Showing posts with label birthdays. Show all posts
Showing posts with label birthdays. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Celebrations by Konnie Enos


It’s December.
Everywhere you go you see and hear all about the gifts that have to be bought for the Christmas season. (Or Hanukah, or Kwanza, or whatever giving celebration you have at this season.)
In all this hubbub people, lots of people, with December birthdays, are forgotten.
Everyone else gets presents for their birthday and Christmas.
People with December birthdays often get just one gift in December sometime.
Everyone else gets a birthday present wrapped in birthday themed paper.
People with December birthdays often get just Christmas wrapped gifts.
People such as Charlie Puth, Holly Marie Combs, Daryl Hannah, Sara Bareilles, Kirk Douglas, Rider Strong, Mayim Bialik, Dick Van Dyke, Taylor Swift, and list goes on and on. There are lots of people with December birthdays including Walt Disney and Patty Duke.
For anyone who is fortunate enough to have a birthday no way near a major holiday you can’t possibly understand the problem. I however have some idea how people born in December feel.
My mother went into labor at the fireworks display. Since the bicentennial fell on a Sunday, we celebrated, you guessed it, on our birthday. Since our birthday was so close to a major holiday our birthday parties generally had sparse attendance, if at all. Everyone had holiday plans.
Having a child actually born in the month of December, I’ve tried really hard to make sure he has a birthday AND Christmas.
So in celebration of the arrival of my first born son, seventeen years ago today happy birthday Tony. And happy birthday to everyone else with a December birthday whom I’ve known throughout the years. (This means you too William Parker.)

Smile. Make the day a brighter day.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Birthdays and Holidays part 2

As I stated in my last blog post, Konnie and I were born on July 5th, a fact that does affect how we think and feel, but there are lots of other people born on or near holidays. I know quite a few.

And I’ve heard a lot stories, and or complaints about this fact of life, everything from never having friends in town, or available, on their birthday because of the holiday or one girl who griped that everyone always expected any party held on her birthday to be a costume party. These things exist, and, when possible, we should incorporate them into our stories.

After all, for our characters to be realistic, they have to have a birthday, don’t they?

I admit, sometimes the timeline of a story doesn’t lend itself to including a birthday. If it doesn’t span an entire year, it might not cover the time when the birthday is. And there are people who just don’t make a great deal out of birthdays, but what if they do, or what if the character was born on or near a holiday?

Or what if, like that bit I witnessed on The Big Bang not too long ago, a character would rather ignore his birthday for some reason. What is the reason? And how do his friends respond to it? If the writers of The Big Bang can make entire episode based on that subject, it should make a good brief story line too.

Or you could have a character born near a holiday that isn’t on the same date every year, and in the story, that date happens to be your character’s birthday. How will they react? How will they feel?

I can help you with a family’s reaction to having to deal with a birthday and Thanksgiving on the same day. I could even ask my brother how he felt. And I already know Mom’s reaction to going into labor just as soon as she finished eating that yearly feast. She never let us, or more particularly Ben, forget it.

And in my late teens when my youngest brother made his entrance into the world, I heard a lot of jokes about being in labor on Labor Day, not sure if he still hears them, but then how many of his friends know he was actually born on that very day? Though it might be fun to have character give birth on that day. :)

And that complaint about friends being unavailable for birthday parties? Well, I recall once commiserating with a couple of friends over that shared problem. They were born on July  4th, but I’ve later heard it from a friend born on Christmas day.

I personally know of three people born on Christmas day. (I feel sorry for those poor souls. Gifts only once a year? How awful! :))
I already mentioned the Halloween birthday complaint. I can see how that would affect the attitude of someone about birthdays. But it might actually be fun to add to a story. :)

And I know a lady was born on New Year’s Day, however, I think she enjoyed being able to have a sleepover the night before her birthday. At least she was having fun at the one such sleepover I attended.

And there is one day on the calendar, which isn’t really a holiday, but it does affect the people born on that day a great deal. I happen to know of several. And that’s February 29th. Just two of these souls that I know of are a cousin and one of my teachers both in high school and later in college.

As I recall my cousin complained about having a birthday party just once every four years, but I think that might have been his mother’s doing, we didn’t get a party every year either. But our one time teacher liked to joke he was younger than his students were. He insisted he was only twelve when he was teaching us back in high school but had celebrated a birthday by the time he moved up to teaching college, so he was thirteen then. And he milked that both times. He was a fun teacher, one of my very favorites.

Anyway, when we were born can affect our attitudes about birthdays, and when our characters are born might do the same for them. Do any of your characters have a birthday on or near a major holiday? And how does it affect your story?


Happy writing, everyone. :)

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Birthdays and Holidays

This past Sunday morning started out like any other day. I went through the same routine I always do, but things were a bit different when my computer informed me that my twin had finally connected to the internet, which isn’t unusual in itself, its just generally when this happens each morning, we either exchange hello’s or good morning’s. This past Sunday morning we each said, happy birthday.

Again, nothing spectacular, it’s not as if we’re going to forget when each other’s birthday is. But I thought it was kind of funny when over hour after we exchanged this greeting, Facebook saw fit to send me an email reminding me that it was Konnie Enos’ birthday. Duh!

I think Konnie put it best in her Facebook post later that day:
Thanks Facebook for reminding me that today was Bonnie Le Hamilton's birthday, I might have forgotten otherwise. I mean it's not like we didn't share a womb for eight months or celebrate the last past 52 years in some fashion together so I'm bound to forget that today marks one more year we've both lived on this planet. Not that I've ever forgotten it's my birthday. All that ruckus people make the night before the big day makes sure I never forget.
Happy Birthday America. I love July.

As for all that ruckus the night before, I can remember a time when we thought all that ruckus was for us. Of course, kids are self-centered by nature, but we grew up. We do know better, however, having the fifth of July for a birthday can be fun sometimes, or down right annoying.

Growing up, our mother often mentioned that the year we were born with the first boom of the fireworks display that July 4th her contractions started, a month early. Our parents left the display and hurried to the hospital, and Konnie and I came into world the next evening. And mother spent the rest of her life complaining about it. J

And then there was the year I took a summer band class, the summer of our bicentennial. That year The 4th fell on Sunday and our hometown planned to have the parade on Saturday. My band class was going to march in that parade, but my problems started when my fellow clarinet players learned two things, first I’d never been on the receiving end of any birthday spankings, in part because my birthday is in the middle of the summer, and that my birthday was on Monday.

The girls in the class, which was all but one of my classmates, decided my height deficiency was due at least in part to the fact I’d never received a pinch to grow an inch. So they were going to make sure they each gave me my birthday spanking, and a pinch to grow an inch. A terrifying prospect considering the number of girls involved and how old I was going to be.

Then we marched in the parade. When we reached the end, our bandleader announced to the whole group that there would be no classes on Monday. While the rest of the band cheered, our bandleader stared dumbfounded at the clarinet section where all but one of the girls responded in some form of, “Uh darn!” and the remaining girl sighed and sank to the ground in shear relief!

Do any of your characters have a birthday on or near a major holiday? How does it affect their life or their attitude? Do you show this in your story? It could be happy, sad, anything. Birthday’s happen in real life, why not in our character’s lives? Think about it.


Happy writing, everyone. J