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Thursday, June 23, 2005

Farty-Far

Today's title is a semi-private running joke that my wife and I share. 

When she was doing her BFA at Wash. U., Zahava discovered that 'farty-far' is the way the locals in St. Louis pronounce the number '44'.  I was similarly confused by the St. Louis accent on the many occasions that my band went to play gigs there. 

In fact, just saying the number 44 out loud with a St. Louis accent is enough to make both of us crack up like a couple of adolescents. 

Except today my personal odometer turned over to display this oh-so-funny number.  Yes, I am farty-far years old (the perfect number for a dyslexic like me)... and suddenly the number packs only about half the humorous punch that it used to.

Last year I published a list of 43 pretty basic things about me on my birthday.  Like any such list, it revealed considerably less than it concealed about who I really am.  Let's face it, when the subject gets to pick and chose among random factoids collected during a life of experiences... the list ends up being 9 parts saint to 1 part sinner.  If you are new to treppenwitz, you might want to read last year's list first. 

A year ago you and I were still pretty much like strangers out on a blind date.  This year I've come up with a list of farty, er, forty-four somewhat more intimate things... the kind of stuff one might discuss on a 4th or 5th date.

Here we go:

1.  I don't need my parent's approval... but I still unconsciously seek it.
2.  I almost never dream, but when I do they are almost always nightmares.
3.  I have an atrocious memory for names.
4.  My wife knows instantly if I can't remember your name and gracefully introduces herself before you realize I've forgotten it.
5.  I can't understand people who don't take afternoon naps on the weekend.
6.  An afternoon nap is improved beyond measure by the presence of a couple of sleeping kids and a wife (family schluf).
7.  I don't remember anything that occurs if I am woken up in the middle of the night.
8.  When she was pregnant, Zahava took horrible advantage of this by having me prepare omelets and milkshakes for her several nights a week.
9.  I was exhausted for much of my wife's three pregnancies.
10.  I love the taste of orange children's aspirin (St. Joseph's)
11.  I'm not a regular vitamin taker, but when I get run down I love the 'zing' I get from a sub-lingual B-12 lozenge.
12.  I am a total coffee snob (meaning I have no patience for anything less than fresh, high quality medium-dark roasted beans).
13.  I am a total coffee junky (meaning I would rather eat day-old coffee grounds or chew a spoon full of discount-brand instant coffee than suffer through the horrors of caffeine withdrawal).
14.  I have never smoked even a single cigarette (or cigar, for that matter).
15.  I find smoking to be one of the least attractive habits, and I secretly long for a few of my friends to quit.
16.  When I eat orange slices I eat the peel as well.
17.  I may not remember your name, but I remember the theme songs to almost every TV show I watched in the 60s & 70s.
18.  Wilma or Betty?  Betty (Yeah, I watched way too much TV as a kid).
19.  I have no patience with people who continually use their blogs to explain why they aren't blogging, or to constantly ask their readers for one sort of help or another.  If you have nothing to say, don't say anything... and if you are constantly in need of help, call tech support or a good therapist.
20.  One of my favorite things to do as a kid was to eat bowl after bowl of Captain Crunch (I couldn't stop until the roof of my mouth was bruised and raw).
21.  I once created an overdue invoice from an escort service and faxed it to a friend's office as a joke.
22.  As revenge for his boss finding the invoice in the fax machine, my friend put my car up for sale in the NY Times classified section for a week at an impossibly low price... with the stipulation that interested parties should call only between 5 - 6 AM (he also billed the ad to me).
23.  There are at least 82 people walking around alive today because I helped save their lives (I remind myself of this whenever I screw up badly).
24.  I understand what an elipse (...) is meant to be used for, but I prefer to [mis]use it as a place-holder for readers to take a breath in one of my long, awkward sentences.
25.  One of the few things that will turn me into a raving lunatic is intellectual laziness, sloppiness or dishonesty.
26.  I donate blood every 3 or 4 months (this provides my entire family with 'blood insurance' for a whole year here in Israel).
27.  Every month I read 'National Geographic', 'Popular Science' and 'The American Bee Journal' cover-to-cover.  I'm thinking about adding 'The New Yorker' and/or 'Harpers' to that list.
28.  Most of what I know about computers I secretly taught myself because I was too embarrassed to admit to anyone how clueless I was.
29.  I can still remember the name of the beautiful blond girl who turned me down when I asked her to go steady in 4th grade (She is now a scientist working for NASA... and yes, Google is a scary-ass tool).
30.  After almost two years of putting it off, I finally apologized to the one woman with whom I had broken up on bad terms less than 15 minutes before meeting my wife for the first time.
31.  I have known how to crochet since I was 22.
32.  I secretly wish I could be a professional writer (OK, I guess technically I am a professional writer since I get paid to write marketing copy, proposals and briefings all day... but that's not what I meant).
33.  I miss taking my family sailing.
34.  About 95% of the time I have no idea what I'm going to write about until I sit down at the computer in the morning.
35.  I delete about 15 - 20% of the journal entries I write.
36.  I absolutely hate when people forward rumors and urban legends without taking 30 seconds to check their veracity.
37.  I firmly believe that there are some people whose decisions and actions are so far beyond the pale of civilized behavior that they are no longer entitled to the niceties of due process, humane treatment or protection under any international treaty/convention. 
38.  If this makes me a conservative, so be it.
39.  I firmly believe that there are people who, through their own decisions and actions (or sometimes just bad luck) are unwilling or unable to look after their own needs, and it is therefore the responsibility of government and society to take care of them.
40.  If this makes me a liberal, so be it.
41.  In almost 14 years of marriage I have never told my wife who I voted for in any election.
42.  I would rather re-read one of my favorite books (I go back to Steinbeck's oeuvre most frequently), than take a chance on being disappointed by a new book (I'm really trying to break out of this trend).
43.  I will never force my children to eat anything I wouldn't willingly prepare for myself.
44.  If I could choose to live during any time period in history, I would want my birthday to be June 23rd, 1961.

