One thing that the kid takes after me is that he runs hot. He often doesn’t wear a jacket out and I see parents looking at me as if I’m crazy.

But, I figure, he knows when he’s uncomfortable so I’m gonna respect that.

On that note, I’ve been wrestling with bringing my son to jits these days because of his eczema.

But, from everything I’ve been researching, most kids grow out of it so I’m hoping that this is just because our apartment is obscenely dry.

Hoping that the summer will be much better for him.

My very first girlfriend came from this very wealthy family. In 1990, her weekly allowance was $100, which is about $215 in 2022 purchasing power.

Mine was $20, I think?

At that time, I thought McDonalds was eating out, but she took me to places like Tavern on the Green and the restaurant at Rockefeller Center.

For our one-month “anniversary,” I bought her a pair of cheap gold-plated earrings; she got me a limited edition automatic Fendi watch. It was strange and different.

I think that the people that we let into our lives leave pieces of themselves with you – again, that whole you’re the average of the five people thing I always talk about.

She was not the nicest person and, because she was my first girlfriend, she left a lot of her good and bad traits and outlooks with me. How I look at dating, women, relationships, etc.

I think that, even some three decades later, I’m still trying to rid myself of bad traits people leave with me, including hers.

On the flip side, after Alison died, I left most of my old friends – who probably represent some of the best parts of me – because they were a constant reminder of her to me but, enough time has passed that it’s not that sharp anymore, which is one of the reasons I’m seeing them more these days.

One person I see somewhat regularly is her best friend. We actually don’t talk about Alison all that much but she’s a constant presence in our conversations, regardless.

It’s nice because I still feel connected to Alison in these small ways as I disconnect with others.


It’s strange. I feel like the past six years, my life was lived by someone else, someone I feel sorry for. He suffered, Alison suffered. It was all just shit.

Over a decade ago, I wrote about St. Augustine and how he ran into a prostitute that he used to visit before he became St. Augustine. The story goes that she tried to get his attention and when he walked past her, she said, Augustine, it is I.

And he replied without stopping, Yes, but it is not I. Because he wasn’t that guy any more. He looked like him but was not him.

That’s kind of how I feel again. I remember the horror and sadness, but I almost feel detached from it. It was me but not me.

Suppose it’s a survival mechanism but I do need to survive after all, so it makes sense.

Anywho, it was actually the second time I wrote about St. Augustine because, five years prior to that, I felt the same way.

Honestly, I don’t remember either guy at all – neither the 2006 version of me, nor the 2011 version of me.

If there is anything I have of value, for better or worse, it is the ability to survive and forget. Blessed are the forgetful, for they get the better even of their blunders.

I remember seeking the Golden Mean in 2006, again in 2011, and again now. It’s not ideal but it’s better than the alternative, I suppose.

Her: Are you ok?
Me: (shrugging) I am today. Who knows about tomorrow?

On that note, I limit myself to only a few articles a day about what’s happening in Ukraine. I feel my blood boil and the emotions rise again when I read about pregnant women being attacked in a hospital for, really, nothing but money.

This article about a man losing his entire family set me off for a while before I put it away in head.

His wife was 43, his son Mykyta was 18 and daughter Alisa was nine, when they were murdered this past Sunday.

All I could think was that, if it was me, I would burn the entire world down and wouldn’t stop until someone killed me. Hardly a healthy mental state.

And this fucked up world is the world I’m bringing this kid up in.

I wonder if my buddy was right about the ethics of having a kid. But it’s too late, regardless, I’m in it. We’re in it.

I’ve gotta make sure he’s ready.

Him: Are we going to jiu-jitsu?
Me: Do you want to go?
Him: Yes!
Me: (laughing) Then let’s go.

Location: earlier today, watching him do an armbar for the first time
Mood: affectionate
Music: you ain’t coming home. I am your family tree (Spotify)
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Opinion: Understanding the 2022 Russo-Ukrainian Conflict

It’s about the money

I interrupt my usual talk about nuthin to discuss yet another topic I know very little about. As you read this, please keep in mind that I’m basically a stay-at-home dad that owns a gym so everything I’m about to say is most likely nonsense.

Just like everyone else in the world, I think I’m right, though.


In 2015, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said that “Russia is a gas station masquerading as a country.”

This was echoed recently by Harvard economist Jason Furman who went further to say Russia’s economy is “incredibly unimportant in the global economy except for oil and gas….[i]t’s basically a big gas station.

What Putin is selling to the world right now, however, isn’t gas but the following story: The Ukrainians are essentially Russian and he’s just trying to unify them and protect them.

I call bullshit. But hold that thought.

(c) Wikipedia

Let’s turn to 1931 Japan for a hot second.

