So yesterday was my birthday. Well, technically it was mine and my son’s. When he was young it meant parties at Chuck E Cheese because they served beer, had skee ball and also had a huge kids play area. Now he is of drinking age, which means our party options are a lot more open. And honestly a lot less party.
Leading up to the day was interesting. It started off with me forgetting that our birthday was this week. So Monday night I was considering what to make for cupcakes… and promptly ran out of time/energy to bake. In my defense our dog picked Sunday night to do his first trips up the stairs in seven or eight months. Kept me up all damn night. (He is 15 years old and doesn’t do stairs well any more.) My wife then asked me what I wanted for my birthday. She had been at her national trade show the entire last week and so hadn’t done anything about birthdays yet.
Here it is. The first sign you’re getting old. Someone asks what you want for your birthday and you reply with, “I don’t know.” You’re at a point in your life when there is stuff out there that would be cool, but nothing that grabs you like a particular toy did back during your single digit aged birthdays. Also at this point in my life I have to look at when I would use/need a particular item and where I would put it. For me most gifts my family give me are gift cards to load my Nook with novels. A card for the coffee shop I do my writing in (as I was given last night), or gift cards for music with which to fill my story-writing playlists with. Most of the gifts virtual, the rest consumable.
Not having cupcakes to bring in, I stopped by the neighborhood bakery near the stadium and grabbed donuts. After resisting the urge to walk around with the box like Dexter (fueled by not many office doors being open yet) I sat down and sent an email saying why there were donuts in the mailroom. Not many of the people I work with know that I bake, or that I specialize in cupcakes so there was no need to explain why kosher donuts instead of cupcakes.
For me, the next sign you’re getting old is how much it means to hear from people. I checked Facebook once in a while and any time there was a beep on my phone about a direct message. By the time I had seen any reply to my office email on donuts, there were dozens of notifications from people posting wishing me a happy birthday. Some in their own, unique way. One of the most unique ways was “Happy anniversary of the first time you were pooped on.” Some of these people I haven’t seen in decades. More than a few I have never met face-to-face (not such an unusual thing in this electronic age). For me there is something about someone taking a moment of their time while on Facebook, Twitter, or some other social network to wish me a happy birthday. I guess what I mean is that it is an old person’s thing to consider your life in connections and not material things.
Then again, that may just be me.
And even though my “official” celebration is a week and a half out at the next Burgers Beers and Beatdowns for the next UFC pay per view, I wanted to do a thank you to each and every one of you that took a moment to brighten my day. Us old folks need that now and again. Now get off of my lawn, ya damn kids! *shakes cane*