A New York French Bistro and a Connecticut Italian Pizzeria

You’re normal

Was chatting with the blond banker the other day.

Her: Did you just get out of a long-term relationship?
Me: Yeah, how’d you know?
Her: You’re normal.
Me: Most guys aren’t?
Her: (laughing)

Man, is she gonna be disappointed. Or impressed. It can go either way.

Had dinner with another blonde on Alison’s birthday.

Was debating whether or not to go but, in the end, I decided to do it. After all, the alternative was just me drinking alone in my apartment; the boy had a sleepover with his sitter because I knew I’d be self-medicating.

We ended up heading to a French Bistro around the way. It was cool, we sat in these bubble-enclosed tables and it was oddly secluded and private, considering that we were surrounded by people.

I arrived first and she showed up just a few minutes later.

Me: Whoa, you look great.
Her: (laughs) Thanks.

We ended up ordering mussels, ribs, and escargot.

The last time I had escargot was May 18th, 2008. The girl in this entry was Alison. She didn’t remember meeting me. I didn’t mind because Mouse didn’t remember meeting me either.

It’s weird, but I pride myself on being the Grey Man most of the time.

We figured we’d just order more food as necessary.

Her: Do you wanna see me eat this whole thing?
Me: Nah, I wanna still find you attractive afterward.

The mussels came with fries but, because I was trying to be good, I asked for a salad instead. They brought both.

Waiter: Do you want to keep the fries?
Me: (sighing) Yes.

We also ordered an Old-Fashioned for me, a French Martini for her, and then, split a Chocolate Martini. She was really great company.

Afterward, we went to the Arthouse Hotel for some more drinks.

I ordered a daiquiri and she had an amaretto sour. The bartender said that both weren’t on the menu but that he’d whip them up for us.

I saw him taste each one (with a single-use straw) so I knew they were going to be good.

It was pretty empty so we had the whole place to ourselves.

Her: I loved someone once.
Me: Was it love or something a lot like love?
Her: I’m not sure any more. I thought it was then. How can you tell?
Me: Time, I guess. I don’t think you ever really fall out of true love.

The drinks were so good, in fact, that just before we left, I commended him on them. He beamed from ear-to-ear. Random kindness from strangers is always a good thing.

Before we left, we sat on the couch in the bar and chatted a bit more before stopping by my pad for more rum and conversation.

It was just past midnight when she called an Uber to head home.

Me: Thanks for the company. I had a great night.
Her: Me too.

The next day, I had a business meeting in Connecticut with my buddy Thor. We’re potentially doing a little bit of work together on a project. Potentially.

I was still hungover when I boarded the train but he met me at the station.

Me: I need protein and coffee. Do you have like a protein bar at home?
Him: I have coffee and I’ll make you some eggs.

What he made me was a killer frittata, which I inhaled. After the coffee and food, we got down to brass tacks.

It was just before four when we finished up.

I offered to pick us up dinner and he brought me to a pizza joint.

Him: The pizza in Connecticut is probably better than the pizza in NYC.
Me: You’re dead to me now.

It was delicious OR I just thought it was because it was the first time I’d had pizza in over three months.

Figured that, since I ate the fries the night before, in for a penny, in for a pound.

I made the train with five minutes to spare, got home, showered, and just as I finished getting dressed, the boy and his sitter walked in the door.

Him: Papa! I went to Coney Island and had a Nathan’s hot dog!
Me: (laughing) Let’s get grandma on Skype and you can tell us both all about it.

Chad and I’ve been busy shooting more Scenic Fights stuff.

Subscribe and like the videos so I can quit my non-existent day job.

Location: earlier today, wondering where we were
Mood: conflicted
Music: if I could I’d change but you were that one that wanted this (Spotify)
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Being scared and being brave

Aren’t mutually exclusive

The boy’s not been feeling well so I had to cancel/rearrange a lotta my weekend plans.

Him: Are you mad?
Me: I’m not mad, I’m worried, there’s a difference.
Him: (apprehensive) Is this going to hurt?
Me: It’s gonna feel uncomfortable but, no, it won’t hurt.
Him: (begins to cry)
Me: No. Stop crying. I need you to be brave.
Him: But, I’m scared.
Me: Being scared and being brave aren’t mutually exclusive, kid. You have to be scared to be brave, otherwise, you’re just nuts. You’re not nuts are you? (he shakes head) Good. Be brave. You get points in life for being brave.

I think he’s ok. We’ll see.

Should note that I felt a lot more scared myself than I let on. A kid needs confidence that everything will be ok, even if you don’t necessarily feel that yourself.

Goddamn, being a parent is often…difficult. Being a single parent is that much worse.

On that note, I was scrambling to find coverage for him recently and I needed someone I could trust with him, especially since he wasn’t feeling well, so I reached out to Pez.

She was a doll and came by on on Monday to watch him so I could get some things done.

Chad swung by as well to make sure it was all handled; it’s nice knowing I have people that care.

Unfortunately, it appears that the boy hijacked Pez’s phone as evidenced by the above video grab…

All-in-all, I bailed on three women this past weekend but managed to see a blond banker for some Korean BBQ.

Decided that I’m only going to eat Korean BBQ when I go out from now on because it’s just so easy to stay keto/paleo without doing anything special. I’m a solid 153 right now, three pounds from my ideal weight.

Anywho, meeting up with people is just interesting to see what life out in the world is like.

After all, my regular friends all have some aspects that mirror me, whereas strangers provide glimpses into lives I know nothing about.

The blond banker told me that another guy asked her out and she had already agreed to meet him when he – without first having met her, just based on her looks alone – asked her to come move in with him and he would also cover all her bills.

Seriously, how shallow – and I say this as an alleged shallow, selfish, womanizing, narcissist – are people these days?

Her: It was kind of a cool offer but, meet a girl first, you know?
Me: Well, my son and I’ll take him up on his offer if he’s still looking.
Her: (laughing) You and your son want to live with him?
Me: If he’s paying all my bills and giving us free room and board, sure. Plus I cook. I don’t clean though.

Seriously, thank god for the average frustrated chump. They make grey men like me look amazeballs.

Her: (texting me later on that night and sending the below) Thanks for dinner! I think I was actually very nice to this guy.

Me: Please, for the love of god, please let me [share this].
Her: LOL! As long as you don’t [leave any identifying information], go for it.

Location: my blue bathroom, asking if he’s ok
Mood: so very entertained
Music: I would never break this promise (Spotify)
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Leveling up

Of course

Him: Hey
Me: Hola! How are you?
Him: Doing well! I’m in the city now. Thought you might have time.

I got a text the other day from a friend-of-a-friend and was without the boy so the next thing you know, I’m downtown near my buddy Pac’s place and getting some Vietnamese food and discussing some business.

Me: Do you want to get a drink?
Him: Sure.

We go next door to Whiskey Tavern, an old haunt of mine where I met one of the schoolteachers, and it’s packed so we head over to Pier A instead.

Struck up a conversation with the girlie sitting next to me.

Me: Sorry, are you Asian?
Her: I’m half. My last name’s Godwin.
Me: (later) I have to ask, how old are you?
Her: 23.
Me: Of course you are.
Her: How old are you?
Me: You’ll have to guess,.
Her: 29?
Me: I’m so not. But it was a pleasure to meet you, Ms. Godwin.

We bounced up to Ferns in the East Village where we met up with several of his co-workers.

Him: How do I only work a couple of days a week?
Me: (shrugging) Have the people you love die and leave you money. Trust me, I’d rather be in your shoes than mine. (shaking head) Sorry, that went dark. I should go.

I politely made my leave with my buddy and his friends.

Me: It was a pleasure meeting you all. (put on my red leather jacket)
Her: Whoa, Logan – you just seriously leveled up!
Me: (laughing) Wait, you haven’t seen the lining yet.

I bought the jacket when Alison got pregnant with the boy and we were close to giving birth. It was a present to myself; custom made with a custom lining.

Never wore it until six months after my dad passed. By then, I was so tired of black.

In any case, I left because I wanted to see someone.

Me: How about the hooka place near Solas?
Her: OK.

The waiter there recognized me immediately – a red leather jacket does come in handy – and we had a few drinks.

Afterwards, we headed over to a local Japanese udon shop, Udon West.

Me: Hungry?
Her: Starving! But I’m a pescatarian.
Me: (nodding) Of course you are.

