Happy Birthday Feed

54 - The Last Normal Year??

54Good morning all - hope you've had a GREAT week out and about in the world! As you might know, today is my 54th birthday and in honor of that, I'm posting some of my favorite music throughout the day. Enjoy!

You know, I have some friends who find it silly that a 54 year old man would make a big deal of his birthday. I understand the thoughts, but I don't agree with it. I celebrate my birthday every year because to me, it IS a big deal. 

You see, when I was in my mid/late 20s, I had a friend with whom I joked that I was approaching 30 and hadn't accomplished anything. It was a joke, really, I was only in my 20s, but, because he had been in and out of ill health due to AIDS for some years, he grimly replied 'well, some people didn't get to be 30'. And you know, he was right to be annoyed by my ridiculous notion that 30 was something to be dreaded. 

I was always a proponent for celebrating the day in style but, after that, I took an even harder line. There was one year in my 30s when I celebrated for two months with dinners, drinks and producing fundraising events around the country. That was my personal best until I approached 50 - I started celebrating in July 2013 and that lasted through to March 2015. Subsequent birthdays have been a bit quieter, of course, just to balance things out! 

But, 54 for me is abit special as it could be the last 'normal' year. Let me explain. 

In 1980 my dad was diagnosed with cancer. He was 55.  He spent a year on chemo and died at 56. This made a big impact on me, a young man of 17. So, for all these years, I've lived with the looming worry of making it through my 56th year.

So, today, I begin the ramp up to a two year cycle of celebrating 54, 55, 56, and, with God's help, 57 and beyond. Because one person I loved didn't get to be 57. 

I hope you'll join me in this journey, because it promises to be fun and interesting. 

First up, a great way to start anything: 

 

 


Happy Birthday, A.B. Lugo #ablugo #SpanishCoffeeBlackNoSugar #SCbns #book #poetry #HowDoYouLikeYourCoffee

Happy Friday all! Today, a short blog in praise of my pal, A.B. Lugo, on his birthday which is this Sunday, January 21. 

But first, a word about A.B. and birthdays. I've known A.B. since February 2004 and I still don't know how old he is. Truly. I have no idea. 

BlogablugoI first met A.B. when I was producing and emceeing a talk show at a club in Chelsea in 2004. He was one of my first guests as a playwright and actor associated with Wings Theater, for which I'd done shows in years prior. A.B. noticed that I was trying to host the show AND take promotional pictures of the show at the same time. He offered to come back the next week and shoot for me in exchange for drinks. It wasn't a great deal for him but I was grateful to have a little help if only for the second week of the show. 

Well, the second week turned into the third week and the first month turned into 12. The show got cancelled and I created a Bingo night at another club in town and A.B. followed. And then every week for the next ten years, A.B. showed up to shoot. I cannot over explain how valuable he was to the success of the show and how valuable he became as my friend. 

In the 2 1/2 years since the end of the Bingo night, A.B. went on to produce and emcee a karaoke show in east Harlem, write a book of poetry when his parents died, meet a wonderful girl, move to Colorado to be with her, and they are expecting their first child later this year. He's back in town this and next weekend to perform his latest one man show, BBC, at JACK in Brooklyn. Click here for more info/schedules/ticket information

And I still don't know how old he is. One year, in defiance of this, I simply guessed and gave him a cake at bingo that celebrated his 50th birthday. I figured this would goad him into telling me his real age. No deal. Even when he left town, I expected to be finally rid of this mystery. But noooo! :) And the funny thing is, A.B. keeps track of what fictional age he'd be now (is it like 58 or something, I've forgotten! lol) 

So here's to A.B. on his birthday. You are timeless. Ageless. and a real friend. All the best and Happy Birthday! 

A.B.'s book SPANISH COFFEE: BLACK, NO SUGAR can be purchased at Amazon by clicking here.