Jewish teens have their bar mitzvah and bat mitzvah while the Americans have sweet sixteen birthdays for the girls. For sure, there are no sour eighty fives or bitter eighty threes.
The dry and undemonstrative guy will consider his natal day anniversary as just any ordinary day. Well, that may be the best attitude because, in the first place, there is really nothing special that happens during one’s birthday unless he does something to make it remarkable. Just the same, it will all depend on the scenario that naturally comes.
In a kid’s birthday party, the important guests are kids. The props are kiddy. There are the balloons, the clown, and the running around, plenty of it. The teen-ager birthday will have teeny weenie visitors, mild drinks, cocktails, punches and questionable hide and seeks. The adult birthday party is attended by adult friends and there are wines, big stories which either true or false, nice gowns and coats which are owned or borrowed or what, and brawls at times.
What about the more adult? The eighty’s? Or the eighty eights? Do they have to celebrate their birthdays? With visitors coming in limping? Guests getting inside in wheelchairs? Or crutches under the armpits and hearing aids below the ears? Not that.
But yes, the oldies have the better right than anyone of us to celebrate their birthdays. Together with the merry occasion, they reflect how much in life they have learned. They refresh the victory or success, big or small, that came for every tear and every struggle. They look back how they cared for their children to the point of self sacrifice and self denial. They recall helping the neighbors in every way they could. To them, no other treasure is more valuable than memories, be it sad or be it happy. And as they remember the lows and highs of the past and the series of ups and downs in life, they become more confident that they can well start