Good mornings and greetings, December fans. Well, another glorious year has gone by since I celebrated the day when I entered the world in the breach position. I can remember that moment so clearly, when my mother looked at me and uttered, “my God, he’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen, but I’m still not going to breast feed him.” Fortunately for all those unconcerned, I forgave my mother for this lactating slight a few years ago, and though we are extremely close, I still tear up any time I see a glass of warm milk.
I’m not really crazy about getting older. The only silver lining to this experience is in my hair. If I feel it had any benefits, I would gladly embrace this aging process, but groaning every time I bend over, not remembering peoples names and phone numbers and walking upstairs and then forgetting why I did is not my idea of the golden, silver or bronze years.
Although it is my inalienable right to complain and finding the negative is easier than passing go, I’m not heading down that path today, as I’ve been blessed with good health and a TiVo system that I can rely on. But it is weird getting older, knowing that at least two-thirds of my life is over and I still don’t understand how in one area code, you can get an infinite amount of telephone phone numbers out of just seven digits. I guess that comes from living my life like a birthday candle in the wind.
And as I slowly age like a fine whine, my children continue to grow older. I now have two confirmed teenagers at home, and as much as I enjoy watching them blossom and establish their independence, I miss the days when my wife and I controlled everything they did. I’m just semi-kidding, and I’m happy that they are getting ready for their lives outside their bedrooms. Fortunately, I’ve been preparing for the empty nest syndrome ever since I saw their first sonograms. And they have both promised me that as long as I keep writing checks, that they will be there for me emotionally.
Once again, I’m just kidding. They never said they would be there for me emotionally.
Yes, getting older is just great. I’m still trying to think of a few benefits. Any wiser? Not really, maybe just a little softer on the inside, like a warm jelly donut. I know I’m shrinking in height, as the other day I passed an old lady living in a shoe and she invited me in. Actually, we are about 1 cm taller in the morning than in the evening as the cartilage between our bones gets compressed by standing, sitting, sobbing and other daily activities. Thus, as the day goes on, we’re all a little shorter. However, at this stage of my life, that is not the shrinkage I’m most concerned about.
At this point, I’m trying to make the world a better place with one weekly post at a time. But after five years at the keypad, I’m
afraid that I’m never going to have the same effect as a Dr. Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela or Howie Mandel. I guess that’s just the deal, or in my case, no deal. It’s a rewarding feeling making a difference in someone’s life, and if I’ve accomplished that, then I’m a better person for it, even if it doesn’t get tallied on Google Analytics. I’m more interested in the karma scoreboard.
So birthdays are a day of celebration, a chance to look back at our lives and quietly weep. So today, on the 12th day of December, birthday wishes go out today to my old radio partner Jerry Hoffman, who turns the big 60 today. Jerry, although just a year older, has always been like a father figure to me. We did Sportstalk Radio together back in the 80′s here on Monterey Bay, and I’ve never had as much fun at work as I did when I was on the air with my 12/12 pal.
Jerry was born to be on the air, as he is blessed with a booming voice, an encyclopedic knowledge of sports and the classic look for radio. He was also quite the fashion plate, sort of the Pierre Cardin of the AM dial. So in the words of the John Lennon and Paul McCartney, “You say it’s your birthday, it’s my birthday too, yeah.” Now I’ve got 52 weeks to savor being not in my 60′s, and I really hope to live it one chocolate day at a time.
And a birthday shout out goes to my basketball playing buddy, Jim Berry, who celebrates his big day on Thursday. Jim is a rabid Denver Broncos fan, and claims he is more accurate with throws across the middle than Tim Tebow.
For today’s photo flashback, we are heading up the coast to the golden sands of Four Mile Beach. These images were shot on a spectacular morning five years ago today, and it was as great a birthday morning as I can remember. No cake, balloons or ice cream, but big waves, changing skies, circling gulls and cotton candy clouds made for a morning of photo delight. Then a rainbow appeared in the sky to the north, and I knew it was my special day. It was nature’s gift card that was just right for the occasion.
On to the late night. “Herman Cain dropped out. Our writers and I were despondent. But sometimes when God closes a door, he opens a window. And standing outside that window is a circus peanut wearing a badger. Donald Trump will moderate a Republican debate Dec. 27. Thank you, Jesus.” –Jon Stewart “Today Herman Cain again denied allegations of any sexual misconduct and thanked his supporters for their gullibility.” –Jay Leno
“Herman Cain has suspended his presidential campaign, but he has asked the Secret Service if they could continue to provide him protection, at least until his wife cools off.” –David Letterman “Everybody’s talking about the presidential election. And this is big: Two days after stepping down, there are rumors that Herman Cain is endorsing his former rival, Newt Gingrich. Not to be president, but to be his new wingman.” –Jimmy Fallon
“The day before yesterday, Herman Cain suspended his campaign. That is a shame. He touched so many people.” –Stephen Colbert “No one in the media is giving Herman Cain credit for having been faithful to the same mistress for 13 years.” –Jimmy Kimmel “Cain now says he’s consulting with his family whether to stay in the race. Really? You think that’s what he’s discussing with his wife, about staying in the race? How about staying in the house?” –Jay Leno
“I was in the supermarket today, and I saw some Occupy Wall Street protesters in the dairy department. They were protesting the 1 percent milk.” –Jay Leno “Authorities have discovered what they call the most sophisticated tunnel ever found underneath the U.S.-Mexican border, being built by a Mexican drug cartel. And Gov. Rick Perry asked the question we’re all asking: ‘Why can’t these tunnels be dug by hard-working American drug cartels?’” –Jay Leno
So that’s the end of a wacky week in the NBA, as Laker fans are still as shocked as Herman Cain’s wife. I hope some of you caught the season finale of “Sons of Anarchy.” For Jax and the boys, it’s really been quite a ride. But then again, who doesn’t like being in way over their heads? We’ll catch you creating magic on the frozen tundra. Aloha, mahalo and later, Ben Rothlisberger fans.