As I said last year... those of you who are mental health professionals may now begin your analysis.  Please show your work.

221_16_5_15

Posted by David Bogner on June 23, 2005 | Permalink

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Yom Huledet Sameach David. The new generation is catching up with your ‘vybe’ (information), so never stop blogin’! :-)

Posted by: kakarizz | Jun 23, 2005 11:16:16 AM

Happy birthday David, have a wonderful day! I LOVE #21 and #22, and please explain (for the newish reader) about #23?

Posted by: Clare | Jun 23, 2005 11:56:11 AM

Great list. My favorite item was the Captain Crunch.

Posted by: Priss | Jun 23, 2005 12:00:11 PM

No analysis, just all my best birthday wishes to you, may you and your family spend a lovely day, and may you all remain healthy and happy.

Posted by: Jany | Jun 23, 2005 12:13:57 PM

Happy Birthday David!!!
Sophie and I hope you have a wonderful day!! We send you many hugs and kisses!! I feel the same way about #12 and enjoy my coffee every morning while reading Treppenwitz. It keeps me in touch with you as well as teaches me somthing new each day. Love to the rest of the family.
Gail and Sophie

Posted by: Gail | Jun 23, 2005 12:47:50 PM

I thought #16 was pretty unique until I read this:

http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=319822

Posted by: Dave | Jun 23, 2005 1:10:46 PM

Happy birthday, David, and many, many more in good health and prosperity!

I'm intrigued about #23. Would you tell us more about it? (Forgive my ignorance -- are you a medic?)

Posted by: Rahel | Jun 23, 2005 1:33:33 PM

Happy Birthday, David!
Impressive list...

Perhaps a post on the Schenectady accent when it comes to pronouncing the word 'orange', might be interesting! ;)

Posted by: val | Jun 23, 2005 2:48:12 PM

you eat the peel...?? woah! happy birthday mr b.

and yes, more on 23 please.

hehe, farty far...my cousins live in st louis (peggy's sister's family). ive only been there for a total of...6 days, and i havent spoken to that many ppl, so i havent heard anyone say farty far (besides, in any city in the us--most jews are from ny anyway, right?)

