Wednesday, August 31, 2011

So What's a Birthday All About, Alfie?

I had occasion to read of a person's disappointment in lack of guests for an apparent recent birthday … people who said they would stop by to celebrate, but obviously did not.

The person indicated that it hurt.

Got me to thinking … again … about the importance or lack thereof for celebrating birthdays.

When I was born, I had nothing … NOTHING to do with it. I don't know if I was planned or if I was the result of a casual, but not too carefully thought out romp in the hay. I was merely the outcome of a plan or the result of a romp that had no particular motive in mind except that it was probably something that the participants thought of as a good idea at the time.

Sure, I was there on my birthday. That's probably why it's called my birthday. Yet I was not responsible for me being there.

I'd like to think that I was a welcomed guest at my "coming out" party, and, if I was planned, it's quite likely that I was welcomed. If I was unplanned, however, it kind of boils down to the inevitable consequence of casual sex. I was just "there," neither planned and possibly not welcome, but grudgingly accepted (and becoming "used to" in time).

So when my birthday comes along, should I be expected to celebrate a deed that I was not involved in or should I throw a party for those who are directly responsible for me being: my parents?

Cynical? I don't think I am. I just see no useful purpose in getting bent out of shape because people aren't slapping me on the back and "attaboying" me for something I had no part of. I had nothing to do with it.

Sure, it must be nice to get congratulatory cards or emails with well-wishes or presents, but in the strict sense, it's my parents who should get those. They are the two who were responsible for me.

If I made it to the "big 5 oh" that's great. But it's no guarantee that I'll make it to the bigger "6 oh" … if I take care of myself, I might. That might be a reason to celebrate the day that I was born on. I took the first steps to live a reasonably good life to get me to 60. Right?

Before you decide to regard me as a curmudgeon, think about it. What part did  I play in being born? What part did you play in your birthday? Think further about it. What, really, is there to celebrate?

Oh … if today is your birthday, happy birthday!

As always, comments and opposing  points of view are welcome!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You'll make it to 50 and well beyond my friend!!! I am going to bookmark this so I can go back and read it on MY birthday in a couple months. There's not much family left, and when there's alllll the hoopla people at work have celebrating "their" birthdays, huge parties, trips, etc, I tend to get a bit depressed. Your article will help with that!!!!