On the occasion on my 44th I thought making a list to take stock a little was timely and appropriate. (In no particular order):
  1. That one time in Brasil, when I turned 18, and my entire host family's extended clan showed up. There was a giant family dinner, a very (very) fancy cake, a gang of friends showed up, and the two cases of Brahma (that's Brasilian for "beer") liters was nice too. Muito bem!
  2. That one time on my 40th when we just had a nice big family table at Andiamos in Grosse Pointe. Lots of pasta, wine, laughs. Then we retired to Robusto's (#rip) for cigars and martinis. Now that's living.
  3. That one time, must have been about 7 or 8, where my parents let me have a small but dedicated birthday posse assault the local Burger King. Got crowned that day. Good times.
  4. That one time, it was Melanie's birthday really, but she had no dinner plans. It was a work night. And I (finally) screwed up the stones to ask her out. Our first dinner date of many. What was she thinking? So glad she said yes. Rest is history.
  5. That one time, the first one really, that made all the others possible. Props to mom (just 24 at the time) and dad (26!). What were they thinking? So glad they made it happen.
  6. BONUS: That one time, in 1973, when my brother Scott was born just 2 months after my birthday, forever setting up an annual sequence in which, for seven weeks every year, I would be technically *3* years older than him. That's an especially big deal for two competitive little boys with just two years and a small back seat separating them.