Monday, January 9, 2012

Birthday Message

So, today's my birthday, and it's basically the one day a year when everybody tells me how much they love me while also patronizing me as if I were a six-year-old handicapped Cambodian adoptee with leukemia.  Don't worry--I don't mind.  I brought it upon myself.

Bryan, for his part, is kind of the lead lover and lead patronizer.  Each year, he writes a baroque and meticulously edited email to all my friends and family, calling on them to do their civic duty, which is to treat me like a golden retriever puppy for one exquisite and fleeting day each year.

These emails are always amazing.  Here's the one that went out today:

Birthday Devotees,

Attention all!  Your annual astrological duty is upon you once again!  I hope I don't need to tell you that today is Jesslyn Shields's birthday, and that she is again walking the streets of Athens, GA enveloped in a soft, ethereal radiance.  Squint if you see her passing, and even the unpracticed among you will catch a glint of her multicolored aura, like a tasteful laser inspiring rapt fealty in your humble retina!  For today Jesslyn, your Birthday Dutchess, is 26 years old (margin of error: 8 years)!

As you know, I like to be as flexible as possible in these annual conscription notices I graciously (but unwaveringly) serve to you, the Chosen.  Therefore, I have this year provided 3 distinct options, based upon your favored recent Century. Please select the option below that you feel best describes you….

1.  "I respond positively to traditions, institutions and contrivances indicative of the late Nineteenth Century, such as light bulbs, phonographs, and postal mail delivered on horseback."
Yes, I picked this one, too.  Unfortunately, written letters (snail-mail) will not be accepted as fulfillment of your Duty to Jesslyn this year.  Instead, we offer a more contemporary analog of the postal mail: electronic mail.  You may send your fond wishes to and start the Jessylonic Year confident in the knowledge that you have once more earned the good graces of the Great Astrologues, looking down from their heavenly gondola. 

2.  "I respond best to the heady memories of the middle part of the 20th Century, with its rapidly accelerating technological infrastructure and its obsession with the New and emphasis on relentless, unmitigated Progress.  To tell the truth, I really dig Modern Conveniences."
You're in luck!  We have the perfect option for people of your preferences and tendencies.  It's the telephone!  Call Jesslyn at 706-555-5555 and tell her why you like her so much.  Your coming year will be Astrologically fruitful, indeed!

3.  "I'm an adventurous soul who's never quite satisfied with the status quo.  I always look past the person to whom I'm talking every few seconds to scan the horizon for the Next Big Thing.  All these Debby Downers crying about how great things used to be?  That's all just noise to me.  I don't mind tossing away a perfectly good apple, say, if I happen to find a bigger, fresher one along the way.  Slow Food makes me feel bored."
Ahhhhh!  This is the crowd I really wanted to talk to!  You-all are the innovators, the job creators and what not.  I can tell you're energetic and capable enough to take on and execute a True Challenge.  You, dear Friends, seem to me worthy of a Special Assignment.  And that is this:  you are going to make Birthday Videos!  Yes!  You're going to record whatever sort of video or message you think best expresses your feelings for Jesslyn on this grand occasion, and then you are going to sign in to YouTube with the following credentials:
Pword: duhr
and upload your video to the associated channel, called "09Birthday" (you can go to "My Channel" once you're logged in).  Don't understand what I'm talking about here?  Can't handle new ideas or complex tasks on the computer?  Go on back to #1 or #2, you Luddites!  For those of you who are savvy enough to participate in this, the 21st Century, congratulations!  You are the most Favored People among all the Birthday Chosen!  (But don't tell the #1 or #2-ers.  I told them what they were doing was perfectly fine -- but actually it's not.  High five!)

So!  You have until Friday (the close of the Birthday work week this year) to complete your assigned tasks!  Have fun!  Breathe deeply!  Imbibe the freshness, purity, and peaceful fulfillment as you express your irresistible fidelity to Jesslyn during this, the Most Important Week of the entire year!  Thank you, and know that I remain

Your dutiful Birthday servant,

Pretty sweet, right? 

Also, here's a birthday message from Odessa:

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