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So it turned out that yesterday I took a short normal trip away from the Internet for the first time in a long time. I did so more or less without anxiety or guilt, figuring “It’s my birthday, it would be sad and pathetic to spend it on Twitter.”
When I returned, I discovered hundreds of sweet, well-meaning birthday greetings here and on Facebook and Twitter. It was a surprisingly touching thing to see. I’m very grateful for this expression of good will, and I suppose it would be nothing but churlish to say, “That’s it? Do all of you realize that this was the 43rd time I woke up on my birthday thinking this year at last I’ll get a pony, and the 43rd time I’ve been cruelly disappointed?”
Forty-three years without a pony, folks. Think about that. You especially, Mom.
Anyway, back to being grateful. Good manners compel me to feel I should thank everyone who took the time to say “Happy Birthday” personally. But here’s the thing: Among those well-wishers were, how to put it, some in-person friends, people I hadn’t heard from in a long time. The kind of friends who at one point or another did real in-person bonded-for-life friendship things with me, like exfiltrating me in their trunks after the operation went pear-shaped or posting my bail. I was excited to see their names. To them, I want to say “Well, finally, Ana-Katerina Vinkler-Petrovic. And what’s up with the ‘Vinkler?'”
Do you think, though, that it’s rude to thank some people more lavishly than others? To express more interest in some of my birthday-well-wishers than others? Or should I be even-handed in my appreciation lest I seem to suggest other friends are not more devoted and loyal?
I guess here’s how I’ll handle it. Thank you, everyone. I was really touched.
Some of you, and you know exactly who you are, are special in-person friends. If you’re a special in-person friend, I was delighted when I saw your name and I thank you especially.
Now, a special message to the in-person friends: Next year there had better be a damned pony or I’m going to hold my breath until I turn blue.
And a special message to Brad Clanton, who said that for my birthday he was going to pay for his Ricochet membership: You count now as an in-person friend. As does everyone on Ricochet. Published in