Monday, September 25, 2006

Wherein I Am Told "September 24th is NOT a Leap Day!"

Unavoidably, last Sunday was my birthday. I have long tried to convince people that due to certain inaccuracies in the Gregorian Calendar, September 24th is an invalid day, doesn't technically exist, and therefore, I never get any older.

Almost nobody buys this. One of the most constantly cited reasons is that if Pope Gregory designed it, then it must be right the way it is, due to Papal infallibility. I counter with the fact that I am not personally Catholic, so what difference does that make to me? Look, Ben (may I call you "Ben"? Because I'm going to, anyway, and it's either that or "Ratzo"), if you want to have a serious discussion about this, take the dress off, put on some jeans and, say, a turtleneck, and we can meet at Starbuck's and talk it over reasonably. I understand that there's a Starbuck's conveniently located inside the Sistine Chapel.

But, I digress, while also risking excommunication from a denomination that I don't belong to anyway.

I've gotten behind in filling my quota of entropic verbiage for a little while. An out-of-whack neck that's pinching some major nerves tends to distract a person from wanting to write anything except extremely vile, profane and dry-heaves-inducing raving and frothing at the mouth. Well, that's one of my favorite things to do when I'm feeling good, and I didn't want to fall short of the high standards for perversion and corrupting the youth of Athens that I usually set for myself.

The business with the neck is a prime example of my growing irritation with birthdays. I've been to three different doctors for this, and they're all excellent physicians (though their cribbage games need a lot of work): First, my family doctor, then a neurologist, and finally a neuropathologist. Tests & an MRI ensued. The good news: It's not a slipped, herniated or protruding disk. There isn't any bone touching bone. It should be able to be alleviated with physical therapy, and nobody will need to poke around inside my neck. I'm fine up until this point. Then they drop the bomb: "However, you are getting older, so the disks are thinning."

Those damnable, denial-proof words: "You are getting older...." They don't say that to people in their twenties and thirties. They say it to people who've medically jumped the shark; it means that it's all downhill from here. Many of you (wearing bifocals, to be able to read this) are fine with this, holding to the crazy notion that it's just life and perfectly natural.

What is wrong with you people?

It's not like I'm not fighting back. I watch what I eat (thanks mainly to my spouse); I'm as active as possible doing wench-tossing and other feats; I usually get enough sleep. My blood work looks great and my heart is in exceptionally good shape (take that, all you lard-sucking middle-aged couch potatoes). In other words, I take care of myself; but I don't take Geritol every morning because, dammit to hell, I AM NOT THAT OLD!! I ain't eligible for an AARP card, and I'm still plenty young enough to resent the fact that nobody offers special discounts for oppressed artists who are having a really hard time with their necks! Would it kill you guys to offer me some free free-range celery (lettuce is out for now, & NO spinach, thanks) at the organic food store once in a while? Come on, be a sport: Gimme some head for free.

Of celery, you perverts!

Though I wouldn't turn the offer down if it was Amy. Amy has got some "quality produce", I gotta tell ya! Anyone who can manage to look sexy in a beet juice-stained apron has got it going on.

This all reminds me of a scientific theory of mine which has never quite gotten the recognition it deserves:

The Eye Wit's Law of the Origin of Birthdays

Sex, obviously, is the most immediate explanation. I can't argue with that. However, in these times, what with in-vitro fertilization, surrogate motherhood, and the sudden mutation of certain kinds of muskrats, it isn't always the case. I'm pointing that out before I even start to say that The Eye Wit's Law is based entirely on sex, as much sex as possible, and as thoroughly naughty sex as possible. I don't do Petri dishes, literally or figuratively. What brings this to my mind to finally publish in this extremely academically-credentialed blog is the fact that the "Big Birthday Bang Rush" in my family has hit its annual stride. There are more birthdays in my family during this time of year by far than any other. Now, why do you suppose that is? Anyone?
OK, OK, I'll lay it out for you: I am firmly convinced that at least 75% of all birthdays can be explained by a holiday. This is something that is greatly misunderstood; every bloody year, the newspaper publishes a picture of the first baby (pointless, really, they all rather look like Winston Churchill. Admit it, you know I'm right) born on Christmas, or the first of the New Year, dubbing them "Christmas babies" and "New Year babies", which is not accurate at all. They're not thinking. When a child is born, seemingly connected to a holiday, it isn't the holiday on which they were born that defines them; it's the holiday upon which they were conceived that determines what kind of "holiday baby" they are. That, put succinctly, is The Eye Wit's Law.

I, myself, am an excellent example: My birthday is September 24; what day is precisely nine months previous to the date of my birth? Christmas Eve, that's what! Therefore, if you think logically, I'm the one who's a "Christmas baby". Naturally, babies can be somewhat early or late, so you have to allow a bit of leeway in looking at the calendar, but this theory is proven out with spectacular results whenever I present it in an intellectual gathering, such as a Wesson party.

Still, you can't accuse my family of not having the holiday spirit. Witness: My mother: August 27th. Obviously, a Thanksgiving baby. My father: June 16th. Could, in fact, be a Labor Day baby, since they actually observed it back in those days, and proving that perhaps my grandparents really did possess a sense of humor after all. Rosh Hashanah is around then, too; then again, nobody in my family is Jewish. My oldest sister: October 5th. New Year's baby. My older brother: November 11th. Valentine's Day, obviously. My next younger sister: February 27th. This puts her in the "Mother's Day baby" class, which by this time was rather redundant. The next sister: September 29th. Christmas, approximately. In her case, for reasons that I cannot explain, I think it's Boxing Day. The baby of the family: September 2nd. Another "Turkey Day" baby, and trust me, we've never let her forget it. That, and what we call "The Parkay Incident", but I swore that I'd never mention it again. My daughter would scream if I mentioned anything about her birthday; I can live with that, for it will give this post an air of mystery & suspense.

"Sure," you say, "that's just your sicko family." Don't be so certain! My spouse, for example, who is not related by blood (though she's spilled plenty of mine) was born on December 11th. Her first name fits well with the fact that she's a St. Patrick's Day baby. Actually, the name was incidental; it was the name of the victim in a murder mystery that her mother was reading at the time, and she just liked it. So, my spouse is named after a corpse. And if I make any additional comment to that statement, it's me that's going to be a corpse.

Proclaiming this theory also has one very consistent side effect: The discussion inevitably leads you, nearly forces you to imagine your parents having sex. This, most people find revolting and abhorrent (major exceptions: Tennessee, Kentucky, Alabama, and Boise, Idaho). Is a it sadistic thing to do from which I derive mischievous glee, and that makes you have nightmares?

You bet it is! Just consider it a birthday present.

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1 comment:

Mariann Simms said...

I think this just proves there are too many damned holidays...and also sex was probably invented by the Hallmark people so they could sell cards to more people.

And you are still a lot older than me. :)