My MIL called me today to tell me that my son rang her while at the park today – he’s got this Dick Tracy watch thingy that we just got repaired.
You can kinda see in the pic above.
She said this was the conversation she overheard.
Him: That’s my grandma! Hi grandma! Her: Are you with your friends? Him: Yes. They’re a bit annoying. Girl: (in the distance) I just wanted to give you a hug. Him: (turning to her) That’s really unnecessary.
Remember that I told you that I’ve been seeing a therapist? Every single one of our weekly sessions’ve been starting off the same way…
Me: So, you’re not gonna be believe what happened to me this week. Her: This is different than what happened last week?! Me: Yeah. (afterward) Listen, I’m not crazy, this actually happened. Don’t 2PC me.**
Wonder if she thinks I’m just making stuff up. Heck, I wonder if you think I’m making stuff up.
FWIW, I wish I was just making all this up. Imagine if I were just an insane lad?
Maybe I am mad. Reality’s worse, though. My reality, anywho.
She did ask if I had anything happen that was good recently and I told her, honestly, that I had two weekday wins.
As a lawyer, I concentrate in a very narrow, relatively arcane, area of the law. One of my buddies got a threatening letter from an attorney that just happened to be in my exact wheelhouse. So, I dashed off a quick little letter and shot it off to him.
Less than three hours later, the threat was withdrawn.
Him: They totally just folded. Me: I wouldn’t call myself an expert in anything. But in *that* particular area of the law, I wouldn’t fuck with me. Him: I believe it.
Still, the weekend was a stressful mess with me thinking that my pad’d flood again.
I got a plumber and workmen in to do what they could to ameliorate the issue and there was no new flooding.
But the aftermath of it all was still palpable, and I’m still reeling from it all.
Did manage to have some entertainment but that’s a story for another time.
The Heiress, and several of Chad’s other friends, wanted to invest in the gym. Chad’s in a weirdly lucky spot where he has more people wanting to help him than he has place to put them.
Him: Should I take their take their investment? Me: Everything comes at a cost. At the end of the day, this is your slice of the world. You get to pick who you share it with. For me, the less people involved in my slice of the world, the better.
The Heiress is an interesting character for sure; the fact she’s ridonk wealthy is cool, but doesn’t really affect me in any meaningful way.
The fact that she understands tragedy and brain cancer is much more impactful.
Perhaps a little too impactful.
Her: Yes, I was thinking that I might not be the right one for you, and vice versa. Me: I get it. In the end, we’re all just looking for our tribe, one way or another.
Who knows, perhaps she’s the mad one and I’m the sane one? Who else would want to get involved with me in any capacity, given my track record?
Me: You still have time to cut me out, you know. Chad: It’s too late, Logan. We’re in it. Let’s go.
Speaking of Chad, with all the craziness of last week, I forgot to tell you that we had a new Scenic Fights video.
I think that we’ve really hit our stride with Scenic Fights these days.
It’s onea the few things I’m really jazzed about these days.
OK, I’ll call that a win too.
** There’s no good definition I can find for 2PC so I’ll just explain it here. In NYS and other states, if two doctors think that you’re nuts, they can lock you up in a mental ward, essentially indefinitely, and you have few-to-no legal means to get let out. It’s short for “two-physician commitment.”
When Alison and my dad were both in the ER, a relative of mine was 2PCed and I couldn’t help for obvious reasons.
Been talking to the Heiress quite a bit. She offered to send me the full amount of the theft.
Me: What? That’s insane! No. Her: I already cut you a check, Logan. It’s fine. It’s just money.
I didn’t take it, though. Although, that was before the flood.
After the flood, she was concerned about our staying in the apartment and kindly offered to fly the boy and me down to Miami in her jet to stay at her home there for a bit.
If I wasn’t trying to keep an eye on things here, I woulda said yes.
Unfortunately, we had another misunderstanding that I’m still trying to wrap my head around. Communication is the hardest thing between any two people.
The thing is, both parties have to at least want to try and understand each other. I suppose it’s just easier to think that the other is a selfish narcissist, though.
Shame, though. Don’t meet too many smoking hot billionaires in my regular day-to-day.