See, that’s when Japan sought to create the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere (GEACPS) by saying that, “[w]e’re all Asian. We need to unite against white people. We’re gonna do that by taking over everyone so we can adequately protect you all.”

Sound familiar?

Under the banner of GEACPS, Japan did all manners of incredibly fucked-up shit.

But, according to Washington Post reporter Daniel Yergin, this was all bullshit – of course – it was for something a lot simpler: Oil.

Japan had – and has – zero oil and realized that it needed to invade other countries to acquire oil, hence all the GEACPS bullshit.

Things hit a massive bump when Japan invaded China in 1937, freaking out the US and causing the US to freeze all oil sales to Japan on August 1st, 1941. This action, plus the freezing of Japanese assets the month prior in July of 1941, directly caused the Asian Theatre portion of World War II.

 

Back to today, 2022.

Here, we have the same situation in reverse; Russia isn’t in need of energy – in this case, gas not oil – it has too much of it. And nuthin else. That’s all it has. Think of the last Russian car, jeans, movie, you purchased. I’m guessing you can’t.

All they have is a shitton of gas but, lucky for them, the world could use that.

But, just like most things in the world, it’s not the product itself that’s the issue, it’s the getting of the product to the consumer’s hands that’s the issue.

(c) Wikipedia

That’s why you’ve probably read about the Nord 2 pipeline; that’s this big-ass pipe Russia’s been building for the past ten years or so to get its gas to Germany and the rest of Europe.

But how’s Russia been able to get its gas to Europe for the past ten years while they’re building this damn thing?

BAM! Ukraine, baby.

Well, Ukraine and Belarus. But Belarus is essentially Russia. Check out the map below.

(c) Wikipedia

Here’s where things get nuts. Well, nuttier.

See, Ukraine and Russia worked out a deal where Russia would pay it for transport of gas from Russia via those red lines you see above. Irritating for a fella like Putin but business is business, right?

Except in 2009, Ukraine was accused of skimmin a little off the top for themselves. The facts, on both sides, were a little muddy but kinda irrelevant: Putin believed that they were stealing gas and that was when things really started heating up between the two countries, ending up where we are today.


I’m a New Yorker. There’s one thing you learn early on in NY; you don’t mess around with organized crime. And you sure as hell don’t interfere in the money-making ventures of organized crime.

But imagine a mob that ran a country and only had one single thing of value (albeit a shitton of that one thing) and (a) you were responsible for distribution of that thing to their biggest customer and (b) you were thought to have skimmed a little off the top?

Well, if you know anything about Bugsy Siegal and/or watched Casino, you know how well that worked out.

A poster of the film Casino. Distributed by Universal Pictures

I’m, not-at-all, blaming the Ukraine for this mess. They’re just trying to get paid for use of their land and the people of Ukraine are just trying to live.

They’ve been at war for years now, with Ukraine having battle-hardened soldiers ready to fight.

But Russia’s still bigger in every sense of the word and they’re betting that it’s easier, and cheaper, to take over the Ukraine a la Belarus than keep paying Ukraine.

What NATO has to do is convince them that the economic cost of trying to take over the Ukraine is gonna cost a lot more than just paying them rent.

Hence alla the sanctions.

It’s anyone’s guess if they can do that.

Russia is willing to start WWIII under the same pretenses of Japan in WWII. Probably with the same disastrous results.

None of this is good. And it’s gonna get a lot worse before it gets better.

Location: earlier today, wondering if we should move to Montana
Mood: concerned
Music: Man, I had a dreadful flight (Spotify)
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Snyder’s Justice League is about family

You should watch it

I was never a true fan of Zack Snyder’s version of the Man of Steel but I did think he had his moments.

But, after the fanboy disappointment that was the theatrical release of The Justice League, I figured what Zack had in mind had to be better.

So, I’ve been quietly waiting all this time for the Snyder cut of the film and I saw it this past Friday.

It was amazing. The whole time I was watching it, I kept saying exactly that: This is amazing.

My brother was at my place while Chad and I watched it and this is essentially how we looked for four hours.

Him: This is amazing.
Me: (five minutes later) This is amazing.

It’s supposed to be 90% different than the theatrical release and I gotta say, that number is accurate: It’s a completely different film.

Snyder left the production after the suicide of his daughter Autumn, which is such a horrible thing to even contemplate that I wish I could just gloss that fact over and not think about it.

But that’s impossible. Her death, forced her parents – Snyder’s wife was heavily involved in the film as well – to just bail.

And I get it. When Alison died, nothing mattered. I had zero capacity to do anything beyond merely function, drink, and womanize.

Still, at some point, we either get on with living or we get on with dying.

