Tuesday, September 26, 2006
Pull Up A Chair And Have A Beer, Birthdays Are Here
Well, Dear and Gentle Reader, that time of year is upon us. The nights are getting chilly, the leaves are starting their age-old journey of falling to the ground, and the evening bonfires feel cozier. Not to mention two of my best friends have birthdays coming up. These guys have been through thick and thin with ol’ Doc, and I feel that now that they are getting a little long in the tooth, maybe I should send them something special this year.
Some of the best advice that my Dad ever imparted to me was this: You don’t get to pick your family, you don’t get to choose to be born rich or poor, you don’t really get to decide where you grow up, you don’t get to pick your boss, and with a lot of things in life, you just don’t get any say in, so pick your mate and your friends well. I have always found this to be true. I’ve chosen my mate and couldn’t ask for a better one than Flannery. She will always be the love of my life. And I would like to think that I have chosen my friends with equal care.
In the film Tombstone, there is a scene, late in the film, where Wyatt Earp, Doc Holiday, Turkey Creek Jack Johnson, and Texas Jack Vermillion are recovering from their last fight with the Clanton’s. Turkey Creek Jack sees Doc Holiday go into a horrible, racking coughing spell and he asks him what the hell is he doing out here. Doc responds, “Wyatt is my friend,” “Hell Doc,” Jack sez, “I got lots of friends”. Doc looks away and sez softly, ”Well I don’t.” That is how I feel. I only have a few, I love them deeply, and I aim to keep ‘em.
So with that in mind, I need to think of an appropriate gift for these honorable Gentlemen, and it needs to be just right. These fellows couldn’t be more unalike than night and day, oil and water, shinola or the other stuff, so two of the same gift just won’t do. I get to see them rarely and I’ll have to ship anything I get them, so a case of good beer seems out of the question. Besides, they know what good beer is and there isn’t anything I could tell them about it, or a good brand that I could turn them on to, and they are probably going to get their own beer for their respective birthdays, so that rules that out.
They are getting up in years, so comic books and Playboy’s don’t really have the appeal that they once did. I could get them gift cards for someplace, but that just seems cheesy. I considered a singing telegram girl, but the cost would be prohibitive and one of them is married, and I don’t think his wife would appreciate a scantily clad crooner on their doorstep. I mean really, who needs harsh words and slammed doors on their birthday. The other lives with his folks and takes care of them, and he wouldn’t like to have his ol’ mother answer the door to find some skinny hussy doing a breathy version of Happy Birthday To You like Marilyn Monroe. So strike that idea.
I have been considering a care package. You know, a box of lots of little things they might need and enjoy, just to show I care. I need ideas as to what to include in my lil’ packages and I’m looking for suggestions. I know my blog is not the center of this wonder-tool we call the web and for the most part goes largely unread, but I’m calling on all of you that stop by to contribute a suggestion. And please don’t say “Get them some over the hill gag gifts from the mall”. That crap isn’t funny to anybody. And don’t say clothes. Wives and mothers get clothes for their men. All submissions will be considered. What was the best birthday gift that you ever got? Why?
One is mid thirties, the other is late thirties, both men. One married, one single. One with children, one without, but both are children at heart. One a football fan, the other not a sports guy. One an avid reader, the other not so much.
Please help out ol’ Doc and give me some ideas.