Life Doesn't Fit in a File Folder

Make a Wish: It’s 12:12 on 12-12-12!

Dad & me, dancing at my son’s bar mitzvah!

My father is 75 today!

My arithmetic-loving son wants permission to get out of class to call his arithmetic-loving grandfather to wish him a happy birthday at 12:12 PM today. You know, because he is missing out right now on account of having to go to sleep.

“Stuff like this only happens to certain people!” Tech reminded me. “You have to recognize it!”

Turns out TechSupport is right.

December, 12, 2012 or 12-12-12 will be the last date of its kind – when all three numericals in a date are the same – until January, 1, 2101. That’s 88 years from now.

However, there is a bit of a dark cloud looming over my father’s big celebration. You know, the thing about the world ending in 9 days — on December 21, 2012? We have all heard this prediction by now, yes?

It occurred to me that the usual gift I give my dad might not be the best choice this year. See, I usually make my father a calendar each December featuring photographs of family members. But if my dad only has 9 days to enjoy his present, I figured, what’s the point?

I started brainstorming cheap gifts other options that might be good to give my father, assuming the world is going to end in a little over a week.

Here’s what I have come up with:

51. Fruit From Harry & David. Because nothing says “I love you” like Royal Riviera Pears. I’m pretty sure my father could polish off a box of 9 pears in 9 days. On second thought, maybe I’ll just spring for the box of 6. Dad isn’t big on wasting things.

2. Tickets to a Show. Gotta tell ya. There isn’t much going on in Syracuse in the way of entertainment right now. But I think my dad would enjoy getting jiggy to some Gaelic music. He might love Enter the Haggis, scheduled to perform at the Westcott Theater a few days before things get ugly.

Don’t think about your arteries. Just eat me.

3. A Gift Card to A Local Deli & Ice Cream Shoppe. My father stopped eating red meat and dairy over 20 years ago when he learned he had high cholesterol. Knowing he has just 9 days left, I’d bring my dad to a great deli and make start with a toasted sesame bagel loaded with twice the cream cheese. I’d encourage him to stick around for a hot corned beef sandwich with mustard for lunch. If he is a good boy and polishes off his hot pastrami & brisket and his knish, I’d send him to Carvel for a brownie sundae. Surely, this is not the time to be heart smart. Or kosher.

Call me crazy, but I think my dad would dig this doll.

4. Sex Toys. With only a few days left to live, why hold back? I’m thinking it’s time for my dad to pull out the silk scarves and try at least five of the Fifty Shades with my mother. You know, if they aren’t already doing that.

mariuana165. Drugs. My father has never inhaled. With only a few days left on the planet, I would get him a baggy filled with green sticky bud, rustle up some magic mushrooms, maybe haul out that betel nut I’ve been saving for a rainy day, and give it to my father to share with my mother. What’s to lose? Those two crazy kids can stare at their hands for hours. They can ride unicorns down the rainbow or chat with imaginary parrots. Hell, they can take naked pictures of themselves rubbing food onto the green velvet wallpaper that’s been hanging in the hall since 1963. If they ration carefully, they can enjoy themselves for 9 days straight and never come down.

Of course, I don’t really believe the world is going to end on December 21st.

That’s why it is now necessary to smother my father in a some genuine daughter-love.

  • Thanks for coming to all my gymnastics meets and dance recitals, Dad. I felt your love radiating from the stands.
  • Thanks him for poking your pointer finger into the middle of my back. You definitely trained me to stand up straight.
  • Thanks for yelling at me that time I threw away the pennies. You were right. It was an ungrateful thing to do, and small change really does add up.
  • Remember the time that you sat me on a raft in the Atlantic Ocean, and I was scared, and you promised you wouldn’t let go… and you didn’t. Thanks for teaching me about trust. I know you do not make idle promises.
  • I need you to know that I could listen to you talk about anything for hours. That you set the standard against which I measure every man. That you taught me about learning from doing. About finishing what I start, whether the outcome is good or bad.
  • About standing by one’s partner, when everything is blue skies and cotton candy – but also when the toilet is over-flowing and there is poop everywhere you turn.

Oh, I also need to tell my dad that when I saw him on Saturday, I removed a particular object from his desk. The desk that he is careful to keep just so. Unfortunately, I cannot tell him which item I took or where I put it.

At first, he will freak out, but eventually he will realize that I am joking.

Like I’m joking about these crappy gifts.

We got my dad something cool, and – G-d willing — he will be able to enjoy it as he watches the next Syracuse basketball game, scheduled for December 27th.


Happy birthday, Dad.

And congratulations on making it to ¾ of a century.

Whatever you are doing, please keep doing it.

PS: By the way, that thing we got you? That’s your Hanukkah present, too. No calendar this year. You know, just in case. So don’t hold your breath.

What gift would you recommend giving to someone whose special day falls between now and Armageddon?

tweet me @rasjacobson


53 thoughts on “Make a Wish: It’s 12:12 on 12-12-12!

    My daughter’s birthday is the 28th which is worse since she will turn 21 after the world ends.. 🙂 I think she will be partying a few days early.

    1. And what are you doing about Christmas? I mean, if things are supposed to end? What’s the point of all the hustle and bustle. I think people should just wait to shop until December 22nd. 😉

      Meanwhile, happy b’day in advance to your daughter.

