My dad just celebrated a milestone of a birthday -60!
Across the city, on that very same day, a little boy (we’ll call him Zuma for the purpose of this blog) also celebrated a milestone of a birthday -his first!
This older man and this young child aren’t complete strangers. Zuma’s grandpa is an old friend of my dad’s and they see each other about once a year. (Also, Zuma’s mother is an old friend of mine -and I think I’m making this sound more complicated than it is.) Zuma and my dad have met once, a couple weeks ago, where they realized they shared a birthday. My dad was tickled at this news, much more so than Zuma, and shortly after their first and only meeting my dad stopped by my house to request a favor.
“I need you to drop this off at Zuma’s house -tonight,” my dad said holding the Mo Willems’ Elephant and Piggie: I Am Invited to a Party! book.
“Why?” I asked. I am not as generous as my parents, plus there was a T.V show I wanted to watch that evening.
“Zuma’s birthday is coming up and I want to make sure he gets my present before his birthday.” Dad sounded anxious. And a little excited. He’s always excited though.
He quickly scribbled a little birthday inscription in the cover (and by quickly, I mean he wrote out several drafts beforehand). “I’m going to give him a little gift every year on our birthday. We’re birthday buddies.”
I probably rolled my eyes.
That night I had a long drive across the city which gave me time to think about my dad’s new little tradition. Because of this little book, and the many more to come, Zuma will grow up “knowing” my dad. They might not “know” each other in a personal way, but, at the very least, my dad will always be known as that ‘birthday book guy’ and that’s a lot better than not being known as anything at all. this simple book would form a bond between two generations. it’s actually a pretty amazing idea.
Whenever I hear of an amazing idea, I steal it for myself. Which is why I am looking for an August 4 birthday buddy. I want to start this tradition out right, so ideally I’m looking for someone with an August 4, 2011 birthday, but maybe that’s shooting for the moon?!? If you know someone, please email me and let me know. I have a book to send them…