It was late by the time she and I headed over to my place.

Her: We’re just friends, you know.
Me: Heavens, of course.

There’s more but that’s all I wanted to tell you for now.

The thing about living in Manhattan is that there always seems to be something to distract you from everything, right around the corner.

I could use some distractions.

Location: earlier today, playing volleyball with a balloon and the boy
Mood: thoughtful
Music: you’re the only reason I go downtown on the weekend

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Blogarama - Observations Blogs

Finding comedy when you can

Caught a cold

Empty NYC #2 subway car, 2014
I’m sick.

Was on the edge of a cold for a few days but the body decided to just take it all the way there yesterday.

It’s probably just as well, I need to just spend a few days resting the shoulder, which is still wonky.

Unfortunately, had to wake up this morning an cancel meetings I had lined up for the rest of the week.

As a byproduct of my being 41, a number of my clients these days were originally friends of mine. This leads to some interesting conversations.

Me: Can we reschedule for next Monday, 10AM?
Him: Can’t that’s prime bathroom time.
Me: (laughing) I’ve never had to reschedule a meeting because of … prime bathroom time.
Him: …that you know about!
Me: Can I use this in my blog?
Him: Sure, just don’t use my name.
Me: OK, Jon (not his real name…or is it?)

The key to life, I think, is to take the comedy you come across in life and enjoy it.

Which seems harder and harder these days, seeing as there seems to be so much unspeakable evil in the world.

Location: should be the bed
Mood: sick
Music: cradle your head in your hands and breathe, just breathe

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A night out with some college buddies

Met up with some friends I’ve known for 23 years

Signs at Jongro BBQ in NYC
Last night I said goodbye to an old friend, which is a post for next week maybe. And then said hello to eight college buddies for our semi-regular meetup.

We met up at Korean restaurant called Jongro BBQ that I’d not been to before.

We picked the coldest night of the week to do it but it turned out for the best since most of the joint was empty.

Brrrrr

It’s fashioned like an old time Korean village complete with signposts and a bike that we all debated if we should try to ride.

Bicycle

Gar: Well, let’s order first. Should we get some steak or ribs? Or maybe some steak tartare?
Me: Yes.

Steak at Jongro BBQ in NYC
We also had some unaged, unfiltered rice wine that looked like soymilk and served in chilled metal bowls. Delicious.

Drinks at Jongro BBQ in NYC

Ox: What do you think?
Me: I like any alcohol I can get in a plastic bottle.
SJ: And with a twist-off cap!

Afterwards, we ended up playing something they called credit card roulette. We all put our credit cards into a bag and the waiter picked out four of them; the four he picked didn’t have to pay while the other four picked up the tab. I was on the losing side.

Credit Card Roulette

Me: Dammit!
Ox: Looks like all the lawyers have to pick up the tab.
Me: Nobody likes lawyers.
SJ: At least you’re not Cappy, he had to pick up the tab himself last time.

Steak at Jongro BBQ in NYC

Afterward we caught some drinks over at a nearby bar.

Me: (to waiter) Seven Old Fashions with rye and a martini. Do you need to write it down?
SJ: (laughing) Yeah, Logan, he needs to write down, “Seven Old Fashions with rye and a martini.”

Old Fashioned

After the drinks came, we settled into more more conversations. We’d all known each other 23 some odd years, which boggles my mind.

Ox: You know, my wife and I read your blog on occasion.
Duck: Yeah, I read it too sometimes.
Me: Ah, thanks. I always wonder if anyone reads it.
Gar: Man, you have some opinions!
Me: I am nothing if not opinionated. Then again, what do I know?

I had an early morning phone conference so one of the guys and I headed over to the west side to catch the train uptown.

Jeffe: It was good seeing everyone. We should do it more often.
Me: More than every six years at least. Good seeing you man, get home safe.

Location: in front of computer screens
Mood: chilly
Music: I’m a part of your circle of friends

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Survival of the strongest

Most people misunderstand the phrase, Survival of the fittest

Fishes off Bermuda Docks

Been meaning to post this for a while.

My coach just forwarded an article by a Ph.D named Dr. Rhadi Ferguson about who would win in a fight between Superman and Batman. You can hear the author read it in his own words here.

