Editor’s note – Mel originally wrote this column last year, but due to an oversight, it got lost in the publishing queue. However, since the core concept still applies, we’re posting it today.
When it comes to my birthday, it's probably at the most awkward time of the year for people.
On Tuesday, I'll be 28 years old. I'm still trying to grasp this concept of me being in my upper 20s. That kind of weirds me out. I get the feeling that perhaps I've missed the bus for adulthood a few times over. Or that I'll end up being, as the meme calls it, forever alone. These thoughts sometimes go through my head and thinking of becoming another year older always makes me think it. It's silly, I know, but that's how my brain works at times.
When people think about March 5, I share my birthday with a rather strange mix of folks. Nobody super famous other than Sir Rex Harrison. Others include White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko, Eva Mendes, Murray Head (the guy who did "One Night in Bangkok"), Michael Irvin, Penn from Penn and Teller, and Milt Schmidt.
It’s a weird, weird mix. If I were to somehow figure out my personality judging by the folks who share this birthday, I have absolutely nothing in common with any of them. I just find it funny that I have such a strange mix.
However, when it comes to my birthday, it's never really about who was born that day. It's almost always about who died. Whenever someone mentions March 5, one of these four people will pop into their head – Patsy Cline, Josef Stalin (or Sergei Prokofiev, since they died on the same day in the same year), Crispus Attucks and John Belushi.
Ever since I was a toddler, my mom would tell me about how John Belushi died on my birthday. Granted, I wasn't even born yet (I was -3 years old, as I like to joke)... Though on a strange weird parallel thing, Chris Farley died 15 years later on my sister's birthday. Considering that people always compare the two, I kind of find it a little amusing in a weird twisted way.
My birthday falls at one of the worst possible times, although some folks may argue that being born on Christmas or along that week is the worst and perhaps it may be. With my family though, it's not so.
My sister's birthday is the week before Christmas and she always seems to get extra gifts because everybody feels bad. My brother's birthday is in mid-January and sometimes falls in with Martin Luther King Jr. weekend, so that's sweet.
As for myself? If I'm lucky, it may be the day that leads into Spring Break. Other than that, it's really not that great. Plus it feels like everybody is broke by then and I hardly get gifts. Granted, I'm not complaining and I did get a sweet stuffed seal from one of my friends this year. That was awesome.
While I have had some really good birthdays, one of which I wrote about two years ago around my birthday, I haven't had that many good ones. My 16th birthday consisted me of being stuck in the house all day because of a "snow day" that was only rain. That sucked because having your birthday during school was always great. At least to me it was, but maybe I'm just a nerd.
My 19th birthday consisted of me traveling for three hours from my first college to home for Spring Break. All well and good, but ugh, traveling all day sucks.
I was sick during my 24th birthday with the Zombie Death Flu. My 26th kind of sucked too, since nobody was around to do anything.
But bad birthdays are par for the course. You just build a bridge and get over it and hope for better next year.
At 27, I was still unsure of what I was doing with myself as a whole. I suppose most people don't ever quite figure out those kind of things until later. Some comedians don't start out until they're later on in life. Andrea Bocelli, George Wendt, and Alan Rickman come to mind.
I know I'll eventually figure it out and I'll do something awesome with myself. So for now, I'm just going to enjoy my birthday and hope for the best for the rest of the year.
Besides, I'm still young in the grand scheme of things. Now if only something cool could happen on my birthday...