Posted by: Tonny | Jun 23, 2005 3:33:54 PM

Yom holedet sameach! I LOVE these lists for some reason, love them! Some are painfully boring, mind you, but oh not yours!

1- If you can write it, how unconscious is that? ;)
5 - How can people simply decide to sleep - and do it! That’s obscene. Besides, whenever I nap I wake up w a horrendous migraine. Gah.
16 - Oy!
21, 22 - Brill! I have boring friends, I think.
23 - Nothing can top this.
26 - People w posriasis aren’t allowed to give blood. Is the one thing that annoys me most abt it. But I can donate blood marrow bcs they filter out what they need. That’s some comfort.
37 - Well…
39 - yes.
41 - Really??
42 - Me too, me too! Though not Steinbeck. But i alwas go back to the same authors and nothing annoys me more than reading a book and not liking it, such a waste when there are so many others I'll never get around to reading.

Did I mention I love these lists? I do! Have a most wonderful day.

Posted by: Lioness | Jun 23, 2005 3:38:56 PM

David--

Happy & Healthy Birthday to you. Do tell me what 44 feels like; my 44th is 3 months away today.

As for these running lists... I kept some in a large sketchbook/journal when I was about 16 or 17 years old. I entitled them: "THE ME THAT NOBODY KNOWS." If I post them today, everybody will certainly know me just that much more -- except perhaps for my name! But I'm tempted nonetheless...

And the "problem" with keeping such lists is that they are neverending; you always think of "just one more" attribute/like/dislike/interest.

Enjoy your day.

Posted by: Pearl | Jun 23, 2005 4:09:35 PM

Happy Birthday!

You've mentioned 22 before, but not in context of 21. *cough* That makes it much funnier.

I'd like to hear about 23, too.

(I was once picked up hitchhiking by an elderly Irish guy who pronounced the road we were on "terty-too," and I get the same giggles every time I hear that number.)

Posted by: Tanya | Jun 23, 2005 4:40:37 PM

The American Bee Journal
I have spent the last 30 seconds trying to come up with some kind of witty remark, but my wings must have been clipped and I am stung by my inability to create a decent pun.

So Happy Birthday Old Man. ;)

Posted by: Jack | Jun 23, 2005 4:41:02 PM

My analysis:

You eat gum (from last year's post) and orange slices. I conclude you are a goat.

I too am intrigued by #23. It's a great achievement. I don't think I'm even close to that, and I'm a doctor!

Have we built enough mutual affection for me to say the following? Number 41 is weird. ball-and-chain and I have no secrets from each other. You don't have to tell me who you voted for, but why could it possibly be better for Zahava not to know? Politics / ideology may not be important in your house, but we don't keep secrets about trivial matters. Are you worried that the two of you are too far apart on the political spectrum? You're both smart and you love each other; that would simply be an opportunity to learn. (I voted for Bush. Twice. Would you have guessed?)

Finally, sung very loud and off key (the only way I sing):

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU
HAAAAAPPYY BIRTHDAYYYYYYYYY DEAR DAAAAAAAAVIIIIIIID
[this line mumbled quickly and out of key:] mayyouhaveverymanymoreandbealwayshealthyandhappy
HAAAAAPPYY BIRTHDAYYYYYYYYY TOOOOOOOO YOUUUUUUUUU!

Posted by: Doctor Bean | Jun 23, 2005 4:44:32 PM

Happy Birthday!

Did you only eat the Cap'n Crunch because you were allowed to buy it just this once to get the mail-in coupon for the Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory kit on the back of the box, and had to eat up the cereal quickly or else be forced to eat it for breakfast every morning? Or did you really like it?

;)

Posted by: Talmida | Jun 23, 2005 5:06:11 PM

Happy birthday!!!

Posted by: Noa | Jun 23, 2005 5:15:16 PM

david--thought you might just be wondering what happened on your birthday throughout history...

