Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Your catharsis is not my ephiphany


What fresh Hell is this?

Well, today is my birthday.  Whoop de-do.

When you are born on Thanksgiving or have a birthday during Thanksgiving week, it's always a bummer.  

Making it worse is that in the United States, this date is always a day of National Day of Mourning.  Kennedy was killed on my first birthday. 

After a while, you get used to it. 

You never get a real birthday party on your birthday if you were born on a Thanksgiving week, because everyone is traveling.  And a meal on Thanksgiving is never a birthday feast.  Trust me, my family tried that con enough times and it never worked. 

Presents always came after the Christmas sales started. UNLESS, you have that Aunt who buys a gift for you at Christmas close-out time and by the time your birthday rolls around, you are too old for the gift. 

The absolute worst of those idiots are people who say "It's your birthday? Well did you know that Kennedy was killed on this day?" 

Why yes. Yes, I do. Because I am not stupid, I have lived that connection for my entire life, had the national news remind me every damn year. And your catharsis doesn't equal my epiphany.

There was a girl in high school who took every opportunity to ask me if I knew I was going bald.  And every time she did it, it was like the first time she knew it was happening. 

And some people, like "Becky" from high school, who have said it once, like to do repeat performances like "Becky" every damn year. 

"You have pointed that out every time my birthday rolls around, and, I can assure you, it's not as big of a revelation to me as it is for you." 

Quite literally, I am trapped in some macabre Groundhog Day movie. 

Making matters worse is that the weather in Cleveland every November is dismal, wet, grey, chill to the bone cold, which just makes my SADD shift into high gear. 

None to worry - this too will soon pass. We'll get through this weekend, and then ramp up for Christmas. 

Still, The Husband hurts for me. He wants me to be happy and have a nice day, and it pains him that he can't make it so.  I keep telling him I have everything I could ever want. I do have friends. I have my health. He has his health. We have a rainy day fund in the bank, not much, but enough.  So what else could I ever wish for?

Good things come to those who wait.  

I can wait. 

And because Thanksgiving floats around the calendar like Veterans Day, you really have no way of knowing one year to the next.  But in 2024, its on the 28th, and my birthday is a Friday the week before.  So things are looking up.

And yes, I can wait. 


  1. Happy Birthday Dear!! I feel your pain!!

    Get this.

    I have an older brother whose birthday is December 17th and a younger brother with the date of Decembers 22nd. Those two could never catch a break. My parents would try the trick of giving them a few of their Christmas presents early. Then came Christmas and the present department was a little shy. My family never heard of birthday parties at home. I don't ever recall celebrations at home or out a some restaurant. There was birthday cake and ice cream that my stepmother would rustle up. Since my stepmother is Japanese we had to remind her that icing goes on top of the cake. She got the hang of it.

    Oh yes, I have a stepsister whose birthday is the same date as her mother's.

    Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Birthday. If you have been good this week, hell today, your husband will give you something a little extra special. Wink/Wink!!

    1. My husband indeed gave me what I wanted - dinner at Hecks.

  2. Happy Birthday! Actually, I never saw the problem of having a birthday near a major holiday--it takes away from some of the focus on the birthday, which I never relished overmuch anyway. Besides, you are in good company. A quick glance at Wikipedia revealed the following 11/22 birthdays, with, incidentally, lots of LGBT representation:
    1515 – Mary of Guise, Queen of Scots (d. 1560)
    1710 – Wilhelm Friedemann Bach, German composer (d. 1784)
    1808 – Thomas Cook, English businessman, founded Thomas Cook Group (d. 1892)
    1819 – George Eliot, English novelist and poet (d. 1880)
    1857 – George Gissing, English novelist (d. 1903)
    1869 – André Gide, French novelist, essayist, and dramatist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1951)
    1890 – Charles de Gaulle, French general and politician, President of France (d. 1970)
    1899 – Hoagy Carmichael, American singer-songwriter, pianist, and actor (d. 1981)
    1912 – Doris Duke, American heiress and philanthropist (d. 1993)
    1913 – Benjamin Britten, English pianist, composer, and conductor (d. 1976)
    1921 – Rodney Dangerfield, American comedian, actor, rapper, and screenwriter (d. 2004)
    ------N.B.: No wonder your birthday "don't get no respect!"

    1924 – Geraldine Page, American actress and singer (d. 1987)
    1925 – Gunther Schuller, American horn player, composer, and conductor (d. 2015)
    1943 – Billie Jean King, American tennis player
    1958 – Jamie Lee Curtis, American actress
    1961 – Mariel Hemingway, American actress
    1962 – Sumi Jo, South Korean soprano
    1984 – Scarlett Johansson, American actress
    1986 – Oscar Pistorius, South African sprinter and convicted murderer

    Many happy returns, --Jim

    1. Belated happy birthday, dear! [Even if you don't seem very happy.]

      Have something by your fellow birthday celebrant to cheer you up - here. Jx

      PS My best suggestion is to make a point of booking a holiday somewhere warm and sunny (and preferably not in America, as no-one else marks Thanksgiving nor the JFK angst) at this time every year? That works for us (we always take holidays as birthday "gifts").

    2. This was the first year that I discovered that Ms. Johansson (aka Mrs. Jost) and I share the same day. That made things brighter.

  3. That must suck so hard. I think it's awful when parents try and cheap out by combining birthdays and holidays. it's just dishonest. Nobody is fooled, and the kid in question gets to carry that feeling around for the rest of their life. Honestly, the Kennedy thing? Who cares anymore? Why even bring it up? The guy's dead. Whatever. Move on. Enjoy the turkey without guilt.
    If I was there I'd take you guys out for drinks. Skaal!