Now, I gotta say, when you hit the age of (gulp) fifty-nine, you don't actually celebrate getting a year older, but --- what the hell. Fifty-nine years ago, give or take about 12 hours, my parents were attending a Philadelphia Orchestra concert, and my mother went into labor (I wasn't due for another three weeks - looks like I started out impatient, and that hasn't changed one bit, as David will attest). Mom's obstetrician was in Atlantic City (a very different place in 1947, with nary a casino to be seen) so I was delivered by the intern on duty at the time. He was so nervous (and I was apparently so eager to get on with it) that I slipped out of his hands and fell - head-first - into the bucket awaiting the afterbirth, positionedon the floor next to the delivery table! I wish I could say that explained a bit about how I turned out, but I've learned that babies and small children manage to do a lot of tumbling and falling without major damage, so I can't use that event as an excuse, much as I'd like to!
For the next year, my uncle, who was an MD, and our family doctor, stopped by our house at the end of the day before he went home for dinner, 'just to take a look at your beautiful baby'. Both of my parents found that rather odd, but didn't know the reason until I was a year old (can you believe it? no one told my parents what had happened for an entire year after I was born! Today, that would mean Major Lawsuit, I'm sure).
In any case, head-bonking, the Years of Sex, Drugs, Rock-n-Roll, working at a nuclear power plant (really!), and Multiple Sclerosis notwithstanding, here I am, like an overweight Energizer Bunny, still going after fifty-nine years.
And the day dawned sunny and bright in Portland, a welcome gift for all of us!
(Cue the Beatles singing "Today is Your Birthday...")