[ T O D A Y I N H I S T O R Y ]

On this day in …

* 1868, Christopher Latham Sholes received a patent for his
"Type-Writer"

* 1892, the Democratic national convention in Chicago nominated
former President Cleveland on the first ballot

* 1931, aviators Wiley Post and Harold Gatty took off from New York
on the first round-the-world flight in a single-engine plane

* 1947, the Senate joined the House in overriding President Truman's
veto of the Taft-Hartley Act

* 1967, President Johnson and Soviet Premier Alexei Kosygin held the
first of two meetings in Glassboro, N.J.

* 1972, President Nixon and White House chief of staff H.R. Haldeman
discussed a plan to use the CIA to obstruct the FBI's Watergate
investigation. (Revelation of the tape recording of this
conversation sparked Nixon's resignation in 1974.)

* 2000, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, during a visit to
South Korea, said American troops would remain in the country
indefinitely to maintain strategic stability in the Pacific area

Posted by: Pearl | Jun 23, 2005 5:25:14 PM

Happy Birthday, David! I loved your list. You have great taste in food....I also love love those orange baby aspirins and Crunchberries...(and ellipses)....but I have to tell you...a cup of English Breakfast tea with sugar and real cream blows ANY cup of coffee away!

Posted by: Stacey | Jun 23, 2005 6:59:32 PM

Yom Huledet Sameach! Many more happy & healthy birthdays.
#23-Wow, how'd you manage that?
#26-You designate and bank it just for your family?

Posted by: Essie | Jun 23, 2005 7:04:20 PM

OK - it seems that David is not responding to our comments in his usual speedy way.

Perhaps he's waiting for us to guess what really happened in #23. It's a kind of "birthday game" - "Pin the Tail on the Treppenwitz."

I don't think the lives were saved over a period of time. I think they were all saved at once, probably when he was in the Navy.

Maybe some of the other 43 items are intended as hints as to how he saved the ship.

Perhaps the ship was taken over by pirates in the middle of the night, and David was woken up, together with the rest of the crew. The pirates asked for one "volunteer", otherwise all 83 sailors would be killed. Since his crewmates knew he'd do anything when woken up and not remember, they told him to volunteer, and he did.

They told him to walk the plank, which is unusual, since most Navy battleships don't have planks, but this one did. They offered him a cigarette, but he refused. They offered him some bad coffee. At first he refused, but when he realized that was the only thing available, he drank it.

Just before he was about to go over the side, one of the pirates started complaining about how he could never come up with anything to write about in his blog. David became infuriated, and screamed, "Your actions are so far beyond the pale of civilized behavior that they are no longer entitled to the niceties of due process, humane treatment or protection under any international treaty/convention!!!"

And he proceeded to force all the pirates off the ship, into the sea, saving the lives of the other 82 sailors.

Anyone have any other ideas?

Posted by: Dave | Jun 23, 2005 7:40:28 PM

I also prefer english tea to coffee, which I'm sure will win me scorn.

But with sugar?! Blech!! ;o)

Posted by: Tanya | Jun 23, 2005 7:42:10 PM

Happy Birthday David!

Posted by: oceanguy | Jun 23, 2005 7:57:58 PM

"I love the taste of orange children's aspirin (St. Joseph's)"

Wow. I thought I was alone in this. It's even better than Pez.

"I have no patience with people who continually use their blogs to explain why they aren't blogging"

Errr...uh-oh. I recognize that it's irritating when I do it, truly I do. But I just start to feel guilty when I don't say why I am not writing. People are coming to see posts, and instead, they find nothing after I've been posting several times a day for 2 years. They deserve an explanation...don't they? It's the nice thing to do, rather than having them think you have lost interest in them, I think...

Happy Birthday! Hope you have a terrific year.

Posted by: Gail | Jun 23, 2005 8:14:47 PM

I live in St. Louis (born and raised) and it bugs the heck out of me when people say "farty-far" and "warsh" and "where is it at."

