Should I be sad that I'm getting old or happy that I get one day of wonderful attention from my wife and kids, perhaps the best part being my kids' home-made birthday cards?
I think I'll go with the latter.
I really am torn on my birthday: On the one hand, it's nice to be treated especially well for a few hours. On the other hand, it's hard to think of the occasion as particularly special, not least as it means I've moved one year closer to my eventual (but hopefully still distant) demise.
I'm glad that my wife and I have reached a sort-of agreement to keep our birthdays, gifts, etc., low-key and low-cost.
I'm sure the highlight of the day will be hearing my 6-year old daughter sing after three days of after-school "choir camp." She simply loves singing, and I love hearing her. Here's a lullaby, or rather a Lili-by, which she recorded of herself on her iPad about 10 months ago. If you listen to it, I'm sure you'll agree that my best birthday present will be seeing and hearing her up on stage, singing with her first grade friends classmates.
Indeed, that reminds me of the really good thing about getting older: I get to watch my kids develop into (hopefully) quality, smart, funny, ethical, productive, fun human beings.
By the way, here's a trivia question for you: How many (randomly selected) people do you have to have in a room to have a 50% chance that two (or more) of those people share a birthday (month/day, not year)? And how about to have a 99% chance?
The answers are perhaps surprisingly low:
You need 23 people in a room to have a 50% chance that two share a birthday, and 57 in a room to reach a 99% chance.
For those of you who want to dig into the nuts and bolts of the math, see this link.
Happy Birthday also to Brett Favre, David Lee Roth, Dale Earnhardt Jr., among many others, and I hope you'll all offer a thought or prayer in memory of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl who was brutally murdered in Pakistan a decade ago for being (like me) an American Jew. Daniel Pearl would have been 49 years old today.