Meeting the Heiress reminded me of two, very lovely, women I met way before I started this blog.
One was the daughter of a film director.
She had crashed her Lambo right before we met so she was a little banged up. Evidently, I was super nice to her, so she developed a crush on me. She told me that if I moved with her to Singapore, I would never have to work another day in my life.
Gotta say, as a 20-something, was kinda intrigued. But, I ended up saying, no. I did crash at her pad for a while before I locked down my current (flooding) pad.
Before that, I met a designer that had a good amount of success on her own, coupled with money from her father.
She also told me something along the lines of, “If you stay with me, you can just do what you want all day…as long as you love me.”
The problem was that I didn’t love her, despite all her great qualities. I didn’t love either of them.
Love’s a weird thing. There’s no rhyme or reason for why you fall in love with one person but not another.
But man, when you find love, it’s something else. I wouldn’t have given up the two women I actually loved for anything or anyone.
On that note, I spoke to the Doctor – whom I also dated in my 20s – briefly on the phone this week because I still manage one of her properties for her. Purely business but it was the first time I’d heard her voice in years. It was a head trip.
As I write this, I remember a night where Buckley and I drank with one of her uncles and he said that he would buy me a yellow Porche when we got married. I remember wondering why it had to be yellow. In hindsight, he probably had one he had to get rid of.
Lost touch with the FDD and the Designer but I last heard they were happy, as is the Doctor. That’s good.
Maybe I don’t fuck everything up.
Or maybe they’re not fucked up because they didn’t end up with me?
Don’t answer that.
Things like Porches, Lamborginis, and private jets are nice.
But I’d trade it all in a heartbeat for family and a quiet middle-class life with the boy and my person.
I came back to find that my fridge was busted.
My luck rings ever true.
Him: Well, that’s your problem right there, your motherboard burned out. Me: The fridge has a motherboard? Him: Yeah, man, it’s 2021, dontchaknow?
I could deal with most anything if they were spaced the fuck out.
When the dams break And the streets flood I’m stuck trying to fight my way out When the earth shakes And the floor drops Free falling, I hit it all on my way down Good or bad nothing lasts I tell myself Ooh I know I will see the sun Even when it feels like The day will never come When everything is broken seems like the light is gone Ooh I know ooh I know I will see the sun When nothing feels real But a heartbeat When you’re so numb, that it seems just like a movie Then you’re crying like a little kid Guess no one said that this life would be easy Good or bad nothing lasts
The last two weeks have been a struggle for reasons that we don’t need to get into but you can probably figure out.
One thing I think about a lot is whether it’s worth it or not to keep this blog up. Because I’m 100% certain that it’s this blog that triggered the events that lead to everything going down.
On the flip side, I’ve gotten so many friends and amazing relationships as a direct result of this blog.
And it’s almost like my second brain in that it reminds me of memories I had in my possible pasts.
So, I wonder if I just start heavily censoring myself and edit out anything too personal OR I take it down and just switch over to something like Twitter where I write less and perhaps reveal less.
There’s actually a lot I want to tell you but it’s all a jumble of events and dates in my head that I suppose I’ll have to sort out before I post about it, if at all.
Because of everything, ended up flaking on everyone that I was seeing the past several weeks including the CEO…
Me: Man, I am really digging your positivity. Her: Likewise!
…and the blond banker…
Her: I don’t like guys I can walk all over. Me: (laughing) OK, be mean to you. Got it. Her: (continuing) I like brilliant ivy league hedge fund guys. The problem is that everyone has so many options out there. Me: My brother said something funny once: “People weren’t meant to have this many food or life partner options.
…among others. But it’s probably for the best because my mind is wrapped up in everything that’s been going on.
Did manage to out for the weekend and meet some new people but that’s another story for another time as well.
Two people I know only spend the 4th of July with family and I think that’s a sweet sentiment.
My boy’s away so it gave me an excuse to stay home with my thoughts.