Posted by: Kimber | Jun 23, 2005 8:40:27 PM

BS"D
Yom Huledet Same'ach!
Bonne Anniversaire!
Gratulerer Med Dagen!
44 is an excellent gematria - it also is "dam", "d'li", "teleh", "lahat", "agam" & Gi'el, an angel.
& if you want a book recommendation, then try *anything* by Timothy Findley.
Aviel

Posted by: Soferet | Jun 23, 2005 9:42:30 PM

Orange baby aspirin....I loved it so much as a small child (back when we gave children baby aspirin,) I sneaked into the medicine cabinet, ate the whole bottle (no child-proof caps) and then had to be rush to the emergency room to get my stomach pumped. I remember it fondly, for I got to drink lots of gingerale.

Posted by: ginger | Jun 23, 2005 11:11:42 PM

Kakarizz...I didn't expect to be 'bloggin' as long as I have... so who know what the future will bring. I appreciate the good wishes.

Clare (and anyone else who asked about #23)... I will tell you about 4 of the lives I helped save... and perhaps on Sunday or Monday I will share the story (complete with pictures) of the other 78.

Life # 1: One day during the summer between 1st & 2nd grade I was at the local swimming pool with my family. A friend and I were sitting on the edge of the pool talking when we saw a toddler wander away from his parents and fall into the deep end of the pool a few yards away. We looked at each other in horror because we realized that we were the only ones who had seen the little boy fall into the pool. My friend only knew how to swim on top of the water and I only knew how to swim underwater (long story for another day). I dove down to the bottom of the pool and started dragging the squirming boy towards the surface. Once I broke the surface my friend was waiting there for me to help drag the flailing kid towards the edge of the pool. By now the lifeguard had realized something was wrong and he helped pull the toddler from the pool. I can still remember the tearful thank you I got from the kid's parents (they were a Lebanese couple that my parents knew), and the pizza dinner my parents bought me as a hero's reward.

Life # 2: I was standing on the corner of a busy street in Olongapo, Philippines when one of my shipmates stumbled drunkenly past me intent on crossing the street. He lunged into the roadway just as a Jeepnee ( a brightly painted open taxicab) came speeding towards him. I grabbed him by the back of his collar and pulled him back onto the sidewalk just as the Jeepnee zoomed past. In his drunken state my shipmate never even saw the jipnee that had almost killed him and simply assumed someone was trying to mug him. He turned around to face me and knocked me nearly unconscious with a drunken round-house punch that landed solidly just above my left ear. The next day when he had sobered up, several witnesses explained to him how close he had come to being run down and how he owed me not only an apology, but probably his life. To his credit, I never paid for a beer in his presence for the rest of the time we were shipmates.

Life # 3: Once while I was in Paris with my High School Jazz band I happened to be standing with a small crowd waiting to cross the street. A British tourist standing next to me followed his instincts and looked the wrong way before stepping boldly off the curb into the path of an oncoming bus. I was one of two sets of hands that pulled him out of the street just as the bus passed the spot where we were standing. Even with two sets of hands pulling this guy backwards the bus still managed to hit him very hard with the bottom of one of its mirrors... hard enough to upon a very messy cut on the side of his head. I am pretty sure that just one set of hands would not have been fast or strong enough to pull him (mostly) out of harm's way.

Life #4: On one of many trips to the Grand Canyon I hiked down the Bright Angel trail towards the bottom. About a third of the way down at one of the numerous switch-backs that the trail takes, I happened to be passing a young woman who was standing off the trail trying to take a picture of the canyon. Apparently she was so caught up in trying to frame her shot just so that she didn't realize she had backed onto a patch of loose sand and gravel at the edge of a steep drop-off. As I passed her I watched her start to flair her arms in a losing battle with balance and gravity and start to topple over the embankment at the turn in the switch-back. I made an off-balance grab for her and luckily managed to get hold of one of the straps on her knapsack. I managed to stop most of her outward momentum, but I quickly started to loose ground as well and felt my feet starting to slip. A hiker just behind me managed to both anchor himself and grab my belt before we both tumbled over the cliff. I almost threw up from the adrenaline rushing through my system.

