Sunday, March 20, 2005


First, before I reel off the Boogie-Birthday Re-Cap, I did more review on the whole Terri Schiavo situation. And while I'm not backtracking -- I still think Congress and all politicians who aren't related to the members of this family should keep the hell out of it -- I have changed my position a bit. The fact that Ms. Schiavo is in a vegetative state doesn't mean she doesn't communicate, or that she is totally catatonic; she doesn't speak, but she can smile, and she does exhibit some sort of presence. She'll never be able to fully communicate with the outside world, but to let a person starve -- over a period of weeks -- seems beyond inhumane to me. If she were my relative, I would want her to find peace, but not over the course of several weeks during which she, ostensibly, would suffer. Instead, I would want permission to have a drug administered that would simply induce coma and, eventually, peace. I still firmly believe that her mother's pleas to Congress to save her daughter are, in fact, misplaced, because, in fact, only God can save her daughter. But I think this country needs to revisit its position on euthanasia; I certainly don't advocate the slow, torturous procedure this woman might be forced endure. But conversely, watching her suffer, day after day, and be barely a shell of the person she once was, should not be the only alternative. And while I understand her family and friends want her to be cared for rather than forgotten, it seems to me that anyone who cares about her would not want her to merely exist in the state in which she is in. I think that is something the politicians meddling in this matter should also consider when they next have a microphone jabbed in their faces.


Back to happier subjects: my girlfriend, totally buried beneath an end-of-quarter that comes due at the end of the month, didn't make it to NYC this weekend. Both of us were disappointed, but as I 'splained to her, it's only just a day -- and considering the bullshit over the past couple birthdays I endured, I'm just happy this one transpired without any ancillary temper-tantrums, issues or aggravation clouding the day and our relationship. That, and looking forward to our next visit -- and when she finally becomes a full-time NYC resident -- mean a lot more to me than just one day.

The itinerary was pretty bland -- no bail money, no transvestite hookers named Fred wearing pink fishnets, and no restraining orders -- and no waking up on the Lower East Side in a hippie commune/apartment belonging to The Friends of Taribithia Prayer and Social Club. No, this birthday was pretty cut-and-dry -- my sister brought me a couple cards and gave me a gift from her boyfriend of an assortment of kickin' cigars -- 5 Vegas (Cinco Vegas, for you gaijins), CAO, Don Tomas, et al... Since they weren't humidified I couldn't fire any of 'em up; but in a couple weeks, once they've been properly rehumidified, I'll be running through 'em and re-enjoying my birthday all over again -- the gift that keeps on giving...

We got to the office, I did a little work and then my sister and I went to lunch at the Brooklyn Diner, where my other half had called in an attempt to get us a special dessert, but the maitre'd (who knows us well) had it already handled: just when we were stuffed and couldn't eat anymore, the waitress brought a huge hunk of incredible chocolate cake with some whipped cream and a candle. We brought it upstairs as neither of us could even make an attempt at having even a bite of it... Once upstairs I did some more work and got a bunch more calls from friends and relatives all over, although none was more memorable than from my friend Ron (gee, thanks, Ron), who had called from Tokyo earlier that morning at 4AM (hint: 14 hours). Thank god for answering machines and me being a heavy sleeper. And that chocolate cake didn't go to waste :-)

Once we finally made it out of the office and homeward, I came home to find a care package with some awesome goodies awaiting me courtesy of my other half, including pictures, some shirts, a couple of wonderful cards, a frame with a tasty picture and a keycase. After trying some stuff on and spending some much-needed phone-time with her, I got changed and headed out to meet friends; we had sangria, tequila shots and some rockin' Mexican at Rosa Mexicana. By the time I climbed into bed it was the next day. Thanks to the time difference, I got to fall asleep with my other half in my ear and a smile on my face.


Friday was a blur: I managed some appointments, a bit of laundry, some relaxing, and just enjoyed the day. Saturday, I did a little running around (errands, etc.) and then came home, got changed and went to dinner with my parents, my sister and her boyfriend at a restaurant near my apartment. I felt a bit detached not having my other half there with us, but I still had a great time; we had a bottle of champagne in honor of my birthday, and then, halfway through dinner, the waiter brought another bottle, announcing to the table that it was from someone who knows and loves me who felt badly she couldn't be there by the name of Kaia...I sorta-kinda knew, as we all smiled and missed her, that, in the back of my mind, she would do something like that, but it still made me smile and even miss her more. And by the time dinner was cleared, I had finished six glasses of incredible champagne, a warm grilled calamari and mesculun salad (rockin'), and about half my dinner. They then brought out the cake -- a chocolate monstrosity with candles spelling out the word celebrate -- before we finally called it a night.

I wound up falling asleep on the phone with my other half, despite a clinging headache and being so tired; I thanked her for the champagne, the same bottle that she'd sent to me the day my father got out of the hospital, and let her know how sweet and wonderful a gesture it was. I explained to her that I'd told my father that the only other time she'd sent me a bottle of Clicquot was to celebrate his release from the hospital. As per usual, it was a small gesture, perhaps, but one that really felt good. I doubt I'll ever see another bottle of Clicquot again and not think of her and smile.


This morning I woke up early, feeling good, well-rested and relaxed (in other words, not hung over). I wanted to get some laundry done but it wasn't meant to be, so I relegated my early morning wake-up to some work and some organizing, and downloading a clip of Chappelle's Show (where he plays Rick James). If you haven't seen it, you need to...if for no other reason than to be reminded that "Cocaine's a helluva drug!"

In the meantime, it was rainy and miserable in NYC but I was looking forward to going out as some friends were taking me to brunch for my birthday, so we met up, despite the rain, and had a kickin' brunch at Atlantic Grill...our waiter told us to relax and enjoy and was in no rush to clear us out, so we wound up hanging there for awhile (the fact they brought us fondue with rice krispies, marshmallows, biscotti and fruit for dessert didn't hurt). By the time we rolled out of there and swung by one of my friend's apartments, it was late afternoon. All in all, a great way to spend a Sunday, birthday or not :-)

It's nice to know that I've got lots of friends and family around that went out of their way to make sure I had such a great birthday. As they know, I appreciate them all. The one thing that was missing this weekend was my other half, and knowing that for my next birthday she'll be here permanently was all the birthday happiness I needed. The rest -- as great as it was -- is just icing on the cake :-)


"Enjoy yourself,'s a celebration..."

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