Perhaps I’m too busy laughing off the ribbing I get from friends and family, but for me age-awareness-induced anxiety has not overcome me on my birthdays. Usually that sort of anxiety is brought on when I find out the year my interns were born… You were born AFTER Kurt Cobain died?! STILL, what better way to eulogize someone you love than on their 40th birthday.
Mike and I (along with our dear friend and my wife Angie) have known each other since our first week of college. I’ll save the cute and mildly embarrassing photos of him for some other milestone, such his wake (J/K!). (Besides finding these on the Interwebs is fairly easy. Just between Angie , Mike, and me, you could see some here and here and here and here and here and here and here.)
To this day it’s hard to articulate what it is about Mike, but he has a seemingly easy social grace with people and is able to draw you in. I’m loathe to characterize it as JUST charisma (CHA = 18, COM = 18, WIS = 16, STR = 6…), but you always feel engaged and connected to him, especially when in conversation. As a mild introvert, I love his gregariousness. His ease of conversation. His tremendous gift for storytelling. His wonderful sense of humor and love of puns. His caring, giving, and support of others. For a year when we rented a “stately” apartment together our senior year of college, I was Felix to his Oscar. (Or was it the other way around? I was having too much of a great time to remember.) We were best men in one other’s weddings. And now we’re having a wonderful time sharing in the joys and challenges of parenthood as we watch our children grow into this wild world we all inhabit. Needless to say, it will be a trip (some of it anxiety riddled!) to watch them go through college (in less than ten years!) during the point of their lives when Mike and I met and forged our friendship. Here’s to at many, many more years of that friendship. With all best wishes, Mike. Happy Birthday!