More on the other 78 after the weekend.

Priss... You have no idea how much I love the Capn (with or without Crunchberries!). :-)

Jany... Thank you so much. It has been a very special day.

Gail... I am so glad that you stop by here to read! lease give Sophie hugs and kisses from me and consider yourself hugged and kissed as well. Thanks for the birthday wishes.

Dave... I don't eat them in quantities that should present a problem. Thanks for the link.

Rahel... Thanks! Nothing so dramatic as being a medic. I'll tell the rest of the story on Sunday or Monday.

Val... I'll let Zahava field that one the next time she guest blogs. :-)

Tonny... I may have given the impression that everyone in St. Louis sounds like that. It seems to be mostly the older folks and the ones living in the suburbs and more rural areas (i.e. the hicks). :-)

Lioness... It's unconscious if you only realize it after your spouse points it out. I really don't know that I do it... but I hope my kids develop the same tendencies. Also, I know you will hate me for this, but I can sleep anywhere, any time, on less than 30 second's notice. I guess this is a byproduct of being in the service. I was once on a ferry from Maine to Nova Scotia with a friend of mine. As the ferry pulled away from the dock I told him I was going to get some sleep, curled up on a bench and was snoring within 15 seconds. He spent the entire boat ride walking around the boat and was very angry with me for being able to sleep on demand. Lioness, I wish my posts were as entertaining and energetic as your comments! :-)

Pearl... It feels somehow... not so different. I always expect to get some new aches and pains... and I simply get happier. I hope you have the same experience. Can't wait to see your list.

Tanya... Thanks for the wishes. You didn't think I was somehow undeserving of such a dirty trick, did you? :-)

Jack... From one old man to another... thanks. By the way, keep an eye on the stats. My Sox are gaining ground on the Angels. I'm thinking of having Jeff's fax over the sausage menu this week so I can decide what I want. :-)

Doctor Bean... It isn't so much keeping secrets as wanting to preserve objectivity. Zahava and I are both very easily influenced by one another's opinions... but this sin't always the case. I simply don't want to know if we cancelled out each other's votes. Simple as that. Thanks for the good wishes and the song!

Talmida... Thanks! There was a time when my parents literally couldn't keep milk and cereal in the house because I was eating it so fast. The Capn is some serious comfort food for me!

Noa... Thank you! I wish I'd had a good story about someone handling my privates in a store, but then someone would accuse me of ripping off your funny stories! You had us both rolling with that one!

Pearl... Thanks for the history lesson. I especially liked the Nixon one since I can picture where I was on that birthday.

Stacey... Thank you. We can agree on the cream (not milk). Once you've had fresh cream in a hot beverage you can never go back!

Essie... Thanks! The way it works is that when you donate blood you get a card with the date (I'm sure it gets entered into a computer somewhere too). If (G-d forbid) anyone in your family needs a blood transfusion within 6 months or a year (I can't remember which it is) of your donation, you are not charged. Even with socialized medicine, you are charged for blood. In such a small country, blood stores are always critically low, so this was a way of both encouraging people to donate frequently, as well as reduce the potential financial hit if someone needs a transfusion. also, since one family member donating gives blood insurance to the entire family, you usually don't run into issues of unfairness at being charged for blood because you were ineligible to donate.

Dave... Yo are going to laugh on Sunday or Monday when you find out how many things you got right in your version of events! :-)

Tanya... You should know by now that treppenwitz is a scorn-free zone! :-) We may snigger a bit, but scorn? Never!

OceanGuy... Thank you. I hope you are managing not to melt as the Florida summer gets underway.

Gail... I wasn't referring to you. You are one of the most interesting and prolific bloggers I know. I'm talking about people who can have 15 or 20 entries in a row that start with "Not much to say", or "I know haven't been posting much, but...", or "I'm still alive... I've just been busy". You have built up plenty of credit and can afford to take a few vacation days from the blog.

Kimber... My wife and I just had some fun strolling through your archives! I hope you know I wasn't trying to imply that everyone talks that way over there! I look forward to following your blog... thanks for stopping by.

