Once More Unto The Year, Dear Friends, Once More, or Close the Wall Up With Our Agéd Dead

I run the risk of divulging biosecurity information that is undoubtedly already on the Dark Web, but today is a special day for me.

Not an extra special round number on the end–that was last year–but my beautiful wife asked me yesterday if I had any especial memories from my birthdays.

My birthdays are generally low-key affairs mostly now because there aren’t many who think beyond posting “Happy Birthday” when Facebook reminds them of the day. I could actually only come up with, on the spur of the moment, a few:

  • On my tenth birthday, I got sent to my room during my own birthday party. Not by my mother or by my mother’s friend, the former country and western singer (one single to her credit) who came with her boys, our friends. No, this was a friend of that friend who was somehow along, perhaps to help manage a gaggle of kids with my newly-separated mother. Annemarie, her name was. Perhaps still is, but that was a long time ago. I probably deserved it, but I’m still indignant.
  • On my 26th or 27th birthday, my new girlfriend wrapped a little gift for me that was “Two bookshelves too big for [my] car” spelled in Scrabble tiles along with handwritten “Now don’t forget to unwrap your girlfriend.” Perhaps this is not so much a memory as a personal relic, as I still have the cardboard and Scotch-taped tiles in a box. I still have the girl, too, I should note.
  • We had a pretty big party on my 30th birthday with my co-workers and some of my beautiful wife’s co-workers, including the Libertarian candidate for Senate who kept up with me and El Guapo, beer for beer. And I almost put out Dennis’s eye showing some others how high our tan tabby could jump by whipping an elastic cat toy back and forth about head height. Unbeknowst to me, Dennis was about head height at about the range of the back part of the back and forth.

As it stands, on my birthday, we sometimes go out to dinner (a steak house last year), sometimes we eat in. Sometimes there’s a cake. Sometimes not. I get a little gift, the boys wish me a happy birthday, and that’s it. My aunt who died in 2019 was the only one to send me a card outside of my insurance agent and my dojo. I’ll get Facebook greetings and an automated mention on my employer’s Slack. But I won’t see anyone today aside from immediate family who will wish me a happy birthday.

Which means this will not be a birthday I will remember except when clicking through old posts and coming across this one.

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