I did the former and so did Snyder.

These pics are all from when I went to ComicCon back in 2017.

Interestingly, the film is as much about family as it is about superheroes.

      • The Flash is trying to save his father.
      • Cyborg is trying to forgive his father and deal with the loss of his mother.
      • Aquaman is trying to know his mother and see his father.
      • Wonder Woman is trying make up for leaving her mother.
      • Superman is trying to live up to the aspirations of both sets of parents, biological and adopted.
      • And Batman…well, he’s all about his parents.

For all the amazing special effects and the thrill of seeing my childhood heroes in a worthy live-action film, it had a far more heart than I was expecting.

Honestly, it’s worth four hours of your time if you haven’t seen it.

I saw it on the night that I normally go to kali but, because of the gout, I could only stay for half-an-hour.

It’s a shame, because my buddy Panda stopped by. He, and another buddy, Thor, both have gout and they told me the same thing: I needed to drink copious amounts of water.

So I did that, and the next day, felt markedly better.

So good, in fact, that I went to roll in Brooklyn, which ended up being both a good idea and a terrible idea, terrible because I thought I almost killed someone.

But that’s a story for tomorrow.

Location: earlier today, baking for the kid
Mood: thoughtful
Music: Sometimes I think this world’s too much, all the hurt, all the hate (Spotify)
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A Non-Linear System

Checking in

One of my oldest and dearest friends called me the other day.

Me: What’s up? How’ve you been?
Him: (laughing) OK. I heard about your uncle and your anniversary and I wanted to check in on you.
Me: Thanks man, it’s been a rough few weeks.
Him: I know, that’s why I’m calling. (later) I should mention that I was in the ER two weeks ago. They’re still not 100% what happened but I was there for five days.
Me: Holy shitballs, what happened?
Him: I was feeling pain in my stomach like crazy so I went to the ER and told the attendant that I was in a tremendous amount of pain. Like a 7 or 8. He said, “You don’t look like you’re in a lot of pain.”
Me: What did you say?
Him: I told him, “That’s cause I’m not a whiney-ass bitch.”
Me: (laughing) Yeah, that sounds like you.

A large dose of antibiotics cleared him out enough that they didn’t have to cut him open. But he’s gotta go back for more tests.

Him: I didn’t wanna tell you because…
Me: Dude, the past two weeks, I was a whiney-ass bitch. It’s good you didn’t tell me. I absolutely wouldn’t have handled it well.
Him: (quietly) Then I’m glad I didn’t tell you.

He’s been through his own stuff. He’s one of the people that I told you lost his mother recently. He understands grief.

Me: The fucked up thing is that, unlike most people, I understand that life is a non-linear system. I get that. Bad things happen and the life you expect isn’t promised you. But…I never expected my life – and Alison’s – to be quite so non-linear.
Him: It is a non-linear system, yeah. But we have some things like our family and good friends.
Me: You know, if there is a god, he fucking hates us. Or maybe he’s just a racist asshole.
Him: (laughing) Maybe, Logan. Maybe.

Location: today, walking with a friend in the sun, looking for Joe
Mood: non-linear
Music: ah shit, am I winner yet? (Spotify)
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Overcorrecting

If you say so

Of course, on the day I went to see my son, the teacher was reading the class a story about a fish looking for his mom. Because, of course.

It’s the first video I’m posting with his voice, if you’re interested in hearing it.

Boy: Can I have a pretzel?
Me: What have you done to earn a pretzel?
Him: I dunno. (thinking) I love you?
Me: (reaching for pretzels) Man, I am so easily manipulated.
Him: Manipulated!

When I first learned to drive, and now when I wrestle, I tended to overcorrect. Things that need to go, say, 5 degrees to the left, I go 15.

Do you remember the Minority Report with Tom Cruise?

There’s a scene where Cruise’s character sits in the dark by himself and watches videos of his son and his wife. He no longer had them, you see.

I remember watching that scene and feeling so sad about it. Enough that 18 years later I recall it, having recalled little else about the film.

I told you that I don’t have too many videos of Alison; almost none, in fact. She hated being recorded.

Of course, I have videos of her immediately after she got sick. One in particular I’ve never seen and don’t think I ever will. I wouldn’t survive it, I don’t think.

But that’s a memory for me and my lonely nights.

In any case, she asked that I try not to put pictures or videos up of her on this blog so I didn’t. I wish I did.

I wish I took so many more pictures and videos of her. God, she was beautiful.

I probably take too many pictures of the boy and people I care about these days. I’m definitely overcorrecting. But I don’t care.

As the years go on, these little bits of digital ink are all I have left of some people and moments. I’ll take them.

Him: I miss mommy.
Me: I do too. All the time. She was my best friend.

