The Truth Board

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The Truth About the Fact: An International Journal of Literary Nonfiction

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The Truth About the Fact: A Journal of Literary Nonfiction is an international journal committed to the idea that excellence in the art of letters can play a vital role in transforming the planet we share.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A Birthday Revolution

It’s easy to think birthdays are the greatest day of the year, I mean for 24 hours you become the tyrant of the day and everyone else bows down at your royal greatness. Well at least that’s what I imagined my birthday would be like when I was turning 5 or 8 or 10 even. Plus, there is a lot of cake involved in birthdays and who doesn’t love cake?

I’ve grown up watching my parents and grand parents grow older and face their birthdays like they were some wall of doom that impeded their progress towards an enlightened life. I never really understood it; they got presents, a nice dinner, a birthday cake and lots of cards in the mail, what wasn’t there to love?

Apparently there is some turning point though, in the whole birthday process, where it becomes less of a “move out of the way Hannah-The-Birthday-Girl is coming through” and more of a “how can I make it out of this day alive” sort of celebration. Why does that happen I wonder as my 21st birthday approaches?

A friend once posed the question what would happen if we all made silly faces at each other like we make at cute babies we pass on the street. It is an interesting thought really, somewhere along the lines of, what if a 36-year-old man demanded that his birthday party be fireman themed. Of course, we’re supposed to grow up – so funny face making, streamers and fire truck shaped cakes may be a little odd for adults to cling onto. But at what birthday do we lose the right to be goofy kids who just want to go swing from the monkey bars?

Maybe that’s the problem. Birthdays could potentially be fun for the rest of time. Parties would always require those annoying hats with the elastic bands that are too tight and candy filled party favors – it would be great. Instead though, we’ve chosen that at some indefinable age, it’s time to hate growing old. I’ll admit, I’m no longer a huge fan of birthdays. But I do still love that cake…and could learn to love party favors too. I’m thinking it’s time to start a revolution.



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