Friday, September 9, 2011

The birthday enthusiasm continuum

If you attend a child's birthday party, you might find a child who cries at the sound of a room full of folks singing "happy birthday", even if it's in their honor.  You might also find a child who is grinning ear to ear, face flushed, thrilled to be the center of such lovely attention.

It seems that this is the same with adults.

Take me, for example.  I love my birthday. I let people know weeks in advance that my birthday is coming.  At work, I bring in a treat and email the entire staff to let them know that it is my birthday and how old I am.  I throw myself a party, order myself a cake (If I want these things, I HAVE to, I'm a grown up! Don't scoff.) I love my birthday. I love the attention thrown my way.

Look at me! I'm like a kid on her birthday.  Oh. Wait...
Now, Tad, on the other hand.  He is fine with his birthday.  But he certainly doesn't want any attention about it. He would prefer people not know, but he is fine with a little celebration and a special dinner and cake for him at home with his family.  I asked him, "Do you REALLY not like the attention, or are you just SAYING that you don't?"  He told me. He REALLY doesn't like it. I, personally, don't get it, but that's okay. So we gave him a small to-do at home. Just the four of us.

Tad and the kids enjoying his birthday cake after a quiet dinner. 

Now, my coworker Harvey's birthday is tomorrow. He has made it abundantly clear that he wants nothing to do with the rigmarole.  He said that he will be very unhappy if anyone does anything.  He made such a point of letting people know this that his coworkers decided to really go overboard about it.  His cubicle was decorated, streamers and balloons everywhere!  And they got him a cake. At the last minute, I had an idea.  I thought we could put something on his cake to match his thoughts about all the celebration.

So that's it, I guess. The birthday continuum.  In closing, I will share with you the birthday song my parents always sang to people (sung like a funeral dirge).  I sang it to Harvey today.

Happy Birthday
Oh Happy Birthday 
Sickness, Sadness and Despair
People Dying Everywhere
Happy Birthday


  1. hahaha. LOVE what you did to Harvey! I can only imagine his reaction! :)

  2. WE still use that song. I remember the first time your parents sang it for us. That cake looks amazing!!