Now I agree with almost everything the doctor says with one major exception. He says:

In battles the strongest guy does not [always] (sic) win, nor (does) the fittest, but the one that has those qualities and is the smartest.

With all due respect to Dr. Ferguson, he gets what everyone gets wrong about the term “Survival of the fittest.”

If I say to you the words, “Survival of the fittest,” what do you hear?

Dr. Ferguson – and most people – invariably people hear, “Survival of the strongest.” They define fittest as being physically fit.

But this is an issue of logical equivocation: The meaning of “fit” in this phrase doesn’t mean physically fit, but appropriate to the situation.

In that sense, then, the actual meaning is the opposite of what most people think.

The phrase: Survival of the fittest, means: Survival of the most appropriate.

If you were locked in a smoke-filled room having a 3-foot window with a small girl, a strongman, and a billionaire, while the girl is the weakest, the poorest, and the most inexperienced, she will most likely survive because she is the most fit – the most appropriate – for survival in that situation.

I think that’s why I have so many interests; I wanna have the broadest skill set possible for any situation that arises. One of my goals for 2015 is to dust off some skills I had that were once pretty good and sharpen then up.

Tank in Staten Island

Speaking of 2015 and having skills, I started the year, as usual, by making a huge pot of chili and by fixing some technology around the house.

We were originally planning on heading out for dinner but the weekend was rainy and my shoulder was killing me.

Her: (canceling a dinner reservation) Open Table will be so mad at me for canceling that reservation.
Me: You know that OpenTable isn’t sentient, right?

 

2015. Maybe this will be our year.

Homemade Chili

One more nerdy pet peeve of mine; people seem to think that Darwin coined the phrase, but he didn’t.

A fella named Herb Spencer, who read Darwin’s work, came up with the term. Darwin used the term himself five years after On Species came out.

OK, now I’m done.

Location: at my desk again
Mood: hopeful
Music: You can get along if you try to be strong

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A long and strange day

Doctors appointments, holiday parties, and violence

Scrubs at the doc's

Saw three doctors yesterday.

My day started at 5:30AM with a colonoscopy scheduled for 9AM. This meant a night of disgustingness the night before and then more of the same that morning.

Once I arrived, got right to work.

Doctor: I’m going to give you some anesthesia. It’ll feel like you had some wine. Do you want red or white?
Me: White. I’m more of a rum runner though.
Him: Rum we don’t have. See you in a little bit, Mr. Lo.

Woke up feeling pretty groggy. Got a Starburst afterward so there was that.

After I got home, got dressed and headed over to a completely different doctor’s office for an MRI for my shoulder. Turns out I have a torn infraspinatus in my left shoulder.

Doctor: Do you have any other questions?
Me: About life?
Her: (laughing) I don’t know if I’m qualified to answer all questions on life.

There was another doctor I saw but that’s a different matter. Then it was off to my office for our holiday party.

Having not eaten much in the last few days, devoured my weight in kosher sushi and pasta – an odd mix but perfect for a guy like me.

Co-Worker: You’re here? After seeing the doctor?
Me: THREE doctors. But I never miss a workday when there’s food involved.

Finally, headed out to teach my fencing class. Didn’t make it to bed until about midnight.

All-in-all a long and weird day that I’m glad is over.

Hope you have a much quieter, less eventful, and doctor-free next few days, folks.

Welcome to Greenwich Village NYC 2014

Location: home, resting
Mood: hungry
Music: Could we have kippers for breakfast?

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Orange is the new Jello

It’s a sad day in the city

New Yorker Sign

Some nutcase shot two cops to death this past weekend in my city. There’s not much for me to say on the matter except it’s sad.

The holidays are right around the corner and two families have to prepare for funerals instead of celebrations.

It’s hard to make sense of the senseless.

———-

On another topic entirely, looks like there was a pretty quick outcome to the case I was involved in.

Not allowed to get into specifics but my client asked me to work with him on another case, so that’s good.

It’s like that Alexandre Dumas quote, Nothing succeeds like success.

Oysters at Cafe Espanol, NYC

Had a long night on Friday; went to two events – one for a client and the other for my old friend Johnny.

