Friday, March 22, 2013

Spring timeout

One day a year I take a break from this blog to celebrate my daughter's birthday. Today is that day.

But first a little story.

When I was 12 years old, my family moved to another city. During those first months of adjustment, I kept noticing a Hess gas station that we'd drive past almost every day. There was a sign underneath the large Hess sign that read: "32279".

The number was the gas station's street address, but I translated it as a date in the future. I joked that momentous things would happen on March 22, 1979.

Well, March 22, 1979 came along about six months later and it was significant only in the fact that I fainted in art class after accidentally stabbing myself in the hand with a sculpting tool and getting a close up view of my own blood (I had a thing about that then).

So March 22 became known to me as a day of humiliation.

Fast forward six years to 1985. I was head-over-heels for a girl who worked the jewelry and layaway counter at the department store where we both toiled. We had a great time screwing around and skipping out on the boss for extra long lunch breaks. But on March 22 she quit her job. Outside of cards and letters for three months that followed I never talked to her again.

March 22 became known as a day of heartbreak.

Fast forward 13 more years. I came home after a hectic Saturday night of work. March Madness, you know. Everything going full tilt. The lights at home were on, even though it was 2 in the morning. My wife was sitting on the couch. Nine months pregnant. It was time. But we waited until morning to head to the hospital. Ten hours later, on March 22, at around 9:30 at night, my daughter was born.

March 22 is now forever known as my girl's birthday.

These days, she is into such highfalutin fare as Les Miserables (hitting store shelves on her birthday, not so coincidentally). Yesterday, my wife caught her reading about the Articles of the U.S. Constitution on her laptop. Not as part of a homework assignment. For fun.

Sometimes I still feel like I'm in over my head.

But it's all worth it. She transformed March 22 from a day of misery into a day forever joyful and filled with wonder.

Certainly I can stop babbling about cards for one day.

Talk to you tomorrow.


  1. Happy Birthday Baby Owl!

    I like how you write an entire post to tell us you won't be posting today.
    Only you pal.... enjoy your/her day.

    btw, the word verification word is "NewsPop"... coincidence?

  2. Happy Birthday, Owlet!

    There must be something about numbers/dates and baseball card collectors...

  3. Happy Birthday to her, and Happy Anniversary to my parents!

  4. Well done sir, happy birthday to the young lady Owl...

  5. Happy birthday to your youngin!

  6. What an awesomely entertaining non-blog post. Well done. Happy birthday to your daughter.

  7. You procreated? Hmmmm....

    Happy Birthday to one of the many things N.O. did right.

  8. Good story. Maybe go buy a lottery ticket using those numbers?

    Hope you guys had a great day.

  9. He writes a post for his break... nice.

    "For break, pull cart with teeth while get whipped!" ~Clerks: The Animated Series

  10. Great story. That's pretty awesome that one specific day has so much sentimental value for you (and your family). The only day that comes even close for me would be 12/25. That's when I bake a bunch of cookies day before, leave them out all night, and eat them for breakfast while opening a bunch of presents friends and family members give me.

    Here's a birthday shout out to your daughter.

  11. wow, that is crazy that all that happened with 3/22!

  12. @Crackin Wax ~

    You never advance-published a post?

  13. Happy Birthday wishes to your daughter.
    Thanks for a great story.