Tuesday, September 20, 2011

people observation #21: I'm a birthday cynic, and your birthday doesn't matter.

Today is September 21, and it's also my 21st people observation.
My big 21st birthday is coming up in November... and it doesn't matter.

I've always been a cynic when it comes to birthdays, getting colder to the idea of them the older I get.

Look, there are 365 days in a year, a number far less than the amount of people in this world. Chances are a birthday is going to fall on the same date as someone else's birthday. Or perhaps, your birthday may fall on the same day as an event, or a moment in history. Why in the world do people think that this is significant?.. at all? My favorite is when a date is brought up at a meeting or some other date-bringing-up occasion, and someone from the back of the room finds it necessary to yell, "that's my cousin's daughter's boyfriend's sister's birthday!" wtf.

People expect special treatment on their birthdays. Like, because it's my birthday the world needs to completely cater to me? No! Because it's my birthday, I shouldn't have to work. I shouldn't have to wake up and be on time to class. I shouldn't have to help out these people who are currently depending on me.

I have a friend Joe who doesn't like the idea of one designated day to tell someone we care about them. Why don't we tell people we care about them all the time? I make a point to tell him often that I'm glad he's alive. Not just on his birthday, but the other 364.25 days in the year. Or things like "belated" birthdays. Just tell the person you care about them. I shouldn't have to apologize for forgetting to post on your Facebook wall on your birthday. How about I post on your wall and keep in touch with you all other days out of the year? Better yet, let's have a conversation in person.

Jimmy Johns has always done such a great job at providing my eyes with activity as I enjoy my #6Vegetarian. Signs cover the walls. My favorite is "free smells."

But the other day I saw a sign that gave a list of 16 life lessons. Number six reads, "Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance." Number 14 reads, "Your friends love you anyway." And number eleven says, "There comes a time when you should stop expecting other people to make a big deal about your birthday. That time is age 11."