Just got back from seeing him. The hope is that he can safely go back to school part-time next semester and that this country’ll have an actual plan of trying to deal with this goddamn virus.

He still gets sad whenever I leave and I tell myself that this is a good thing but it’s hard. Everything’s harder than it should be.

Him: I could wave to you from the front door.
Me: It’s too dark. You wouldn’t see me. Stay here.
Him: (sadly) If you say so, papa.
Me: I do. I’ll be back soon. I promise
Him: (nods, cries)
Me: Really. I promise.

Podcast Version
Location: home, looking at pictures of people I’ll always love
Mood: lonely
Music: Don’t come and go like you do. (Spotify)

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Blogarama - Observations Blogs

We *all* have problems, Logan

Good luck and good day

Me: You want some Sriracha?
Chad: (covers his entire meal with it).
Mouse: That’s a lot of Sriracha!
Me: I’ve made him into a man now, Mouse.
Chad: (nods, doesn’t stop eating)

People keep calling me to help out with these projects and I take what work I feel I’m a right fit for or if I want to help someone out.

You know that I don’t advertise? Been working for myself for over two decades and I’ve never advertised anything ever beyond this blog, I suppose. Maybe a few things, here and there.

Huy Fong, the makers of Sriracha also never advertised. They got by purely on their reputation. Must be an Asian thing.

Anywho, a lawyer buddy of mine asked me to help out with a client so, as a favour to him, I reached out to her and sent her what I could do and what I would charge.

Her: That seems excessive for a few pages of paper.
Me: I couldn’t agree more. You can probably find someone much cheaper with the New York Country Bar Association. You can ring up a lovely woman named Hannah there at 212-267-6646, ext. 217 to find someone else.
Her: Wait, but…
Me: 212-267-6646, ext. 217. Hannah. With two H’s and two N’s. Good luck and good day, madam.

I know what I’m worth and I don’t have the time or interest in convincing anyone of my value.

On that note, last week was one of my busier work weeks in a while.

On the flip side, I can also remember sitting at home waiting for the phone to ring. Of course, that was before everything in my life turned to shit.

Speaking of sitting at home, like I said earlier, Chad broke his foot but he’s a teacher by nature, so he’s definitely going stir crazy locked in his pad.

And Cho just got a new whip.

So, I offered for them to come by – along with Mouse – and roll in exchange for some food and entertainment.

And on a random weekday night, they were here.

We were all grateful for the lesson and I think Chad was grateful to just be on a mat again. He literally walked in – or hobbled in – and lay on the mat for a moment and sighed.

Just like the first time he came over.

After our lesson, he asked if we had any questions.

Me: About what you just taught or life?
Chad: We don’t have that much time, Logan.
Me: Well, I’ve got a lot going on.
Him: We all have problems, Logan!
Me: You don’t have to yell.

Pro tip: If you see a bottle of Lao Gan Ma Crispy Chili, buy it. You’ll be ahead of the curve. Trust me on this.

It’ll be the next big thing.

Podcast Version
Location: earlier today, trying to break an arm
Mood: tired
Music: I don’t want somebody like you (Spotify)
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How JFK killed the hat industry

The president leads

A cornerstone of this blog is that communication isn’t what you say, it’s what the listener hears. That’s because this is my blog and that’s a cornerstone of my life.

Above’s a picture of JFK’s presidential inauguration. Look at the men in the crowd of the picture. What do you see?

Hats. Dudes wore hats back then. Period.

But now, check out Johnson’s inauguration pic just a few years later. Notice that, while there are hats, there are a lot fewer of them.

What happened?

The answer’s pretty simple; JFK generally didn’t wear hats. And dudes that saw him walk around without a hat thought – consciously or unconsciously – Well, if he’s not wearing a hat, I’m not gonna wear one either.

Did JFK purposely go out of his way to single-handedly destroy the hat-making industry in America? Probably not. But that’s what happened.

Unintended consequences and alla that.

I’ve been noticing that the deep red people I know are suddenly fixated on China as the evil empire – which it is, for sure – when they never previously posted anything about it before.

Similarly, wearing a mask has become a political statement versus a simple safety measure.

I also note that Trump has generally not worn a mask and that the US now leads the world in COVID-19 rates and deaths.

To say that JFK destroyed the hat industry is to simply go back and piece together facts.

To say that Trump killed his fellow Americans by the thousands is probably similarly accurate, although only time will tell.

As for me, I’m glad that JFK didn’t wear hats because, with my huge head, I’d probably block out the sun.

Podcast Version
Location: Battery Park City, seeing about a girl
Mood: hot, hot heat
Music: I’m just gonna go out (Spotify)
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