Sunday, August 28, 2011

Forty-nine years old? What the...

Today, I'm a forty-nine year old. What the hell?

That's twenty-three years older than LeBron James. All I can say is, just wait until your prostate is bigger than your ego, LeBron. Okay, that's not gonna happen.

That's twenty-four years older than Lady Gaga. And to think that I had such a huge head start and still failed to predict America's voracious demand for crotchless pantaloons made of calf tripe.

That's thirty-two years older than Justin Bieber, and I've only recently discovered the foxily imperative comb-forward.

I know it's really not that old, right? That's what everyone says, anyway. All I can tell you is that when I turned one, I was three percent of my dad's age, and now I'm sixty-three percent of his age. It won't be long before we share a two-for-one shower escalator Groupon.

Okay, enough of the self-pity. I'm breathing, my heart's beating and, doggonnit, my wrists are as good as ever (That's a typing reference).

A few Negative Nellys have commented on their hatred for lists, especially of the top ten variety. Well, it's my birthday, so what's a nice way to put this? How about this—screw you, haters.

I've had so many great birthday happenings over the years, I'm going to head in the other direction this time. Here's a list of my top five worst birthday experiences over nearly half a century of polluting Mother Earth's lower lumbar with my Converse Chuck Taylor carbon footprint:

5) August 28, 1971—I was already crabby because we were camping on my birthday and therefore couldn't go to Shakey's, but decided all would be well if I could crack open some brand new Puma soccer shoes on birthday morn. But they weren't Pumas; they were called "Mr. Pro" and I was pissed. Sorry, Dad.

4) August 28, 1978—During high school, we always had two football practices per day, which really sucked. This was back when coaches wouldn't allow water because they thought it contained estrogen or something, so by the end of practice, we looked like fruit leather. And on this particular day, I broke my finger and witnessed a motorcycle wreck, to boot.

3) August 28, 1965—For my third birthday, I had requested olives on the cake, thinking they would taste like cherries. My mom acquiesced, I ate an olive and have loathed them ever since.

2) August 28, 2002—Another camping birthday, but this time it was my fortieth, and it was in a yurt. The camping part was okay, but when we decided to have dinner at the local golf course, the waitress volunteered a free golf cart to tour the greens for my birthday.

Our family, plus one other kid, packed into a single cart and tentatively navigated the course, trying not to interrupt anyone's golf swing. We looked like a made-for-TV movie, "The Beverly Hillbillies Go a' Golfin'." After receiving scores of nasty glares, we ditched the cart at the earliest opportunity; the Clampetts headed back to their yurt, and Jed, the birthday boy, had aged at least another year.

1)  August 28, 1985—My clinically crazed girlfriend, after repeated warnings that I really, really didn't want a surprise party, threw me a surprise party. On the way up my apartment stairs to said event, she informed me of it, so I had to act simultaneously surprised and not highly annoyed with her within fifteen seconds.

You may think, "What a jerk. She was just trying to be nice," and that's fine. It also means that you don't understand the mind of a sociopath.

Enough with the negative shtick. I've had so many fabulous birthday presents and happenings—the green stingray on my sixth birthday, the trip to Tahoe on my twenty-fifth (good surprise), the bungee jumping on my thirtieth.

And, of course, all of those trips to Shakey's. Good thing I didn't ask for pizza on my cake for that third birthday.

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