You Are Not As Tough As You Think

  I am not as tough as I think I am. The realization hit me while laid out flat, the side of my face crushed against the mat. On top of me was a blue belt named Nestor. He pinned me down with his legs, and using his arms he started working on my grip. Seconds later, he broke the grip and leaned back for the armbar. The second my grip broke, I let my arm go slack and started to “hitchhike out” — turning my arm to the right so my thumb was sideways. Then I ran my legs
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How Did You Do In 2017?

  The first musical I remember listening to was Miss Saigon. My mother played the cassette on weekends, and we listened to it dozens of times. As a boy, I tried assembling the story by the songs alone: Why did Chris leave Kim so suddenly? Why did he marry Ellen? For years, for some reason, I thought she was stuck in a Vietnamese jail with her son Tam, not hiding in a village. A post shared by Christopher Ming (@christopherming) on Dec 8, 2017 at 11:06am PST A couple weeks ago, I saw the musical for the first time, and
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How I Taught Myself to Bartend

  I saved the empty liquor bottles and filled them with water. When the restaurant was quiet (we opened winter of ’08), the start of the Recession — it was quiet often) I took the rail liquors out. Placed them on the ground. Replaced them with the dummy bottles. Then I practiced making cocktails. Over and over again. For hours, six days a week. That first week, I only made 4 cocktails, our most popular ones (Raspberry Saketini (it was a Japanese restaurant), Dirty Martini (for Tom, that’s all he drank), Cosmo, Mai Tai). I learned with the jigger pour
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