This past Saturday, April 7, was my 25th birthday.
What does it mean? Well, it means that it is officially inappropriate for me to even make eye contact with teenage girls.
It means that it is pretty humorous at this point if I still get ID’d at bars.
And it also means that it is a little more embarrassing that I am now a 25-year-old who still lives with his parents, as opposed to a 24-year-old.
Everyone handles their own birthdays differently. Some like to make a big deal out of it, others like to have a small, quaint affair with their close friends and loved ones, and others like me, think, “Well, you only get one a year, so might as well do something.”
Seriously, the day of your birthday is like what Jim Carrey must have felt like every day on the Truman Show. The world essentially revolves around you. On this day, nobody is ever going to give you a hard time. Nobody is ever going to disagree with you. In fact, not only are people nice to you, but they actually give you things.
You already know about Facebook, and the role that plays. And as a small aside, this was my first birthday with the new Timeline feature, and I have to says, it makes it a little worse. Your birthday messages are not as easily transparent or visible to an outside observer. If I get a lot of messages, I want people to see it, dammit.
Also, one more thing. I know we all try to pretend like all the Facebook messages aren’t a big deal, but, we both notice and remember who wished us a happy birthday. And even more importantly, we remember who didn’t wish us a happy birthday. Oh, we remember.
But as I was saying, people treat you like royalty on your birthday. So what the hell? Just throw a party and watch as people buy you free drinks and shots left and right.
It’s funny, you’re almost expected to get black-out drunk on your birthday. You can tell people about it the next day, how you don’t even remember getting home, how you threw up the next morning, and how you are still hung over 24 hours later. Their response?
“That’s how it should be.”
Should it? I mean, think about it. It is a tradition for your closest friends to actually poison you on your birthday. People forget that alcohol isn’t actually healthy for you. When drank in excess, you can die. It’s called alcohol poisoning. Essentially, your friends are trying to kill you. And on your birthday, of all days.
And that is why it is probably a good thing that your birthday is only once a year. I’m someone who likes to drink casually during most weekends, and even I would not have the stamina to treat every night as if it was my birthday.
In all seriousness though, the coolest part about your birthday is probably the anticipation. You envision how your birthday party is going to go, how many Facebook posts, phone calls and text messages you’re going to get, and you always think in terms of the best-case scenario. And by doing so, you officially put yourself in position to become disappointed when your actual birthday does not meet the impossible expectations.
But I guess everything in life is all about anticipation, right?
Maybe birthdays should change every year. And you won’t know what day your birthday is until you log onto Facebook that morning and see an alert that says “Today is your birthday.” That would add a little bit more excitement, wouldn’t it?
Also, my birthday this year had a little of its thunder stolen by both Easter and Passover. Damn you Jesus from rising from the dead, or Moses from leading the Jews out of the desert.
Speaking of which, I can’t believe how many of my friends who I know that are actually observing Passover. I see them carrying around their little boxes of matzoh, and at the same time, complaining about how much they hate Passover. I just don’t get it. Since when is religion about self-deprecation and misery? Aren’t there better ways to be an observant Jew and/or Catholic that don’t result in unhappiness?
And one last thing. I’m 25 now, half-Jewish, and I still have absolutely no idea what the word “kosher” means.