Soferet... Thanks for the multi-lingual greeting. I don't go in much for the gematria (numerology), but I'm never averse to hearing good things about my age!

Ginger... And I'm assuming that's how you got your screen name??? I worry about that with out kids and have had a long talk with the big ones about the dangers of taking medicines improperly.

Posted by: David | Jun 23, 2005 11:39:06 PM

Happy birthday David - hope that your trip to limonim was more like mine than Noa's - sorry to have missed you yesterday - will I see you at her wedding?

Gilly

Posted by: gil ben mori | Jun 23, 2005 11:54:12 PM

David,

It is a long way to September. Schilling is still hurt, Pedro is history and I am not so sure that I see that lineup holding fast.

But I wouldn't be surprised to see them try and bring the Rocket back.

Posted by: Jack | Jun 24, 2005 12:28:47 AM

Jack, that would be awesome. im a mets fan, but i like the r sox. that would be pretty cool, i must say. i wonder how the fans would treat him. i cant imagine so bad if hes pitching rocket-like, right?

Posted by: Tonny | Jun 24, 2005 12:35:17 AM

Well it seems with the whole international time thing I missed offering birthday wishes on the day in the Holy Land, but here in So. Cal. I'm still on schedule, so, feliz cumpleanos!

And...I'm all about elipses too...

Posted by: beth | Jun 24, 2005 1:03:18 AM

I thank you for sharing and wish you a happy birthday. Do your think your wife knows who you voted for in general? I have a masters in social work. You sound normal to me. Someone I know once defined normal as someone you don't know very well yet. Again Happy Birthday.

Trivia Q - Whose birthday party is the only one mentioned in the Torah? (People always guess Yitzchak but that's wrong)

Posted by: rabbifleischmann | Jun 24, 2005 1:13:12 AM

Oh, oh, oh! I think I know this one, is it the Pharaoh's? Is it?

(David, I know I sound over-enthusiastic at times and am always a bit wary of it - but lists! Love them! In case I hadn't made that abundantly clear before.)

Posted by: Lioness | Jun 24, 2005 2:02:29 AM

Happy Birthday! Thanks for explaining about the blood insurance. I was about the ask about it when I saw the comment.

Posted by: Megan | Jun 24, 2005 3:14:55 AM

I was about to ask. Note to self: Make use of the handy preview option.

Posted by: Megan | Jun 24, 2005 3:31:30 AM

Happy birthday!
For a moment I got this feeling that I should just stop blogging. What's the point when there are people like you out there! I find it puzzling how your posts make such a great read, every single time. I hope you have a great birthday.

Posted by: Maria | Jun 24, 2005 4:15:22 AM

Oh I see everyone is showing off with using different languages here...
So... A Freilekhn Gebortstog!!
Okay that officially makes me a heck of a lot cooler than everyone else :-) (except the birthday hero, of course..).

Posted by: Maria | Jun 24, 2005 4:18:05 AM

How fun to learn, after months of "lurking" on this site, that we almost share a birthday. Happy birthday -- ad me'ah v'esrim!

(And I completely agree about the shabbat naps.)

Posted by: alana | Jun 24, 2005 4:34:17 AM

a Heppy Boitzday to you....Anodder lengvidge...Hinklish off kuorse.....from de hull femily

Posted by: Shmiel | Jun 24, 2005 4:45:43 AM

Sorry to be late adding my wishes for a fabulous 44th! (you youngster, you - I've got you beat by 2 years). Incredible list(s) and stories! You are a fascinating person (that's my professional opinion as the proud holder of an MSW). And at the risk of sounding corny, the world is obviously a better place because you're in it.

Posted by: AmyS | Jun 24, 2005 6:36:30 AM

And now (or at least soon) from Farty-Far to Photo Friday!!!

[drum roll]

[a hushed murmur rises over the assembled masses]

Posted by: Doctor Bean | Jun 24, 2005 7:00:40 AM

Welcome to my side of the hill.

