I really really dislike my birthday.
I think it is ok to say this out loud.
The reasons are not the ones you may suspect, I don’t mind getting older nor has something absolutely terrible happened on one of my birthdays that will forever ruin that day for me.
In fact, nothing exciting has really ever happened on my birthday, except me getting increasingly stressed, fall out with people and end up crying at home, cursing another failed birthday.
The best birthday in recent memory was one where I was so drunk at 10pm, I went home and fell asleep.
Much like New Year’s eve, this is the day where planned fun happens, except you’re responsible for fun and the fun of other people. At least on New Year’s you can push this particular burden away from you and choose to ignore it or go with the flow (I choose to ignore it mostly).
Whereas being the host on your birthday is much like being the designated driver, except everyone encourages you to drink and drink more than anyone else.
But you still have to dictate the evening, make sure that your friends who might not all be from the same circle are having a good time. In this day and age, you will have friends dotted around who aren’t necessarily friends with the other guests, so to avoid awkwardness, you will invite several of each group or try especially to include them on the night (and probably failing).
Then there is the worry about the turnout. Will people come? How soon can you invite people? And each rejection is like someone stabbed you in the heart with a stick. A stick from the outside, covered in leaves and poo.
What to do? Party? Pub crawl? Whatever it is, it will not ever work out the way you want to. Parties have the notorious side effect of looking empty and dead when not enough people show up, it’s safer to go with pub crawls and public places, at least the amount of strangers around you will visually fill the empty seats left by your busy (and careless) friends.
It Used to be Easy…
Being responsible for fun is never a good thing. When my parents used to organise my birthday party for me it was hugely entertaining. I would get a cake, presents, a good number of guests would show up (I mean, you’re 8, what else could you possibly be up to?!) and no booze, just old fashioned board games, chocolate and mini pizza fun, all finishing at 7 or 8pm to have a civilised ending to the chaos.
So, What’s the Answer?
Anyway, what are the tips to having a good birthday then you may ask?
Well, I don’t know, I still haven’t figured it out but I have a suspicion it may involve carefully balanced planning mixed with little expectations.
You just fuck off for those cursed days, to a different country and ignore it altogether.
Please let me know how to survive one’s birthday!