The Seward Phoenix Log - News of the Eastern Kenai Peninsula since 1966

OMG! I'm the little old guy from Pasadena


Truthfully, I have never been much of one for counting birthdays. Perhaps that is due to the fact that I have a hard time remembering dates, or maybe it is because I never thought I’d live to be this age so I didn’t pay attention. Whatever the case, I was reminded earlier this week that I had another “moment.”

At about 9:10 p.m. on Monday evening, She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Made-Mad texted me and said “Happy birthday!” At first, I wasn’t sure if I had forgotten her birthday so I immediately started scrambling around the office looking for something I could throw in an envelope and mail her as a gift. I missed her birthday once when I was younger and I have never lived it down. I’m pretty sure when I die, she’s going to have the following words put on my tombstone ... “Here lies Tommy. He was born on May 23 and he died a while after that. May he rest in peace ... but not too peaceful since he forgot my birthday.”

Just between you and I, I had packaged up 2 newspapers, a couple of papers clips, a dirty sock and a couple dandelions before it hit me. SWMNBMM was born in July. With the fear of death having passed (at least for now), I was able to text her back a deeply insightful message that only men understand.


Ladies, please bear in mind, that “huh?” is a word with seriously deep meaning. I’m pretty sure it is a contraction for “How U, honey?” ... which is man slang for “Holy crap! What in the heck are you talking about?”

“She texted back.

“Happy birthday!”

I’m not going to lie. At this point, I logged onto my phone, went to the calendar and looked up SWMNBMM’s birthday ... Just in case, you know. I’d rather fight a polar bear with a rubber band and a limp spaghetti noodle than forget “important dates.”

Again, the phone concurred. SWMNBMM was born in July. But, just to triple-check things, I texted her younger sister, Merri Etta, and asked, “Yo dummy! What day was The Grouch born?” I know she’s not the sharpest tool in the shed, but even Merri Etta thought it was in July. She asked her husband, who is among the sharpest tools in the shed. He agreed it was July ... just like all the rest of Mary Christian’s kids.

Feeling kind of secure in the fact that I hadn’t forgotten “the day,”I texted her back. “It isn’t your birthday. That doesn’t happen for another few months. I don’t know what you’re drinking but you need to put the bottle down.”

“After a few minutes, the phone started ringing. It was SWMNBMM.

I don’t know about any of you guys, but right after I smart off to my wife isn’t the most exciting time to get a phone call from her. I was kind of hoping the IRS would call at the same so I could take the lesser of the two tortures.

Hello, IRS man. How are you?

They didn’t call.

You ever think about not answering a phone call from your wife? I did it once. I’ve never been able to get my butt to fit in my pants right ever since.

“Hello ...” I said meekly.

“Tommy Joe,” she said. “It’s not my birthday. It is your birthday! Don’t you remember, the day your mother had you?”

I was going to tell her that I did not remember the day She-Who-Should-Be-So-Grateful-She-Had-Me had me because I was a baby, but I thought I should probably answer with something more profound - and less likely to have me floating in the bat face down.


“Gosh, babe. I can’t believe you are 52 years old,” she gushed. “Doesn’t it seem just like yesterday that we were kids in high school? Hardly seems like any time at all since the kids were little and ... “

Sorry I zoned at at this point. Admit it guys, i happens ...

Wait! How old did she just say I was?

“Are you sure about that?” I said.

“It is May 23rd. You were born on May 23rd. I’m pretty sure your mother, and all of your brothers and sisters would remember when you were born,” she said.

“OMG!” I said as soon as it registers that it was my birthday. “I’m turning into a version of a Beach Boys’ song. I’m the little old guy from Pasadena.”

“It’s OK, dear,” she said.

“I’m not concerned,” I said. “I mean, I’m not the kids ask “Mom, what was Jesus like when you sat behind him in the third grade?”

I’m thinking I may not have to worry about 53 ...

(Tommy Wells is the editor of the Seward Phoenix LOG. Everything in this column is true, except for the parts that have been fabricated, exaggerated or just plain lies.)


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