My Birthday Dinner

As most of you know, yesterday was my birthday so I decided to try and have a birthday dinner. The reason for it was twofold. First, I had to eat. Second, I wanted to do something with some close friends and acquaintances who at one point or another meant something to me or still do. I have always said to myself  that when I  would ever get the  chance to show my appreciation for whatever it might be, then I would do so which is one reason I had this dinner. Each of the 18 or so that joined me in celebrating, had a reason to be there. Some were just there because I wanted them there but whatever the reason, the 18 that were with me gave me the best night I had in quite some time a night that at points caught me off guard and unexpected but I guess that’s what makes it fun.

I was kind of nervous though because I had no idea who was gonna show up if any at all because last year I tried this and no one bothered to show up not once but twice. I mean after all, you show up to their parties you expect them to return the favor right? I guess the lesson here is be weary of who your friends really are and normally I’d do that,  however I’m the type of guy to give someone the benefit of the doubt and not to be quick to judge someone. Maybe it was bad timing. Maybe I shouldn’t have been born in the summer. Who knows? What I do know is that a lot has changed from last year to this year which is why I can write all this now and talk about it.

Over the past year, I’ve somehow become more  popular which is a real surprise to me because I wasn’t the most popular kid growing up. Hell I wasn’t popular at all. I’m not a ladies man  (though I sometimes wish I was) or lady killer and yet I feel like I’ve gone through some kind of transformation and I can’t explain it. Would I love for ladies to swoon over me when I walk into a room? Well yeah but who wouldn’t? But I guess I shouldn’t reveal secrets publicly because that could lead to more harm then good.

The point is that birthdays are supposed to be for you and over the years the only thing I have ever gotten was a card. One lousy card and nothing else. I’ve never had a girlfriend to celebrate  birthdays with. Never had “friends” offer to celebrate with me. My own family went about their day as if it were nothing and it does hurt for sure but you don’t let it bother you and realize you can celebrate it by your lonesome and hope something good comes out of it. I didn’t get any card this year.

Flash forward to this year and I’ve now got 3 times the amount of Facebook friends then last year (600 at the time of this writing) and you think to yourself: “Golly gee whiz am I that popular? Out of 600 of these friends, how many do I really know?” It’s interesting to  mention that Facebook has opened up new doors for me in a strange way as I’m sure it has for others. But what I don’t understand is that if Facebook has become a way of life for everyone,  why are there people who still denounce it as “evil.”

Anyway, back to the dinner party. I was pretty much nervous the whole night and I’m not sure why. But when you post an event and people say they are attending, you really don’t know if that’s true until you are physically there. How stupid would you look if you reserved a room for a party and no one showed up? Thankfully I did not have that problem because not only did they come, but some even came early… Like 3 minutes after I arrived.

The other reason I wanted to do this was simple and it’s something I forgot to mention during my toast: Everyone (or mostly everyone) who sees me always does so at parties, social gatherings, outings or weekends and that’s only one side of me. I wanted them to see me as a real person. For who I really am. I wanted them to know that outside of the party scene, I am a gentleman with a good heart. A sweet and genuine person. A person who would make any girl happy to be with me. I admit that I can be a little “crazy” at times but it’s me embracing the “Leo” that’s in me. But I am a warm and good natured person who means well but maybe a bit misunderstood at times.  Though, the dinner did get out of hand at certain times (in a good way), it was  just everyone having a good time and I am happy you all did.

On the way home I kept thinking to myself how I can thank each and every one of you individually for making my birthday the best one ever. I realized that if I did that it wouldn’t be in a timely manner so I decided that I could do it this way in my own words and to do that,  I’d have to think long and hard to say what i want because I want it to have meaning and it has to come from the heart so I have done just that and now I have the chance to thank each and every one of you in my own way.  I have a policy not to mention names publicly without permission because a good friend respect’s his friends privacy and wishes but I apologize in advance because I have to do this (It’s important to me ), I will just mention first names..

Moshe: Thank you for coming. You always give me rides when I need them. You and I are alike in many ways because like me, you have a good heart and you don’t know what the word no means.

Yaakov: Most of what has happened over the last few months to me is all because of you. Before I met you I felt like a nobody and now I feel like there’s more to me then I ever thought possible.

Levi: I don’t know you that long but you just seem to me like a cool down to earth fella.

Donny: What can I say? You say such nice things about me that it makes me blush. Yes I gave you that sandwich but I didn’t expect the accolades you’d give to me afterwards. I was just being a good friend. But if it wasn’t you, it would have been someone else.

Shelomo: Just once I’d like to see you let loose in Jeans, Sneakers and T Shirts.

Richie: Just an all around nice guy and a hell of a guitarist

Nechmia: I know you for a few months and you could be one of the guys when you want to be. Thank you for the present. You really didn’t have to though.

Elias: I met you the same time I met Nechmia and you can be cool when you want to be.

Ayton: What can I say except thanks for coming and starting before everyone else: Just kidding.

Leah: Came on mine and Moshe’s Mountain Creek trip and then told us about a great place to eat in Teaneck.

Miriam: Thank you for taking Eve and I tubing. You seem like someone I could get to know better.

Odelia: I’m glad you had a great time. You are a sweet and quiet girl.

Eve: You are fun in your own quirky way. I didn’t know you were coming but thanks for celebrating with me.

Maeve: Sometimes it’s hard to understand you with your French Accent but it’s a sexy language (Don’t ask me why)

Tania: We only met a few days earlier but without you it may have just been a boring old dinner.

Sorah Leah: You came and left early before everything really started but you had me over for both meals without me even asking for one. Someone who opens their heart for me is considered someone special in my book.

Stephanie: Thank you for allowing me to get to know you on the hike. Thank you for playing Happy Birthday to me on your violin of which you play very well and thank you for driving Laura.

Laura: Thank you for changing your plans just to be here for my dinner. That was very sweet of  you. It meant more to me then you could ever know and it’s not something that I will soon forget.

I hope that you will all continue to celebrate with me on Saturday night along with everyone else.

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