Went to Johnny’s first, at Cafe Espanol downtown. It was the first time I had Spanish food since I went to Spain and it was just one plate of deliciousness after another coupled with pitchers of mojitos. May have had an entire pitcher myself.

Had some killer seafood and far too much of a 10-person sized portion of paella.

Him: Are you full?
Me: Stuffed.
Him: Do you want more?
Me: Yes.

By the time I arrived at the client event, most people were already fairly snockered so I made my rounds and headed home.

Orange is the new Jello

I have a colonoscopy scheduled for tomorrow. So that means today nuthin but orange jello and clear liquids.

At least I did a lot of eating this past week.

Wife: Sorry you have to do this, I know how much you like to eat.
Me: I love to eat! This is gonna be rough.

Location: desk, hungry
Mood: hangry
Music: you’ve worn me down, worn me down like a road

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I’m falling apart

But getting older is better than the alternative

Edison Lights at an office party

I try never to miss a Monday post but my site completely crashed the other day. Spent days trying to get it to work again.

Which is pretty much what’s going on with myself these days; I have a new injury – tore my rotator cuff in my fencing class and then, stupidly, went to my wrasslin class the next day.

Been icing it going on three weeks now. Actually wrote my coach to ask him to suspend my account because it doesn’t look like I’ll be going for a while.

Also, saw the doc for an annual checkup and now have a colonoscopy scheduled because I’m 41.

Finally, I picked up my first pair of glasses in maybe 20 years last week.

I’m getting older and I don’t like it.

Then again, to quote French actor Maurice Chevalier, Old age isn’t so bad when you consider the alternative.

Friend: Remember, if it happens in an alleyway and the dr gives YOU money afterwards, it’s not a colonoscopy!
Me: Lemme Google that.
Him: Image search is best.

Bicycle hanging on a pole in NYC

On a positive note, wrapped up all my major projects for the year. Have the regular day-to-day client work but nothing major.

So I had time to go to three different holiday parties where I ate my body-weight in various forms of carbohydrates and have at least two more scheduled.

Was going to spend the week going to the gym to balance out those items but it looks like it’s just going to be me and my icepack for the forseeable future.

On some positive notes, I did see a bike strapped to a pole and toilet bowl in the middle of the street, though.

I’m clearly grasping at this point.

Toilet in middle of 8th Avenue, NYC

Location: desk, with ice pack
Mood: deflated
Music: They are the hunters, We are the rabbits

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Stretches of boredom and high anxiety

Was a busy week last week

Protests in NYC near Rockefeller Center 2014.12.03

It seems that the closer I get to the finish line, the farther away it gets. Thought I’d be done this Wednesday with everything but some new things just cropped up.

Last week, though, was a whirlwind of work. Had to stay later in the office than I wanted to to talk to a new client. Caught the bus home.

At least I started to, but then protestors surrounded us and filled the streets so we couldn’t move. Ended up leaving that bus you see up there and finding another way back to the pad.

Federal Court in Brooklyn

Friday I was in Brooklyn Federal Court. I’m rarely in court and even more rarely in Federal court.

The difference between State Court and Federal Court is like the difference between a burger and prime rib; they’re both good, but one is usually more impressive.

Really got into it with the opposing lawyer.

Him: You said it was noon when in fact it was after noon.
Me: That’s a distinction without a difference. It has zero bearing on the issue at hand. The fact it’s important to you, doesn’t mean it’s actually important.

Oddly, though, he thanked me afterward for being courteous. The way I look at it, I don’t need to be a douchebag if I’m right. And I was right.

If I can sum up court, it would be exactly as described in a blog post on https://kratomystic.com/ that I read last week: long stretches of boredom with periods of high – extremely high – anxiety.

At least I got to break for lunch and have a spinach pie at Siggy’s.

Camden Plaza

The weekend was markedly better.

Saw my brother and also celebrated my friend’s birthday with the wife. Really nice group of people. Had a killer steak (speaking of steaks…) and some top shelf booze.

Him: What did you order?
Me: An old fashioned with rye. (turning to waitress) Make that two.

Have some food pics, of course, but I figure I’ll post that some other time.

Back Room at Tessa, NYC UWS

Birthday Cake

Location: close, so close, to the finish
Mood: anxious
Music: It’s been awhile since I’ve been stylin’ in just my jacket and my jeans

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