Thurs, Aug 31: Skin in the Game

– First sweater of the season, a favorite grey crewneck. L Train to work.

– Goodbye lunch at Laut, a Thai / Singaporean spot on 17th, for a coworker who’s moving to SF. I got basil fried rice because it wasn’t spicy. Didn’t want to risk jum-tum with basketball on the docket. Sad repast.

–  At 5:30, our motley collection of engineers, data lords, and me made our way to Penn South Park in Chelsea. We’ve been playing basketball once a week for a couple months now. I would describe the caliber of play as: underwhelming. But it’s nice to run around and get shots up, feel alive for a couple hours. We played til 7:30, then I walked the 12 blocks down to the L and went home, my fellow straphangers giving me ample space on the train.

– Showered, ate Advil, foam-rolled the gams. Realized an enormous tract of skin had come halfway undone from the bottom of my big toe, the new skin below it deeply pink and raw, the skin of an infant. I took a few pictures and a Boomerang (ask if you’d like to see), clipped the trophy free with nail-cutters. It was grisly. I will not look good dead.

– Dinner at Dar525, my favorite spot in the neighborhood. I go at least once a week, taking what’s now my customary table on their covered, street-facing patio. The $9 falafel platter, served with a huge pita, baba ganoush, hummus, salad, and tahini is an easy contender for best under $10 meal in New York. It was too dark to read, so I scrolled through social media and dating apps. The previous day I’d changed my Tinder profile to Dr. Evil’s monologue from the first Austin Powers movie (when he’s in group therapy):

My father was a relentlessly self-improving boulangerie owner from Belgium with low-grade narcolepsy and a penchant for buggery. My mother was a fifteen-year-old French prostitute named Chloe with webbed feet. My father would womanize, he would drink, he would make outrageous claims like he invented the question mark. Sometimes he would accuse chestnuts of being lazy, the sort of general malaise that only the genius possess and the insane lament.

It was not having the intended effect, which is “girls loving it”. So I switched it again to something more heartfelt. They don’t tell you when you’re younger than finding love is really just a matter of exhaustive a/b testing.

– Today technically marks my two-year anniversary in New York. I’ll be celebrating in earnest tomorrow. Here’s my blog post from that fateful night. Good reminder that they have meat pies at Northern Territory.   


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