It's my birthday. I'm 50 today

Things I have accomplished:

I have had fifty cars. In fact, I have even had fifty each, of several brands of car.
I have had fifty, fifty dollar dinners
I have loaned several people fifty bucks
I have mowed fifty lawns, and in order to grow the most recent lawn, I spread fifty truckloads of topsoil as a bed for the fifty bags of seed and fertilizer and lime.
I have made the kid do his chores fifty times
I have seen my sound equipment play in fifty of the largest concert arenas in the country
I have spoken to fifty troubled kids and hopefully provided some encouragement
I have visited Holyoke, Massachusetts – the gateway to Chicopee – fifty times
I have made friends with fifty people
In the first eight hours of my birthday, I received fifty spam emails offering sex aids, Russian girls, and money from Nigeria

Things I have partly accomplished:

I have fifty thousand dollars, but I do not have fifty million dollars
I have induced fifty people to place advance orders for my book, but I have not actually completed any sales
My subjects, Martha and Cubby, have obeyed my commands fifty times, but they still fail to recognize me as their King who must be obeyed
I have gone on fifty boat rides, but I have not gone on fifty ship voyages
I have written fifty magazine articles, but I have not written fifty books

Things I have not done:

I have not had fifty dogs
I have not had fifty cats
I have not lived in fifty places
I have not gone to fifty parties
I have not been to fifty states, or fifty countries
I have not had fifty girlfriends, nor am I anywhere close to fifty wives
I have not spent fifty days in any prison or jail
I have not been to fifty pig races, or fifty NASCAR races



Michelle O'Neil said…
I ordered your book weeks ago, but have been working on Kim S. to give me a sneak peak.

Maybe if I ask her nicely fifty times?

Happy 50!
John Robison said…
Send me fifty dollars and I'll send you fifty pages
Trish Ryan said…
Happy Birthday!!! You are an accomplished guy! After all, 50 visits to Holyoke--the gateway to Chicopee--is something few people can claim!

When you're on tour with your book, perhaps 50 of us could gather and sing you Happy Birthday...

Are you coming to Greater Boston? (hint, hint) I can start planning now...
Tena Russ said…
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, John! Bet you get forty-nine more birthday greetings.

Woof, fifty times.
Polly Kahl said…
May your day be filled with the love of family and friends.

(raises glass of wine to John. OK, bowl of fresh fruit.)
kristen spina said…
Happy Birthday, John. Enjoy your day!
ssas said…
Yea! Have a happy birthday.
Holly Kennedy said…
Happy Birthday from Canada, John.

I'd say it 50 times, but I don't want to fill up your comments section!
Aprilynne Pike said…
Happy Birthday!! I loved your list! Laughed out loud at several of them.:)

May your book sell fifty thousand copies in its first week.:)
The Anti-Wife said…
Have a very happy 50th birthday, John! Loved your lists!
Anonymous said…
When I was in elementary school they used to make us stand on a chair in front of the class while everyone sang "Happy Birthday" to us. (I guess they probably wouldn't make you do that though -because you would have to crouch down so that your head didn't touch the ceiling) They also used to take turns spanking us for each year and one to grow on.

What happened to this tradition?

Now consider yourself spanked 50 +1 times!
The Muse said…
Happy Birthday John!

Happy Birthday John! Sending you good wishes and happy returns fifty times over!
Stephen Parrish said…
Happy birthday. Here's to fifty more.
Sandra Cormier said…

You can watch fifty sunsets before you're fifty-one.
Kanani said…
Yeah, nifty fifty. You're still a big pup! Woof!
John Robison said…
Thank you all so much for the sentiments and support you've expressed. I wrote this post in the morning, when I felt good.

Birthdays are hard for me - in fact, there will be a chapter on hard holidays in my next book - and I'm afraid I sink into sadness by afternoon.

But I'm going to be fine tomorrow, and I'll write something else.

Kanani, hows your reading group doing with Look Me in the Eye?

And Trish - I sent you a note on my Boston appearances and I hope you'll come and bring all your friends.

And woof back at all of you!
Unknown said…
Happy Birthday! I am thinking about preordering your book, but if that pushes you past 50, I'll wait until it hits the shelves and make it 50 there!
Tena Russ said…
John, I am delighted to hear that there well be a "next" book. Your writing is wonderful and the world needs more of it.

Regarding your afternoon sadness: You're not alone. I like to call it low tide. I don't know if it's biological or simply the realization that another day is ending. Writers can be such a melancholy bunch.
Drama Mama said…
Fifty bday spanks right at ya!
Mizz O'Neil, I'll send you my ARC on loan but you stil have to buy a copy or two or three. Right, John? Between LMITE and Lottery my holiday shopping will be a snap!

Happy Belated, JOhn! I was celebrating my husband's 50th on Sunday and not blogging too much. Michelle came to the party! How cool to meet a blog buddy in person! But you and I already know that.

Happy x 50.
Kanani said…
Hey John
I find your book makes a really good wedge. So far I've used it as a door stop, trivet, barbecue fan, and thing to hold up to unwanted solicitors and say, "Away! Away! Or I shall throw the book of John at you!"

Okay, so maybe not. But yes, I have finished your book. I am waiting to see if the others get the hard copy in the mail before I comment.

They really hate spoilers.

And thinking of.... send me six more, I'll tape them together, attach them to a go-kart and make a spoiler.

Yer sis,
Amonly said…
Hey John,

Synchronicity strikes again. Mari and I had stopped in a store and we just had to buy this special calendar for you (on Monday!).

Little did we know it was your birthday- how timely....

Also- Finally finished the piece I wrote for you. 'Are You Zippy'

I DID make it to 50 with your support, and welcome you joining me on this other side of midlife!

It ain't so bad. Certainly seems like some great things ahead for you.

Tyhitia Green said…
Happy birthday, John!:*)
Anonymous said…
Happy belated birthday, John. I've just ordered and paid for your book.
Anonymous said…
i considered leaving 50 comments but then demurred.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!! hope it was wonderful!
Anonymous said…
oops, i scrolled down to read the comments after leaving mine. sorry about the afternoon sadness. that can happen to me as well, for my own set of reasons.

by the way, i put in my pre-order for your book ages ago!! can't wait to get my hands on it.
Laura said…
Happy Belated Birthday! Sorry I didn't get on in time, but you get to celebrate almost a week later, now!

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