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Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Best Day of the Year

No, it isn't "No Trousers for British Actress Natascha McElhone" Day. It isn't even "Donate Gently-Used Antique Volkswagen Beetles to My Masonic Apron" Day. And, unless I'm sorely mistaken, it isn't even "The Idea of a Jewish President Isn't As Funny As It Used to Be" Day.

It's my wife's birthday.

Knowing me, insufferable sap that I am, I probably wrote a post like this on October 9th, 2009. It just seems like something I would have done, 365-or-so days ago. If I did, hey, you have two choices: 1.) you can sue me, or 2.) you can use this as an opportunity to look at the two blog posts side-by-side and write a little compare-and-contrast essay on them. Five paragraphs, please, double-spaced, size twelve font. Times New Fucking Roman, bitchcakes. Oh, and A.P.A. formatting, because I think all civilized people can agree that M.L.A. is for queers and communists.

I love my wife's birthday. It turns me into a complete Pudding Pop. Every year, at the precise, absurd, prior-to-butt-crack-of-dawn time she was born, we have set the alarm clock to wake up, hug, and go immediately back to sleep. That's just how we roll.

That's not my favorite part of my wife's birthday, though. Well, if it is, I don't know it, because I'm barely conscious, and neither is she. My favorite part of her birthday comes in the weeks, actually, the months beforehand. See-- I'm a planner. I love scheming. I love machinations. I love scurrying around, buying things surreptitiously, trying my best to pay attention when she says, in January, "Oh, I'd like this! Girls love sparkly things," at an antique shop or "Ooooh, cuuuuute!" at some brightly-colored skirt at Anthropologie. I love planning weekend getaways, talking to crackly old biddies named Edna and Mary Jane who run bed-and-breakfasts in random spots along the East Coast. I even like telling them that my wife is a vegetarian, but, "you can just give me all her breakfast meat." I always use that line when booking rooms for us at B&Bs, and the old biddies always laugh. Oh, Edna. Keep that bacon coming.

I like whipping up a birthday treat for my wife. She's the baker in this relationship, and I routinely fuck up things I try to do myself, because I lack the attention-to-detail that a recipie demands.

Add the vanilla AFTER turning off the heat? Oh.

But, usually, my kitchen capers and cockups are regarded affectionately as blunders of the heart, and I am given leave to "try again next year." And I do. Because, for me, it's fun.

Every birthday of my wife's comes with a custom-written parody of a Gilbert & Sullivan song. Rhyme and meter are all preserved, as is Arthur S. Sullivan's music but William S. Gilbert's lyrics are all supplanted (sorry, Schwenck) by yours truly, and I have an absolute ball setting the funny, quirky, delicate and strong story of our love to a patter song from "Iolanthe" or a duet from "The Gondoliers." Yes, that is my idea of fun. What's yours?

I like decorating the dining room with streamers for my wife, because my parents did it (okay, they still do it) for me and my sisters, and for each other. And, after the first time my wife saw the dining room of my mother and father's house streamered up to the nines for me, she started doing it, too. It's a good tradition. It makes more sense to me than not eating pork or not driving a car on Friday night.

My wife and I have known each other since February 16th, 2003, and it's hard for me to remember a time when October 9th wasn't the best day of the year for me. My own birthday has sort of faded in importance to me, that has become a rather emotionally tempestuous day in May where thoughts of mortality, uncertainty and other unfortunate thoughts cloud my otherwise vigorous thought processes.

But I suppose it's only natural that the birthday of the one you love should eclipse your own birthday, because, when you're married to your partner, to your buddy, well-- they're supposed to come first.

I'm glad you're here, October 9th. There's presents for her, double bacon for me, and enough love for a thousand more October 9ths.


  1. Okay, forgetting for a second the small fact that I don't know ya'll, you guys are the cutest couple I know.

  2. Thank you, buddy. You made it a beautiful day for me. I love you.

  3. ^I'm going to have to repeat: cutest couple ever.

  4. Awwww. I am so far behind in my reader but Happy Belated Birthday to the Mrs. nonetheless.

  5. <3

    Happy belated birthday, Mrs. Apron.


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