Him: Calling in to check up on you. You sure you don’t wanna come out? Everyone would love to see you. Me: Nah, I’m good. Him: Sitting at home thinking of everything you’ve lost isn’t going to help anything, Logan. Me: It’s a distinction without a difference: Doesn’t matter where I am, I think about everything and everyone I’ve lost. Him: True. But we have hot dogs here. Me: (laughing) Compelling…
Him: This is what you do, Logan. You survive things. Me: I’m tired of surviving things, man. I wanna live. I’ve been a shell of myself for the past seven years. I wanna live. Him: You will. You’re the strongest guy I know. Me: But I don’t want to be. I’m tired of being the strongest guy people know. I just wanna be a normal dude with a family and a boring fucking life. Why is that so much to ask?
In my life, I’ve had a number of horrors. Some turned out to be fine, like when I thought I had testicular cancer but I didn’t.
My father dying was a horror as well. But, we all understood that he lived a good long life.
Of course, we all wished he lived longer and died more peacefully. But wishes are for children. And I stopped being a child decades ago.
Alison dying was the most horrific thing that has ever happened to me up to this point. It still gives me nightmares. It always will.
But two weeks ago, someone stole my phone number – not my phone, my phone number – and that was the start of a horror that was nowhere as near as bad as Alison and my dad dying but far worse than losing my life’s savings at 34.
So much worse. You have no fucking idea.
I’ve spent the last two weeks trying to fix everything but it felt like being trapped in a spider’s web. I could move, but I knew it was just a matter of time before the inevitable.
Just like when I was 34, it’ll be years before I return to the level I lost and I feel, some new horror is waiting for me.
The thing that kept me up the most was that I had no one to help.
While friends like Chad and Miller were constantly checking on me…
Him: I’m at the beach, homie. Just checking in. Me: I’ve got ok moments and awful moments. I still can’t wrap my head around how much I lost. It’s mind boggling.
…it’s not the same as a partner in life.
Don’t think I’ve ever felt as alone as I have in the last two weeks. It made me realize exactly where I am in life with many things.
I guess I’ve been sleepwalking longer than I care to admit. But, if nothing else, I’m awake now.
The thing that hurt the most was that the boy had his “graduation” the week everything went down and, even though I was physically there, mentally, I missed the whole thing.
He’s been away so I’ve the time to clean up my life and this here blog. If you click a link and find it broken, it’s probably due to this thing.
(c) Associated Press
But then I read the news this morning that they’ve been finding children’s bodies in the rubble in Florida and I realized that this was nothing compared to the grief these families were dealing with.
There’s always more room for down, so I’m grateful for what I have; the friends and family I have, among other things.
Years ago, when I thought I hit rock bottom – which seems laughable in hindsight – Bryson put both of his hands on my shoulders and said, as gently and as seriously as possible, “Logan, sometimes, you just gotta say, ‘Fuck it.’ Fuck this shit, man.”
Some of the best advice I’ve ever gotten. Still is.
Fuck it. It is what it is. I survive shit. Even when I don’t wanna survive shit, I do. I eat grief every fucking day and have for the past decade. A little more won’t change shit.
That’s all I’ll say on the matter.
Back to the usual nuthin soon.
Location: home, looking for some papers and a goddamn mosquito because, of course, there’s a goddamn mosquito here
Mood: fuck it
Music: Sorry, I’m not home right now (Spotify) Subscribe! Like this post? Tell someone about it by clicking a button below.
On that note, here he is breaking down Captain America: The Winter Soldier.
I hobbled to the doctor’s and, after a buncha questions, x-rays, and whatnot, gout was the conclusion.
Oddly, the reason for it may have more to do with my intermittent fasting per a video my buddy Aric sent me.
All in all, it was not a great day.
The few days before that weren’t any great shakes either.
Me: You did what?! Son: Are you mad? Me: I don’t think the word “mad” fully captures the range of emotions I’m feeling right now, boy.
Some people think I push the kid too hard; others, not hard enough. I figure that this means I’m probably doing ok. But we do have these types of convos:
Him: I don’t need to know how to do that, you’ll do it for me. Me: For now. But you need to learn how to do it yourself. Him: Why? Me: People are valued for their skills; the more skills you have, the more valuable you are. The less skills you have, the less valuable the world considers you.
If being a parent has taught me anything, it’s a profound respect for my own parents.
I realize now, how difficult it must have been for them as two very young foreigners (20something and 30something) in a foreign land raising three children while being immigrant poor.
