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Wednesday, December 15, 2004


   Belated Happy B-day to me.....=))
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I was supposed to post this on my birthday but I wasn't able to get online. I saw this in a magazine and got the idea of sharing this to you. Hope you'll like this one.
The Trouble With Being Born

I was still sleeping when the phone rang. I didn’t pick up because I didn’t want to exchange pleasantries on my birthday.

Thank God for answering machines: I am not at home right now or I’m in a very bad mood. Leave a message. Beep Beep Beeeeeeep.
“Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday happy birthday…”

I will not have that obscene greeting left on my machine so I pick up.

“I knew you were still there,” said my early morning annoying caller.

“What do you want?”

“Are you bringing cake and ice cream to the office?”

“NO! Leave me alone so I can get back to what I was doing.”

“What were you doing?”

“Slashing my wrists.”

“So, how old are you today?”

“Good-bye.”

I put on my pants, pulled a shirt over my nightshirt, slipped into my espadrilles and left my apartment. I wasn’t going to the office because:

1)I was too broke to treat everyone to cake and ice cream.

2)I hated turning another year older.

3)I forgot to brush my teeth.

I wanted to share my misery with the person partly responsible for my having been born. I decided to go visit my father.

“What brings you here so early,” he greeted me over breakfast.

“I needed to blame someone,” I said, a bit hurt that he had forgotten it was my birthday.

“Did you bring cake?” he asked.

He remembered! I brightened.

“I wanted to find out what kind you wanted,” I said.

“The usual,” he said.

I went out and bought lemon chiffon cake and ice cream.

“Where’s the pancit?” my father asked. Noodles symbolized long life for the birthday celebrant.
I bought chicken instead.
Chicken means being afraid.
Chicken out means to give up because you are afraid.
Chickenpox is a disease which gives you high temperature and red spots that itch.

“How are you going to spend your birthday?” my father asked. “Bet you’re going out with your friends and have a good time.”

Yeah.

He gave me a whole bag of Lifesavers which a relative had sent from the States, and then he settled down in his divan for an afternoon nap.

Bonding over, I decided to get a haircut.


Normally, I would call first to make an appointment, but since it was my birthday, I thought fate would be more accommodating.
When I arrive, Luc, my hairdresser was busy with a client.

“Be with you in a minute,” she said, and instructed an assistant to shampoo my hair. The assistant studied my dry boring hair-do and asked: “Would you like to color your hair?”

“No.”

“What about henna?”

“No.”

“Perhaps a hot oil treatment?”

“No.”

“Manicure?”

“No.”

“Pedi—“

“NO!”

Luc finally came around and did her thing: Snip-snip-slip! She had accidentally nipped my ear.

“Is it bleeding?” I asked.

“I can’t really see,” she said.

So what was she doing holding a sharp instrument inches from my head?

“Does it hurt?” she asked really concerned.

“Nah,” I said bravely, “It’s just a nip.”

She continued to cut my hair and I continued to pretend I was reading a magazine. When her assistant was rinsing my hair, she asked, “And what happened to your ear?”
I pretended not to hear.
“It’s bleeding,” she shouted through the gurgle of spraying water.

I felt like Vincent Van Gogh. All I needed was a picture. Or a song…Starry starry night!

I decided to renew my driver’s license. I went to the nearest Land Transportation Office. I asked the information desk where I could have my license renewed.
The man looked at my license and said, “Happy birthday.” Then he asked me for P30 because I had lost the true copy of my four-year-old receipt. It was P30 or an affidavit of loss which not only takes time, it costs more than P30.
I waited with the other drivers for my turn to have my picture taken. Good thing I got a haircut! I didn’t want to get stuck with a bad hair day picture for the next four years. Think of all those traffic cops asking to see my license and snickering when they see my picture.

I was so concerned about posing without showing my double chin, I ended up looking like a criminal. Of course, the LTO man refused to re-shoot me.

I was busy figuring out how I could lose the license and get another picture taken I drove pass a red light.

Of course a traffic cop was waiting for me. He motioned for me to pull over.

“That was a red light,” he said and asked to see my license. I gave him the newly typed-out receipt. He took one look at the issue date and my birth date and smiled.

“So, how old are you today?”

I burst into tears.


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