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Present Time

December 2, 2015

If I were young again, I’d pay attention – To that little-known dimension
A taste of endless time
Just like water – it runs right through our fingers
But the flavor of it lingers – Like a rich, red wine
~ Chris Smithers

Sunday it’s my birthday. I’m creeping up in years. And every year December 6 seems to come faster and faster.

It used to be that I was bummed when Chanukah happened to fall on my birthday. Regardless of how big a deal parents make of the occasion, it was hard not feeling cheated when most kids would get presents two times during the year, and I would only get gifts in December.

Age does funny things to you. This year the first night of Chanukah coincides with my birthday, and I have to say I’m a little relieved. That means I’ve got a fighting chance of having the kids focus less on me and more on their own self interest.

There’s just one problem.

Nobody wants any presents. And maybe that’s the opposite of a problem, right? Most people are unhappy because they want the material things they don’t have. And it’s not that we have a ton. The kids don’t have tablets or phones. I work on a three year old laptop. There are more basic kitchen gadgets I’m missing than I can count.

I suppose I could count all the coffee gear I have in the house. But you know how much of it I use? Three pieces. The ceramic drip filter, the plastic cold brew bucket, and the burr grinder.

All of those things that I wanted last year, I don’t really want anymore. At this point I’ve gone a year without them, and haven’t really thought about them since.

My joke to Mrs. Fussy is that what I want most of all is more counter space to put additional appliances. But I haven’t been doing that much cooking either. Getting the Cuisinart up on the work surface wouldn’t get me using it more. It will just be a constant reminder of how little I am putting it into action.

Plus, anything I get is going to take up some kind of space.

I don’t know what’s gotten into me. Maybe it’s all the Yelp Schwag that comes into the house every month. It’s like Christmas every thirty days. Right now I’m sitting on all these shot glasses, pint glasses, coffee mugs, commuter journals, pens, and ponchos. Oh yeah, I also have 500 balloons somewhere in my closet. It’s crazy.

The kids just want money, and that always makes a terrible gift. As far as I can tell, they aren’t going to spend it on anything. It’s not going to bring them any joy. It’s going to go into their bank accounts, and they can watch the number rise by a couple of digits.

And I suppose encouraging good saving habits is important too. However, they aren’t going to be distracted from wanting to “help” me celebrate the birthday with a Chanukah check. So, I guess I’ll have to come up with something else. It’s times like these that I’m especially happy to have a store like ta-da! which seems to specialize in small fanciful things that kids love for about fifteen minutes.

What I am excited about is Chanukah itself. But I’ll remind you more about that in the days that come.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. December 2, 2015 10:52 am

    Yay for the Chanukah birthdays!! Mine was yesterday, so I’ve almost always gotten my birthday cake on Thanksgiving or at the family Chanukah party.

  2. December 2, 2015 11:01 am

    I wish I knew then what I know now. What is the word for that feeling… is there a word? It feels like there should be.

  3. December 2, 2015 11:51 am

    Happy Birthday, and HAPPY EVERYTHING. Sending you more balloons. (: Zena

  4. RogerK permalink
    December 2, 2015 6:36 pm

    Happy Birthday! We can toast your b’day on Thursday, between 7 pm and 9 pm with a swallow of beer. ;>)

  5. December 4, 2015 11:35 am

    Happy Birthday! You can always cultivate generosity with money by joyful giving.

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