Happy Birthday to you!

BIRTHDAY CARD DISCLAIMER:

Once a year, people feel compelled to congratulate you on reaching your birthday milestone.   Normally they share their well wishes via phone calls, emails, text messages, handwritten notes, flowers, chocolates, balloons, singing telegrams, etc.  

I, on the other hand, decided to write you a “Happy Birthday” blog.  This particular blog entry is dedicated to any friend of mine who will be celebrating a birthday sometime in the next year.  If today is not your birthday, then be patient.  Eventually, this blog will be relevant to you. 

Sure, I could have sojourned to the local drugstore or supermarket and spent hours perusing overpriced, over-sentimental cards.  Then I could’ve signed my name to someone else’s idea of humor or sympathy (depending on your age).  But are you really deserving of such a card?  I mean, all you have done (since my last congratulations) is survived for another 365 days.  How hard is that?  Also, if I did the traditional card option, then I would need your address.  And a stamp.  And a pen.  Would you even appreciate the gas money I invested to and from the store?  Would you gratefully acknowledge the risk I endured (of paper cuts on my tongue as I licked both the envelope and the stamp)?  Doubtful.   Besides, who really wants to walk ALL THE WAY to the mailbox to retrieve a card that points out the glaring fact that you are OLD?  Basically, I am saving you time and what better gift is there than the gift of time? I’m thoughtful like that. 

In the likely event that I should forget to send you this direct link on your birthday, you shall be responsible to come to this particular location on the web and read it for yourself.  In a spirit of generosity, I will also allow you to send this blog link to your friends on their birthday.  In fact, your friends can send it to their friends on their birthday – free of charge.  Consider it the gift that keeps on giving.

“HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU” FUN FACTS:

  • According to wikipedia.org, the melody of “Happy Birthday to You” comes from the song “Good Morning to All”, which was written and composed by siblings Patty & Mildred Hill in 1893.  The sisters created “Good Morning to All” as a song that would be easy to be sung by young children.
  • According to the 1998 Guinness Book of World Records, the song “Happy Birthday to you” is the most recognized song in the English Language.
  • The song’s base lyrics have been translated into 18 languages.
  • Unauthorized public performances of the song are technically illegal unless royalties are paid to it.  For this reason, most restaurants or other public party venues will not allow their employees to perform the song in public, instead opting for other original songs or cheers in honor of the birthday celebrant.

GENERIC BIRTHDAY FUN FACTS:

  • February is the least common birth month.  August is the most common birth month.
  • October 5th is the most common birth date (Interestingly, it is exactly 9 months after New Year’s Eve.  Badda bing.)
  • May 22nd is the least common birth date (besides Leap Year – February 29th.)
  • Birthdays were usually only celebrated by nobility (which may be why we like to put a Birthday Crown on the birthday person) until the Germans began the practice of celebrating children’s birthdays called “kinderfeste” and bake a special sweet cake.
  • $27.2 Million- Most money spent on a birthday party.  This extravagant party was for the Sultan of Brunei’s 50th Birthday in 1996.  My 40th birthday celebration (in 2010) was a close second.

Speaking of expensive parties, did you know that there are two birthdays celebrated in the Bible?  Some interesting things happened at both….

Birthday #1: Pharaoh’s Birthday Party (Genesis 40): At the first birthday party we find Joseph locked behind bars interpreting dreams for two men who used to serve in the King of Eygpt’s court.  One man was Pharaoh’s cupbearer.  The other was his baker.   Joseph correctly predicted that both men would have their “heads lifted up” by Pharaoh.   The cup-bearer’s head was lifted up and he was restored to his original office.   The baker’s head was also lifted up and placed in a noose and hung.   Nice party.  Try the veal.

Birthday #2: King Herod’s Birthday Party (Matthew 14): At the second party we find John the Baptist bound and imprisoned at the request of Herodias, King Herod’s sister in law.  During the party, Herodias’ daughter was dancing (think dirty, not square) before the king.  The dance pleased King Herod so much that he promised (with an oath) to give the girl whatever she asked.  Having been prompted by her mother, she asked for the head of John the Baptist on a platter.   Odd request.  Most girls her age ask for earrings.  Sadly, she got her wish.

There are a couple of lessons for you here.  On your special day…

  1. Avoid prison.
  2. Keep your dreams to yourself.
  3. Don’t party with kings.
  4. No dancing.

Blessings on your special day!

Thanks for --