Friday, September 12, 2014

Birthdays are still a thing, so I guess I'm having one.

This ritual happens each day across America and other countries where Facebook isn't blocked by the government.

This comment is about a creepy Dennis the Menace panel.
A congratulatory message from my insurance agent in my voicemail . An Amazon gift card from my sister in my e-mail inbox. A much-reused banner reading H-A-P-P-Y  B-I-R-T-H-D-A-Y stretched across my cubicle at work. The clues are all there. Doesn't take Mycroft Holmes to put 'em together. Another year went by, and I didn't die. And now, as a result, it is my birthday. Personally, the allure of birthdays wore off for me about twenty years ago, around the same time as the allure of Christmas. They were fun once; now they mean virtually nothing. You might think that a birthday is at least a chance to take stock of one's life. Nah. I'm too tired for that shit right now. I had to wake up at 5:30 this morning to get to work on time. I was filling in for my boss today, which meant there was no time for lunch or breaks. Just work, work, work, then leave. It's cold here in the suburbs of Chicago, 48 degrees currently, overcast, and drizzly. Not the kind of day which makes you wanna go out into the world and give life a great big bear hug. I think I'm gonna curl up on the couch and watch some of the shows that have accumulated on my DVR. It's Friday, so there should be new episodes of Married, Garfunkel & Oates, and Black Jesus from last night. Good shows all. By far, the best thing that happened to me today was that I was awarded Comment of the Week on Josh Fruhlinger's Comics Curmudgeon blog for my review of a rather disturbing Dennis the Menace panel. That's always an honor. In other news/life updates, I have booked my flight and my hotel and, barring the direct intervention of God (in whom I do not believe), I am headed to New York City to attend the last two days of the Ed Wood retrospective at the Anthology Film Archives in Manhattan. I'm genuinely excited about that. Or I would be if I weren't so cold and tired. What this situation requires is an episode of Black Jesus, some root beer, and a good night's rest. In the meantime, I'd like to leave you with a song I've been listening to a lot this week for some reason. Maybe it just came up randomly in shuffle mode and I got stuck on it. It's called "Leave My Kitten Alone," and it's a catchy little R&B number from 1959 by the great and tragic Little Willie John, who died in prison in 1968 at the age of 30. As of today, I'm nine years old than he ever got to be. Go figure, huh? "Kitten" has been famously covered by both the Beatles and Elvis Costello, but for my money, there's no beating the original. Give it a whirl, huh? If you promise to listen to this song even once, that's the best birthday present you could give me.


  1. Birthdays remain strange when you're an adult, but I still enjoy their allure. I tend to just make sure I do minor things I usually feel too responsible to do, like eat a chocolate scone for breakfast. That's that!

    1. My boss, before leaving last night, actually left me a miniature chocolate bundt cake from Corner Bakery. It was nice to discover that on my desk this morning, especially as I had no opportunity to get away from my desk for lunch today. Did I ever tell you about my idea of surviving for an entire week on nothing but free food in the office? Don't know if it'd work, but I'm tempted to try.

    2. Free office food generally only comes around the holiday season by me, and it'd be a tough survival: donuts, cookies, the occasional fruit tree. Not overly hearty stuff to last you 7 days.

    3. I was thinking more like five. You know, work week. Hey, MST3K's Kevin Murphy tried a similar experiment with movie concession stand food.... and he survived.