where the writers are
It's My Party, and I'll Cry . . . Oh, Never Mind

If you are a member of an internet social network (or an online dating site), you know that your birthday is revealed.  On some dating sites, people lie like no one's business, but on Facebook or Myspace, people just sort of put the dates up there and go about their business.  Now and again, I notice that one of my friends on Facebook has a birthday, and I write a little note out to this person, most often, someone I have never met but who is a friend of a friend of a friend who accepted me as a friend or who asked to be my friend.  I have over 300 "friends" on Facebook, and I know more about someone of them than I do my own sister. 

But on birthdays or if you put out a little note that things are going well or not so well, you get back responses.  Today, I woke up to a nice little queue of birthday wishes from my pals.  I also found out that a very famous writer and I are exact birthday twins, both born on October 18, 1961.  We've managed to have a little dialog with each other, something that wouldn't have happened in the literal world.  I also now know why his books always were so clear to me.  He's seeing the world with my timeline.

In general, though, I am not a big fan of birthdays.  This goes way back to my early life when they just seemed to be a hassle, struggle, and big deal.  One year, I remember I had to promise not to get out of control if I had a birthday party.  If you don't know me in person, I have, euphemistically, a "big" personality.  On a six-year-old, this isn't such a great thing, and I could whip any number of kids into a wild pack of raging creatures.  Who wants that? 

Birthdays were always a promise of something, and when you think about that promise too much, nothing good can come of it.  Now, I try to sort of slip under the wire, not announcing it weeks in advance as many of my friends do.  In fact, my friend Ann holds her birthday for an entire year.  If we ask her why she's acting like a princess, she will say, "It's still my birthday!"  No matter that it is March and her birthday is August 3rd.

And from the age of 21, I stopped looking forward to the progression of time.  At that birthday, I knew the inevitable was happening.  Every year was one lick closer to the unknown, that undiscovered country no one bothers to come back from  to give us reports.  Turning 21 showed me that things would only get more intense and difficult, no matter that I could drink to numb the existential pain.

Poor Michael.  He's stuck with me and my birthday grumpiness.  He is right now making me an omelet, and we are going to work out and then go up to Sonoma for the day, tasting wine and eating at The Girl and The Fig.  I am going to snap out of it right now.  I'm going to stop worrying about the ravages of time.  I'm going to enjoy the day, open the cards and presents my friends and family have sent.  I'm not going to wish for the birthday party that I didn't get to have some years, because what I really want is right here, and I don't need a birthday party to show me that.


5 Comment count
Comment Bubble Tip


HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JESSICA! The day you've planned sounds lovely. Have a wonderful time. 

Katie Burke

Comment Bubble Tip

And A Nice Dessert

There's no better way to get closer to the grave than wine and food. I just looked at the menu and I'd go for the chickpea panisse cake (those caramelized onions - umm).

Comment Bubble Tip

I got it wrong.

It's today :)

Remember I celebrate the entire month on my own-without telling anyone?  I don't have parties or cards or presents.  I buy a bowl of soup and go sit by the water.  I sketch.  I go barefoot in the fields.  Do the many, many small things for yourself (or others) and the birthday month (or year) will be plain delicious.  I can' wait for another birthday month.  For me, it's the small things done alone that feels like a real celebration and affirmation of life.

You look great.  I had proof!!!

Happy happy birthday month.

(And if you feel bad for yourself, think how your mom felt in labor-lol!)

Comment Bubble Tip

Wednesday's Child won't be running to form!

Hope you have a wonderful day, Jessica. You're spot on about the timeline thing, but love is something else and doesn't always coincide. As a well-balanced Libra lady, I'm sure you won't miss a party (but what if there's a surprise one waiting to be sprung?!)

Have a glass of champagne for us in Redroom!

All best,


Comment Bubble Tip

Thank you all!  I am just a

Thank you all!  I am just a birthday pain in the ass, and I apologize for my whinging!

We are on the road as I write, and now I'm going to turn off the phone!


Jessica Barksdale Inclan www.jessicabarksdaleinclan.com