I have one kid and live on the Upper West Side of Manhattan and I still feel like I’m struggling.
Yet it’s still some of the most interesting work I’ve ever done. It forces me to question whether or not I truly understand the world as it is.
Him: Why is fire hot? Me: I never thought about it. Let’s look it up.
On a deeper level, what I see lacking the most in the world is critical thinking, which is analyzing a given set of facts and making sense of them.
The pitfalls are:
Poor actions based on the conclusion
I see people mess up at least one, sometimes all four, at least once a day.
And the biggest problem with people is that they think that the world adjusts to their level of skill, rather than the adjusting their level of skill to the world.
My parents wanted us to get accolades – A+s and Ivy Leagues – and I get that. But what I want for the boy is much more modest, I want him to have general life skills coupled with an ability to critically think.
The most unsuccessful, lonely people, are those that expect certain things of the world and are angry that the world doesn’t match their expectations.
I get that, more than most.
But, at the end of the day, the world doesn’t care what we want or hope, only how we respond to it.
Him: Why do I have to learn this? Me: Because the world doesn’t adjust to your level of skill. So you have to do it the other way around.
That post I wrote about years about about the grief button remains the truest thing about grief I know.
This past weekend was busy, tiring, and fun. Oh, so much fun.
Chad, who’s normally pretty funny, was messing up the shoot for everyone because he was just full-on hilarious.
Me: (to the director) You gotta leave if you can’t stop laughing. Him: (though tears) I gotta, yeah. I gotta.
Hopefully, some of the insanely funny things he said will come across the videos.
And Mouse and I have been getting along better than we have in a while. Plus the kid’s been adorbs.
All-in-all, I’ve been doing pretty well. That is, until I did my taxes.
You see, Alison did our taxes because she was a math whiz. And when she got sick, I did them, as best I could. Been doing them ever since.
I just finished them up before our weekend shoot when I remembered that our tax software was linked up to Alison’s email addy so I signed in and…nuthin.
Evidently, Yahoo erases ALL YOUR FUCKING EMAIL if you don’t log on for a while. Which I didn’t. She had that email since she was a kid.
Everything that made her life hers, digitally, was there. Because she lived before texts and FB but after email so the bulk of her digital life – as it were – was on that.
That gutted me.
But then I spoke to her mother and we both agreed that, because I never read her emails in the four years since she left, I never would have. And I have no business reading it because those were for her and not for the kid or me.
That brought me some peace. Still, it was a rough day/night.
Then today – the very next day – I got a phone call from my very last client that I did work for back in 2015 before Alison went into the hospital.
Him: I had a question I wanted to ask you so I hope you don’t mind my calling. Hey, how’d it all go your first child? Boy or girl? How’s momma? Me: … I’m…outside right now him, actually. Can I call you back? Him: (confused) Oh, sure. Sure. We’ll catch up later.
And it’s like I stepped on the grief button and just stood on it. Grief-stricken.
It hit me all at once. I remembered.
I remembered Alison telling me to take that one last gig because we would both be busy raising the kid for the first 60 days and we’d need the money.
Little did we know just how fucked up the first 60 548 days of the kid’s life would be.
For just a moment, I felt the awful emptiness that I felt after Alison left.
I stood there with the most insane impostor syndrome feeling you could imagine.
The fuck are you doing, Logan? You’re not a dad, you can barely raise a houseplant. And you’re trying to raise a kid without her? Are you mad?
So, I just crumpled into the same park bench that Alison and I walked by a million times but never sat at because we never had a kid that needed watching on that goddamn park bench.
Him: Papa, papa, can I…wait, what happened? Me: I…I hit something and it hurts. So, I had to sit down. Him: Was it your foot? (I nod) I’m sorry it hurts. Me: (deep breath) Thanks, kid. You go play. Papa needs to just breathe through it. Him: I’ll stay with you. We can breathe together! (starts breathing deeply) Me: OK. Thank you.
Mouse and I’ve been fighting. Hard to say why, exactly.
I tell you that as background to the following conversation.
Me: I need a favour. My uncle died and I need to know if you can watch the boy and lend me your car on Monday so I can say, “goodbye.” Her: What time? Me: 9AM to 1PM or so? Her: OK. I’m sorry about your uncle. Me: I am too. And thank you.
