A rare moment of calm here at From The Ashes HQ. The TV isn't on nor the radio, there are church bells ringing 11 am somewhere downtown. Mr. Riley is napping in the sun that is spilling across my bed, as he patiently waits for his morning walk and some food.
I've been actively looking for work, not counting on my previous employer to ever get their shit together enough to re-open. I am still in contact with them however, as I have some court appearances to make in response to the summonses they were hit with back in August. Even though I'm not technically responsible for any of it, some of the summonses were written directly to me, in order to ensure that they were answered. I guess that worked. So I have a court appearance in two weeks and another in November. That should be it.
The job search is tedious, and with the economy in the toilet it's kind of tricky. The jobs haven't completely dried up, but hiring has slowed. It's an inevitable fact of life that people need to eat and go out in New York so there will always be a need for people to run the nightclubs and restaurants. It's also true that right now, people are vary wary of just quitting their jobs with nothing to fall back on. And there have been many reports of new venues scrapping their openings or scaling back the size. This makes my job search more difficult. I'm at a point in my career where I can't really take any old restaurant job. I've sort of specialized, and pigeonholed myself, as someone who runs fairly large, very high volume venues. I need a lot of activity and the chance to multi-task, to work in different areas and have a lot of responsibilities. Otherwise I get bored, then crabby, then pretty apathetic. A little 80 seat restaurant in Hell's Kitchen that gets 10 tables for lunch then a really busy theater rush is not a challenge for me and not a job that I would be successful in for very long.
I've been going to a lot of Gay-A meetings while I've been off. A lot. Not that I feel particularly like I would drink, but I read a great book recently by David Carr called The Night of the Gun. It's a pretty good read not just about addiction and recovery but also about memory, and how an individual's recollection of the time and severity of any particular event can be colored, and frequently remade, to suit that person's emotional or psychological needs. In any case, Mr. Carr relates on more than one occasion that it's never a good idea for an alcoholic to spend too much time alone. An alcoholic with only himself to be with is hanging out in a very bad neighborhood. That's paraphrasing, but it's the idea. So I go to several Gay-A meetings every week instead of one or two. I make sure I raise my hand to talk often. I'm also looking for a new sponsor, admittedly not very hard but I'm looking. And I'll be speaking at a detox meeting at one of the local hospitals, possibly as early as Monday.
Beyond that, I've been spending a lot of time hanging out again in parks and the dog runs. I'm working out regularly and I think I lost about 5 pounds. I never worry too much about actual weight, more the appearance, and the appearance is still pretty flabby. I've taken to comparing myself to other men that seem to be close in age to me and I feel like I'm somewhere in between ridiculously overweight, and in good shape for my age. I would certainly like to move towards the good shape side, but at least I don't have back hair and my underwear fits. Seriously, what's up with the ripped up saggy drawers when you pass 45?