Posted by: David Gerstman | Jun 24, 2005 7:16:24 AM

Happy Birthday David! May the year ahead be fabulous.

Posted by: Kay | Jun 24, 2005 10:04:33 AM

Excuse me, is that a .38 or a Farty-Far on your belt.

Posted by: Jack | Jun 24, 2005 10:12:37 AM

Happy Birthday David.

Posted by: Imshin | Jun 24, 2005 6:36:05 PM

When I saw the title FARTY FAR, I KNEW that you would refer to St. Louis in your blog. My husband and I lived there for 18 long months after college and I always laughed when I heard farty far or just plain Farty (two highways in town). I also laughed when they "Germanized" French words. Creve Couer is "CREEEV KER". I worked at an Olive Garden and laughed all the time when people ordered plain spaghetti and a bottle of ketchup, called Sprite "White Sody", and asked everyone who walked by, "Where'd you go to high school?!"

Hope your birthday was happy!

Posted by: dawnan | Jun 24, 2005 10:44:53 PM

Whoops! My bad. My wife wanted to make early shabbat and I ran out of time to respond to all these wonderful comments. Please don't think for a moment that I didn't appreciate and enjoy them thoroughly!!!

Gilly... Thanks, we had a fab time (a post about this to appear sometime this week).

Jack... as I sit here checking the standings Saturday night, the Red Sox have pulled into 1st place and are leading the 2nd inning of today's game. yum yum... sausages.

Tonny... Good riddance to bad garbage. Let him finish his career far from Fenway and retire the Jersey of another team to the hall of fame.

Beth... Thanks for the wishes (considering how bad I am about such things I have no place to be picky about punctuality). Regards to Chuck and Zoe (and of course your new little white furry friend).

rabbifleischmann... I have no idea about the trivia question but I can say with certainty that Zahava and I do not know about eachother's voting record. I think every relationship needs a little mystery, no?

Lioness... I'll keep that in mind. I normally don't organize my thoughts into neat little lists (birthdays and special occasions being the exception), but I'll try to throw you one from time-to-time. :-) No worries, enthusiasm is always welcome.

Megan... My pleasure... and thanks for the wishes.

Maria... Thank you! I think I can safely say that that is the first time I've been wished happy birthday in that language (I'm assuming it was Icelandic?). :-)

Alana... I'm so pleased that you d-lurked (is there even such a word?) to say hello. Happy Birthday to you as well!

Shmiel... What I've really been looking for from you all these years is a few words in English (at least the punchlines of your jokes which are invariably in Yiddish!). Thanks and regards.

AmyS... Thank You for such a nice sunny 'postcard'... even if id did arrive the day after my birthday. Never can trust the mail, right? :-) Also, thanks for the kind words. This is one case where I won't seek a second opinion.

Doctor Bean... If you'd just spend more time taking care of Jack's 'tang' and less time clicking refresh on treppenwitz Thursday evening, we'd all be a bit happier, no? ;-)

David Gerstman... As an avid cyclist I can only take your analogy and say that I've earned a nice coast down the other side of the hill after all that time and effort spent climbing up. Thanks for the wishes.

Kay... Thank you. It has already gotten off to a wonderful start with people from all corners of the globe checking in to send their best (You represented the Australian contingent). Hope all is well down under.

Imshin... Thank you. By the way, I am so pleased that you finally decided to allow comments on your blog. That doesn't mean we shouldn't get together and 'dance' again in the near future, but it is nice to be able to send a quick response to a thoughtful post.

Dawnan... I really wasn't trying to poke fun of St. Louisians (is that what they're called?). To their ears I probably sounded just as strange. What I didn't point out in my post is that both my wife and I had fantastic experiences in St. Louis and have wonderful memories of the place (except for the weather). Thanks for stopping by and wishing me a happy birthday.

Posted by: David | Jun 25, 2005 10:01:58 PM

44-49 and 43-30. It sounds like our boys are neck and neck, but there is a long way to go. :)

Posted by: Jack | Jun 26, 2005 9:38:47 AM

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