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September 30, 2002
The lesson is, when I

The lesson is, when I have something to say, something to dump, as it were, I should do it right away. Otherwise I find myself 3 or 4 days later, sitting here with a pile of tiny scraps of paper with notes on them, a small stack of various little notebooks with other notes, and when I read the notes, I'm disconnected, don't care about what I had cared about a few days ago, and end up letting it all go. This is a problem.

Friday I went to have lunch and hang out with Sonja and Arye. These are relatively new friends of mine, so it's fun to spend time, it's new, different. Arye is a character that could only exist in New York. He conforms to so many of the stereotypes of a Upper West Side Jewish Kid, it's hard to believe. I've been to restaurants with him twice, and both times he made some kind of issue with the waiter about substitutions, pricing, etc. For example, "So, it says here guacamole is $.75, but I don't want cheese on my burrito, so I can have guacamole instead, and just charge me the original price, since I'm not getting the cheese?" or "When I asked for a side of guacamole, the way the guy said it, I assumed it was going to be free, so I don't want to pay for it." This last one actually worked, which is really the root of the problem. It also very well illustrates why I don't work in food service. If it had been me, I would have told him to shove it up his ass and quit on the spot. Interesting that both incidents revolved around guacamole. It is a rather contentious condiment.

Saturday Liz went to Jersey to play in a volleyball tournament, so I had the day to myself. I went on a voyage to see Apollo 13 on the IMAX screen at Lincoln Center. First, in the morning, I watched High Fidelity, which made me cry. Apollo 13 made me cry too. Go figure.

On the way into the city, I decided I really need to simplify my life. I was lugging like 20 pounds of shit with me, it was just ridiculous. I had also decided to take a discman with me, which I never do, and that added to the clutter. I was juggling all kinds of gadgets, trying to get through turnstiles, it was silly. I did an inventory, here it go:
-me, clothed (t-shirt, pants, socks, underwear, shoes).
-about $70 in cash, debit card, ID
-like 8 pens
-pocket knife
-discover magazine
-the village voice
-naked by david sedaris
-hacky sack
-car keys
-house keys
-two lighters (I don't smoke)
-subway map
-little black journal/notebook
-little yellow journal/notebook
-3 CDs
-portable, fold-out keyboard for PDA
-cotton terry headband
-back country first-aid and extended care booklet
-small pump
-bag of advil
-hand sanitizer
-waterproof matches
-artificial tears
-several chapsticks (I hate the stuff)

Now it's important to note that I recently went through my backpack and took out everthing I deemed unessential. Really.

Yesterday, Sunday, Luke, Jeanhee, Liz and I went down to Jersey to play in the coed divisions of the volleyball tournament. It was the last beach tournament of the season, and only the second time Liz and I managed to play together in coed. We came in second in our division, won $80 worth of sweatshirts. In fact we would have won our division, but the team that beat us in the finals had a ringer. He was practically a professional, but had never played coed in this league, so he was allowed to play in our division. He was playing with a girl who he coaches in high school and, as he put it, he "wanted to get her some time on the beach". If that was really the case, though, he wouldn't have been playing so hard, spiking visciously and so on. He in fact would take served balls from her if possible, which didn't exactly give her a lot of practice. Having found this information out after we lost to them in pool play, in the finals we focused all of our serves and hits on the girl and it worked pretty well, we lost only 15-10, and I think gave the guy a little scare. We also dug up lots of his hits and serves, and generally played well against them. It would have been better if we'd have beaten them, though.

I have a couple of small goals for myself to complete before Wednesday this week, so I'd better get to it. I'm not mentioning what the goals are, though, so I still have a chance to back out.


Previous Comments

Based on your reponse to the movies, I'd say the artificial tears are a non-essential item in your backpack. I'd also question the small pump, various chapsticks and the terry headband...but that's just me. And I'm sure that compass will come in handy one of these days when we get lost in the Bronx. On second thought, that terry headband could also be a lifesaver if we're ever lost in the 'hood.

urban survival tip #357:
when lost in 'the hood'
1 use terry headband to make slingshot
2 shoot hard object , (such as a compass) at would be thugs
3 run like hell while screaming like a baby

congrats on the tourney. you guys looked great out there, especially digging that guy's hits and when you served the unreturnable serve down the line against that pro chump when he was cheating over to his partner's half of the court!