Saturday, January 6, 2007


I just had a birthday...I am 29.

I feel a good bit older.

I didn’t get much, but that’s hardly what it’s about, yeah? My daddy bought me a cake. He had a bit of trouble because he called and asked me what kind I wanted, and after going over a list (which I’d already given to my mother once) of possibilities, including everything from a Boston cream pie to a spice cake, I decided once more on an Oreo cake...which they don’t actually make. I wanted a Cookies and Cream cake. He figured it out. Of course that didn’t spare me the poking in the ribs and the good natured teasing I got for making him look silly when he asked the deli people for a nonexistent cake.

He then spent the rest of the evening retelling the stories about how my scooter used to beat me up as a kid, and...about how I (never) learned how to ride a bike, which was basically the story of how he spent weeks trying to teach me, and then finally tied my bike to the back of his truck, told me to hold on to the handle bars, somehow convinced my grandmother this was not only a good idea, but also to help hold me steady...and then he got in the truck and hit the gas. Theoretically if we fell over, I was supposed to just be able to let go. We both got dragged a quarter mile because he’d told me very sternly before we started to, “Hold on tight...and just don’t let go.”

And so we nearly died...being that when we fell we were in his blind spot.

Ohhh good times.

I didn’t get a call from my biological father for my birthday Didn’t get one for Christmas either. I suppose that’s because he’s dead now. I suppose that, but for some reason I was sort of expecting one anyway. It’s funny, because he never used to call on those days before. He always missed them because he was sort of an absent parent...not like my adoptive dad at all--near death bicycle training notwithstanding--but these last couple of years he knew he was sick and so he started calling. And I started expecting it. And now he’s back to not calling again, and I am just as pissed off about it as I was when I was ten.

Kind of selfish of me isn’t it? He’s dead and I’m the one who’s pissed off?

I’ve been trying to sort that one out since yesterday, since all the happy birthdays and dad pointing out that I had this silly smile on my face when everyone was singing to me. He says everyone gets this silly smile when you sing happy birthday to them. Same smile, everyone gets it, he says. I think it’s because it’s the one moment you aren’t allowed to think about who is missing and who isn’t thinking about you and who should be, because for those few seconds, at least the people you have are getting your absolute attention and making sure you know beyond a doubt that you are special. It may not last past the candles being blown out, but for those few seconds all that matters are the people who are there.

It has to be at least a little true, because I started to think about the whole thing many hours later and I made myself cry as I tend to do, those missed calls bringing me down again... And then I just thought about how goofy I must have looked for Dad to have even noticed my smile to comment on it. He had to have been looking for it, it must have really mattered to him, because his smile was pretty goofy too, which made me laugh just to think about. It’s really hard to wallow in misery and snicker at the same time.


scribblekitten said...

Cheer up, sweetie

Hehe, I miss all the old bonding fun we used to have with Dad as kids, and at least you had Mom there for your little bike training session. Me, I got taken to the garbage dump where they had this huge steep hill with a narrow dirt road that Dad swore was perfect for learning how to ride on. It was bordered on either side by a sea of smelly trash of every kind on either side, but Dad insisted it would just cushon my fall if I fell off. When Dad put me on the bike, pointed it downhill and said, "Hold on tight and don't lean to the side," I did just that, but he forgot to tell me how I could turn when I got to the curve. The bike and I left the dirt road at the bend and flew into a mountain of boxes of junked crap, crashed into a big pile of glass jars and landed with me tangled in it in a crate of spoiled vegetables. I was pretty skinned up, but survived, however, I stunk so bad, that I had to ride in the back of the truck home, so folks could see and point at the nasty street urchin my Dad was nice enough to give a lift home to. I learned never to let Dad teach me to ride again after that down hill lesson, ehehe. Mom was the one who finally showed me how to ride with the help of training wheels, even although Dad said they were for sissies and real soldiers never used them.

Hey I told Dad and Mom exactly what kind of cake you wanted, problem was Dad didn't believe you didn't want the standard Birthday cake. So he wanted to ask you to make sure. He flat out refused to get a Boston Cream Pie, saying, "That's not what you get for someone's birthday! How are we supposed to put all those candles on a pie?" hehe. And come on, now, you know Dad couldn't let you get away with doing something different for a change without a little ribbing. I think he lives for chances to poke fun at us at times, so he can have more stories to tell on us later. ehhehe.

Sorry old haunts made your birthday was such a downer. Truth to tell, I've been thinking of him too more than I normally would have and for some half-assed reason expecting a call from Allan myself. Just seems weird that after all this time, he isn't around anymore to stir things up, or call to say he's in trouble again and needs my advice or help. But like you said, it's the ones around you that are there that matter. We all love ya, and you gained a better father in the long run than your biological one ever tried to be, skinned knees and all.

You know something else? You could always be thankful you aren't as old as me yet, or you'd too have to have the fire department stand by when they light the candles, just to make sure you don't burn down the house. ehhe

_dreamingdead said...

I know it's late but .. Happy birthday. I'm sorry I missed it, telling you that on the right day and everything. It's been awhile. I do think about you still :) Miss you, too. Anyway, yeah. Happy birthday, darlin'.

andartha said...

Hi there ^_^

sorry my birthday congratulations are a bit late...I've got exam time coming up soon, so I don't check lj as much and sometimes I'm happy I remember my own name....

Anyway, my exam woes aside: HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! *HUGS*

Pablo Picasso once said "It takes a long time to grow young.” and Abraham Lincoln stated that “ the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years.”

I wish you grow to be always young at heart, no matter if you're 29 or 99 and that there's a lot of life in this year as well as in all future years for you.

With love and best wishes,