Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Ten Things I Wish I'd Gotten for My Birthday

On my 50th birthday, I got some lovely body wash and lotion from Precocious Daughter.

I got a card with some cash from my parents.

I got a bottle of local honey and a pot of delicious chicken orzo soup from Drummer Boy.

I got a wooden squirrel from Pablo.

And I got a bunch of birthday greetings from friends, family, and co-workers.

Warm fuzzies FTW.
The well wishes mean more to me than anything, because I'm not big on making a fuss about my birthday (other than this one because I turned 50, which turned out to be pretty much a nothingburger, tbh).

But if I were the type of person who judged the quality of my birthday by the gifts I received, I might be a teensy bit disappointed by my haul this year.

That's a huge if. I don't give a shit. If ever people make a fuss over me, I want it to be because I've finally published that damn book that continues to gestate within me like a weekend's worth of bad choices at Taco Bueno. Not because I managed to clock another year without croaking.

But if I were...

I might let it slip that these were the birthday gifts I wish I'd received.

Take notes if you wish.

1. A monkey skull. Just a small one. Something to put on my knick-knack shelf.

2. An original hardback copy of Daniel Pinkwater's Lizard Music (the pink cover with the Escher-like lizards).

3. Digital copies of Michael Nesmith's Elephant Parts and "Television Parts," which I owned on VHS and stupidly threw away just because no one owned VHS tapes any more.

4. A single, real pearl. Because I don't think I've ever seen one up close.

5. A goldfish bowl, plus a package of Sea Monkeys and a package of Magic Rocks. I mean, do I even have to explain?

6. Some adult Garanimals. It's so hard to choose an outfit every day.

7. A corn snake.

8. An enormous plate of biscuits and gravy.

9. That amazing Custo Barcelona top I wore when I was a size small.

10. That size small body I had when I wore that Custo Barcelona top.

Wish lists are great.

Dream big, you guys.

The worst that can happen is that you end up with amazing things that money can't buy.

Or a corn snake.


  1. Happy 50th. That's not very old. I'm not just saying that because I'm only 5 years behind you.

    I've got a digital copy of "Lizard Music." A few years back, I was trying to remember who made me weird, and I remembered these strange little books I read when I was in elementary school. It took me months to figure out who had written them, but it turns out it was Pinkwater.

    It's all his fault.

  2. All those times I raised Sea Monkeys as a kid I never understood why they didn't build elaborate homes and fashion tiny crowns for themselves. Now I know. I should have combined them with Magic Rocks.
    Also like Harry (and, I suspect, many of us) I was also influenced by Pinkwater, but I never finished Lizard Music when I was a kid.
    It took several stabs before I finally finished The Magic Moscow, the first Pinkwater book I read. It was so unlike anything I'd ever encountered, but embracing Pinkwater's weirdness helped me accept my own.


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