Author Archive

Overheard

My friend rko was in town past week. He is a piece of work. Within 30 minutes of meeting a friend of a friend, he actually asked her: “how much did you charge for second base [when you were a teenager?]” Those words actually came out of his mouth. She was polite enough to laugh nervously and then flee.

Interns

The new summer intern here was telling me about a street cart on 53rd and 6th ave. I wanted to throw him out the window. I refuse to do the age math on this situation but suffice to say its fucking grim GRIM.

The entire episode has me reviewing the employee handbook’s section on permissible forms of intern hazing. It’s very vague, but ambiguity is the playground of my profession. Can’t wait til my assigned mentee starts in the midsummer session.

Reunion notes

Best job of classmates:
1st place: Director of veterinarian public health for City of New York
Runner up: Historian

Best meet cute with spouse:
1st place: “We met at Circle.”
Runner up: “My visa was up.”

Best career change:
1st place: left law firm job, created health care startup.
Runner up: left law firm job, became statistician. (DO YOU SEE A THEME)

Most fascinating person I met but never knew during college:
1st place: a guy named Miguel, who
is living in Panama, where he works for the Panama Canal.

Best quote:
1st place: “I think [your friend] hooked up with every one of my friends except for me. I’m almost insulted.”
Runner up: “You look… older.”

—-

Revisiting your old late night food places, after your college reunion banquet and drunk, is the most visceral way to learn that nostalgia is a fool’s game. Whether we knew contemporaneously that koronets pizza was sour flatbread and our fond memories made it sweeter in the intervening years, or we are re-judging old plates with more worldly palettes, or maybe the place just went to crap since we left. That is to say, nice moments in time are almost never reproducible.

Reminds me of fireflies at dusk. You know: Blink. BLINK. At once: seemingly ubiquitous, beautiful, regular, oh, common. BLINK. Then a last round of lights fades and you wished the fireflies had just warned you that this was the last round so you savored it but all you can do now is memorize a fading light.

I wonder how much of changing the world is merely waiting for other people to die.

Vitamins

Apparently I am allergic to this multi vitamin supplement I started taking. That’s all you need to know about the state of my physical health: that my body is actively repulsing nutrients.

Idea: tribal stream watching

With more television being binge-consumed, we lose a sense of community watching. Idea: Netflix lets you form a viewer group with your friends, and no one can watch the next episode until everyone in the group has caught up.

Side piece

Seeking: mistress to send all the awesome links I send to girlfriend that she doesn’t bother to read.

Title of this blog in alternate universes

Selfish Crab Boating Enthusiast
Selfish Crab Detective Agency
Selfish Crab: Expat in Hong Kong
Selfish Crab Programming Pearls
Selfish Crab Dog Fotoblog
Selfish Crab: Fixing Up My First House
Selfish Crab And Family
Selfish Crab Happiness is Forever!!!

Battlestar Galactica

There was a point in time, somewhere halfway through the fourth season of Battlestar Galactica, where I thought of death. Of how relentlessly it comes. Of how helpless it must feel, those last dirty minutes, probably connected to some machine, and surrounded by the infirm, them coughing, always coughing.

That a television show, let alone a tv show with flying spaceships, makes me feel this way is nothing short of incredible. I suppose the show’s science fiction bent makes for an alienness that forces the mind to consider the themes anew, rather than gloss over it like a story you’ve heard before. Mysticism, faith, the cycle of violence, morality of warfare, justice, terrorism, human mortality, it’s all there, interleaved with scenes of twitchy action BANG BANG KABOOM to slake your baser appetites. And it’s topped off with one of the strongest group of characters that happen to be female on any television show.

Recommended, and available on Netflix instant streaming.

Yeezus is some Clockwork Orange type music. Holy hell. I mean, he samples “Strange Fruit”, a Billie Holiday hymn about lynching.

That age where complaining about having too much hair approaches complaining about having too much money.

I only listen to music for the inconsolable heart.

Finding Nemo holds up; Toy Story 3 does not.

Watching a season of Mad Men, then In the Mood for Love, renders a man skeptical of fidelity, and sour on the the human condition.

Par for course

In the past month, I have become an avid up cigar smoker, and have just bought my first set of golf clubs. I did not realize that in my 30s I would transform into a middle aged white man.

Insult

I once quarreled heatedly with a friend, where he said– okay shouted– that I was a horrible person; that the only reason people were friends with me was because they had known me since childhood; that in every group of friends there is always some loser that is tolerated out of sheer loyalty; and that I was that loser.

Yknow, in fights and arguments, there are good ways to fight and bad ways to fight… And then there are fucking dirty-nukes-in-briefcases-hidden-in-grade-schools ways to fight. Oof.

On Airports

I find airport terminals to be places from which one can replenish one’s pre-existing notions and prejudices. It seems logical, dunnit; a spectrum of people all heading to or coming from a single common place. Eg., Them people from that state sure are fat. Lotta Asians over there live in that city. And yonder: a real horror show, a parade alternating betwixt the ugly and the grotesque. Take this gate for a flight bound for LA, for example. All the attractive people are obviously would-be actors.

One girl, tall, slim, a substitute Thandy Newton, and wearing pink heels that match her pink shirt. She’s accompanied by a squat man with greasy skin and purple dyed hair, dressed in all black, adorned in too many rings, necklaces, and charms (and lacking in any his own). I want to call him Roadie, or Roach, or Toad. They appear to be a couple, but a reluctant one. He puts his hand on the small of her back, and she is uncomfortable, but somehow feels obligated to oblige him. At first glance, I thought he was a fanboy asking an autograph from a starlet, but now I almost suspect some form of low level sex trafficking.

There are also children. Lots and lots of children. They are making noises. It is chaos, and I want to lie down, and I have been standing here for 5 minutes. To be clear, it’s not crying or yelling that upsets me– I’ve put up with worse flails from human adults– but rather it’s their chaotic sense of merriment that irks me. They have a positive feedback loop where yelps beget shrieks, shrieks beget aural maelstrom. I pray that the flight attendants permit us to place them in the cargo hold.

Here is another girl who i recognize from before the layover, all the way from LGA. She must have been the pretty girl in her class the one everyone said would make it. She is encased in light coffee skin, wrapped across a toned body. She must be a yoga instructor, because only professional aptitude would explain her body; there is no way that is the product of a mere hobbyist. She is wearing a tank top, yoga pants, and an actual fanny pack because it seems that functioning pants pockets would ruin the clean silhouette she is currently burning into the collective memory of the world. She has a stern face. This is a protective measure she learned long ago, lest she appear approachable, because if she did, um, men would approach her.

Her on-flight reading material? A script, of course. The word WIN is scribbled across the cover page. Mid flight, she gets up to retrieve a pouch from the overhead compartment. She reaches up, on her toes; her back arches; and half of the cabin sighs. The Frenchman sitting next to me notices her and instantly furrows his brow in disbelief. He mutters something in French, which I assume is a curse word for “gods curse this unfortunate seating assignment.”

The plane is delayed one hour for plane maintenance, and then another hour because the engineer working on the aforementioned maintenance forgot to return a logbook to the airplane, and he was now nowhere to be found, so until someone returns a physical item made of bound and dried parchment having information describing the maintenance of a modern avionics device, we should– WHY IS SAID LOG BOOK NOT DIGITIZED AND WHY CANNOT THEY JUST WHISK THE INFORMATION VIA TELECOMMUNICATION. I mean, i keep a maintenance notebook in the glove compartment of my 2001 Honda Accord, but I don’t have 150 people waiting on a Tarmac. Crab out.

Question of the day

Is this considered prostitution if it’s a prize raffled by lottery for charity?