My lovely wife threw me a birthday party this weekend. My birthday was actually last weekend, but we had the party this weekend so that my son could be there (I switch weekends with him off with my ex).
The party was, in a word, marvelous.
My best friend Jim was the first to arrive, clutching his burger and fries from nearby Jerry's Grill. Their cuisine has apparently improved-- they once served me the worst burger ever.
We were soon joined by another of my oldest friends, Dan, who resisted The Evil Dictator's challenge to a Risk game. He did, however, pay up on their annual $5 "Cubs vs. White Sox Final Record" bet.
We were eventually joined by many others, including Bubs and Mizbubs, Tim, his wife and kids, Phil and Robin, Wendy and Guido and their daughters and Jesse and Elefteria.
One of the things I love about parties is watching people who are friends from various spheres in your life mingling, meeting and getting to know one another. The night was filled with this. There were dozens of great conversations that night.
My stepdaughter hit it off with Tim's daughters and they had a great time talking and playing Life all evening.
I decided that we needed to use the lcd television I installed in the kitchen last week, and put the Elvis 1968 comeback special in.
Many people complimented our friends, neighbors and landlords Patrick and Jane on the lovely new backyard. The on and off rain limited use of it, but we were able to get out there early in the evening.
Somehow, everybody seemed to know that a nice bottle of red (or two) was the perfect gift for me. Of course, Dan and Jim, who have been my friends for 25 years, knew I'm always up for a good gag gift.
Dan and I have a long tradition of getting one another the worst imaginable records and movies. Following this tradition, Dan got me a couple of garage sale treasures-- the Liberace Christmas album...
...and a vhs of Zombies of the Stratosphere...
...starring Leonard Nimoy!
Jim got me a refrigerator magnet with one of my favorite pop culture images on it:
Jim mentioned that it is the most-requested image from the national archives, which I'd heard before.
In the end, it was the perfect birthday, surrounded by my family and a bunch of my favorite people. It's hard to believe that I'm 47, and that there are people that have been my friends for 25 years, and that I have friends I've known only a couple of years, but have become lifetime friends.