And that’s Mouse in a nutshell. To know her is to love her.
She came by, right on time, and immediately started chilling with the boy while I dashed off in my black suit and shirt to go someplace that no one ever wants to go.
Didn’t sleep a wink the night before so I got there in a complete haze.
When I arrived, I texted my cousins – the two children of my uncle and a third from my other uncle, his older brother. It was the first time I saw all of them since Alison and I got married.
I sat outside in the cold car trying to steel myself to enter. I called Mouse, ostensibly to check in on the boy.
Her: Are you ok? Me: Honestly? No. Her: You got this. We’ll be here when you get back. Me: OK.
So I went in.
I said hi to my uncle’s son first and wanted to say hi to the daughter and my aunt but I couldn’t. I just stood quietly in the corner.
Funerals should always be about the person that died, not some rando that shows up and makes a scene so I composed myself as best I could.
After a bit, I walked over to the daughter, and then my aunt, who sat with my other cousin, and said hello. I’d still not really walked up to my uncle yet. I was putting that off.
I told my aunt I was sorry and she just nodded. She looked old and she never looks old. Rather, she looked shellshocked and I knew that look. Think I looked that way for most of 2017.
Finally gathered up the courage to go to my uncle and when I saw him, I had to laugh. He wore a suit but under the suit was a red CARVEL tee-shirt.
Of course, that was so perfectly him. He was so proud of his store and his work.
My mom told me to tell him some things from her…
I’m sorry you had to go through this. You didn’t deserve it. But you’re with grandma and grandpa now. And if you see my dad, please tell him we miss him, terribly. And we miss you.
…but I added my own little thing.
You never met Alison but you would have loved her. She always said she couldn’t wait for the three of us to head over to Carvel and eat as much ice cream as we possibly could. If you see her, tell her the boy and I love her so very much. She’ll want some ice cream, but not plain vanilla. Ah, the boy and her woulda both loved you and you, them.
Don’t remember much else. I did see a dozen women show up, crying. These were all the girls he hired across 30+ years. I overheard one woman say that she met her husband at that ice cream shop and that she loved my uncle.
Realized then that that was the reason he was my favourite uncle: To know him was to love him. Just like my mom, my dad, Alison, and all the people I’ve loved in my life.
On the way back, I got lost – even with GPS – at least three times.
And when I tried to gas up Mouse’s whip, my card was declined but then my phone rang asking me if I would authorize the charge.
I clicked yes and bam, it worked.
Wonder what tiny but amazing things the kid’ll see that I’ll never see.
Me: I should be back by 2. Her: We didn’t eat lunch yet. Me: Don’t wait for me, there’s some brined pork in the… Her: We’re waiting for you to come back and make us lunch. Me: Done. It’s a deal.
My uncle died from COVID yesterday, just after noon. That’s him with my grandma and how I picture both of them in my head. I loved them both, very much.
My mother said the saddest thing when she told me. What she said in Chinese was, My little brother ran away.
That’s what broke me that day. He was my uncle, but he was her baby brother.
He was actually my favourite uncle because he always seemed thrilled to see us. He owned and operated a Carvel in NJ for decades and none of us ever saw him without coming back with a cooler full of ice cream.
And yet, all I could think about was all that Alison had been cheated out of. The same for Fouad. Nick. Kirk. My Uncle Jay. And now my Uncle Nelson, whom I used to call JoJo.
It’s not right. It’s not fair.
They deserved to be more than mirrors and magnifying glasses to Alison and yet, that’s all I can muster. And the guilt from that is just more bullshit bonus.
I’m rambling. I’m sorry.
Everything’s fucked up and nothing’s right in my head anymore. Nothing’s been right since November 2015.
My uncle took us all fishing once, when I was a kid.
I remember being so deliriously happy that day and I thought he was the coolest guy ever. He deserved so much more than this.
Son: You’re thinking of mommy. Me: Yes. I’m thinking of family. How did you know? Him: You went (breathes deeply) Me: (nodding) You’re a smart boy. Him: Are you sad? Me: Now, how sad could I be? I have you.