Back from another run on the East River Trail, drinking coconut milk and eating fried tortilla neons* of two varieties. A main entree (or plato fuerte) of Justin’s almond butter and jam spread elegantly over a lightly crisped tortilla followed by nutella and cayenne pepper roasted marshmallows atop a lightly carmelized/sugar-fried tortilla for dessert. If there ever was a non-Mexican meal that represented me, this might be it.
* Neons are crackers (or cracker-like things) with two or more toppings on them. For example, Breton crackers with fig jam and feta cheese or Wheat Thins with apple slices and smoked gouda. My mom invented this definition of Neons and so even the mention of them makes me feel special. You know, like the President’s coming to dinner.
1.0 Rattling Around in my Head
I tried Cleanly this week and I’m still deciding whether it should be a part of my regular routine. In case you haven’t heard, Cleanly is pick up and drop off laundry services that you can order from a streamlined and beautifully designed app experience. Another one of those services that lets people pay other people to do the things people’s parents once did for them.
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I knew subconsciously that we were over and so when you sent them in 2014, I couldn’t read your (broken) letters.
Today I finally grabbed the courage to read everything at once. I realize now that there’s so much I didn’t see. So many things I didn’t consider. I knew everything and nothing. All about the way you brush your hair and walk across the floor late at night. So little about the inner workings that scared you.
Had I been braver I would have looked deeper. I would have read your Even Days project the day you sent it. Instead I let your letters sit.
Now I am making all my plans without you. Trying not to consider what you would have liked or even what you would have thought. Life goes on without the people we love. Sometimes it takes more time than we’d like to admit to realize it. But we continue, and then find life anew.
I was on the phone with my mother when I realized our end was almost as extravagant as the beginning. My Mom and I, we’re just now able to talk about the way life feels. And so in my new openness I tell her about you, filling in the gaps I was afraid to share when we first began.
I told her about the night we met. How pivotal it felt when I went back to the oatmeal shop and told my friends about my adventures. The way we closed down the bar at 4:00 and then pedaled over the bridge into Brooklyn. How we lied down near the carousel and watched the sunrise over The City. The beginning couldn’t have been more romantic.
And then there was the end.
The Rose Bar at the Plaza Hotel. Fresh off the gondola in Central Park. A fancy bar in our summer clothes. You and me, we’ll always be ones for opulence.
Software always looks simple from the user’s perspective, but anyone who’s dug in their heels and actually prototyped, you realize that every pixel is a decision. When the product is your baby every pixel is a heartfelt decision and then some.
I’ve been working on Superflare for about a year now, and as I head to South Korea I can’t help but feel like it’s time to actually launch this thing. All I have to do is finish prototyping and then let this thing fly.
I’m terrified to fail but also full of so much hope. It’s time to tighten up the leftover loose ends. I’m so close and I’m going to conquer this list once and for all. It’s time to turn these ideas into something real and working.
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Finding old to do lists always feels a little like recovering old fragments of self stuck in time. I’m sure they’re of no interest to anyone else but I’m going to start keeping my tasks here for progress tracking and archival purposes. I like the pressure of transparency and want to look back on these and get a little of that breathe-easy, grateful-to-have-survived feeling. So here we go, my first to do list that’s still a work in progress. Continue reading »
I’m in the most stunning coffeeshop I’ve ever seen. Drinks are 8,500 won, which is about twice the price of a typical coffee shop (e.g. Starbucks or Cafe Bene) in Seoul. For a little extra context, you can get a legitimate meal in most areas of Seoul for 7,000 won. Yet 8,500 for a coffee s is normal for Gangnam’s other boutique spots, and in some ways this coffeeshop is just on par with others in the area. There’s something different here though, and I think it’s the sheer size of the place.
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I arrived in Korea late on Friday night, just in time for a nap and the beginning of New York City’s workday. I could barely keep my eyes open so I took a catnap and woke up just in time to power through some work and a couple phone calls. Nearly a day of travel had gotten to me so on my first night in South Korea I crashed to sleep at AMASS Hotel and dreamt of nothing.
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At first I thought everything was falling apart (Chinua Achebe style). It started with an audit letter. I’d forgotten to list one of my freelance gigs in my earnings and owed thousands of dollars to the IRS. The next day I received a rent increase. The week after that the startup I was working for collapsed. I got laid off alongside some of my closest colleagues. Continue reading »
A few days ago I wrote what might be my most revealing post yet. If you haven’t read it, feel free to click here and do so. If you prefer the tl;dr version, I’ll give you the gist: Just when I thought I had everything together it all fell apart. Within a matter of weeks my cruising-along-just-fine life turned into catastrophe.
Not “I lost my health or a loved one” catastrophe, but the regular kind you can’t really admit to because it’s so normal. I struggled before pressing publish, but ultimately decided to share. I don’t think enough people talk about the hard parts of being a thirty-ish year old tech person who lives in a big city and wants to do things like find love and have a family (whatever that might look like).
So here I sit today, writing my way out of the rubble. Here are a few lessons I’ve learned along the way.
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Dear The Person Whom I Will Marry,
Maybe we get married, maybe we don’t. But you’ll know what I mean by that. Since this is public-facing I guess I’d better make that a little more accurate…
Dear The Person Who Will Share With Me a Beloved Infatuation For Life and Each Other. Dear Endlessly Ambitious But Totally Attuned Individual Who Is Committed And Stubborn But Flexible And Understanding,
I’m just going to come out and say it. This is where I want you to ask me to marry you. Or maybe this is where I want us to get married.
Or as I mentioned before it doesn’t have to be married per se. It could just be a trip you find for us because you understand the importance of inspiration. Or maybe on a whim you want to look into my eyes for a long time in a jungle house we’ll always remember. Or maybe it’s a huge party we pay for our friends to attend as an expression of love and commitment for an expanded life (partially because we found each other).
While I’m making corrections, it actually doesn’t have to be this place at all. But again, you know what I mean. It has to be a place like this.
Rare, daring, imagined, handmade, cultivated, one of a kind.
Yeah, that sounds about right.
I love you already,