Today – Sept. 27 – is my birthday.
Y’all really shouldn’t bring presents unless you’re particularly moved to do so.
Did I mention I like gadgets?
(I don’t even know where that last thought came from!)
But, seriously, another year has passed me by. They seem to be stacking up more quickly as I get older. I’ve had older people tell me about that phenomenon for years. I just passed it off as something to make conversation.
Now, I’ve learned that, sadly, it’s true.
What’s weird is that all periods of time seem to go by quickly except for one – the workday. Isn’t it strange that a workday or two during the week might seem endless, but the week, month or year flies by?
Father Time’s a crafty old rascal.
Actually, as I start my 58th year, the entirety of my first 57 on this planet seem to have gone by fairly rapidly. I can remember thinking about the year 2000 when I was a kid, realizing that I would likely see a new millennium. The next thought was always that I would turn 40 that year. I could not imagine being that old.
Now, with 17 additional years in my rearview mirror, 40 seems young and the year 2000 seems so long ago. The Y2K bug we all feared so is nothing but a harmless memory squashed and rotting on the windshield of time.
I can remember the innocence of my youth. Don’t laugh. I was an innocent kid – the kind any beautiful American teenage girl would want to take home to meet her mother. In fact, I met several mothers and, in truth, made varying impressions. The mother of my first love was crazy about me (Of course, she was my Mom’s best friend, too, and may have had thoughts of becoming in-laws some day). When that relationship ended (she dumped me for the quarterback; isn’t that always how it goes?), I quickly (well, not really; I wallowed in heartache for a year or so, playing sad songs like the Eagles’ “Best of My Love”) found another cutie and wasted no time in angering her mother by taking her (the daughter, not the mom) to a concert in Auburn and bringing her home after midnight. I wanted to hear every note of the late Robert Palmer and Bob Welch.
(Little-known fact: they rolled up the streets at midnight in the 1970s – or at least my Dad said so. If you weren’t home by the time Wolfman Jack started howling on “Midnight Special,” you were done for!)
Seriously, I can remember vividly the days of bicycles, baseball cards (of course, as I’ve discussed here before, I still collect those; but I’m talking about the five-cent packs, not the $5 ones of today), bumble-bee marbles and backseat kisses. The bicycles had banana seats, the baseball cards were, as I said, affordable and the bumble bees were much cherished.
And the backseat kisses? Words will never do those teenage experiences justice!
But I digress.
So it’s happy birthday to me! All in all, Father Time’s been kind. The workdays may sometimes be long, but at least I have the health, ability and opportunity to continue to make a living doing what I love to do. I’ve been blessed with a wonderful, beautiful wife and family and that’s all a 58-year-old man can ask for.
Some say that they quit celebrating birthdays at a certain age. Not me. It’s my own personal holiday and, if I can’t do it anywhere else, I have a party in my mind. If I must, I’ll buy my own cake and ice cream and probably splurge on a present for myself.
After all, I deserve it.
I’ve survived another year.