I Shall Wear the Bottoms of my Trousers Rolled

Today is my 40th birthday. On this day at a medical clinic near Dallas four decades ago, my grandfather Bill hounded a senior nurse as she weighed and measured me, convinced I would be switched with another newborn through accident or malice. The only other kid in the nursery that morning was a girl, so I'm pretty sure my folks are the ones who produced me in a night of Champale-fueled abandon that probably involved a Chevy Malibu.

My parents married in late September 1966. I was born full-term. Twelve years later I finally did the math and began pestering my mother for an explanation during a car ride to my grandparents' house, fearing that I was a living breathing example of the breakdown of the American family. My aunt Pam halted the line of questioning and put my mind at ease by threatening to beat me.

With this birthday, I am officially entitled to a mid-life crisis.

Although I am a lapsed Catholic, I stuck with the church long enough to master guilt, so horndogging in the tradition of our nation's 42nd president has been ruled out. (Today's news that gonorrhea has developed drug resistance helps reaffirm that decision -- we're getting closer to Eddie Murphy's doomsday scenario where you poke your nether regions in the wrong place and they immediately explode.)

Because I refuse to clean my garage and live in a covenanted community that forbids curbside parking, a sportscar is also out of the question.

Normally in this circumstance, I would settle for some completely unnecessary home theater or computer purchase, NBA or baseball tickets, or perhaps Silver Age comic books in pristine mint condition. I live my life so close to the edge I get dizzy.

But this is one of life's moments that comes with spousal immunity from prosecution, so I'd hate to waste it. I think I'm going to use this opportunity to become one of those people who goes to the beach in a leopard-skin mankini.


You could have your mid-life crises on your blog!

Replace your photo with one involving a baseball cap precariously mispositioned on your head. Redo the text and design with significant inspiration from the top MySpace pages.

And don't forget about the much-maligned "blink" tag...

And there's no hurry. Feel free to wait, say, 352 days.

Happy Birthday!

(We shall have to see a photo of the leopard-skin mankini pose, of course..)

You could take up blogging. I hear Radio Userland is going to break out any day now as the dominant blogging tool.

[happy birthday. am months away from a similar event.]


I hear Radio Userland is going to break out any day now as the dominant blogging tool.

When it does, I'll be ready. I can hear the cash register ka-ching in my ear already. Unless that's tinnitus caused by aging.

Leopard skin mankini? Rowrrr! Happy B~day, you naughty little minx!

Happy Birthday, Rogers! I like the T.S.Eliot in the title. But don't go all Prufrock on me yet, I've got seven years on you and I'm not ready to go scuttling across the floors of silent seas just yet.

So, you got an RSS feed for that life of yours?

Happy Birthday, young fart.

"I like the T.S.Eliot in the title."

Wow, nice catch. It sounded familiar, but I couldn't place it.

Wow. I thought the title was a reference to the Jenny Joseph poem.

Happy Birthday!

I've been reading your Sams Teach yourself Java in 21 days book, and clicked on your website to get some source files. I figured you had a fairly decent sense of humor, given the reference you made to final variables in Java (protected static final int MEANING_OF_LIFE = 42;), but reading this proves to me that you're off your rocker!


PS: The book's pretty good too.

platypuses are very interesting animals.********L*O*L********.

********platypuses are very interesting animals.********L*O*L********.

We met when you were 18 years old. Twenty-two years later, you still make me laugh. I'm amazed I got so lucky to have a life with you by my side.

I love you

"Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;

At times, indeed, almost ridiculous--
Almost, at times, the Fool.

Woo Hoo!

The blog-god is old guy now.

They say fourty is the new thirty, you know.

Who sez that?

Bunch of old farts, mostly.

"leopard skin man-kini"?

Note to Rogers:

Florida is fast garnering a reputation fer being THE oddball state.

You are not helping in that regard.

Hairline receding, gumline advancing, it tuly is a silver age.

Here's yer present...

Happy birfday blog-god!

Spud Dares Ya to Eat A Peach!

Be Well.

It won't be necessary to worry about you old folks in Florida (geriatric melt down notwithstanding). Be at peace. Global warming is going to drown Florida under 20 feet of new found water. In other words--You're all gonna die!!

PS: Have a nice Birthday!

We met when you were 18 years old. Twenty-two years later, you still make me laugh. I'm amazed I got so lucky to have a life with you by my side.

I love you

Ewww. Get a room.

I've known you since we were both knee-high to grasshoppers, laddie, and the good times we've shared will never fade from our memories. From our adventures as young bucks in the wilds of Romania to our joint (ha!) venture smuggling hashish in from Bogota, you've always been and still remain the best.

I'm especially indebted to you for your understanding and support during my stretch as a transvestite prostitute. Your quick thinking and solid right cross kept me from spending the rest of my days (and nights) bent over a cheap futon and singing like Mariah Carey.

Okay, not all of that is strictly true, but I figure if David Sedaris can fudge a bit, why not me?

Happy birthday, Pope poker!

Happy Birthday Rogers, you make liberalism seem almost not completely crazy sometimes. And that's Jedi magic, baby. How about a link to your Amazon wishlist so we can buy you things?


Just a tip... sometime after you hit 32 in decimal, switch to telling your age in Hex. Happy 0x28th birthday. It means the same thing to computers but our human brain seems to enjoy the translation.

When you hit 42 decimal you have to tough out those 2nd generation "Alpha" years (0x2A-0x2F) but at 48 your good to go again (0x30). I'm approaching my 3rd generation "Alpha" years and starting to feel the dread of having no convient base number system to hide the truth.

Don't tell anyone, I don't want a bunch of false sympathy, but I think I'm going to die. Science is moving too slow to save me and even universal healthcare couldn't afford to justify the expense of keeping me around to blog all day.

So, do what any self-respecting 28 year old would do... buy a motorcycle and t-r-y not to kill yourself.


Hapy bday, leopard skin mankini, that is SO you!

I can't believe I stumbled over your web site somewhat by accident only to discover that I don't know this gray haired man that looks like he's 40 years old! Rogers dear, you are now older than I was on our fun-filled UIL trip to Austin. Thinking back on it, I had to have been young and naive to put up with all that transpired on that jaunt.

Anyway, I'm glad to read that nothing else has changed in your spirit for life in these past 22 years since I saw you last. I've retired from the classroom, but not from RISD entirely. Life only gets better every year. You can count on that just like everything else I taught you.

Much love,

Add a Comment

All comments are moderated before publication. These HTML tags are permitted: <p>, <b>, <i>, <a>, and <blockquote>. This site is protected by reCAPTCHA (for which the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply).