Monday, April 11, 2011

Why Birthdays Can Be Deceiving...

B-day cake.jpg
As you probably know (and if you don't... you will), at some point birthdays tend to lose their luster.  Well, maybe not lose their luster, but they just aren't as big a deal for me as they used to be.  Now, of course I'm really glad I'm not room temperature, however, my enthusiasm has waned a bit as the years have piled up... or on, as the case may be.
So this year, when the 'ol b-day rolled around, it turns out that I was booked to do a lecture for the Central New England Dental Research Group about 1.5 hours outside Boston.  The best part?  It was a function presented by myself and my lecturing buddies Marty Jablow and Paul Feuerstein.  Combined we are called "Dental Technology Solutions".  The NEDRG had asked us to do a program all day Friday and 1/2 day on Saturday, with Saturday coinciding with my birthday.
Now I like my birthday, but I'm not one to make a big deal about it... especially when I'm with people that don't know about it.  So I ended up in the Boston area keeping the secret to myself.
On Wednesday the office surprised me with a big celebration.  Since I was traveling to Boston on Thursday, I wasn't going to be in the office.  I was expecting the staff to celebrate after I got back... not before I left.  They decorated the office and met me as I drove into the parking lot.  They ALL were standing in the front yard waving as I pulled in.  They provided a barbecue lunch for me in the conference room.  They also got me 2 tickets to a White Sox game in Chicago... right behind home plate.  Wow!
I was hoping that I could keep this to a low profile on the trip.  Of course, it's really hard to keep a secret from your friends.  Somehow Marty and Paul figured it out.  It didn't help either that some dear friends at Gendex found out either.  At our first break on Saturday morning, Paul announced to the group that it was my birthday.  During the morning session, the John the Gendex Rep had snuck out and purchased a balloon bouquet as well as a potpourri of gag gifts.  I was presented with a slice of cake and some great baseball related gifts.
Then... the geek part of the birthday began.  My Facebook account suddenly lit up as word got out.  At about the same time, my personal email account began to receive well wishes.  I received lots of very special and touching messages from all sorts of great people.
When we had finished our lecturing, we left for downtown Boston.  Marty and I both had early flights on Sunday so we stayed close to Logan airport.  We spent the afternoon and early evening wandering around Boston seeing the sites and enjoying the crowds.  It was awesome.  Of course anytime I'm wandering around any where with Paul & Marty there are good times.  No less than 5 times we all laughed about something til we cried.
We finished off the night with dinner at Legal Seafood which is one of my 10 favorite restaurants in the world.  When we arrived the wait was a 1  hour minimum which Paul, of course, managed to change to about 3 minutes.  I started with lobster bisque and then finished off a 2 1/2 pound lobster and some Boston Cream Pie.  How I managed to eat all that, well I'll probably never know.
So it just goes to show... here I was thinking that I'd maybe get a little celebration on Monday and I've been livin' the dream for the past 96  hours.  This was one of the best birthdays ever and I didn't even expect anyone to know.
So thanks to all of  you who helped make it so special.  Often we don't get a chance to really realize how blessed we are to have friends.  Me?  I'm grateful to have been given that chance.  I'm never going to forget this one.  Ever.  That's how special you all made it.  Thank you!!!

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