• author
    • Kelvin Wade

      Columnist
    • October 16, 2014 in Columnists

    It’s my birthday and I can buy if I want to!

    It’s October 16. Happy Boss’s Day! By the way, it’s also my 48th birthday, which is kind of the same thing.

    Everyone is ambivalent about his or her birthday. The only ones happy about getting older are those under 21. But no matter what people say, everyone wants his or her birthday acknowledged. However, almost no one wants to be in a restaurant and suddenly have a strange hat plopped on their head and see an employee approaching with a single sad cupcake with a lone flickering candle and more employees in tow, crazily clapping and singing a birthday song. What do you do while they’re singing and clapping? You just sit there with a stupid grin on your face thinking, “Guys, I’m not 5.”

    I’ve had some interesting birthdays. My mother once bought these ignorant looking poodle soap dispensers. I laughed hysterically. It wasn’t so funny when a week later I unwrapped my birthday present and there were the poodles. Plus, since my mother’s birthday was six days before mine, she simply gave me the birthday card that I gave her but she scratched out “Mom” and wrote “Kelvin.” A family of comedians.

    My dad used to give me and my brothers $25 checks for our birthdays and Christmas. It never varied. We didn’t complain because early on it was obviously his wife buying the gifts for us because we were getting $25 gift certificates to Macy’s. I’m not knocking Macy’s. It’s a great store. But really? We’re not Macy’s’ shoppers. We’ll take the cash.

    My brother Tony usually gives me a guaranteed Oakland Raiders victory for my birthday, so obviously I haven’t gotten a gift from him in years.

    I’ll settle for a Niner loss on Monday.

    Cake is a must.

    Cake is a must.

    It was on my birthday in 2005 that my girlfriend Cathi got herself a new puppy. Yes, she got herself a gift for my birthday. She at least let me name the Maltese poodle mix. I named her Rafiki (we call her Rafi), which is “friend” in Swahili, although I wish I’d known the Swahili word for “poops on the carpet.” I’m hoping I can get through this birthday without her adding yet another little crumb snatcher to our happy home.

    Cathi surprised me one birthday with a silver Motorola Razr cell phone. That was the hot phone for the longest time. I still have it and don’t know what to do with it. It may be dated today, but at least you couldn’t butt dial with a flip phone.

    The thing guys want for their birthdays is simple. Okay, I’m not talking about that thing. That thing is a given. What guys want is a blank check to go out and buy themselves a toy without being raked over the coals about it.

    Well… that and cake. There has to be cake.

    Luckily for me, there’s an Apple event today in Cupertino where the new iPad Air 2 (or whatever they’re calling it) and new iPad Mini are expected to be unveiled. So I should be able to purchase a new sleek slate of silicon perfection without complaint.

    But for those who haven’t noticed, recently I’ve taken a step back from my obsession with electronics and social media, and it’s been great. I’ve been working on a pet project and it’s been awesome once again being the master of my time without Facebooking my life away.

    While I’m not over the hill like my older brothers, when you’re my age, birthdays often become a time of reflection. I have more yesterdays than tomorrows. Toys take a backseat to what’s really important – the people in your life. Cathi has some health issues that I’m determined to help her through and I’m facing my own challenges. Time marches on. My granddaughter Lauryn is a senior. The grandkids’ dad is heading back to Afghanistan soon.

    But this is my birthday, so let’s get real. I’m going off the wagon for a bit. At least I must entertain the idea of getting a new iPad while I have a bellyful of cake and booze and Cathi’s unspoken permission for the day about getting whatever I want. Besides, at least a new iPad won’t poop on the carpet.



    • HAPPY BIRTHDAY! The world got a little bit better when you arrived! Buy those toys, eat that cake… and pop in on Facebook from time to time! You are missed!



    • Happy Birthday!


      • David Lacy

      • October 16, 2014 at 10:39 am
      • Reply

      The Niners won. Your brother needs to take the gift back! 😉 Happy birthday, friend!


      • Kendall Wright

      • October 16, 2014 at 11:58 am
      • Reply

      The time is not far off, homey, when birthdays cease being cause for lament and become victories. Ha! Didn’t get me again! I actually love my birthdays again.



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