My 30th birthday is near the beginning of June, and my son's birthday is near the end of June. We both celebrated milestone birthdays this year: 30 and 1. I'll leave it up to you to do the math and figure out whose is whose.
Since I often work weekends (including the weekend of Dylan's birthday), it seemed only natural to travel out to the homeland for his birthday party a week early. Unbeknownst to me, the idea was merely a wily subterfuge to conceal my surprise 30th birthday party.
Another piece of backstory that is important is that my wife has, on several occasions, removed a number of my t-shirts from my dresser drawers and placed them in bags and hidden them in storage. Her claim is that not only do I own far too many t-shirts, but that since I don't notice them missing, they're not even necessary in the first place. My counterpoint is, "Mine! Mine! Mine!" Once, she wanted me to toss a couple bags of clothing in front of the Salvation Army for her. I initially refused because you're not supposed to dump bags in front of the Salvation Army shop during off-hours. After some persistence, I agreed to do it. I pulled two bags out and started walking for the front door of the Salvation Army. A few familiar words spoke to me through the clear heavy-duty plastic bag: "State Spelling Chimp." Indeed, it was one of my old t-shirts in the bag without my permission. After scanning the bag again, it became apparent that many of the shirts were in the bags. Needless to say, the bags returned to the car, along with a grumpy husband.
When I arrived at the party, I walked in the house to see the usual family members. My mother was at the door and greeted Sebastian and me as we entered. Since my wife was still getting Dylan out of the car, I announced that Dylan was not with me, since it was his party. I then looked at my mom and noticed that she was wearing my Family Guy t-shirt for some strange reason. I told her, "Nice shirt." As I looked over at a couple other people, I noticed that they were also wearing my t-shirts. Confused, I offered the same "Nice shirt" to them as well. At that point, it became clear that many of the people were wearing my shirts, so I continued telling each of them "Nice shirt." Still confused, my eye caught the gift table, which had a couple large black signs noting that it was my birthday party. It should be noted that my 30th birthday cake was really a Twinkies pyramid.
I was further surprised by my gifts this year from the culprits behind the surprise t-shirt-wearing party. My first gift was a t-shirt stating "My wife hates my t-shirts." My second gift was yet another shirt, but this one said, "And I have 30 more just like it." The third gift was another shirt that said, "… in a box over there." The final gift/shirt said "… in a bag in the trunk." Each shirt also has the website address to my primary blog, smarmycarny.com. Check out the (low-quality) scan of the shirts:
Of course, strangers might be confused by all this. You'd have to know me personally to understand . . . and even then . . .
The first shirt works great. My wife hates my shirts . . . and visit this site. Since the other three are part of a "story," they make less sense on their own. (It's not often that I'm wearing 2 or more shirts at once, and even if I did, only one would be visible.) The best of the three confusing shirts is "… in a bag in the trunk." It sounds so suspicious, you can't help but wonder what that guy's been doing with his free time.
Now, looking back at the events of that weekend, I came to some interesting realizations:
We brought presents for Dylan, but we also brought some gifts for my aunt as well because her birthday (39th, of course) was a couple days before Dylan's. I "knew" that the party was for Dylan, but I didn't know if we were also celebrating my aunt's birthday too. The day before the party, I asked my mom, "Who exactly is the party for?" Of course, I innocently wanted to know if we just brought the presents for my aunt because it was the only time we'd see her, or if it was also officially her birthday. My mom, on the other hand, took this as an accusation that the party wasn't really for Dylan. Discussing this later, she said that she was sure that I had figured it out.
Before the party, I took my family to visit my father. I made sure that we got there with plenty of time to spare so we would not be late for "Dylan's party" and we also would be able to spend a substantial amount of time with my dad. I calculated the time we needed to leave in order to make it back 15 minutes early and arrive before most of the guests showed up, but my wife was working against me, doing her best to make sure that we arrived after all the other guests. On our ride back, my wife drove with Dylan and I rode with my brother-in-law and Sebastian. At one point, she pulled off at a gas station behind us and called us to tell us where she had gone. We were on a road that my wife knew well enough to make it to the party, so I kept trying to tell my brother-in-law to just keep driving and to have my wife make her way there. If I had been driving, I would have left her behind and arrived much closer to the time of the party.
One coincidental thing that happened had to do with shirts. As I mentioned, many of the guests wore my shirts that day. Earlier in the morning, my brother-in-law put on a shirt that looked strikingly similar to one I had. Sebastian even told him that he was wearing my shirt. Once the surprise had been revealed to me, I assumed that he was wearing one of my shirts, but it really just was a coincidence.