    1. Believe it or not a certain GRANDPA was NOT home at 12:12 PM! It never occurred to me that I need to provide a cell phone number. Aren’t the ELDERLY supposed to stay at home under blankets? LOL.

      Tech will call tonight. 😉

    1. Carrie! Believe it or not, my father had the audacity to be out playing table tennis at 12:12 PM! BOTH Tech and I missed him! I’ll have the boy call him tonight. Although, apparently my mother is going to give him some bang bang tonight. (This sounded very naughty until my mother explained they were going to Bonefish! LOL!)

  2. That’s a great picture of you and your dad dancing! I think your dad would just appreciate the fact that your son is calling at 12:12 pm and not 12:12 am. =)

    1. My dad and I love to dance together. When I was a little girl, I used to stand on his feet. Now we can really cut a rug. There are dozens of pictures of us dancing together, and I love all of them.

      Believe it or not, my father would have been awake at 12:12 AM. He would have been sitting at the kitchen table eating a tangerine and some peanuts and doing a crossword.

  3. you are a hoot–happy happy to your dad–sounds like he taught you well–I need a finger in the back–my mom tried to teach me to stand up straight but it is still something I struggle with after all these years
    a gift for someone facing extinction – a hug and a kiss–that is what my dad asked for for every gift giving situation

    1. R: Thank you so much. I know what you are talking about. Having a great dad makes me a lucky girl, and I don’t take it for granted. Not for one minute. Love to you. Thanks for continuing to read and for commenting when it counts.

    1. I think there is a zero percent chance of him ingesting either one of those gifts, but I rather like to imagine my father enjoying a little psylocibin. That would be hilarious. That said, I don’t know that he would enjoy himself. He’s all about straight lines and all that magic makes things all crooked and stuff. You know, or so I’ve heard.

  4. Even the suggestion, albeit in jest, of buying your father sex toys and drugs, makes you the best daughter ever!! Happy Happy to your dear ole dad. May the world still be here on his 76th. 😉

    1. The fact that my father thought it was funny is the best. Even better was the fact that the other night, my mother said she had never heard of Fifty Shades of Grey. Safe to say, they are enjoying themselves without a Red Room of Pain.

  5. Ha! Your dad and I share a birthday. Awesome. I wonder if he is like me, and remembers turning 12 on 12-12? Turning 12 on 12-12 was the best birthday I’ve ever had.

    Happy Birthday!

      1. Happy b’day, Eric! I forgot that you shared a b’day with my dad! Happy b’day to you. Is this a significant one for you, too? I will have to ask him if he remembers turning 12 on 12/12. That might help me write next year’s birthday blog — in advance. LOL.

        I take this to mean that you are assume that the world is going to continue. You Sagittarians. You love your timepieces and calendars. 😉

  6. Such a wonderful post for your Father..Happy Birthday to “Dad”!!!!!
    I think I made a boo-boo….I gave Melvin, the owner of the horses that I photograph, A CALENDAR OF THE HORSES for his Birthday yesterday!!!!

  7. Renee, I think this post is one of the best gifts you can give your dad! Oh, and I’m torn between the Harry & David pears (they are pretty special…) and the drugs. Maybe you should get him both? After all, they DO go together….

      1. It doesn’t matter what color. The car is either going back or the world ends and it doesn’t matter. When time is short, grab the closest one.

        As it says in the old song, “if you can’t be with the car you love, love the car you’re with”

  8. Happy birthday to your Pop! I love all of the pictures from TS’s bar mitzvah, this one being no exception. I also support all of these gift ideas, and the 12:12 happy birthday wish.

    Hmm… end of world gift ideas… I don’t think I can top sex toys and illegal narcotics, but how about a gift certificate for skydiving / bungee jumping?

    1. Dad, Jules has the best ideas. Would you like to go bungee jumping? Or maybe would you like a pair of mustache glasses? If so, let me know, I’m sure that Jules would gladly send you a pair. And if you don’t like them, you can give them to me. (That might be the ONLY way I ever get a pair, eh Jules?)

  9. Awwww…what a great dad you have (and what a great daughter he raised)! It doesn’t matter if the world ends on the 21st, love like that will reverberate and be out there forever!! Happy birthday, Renee’s Dad!

  10. It’s a great post, Renee! Happy birth day to your dad! 🙂 And I am going to echo what most of your readers have said before. That photo of your dad with you is really nice.

  11. A time travel machine so they can go back and do it all over again. If it was for me? Nine days with Karl Urban in a luxury suite somewhere hot. And a Do Not Disturb sign on the door. I have simple needs. 🙂

  12. Happy Birthday to your dad, my mom turns 75 this year – if Armegeddon doesn’t occur! I’m thinking it won’t. I am still buying lotto tickets in hopes thatI’ll be 1 in 175 million! it would have to be something that would be extravaggant – like a live lobster and a pot with butter….hhhhmmm (oh yeah, and some one to cook it – remember Julia and Julia?) Have a great day!

  13. I’m late but I’m glad I didn’t miss this! Happy 12-12-12 birthday to your Dad! I’m happy to know two things – that his hometown is my hometown and we share the awesome birthday of 12-12-12! Since your Dad lives in Syracuse, does that mean you grew up there? If so, I need details! Syracuse is not that big. We should have met somehow. 🙂
    Love the the crazy gift ideas and and your real “thank you, Dad” gifts!

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