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Two birthdays better than one
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Once again my conscience is bothering me ahead of what will be my real half-century celebration in just a few days.
As my loyal readers know already, there’s something quirky about my birthday each year. It seems I have two of them – one real and one, let’s say not so real. I refer to it as my Internet birthday and it falls each year on Feb. 1.
“What? Are you trying to double up on birthday gifts, Sherrill?” some people ask when they hear about the fake birthday. “Is this the 12 days of Duane’s birthday?”
It’s nothing of the sort, although I will take double gifts if you’re giving them. A birthday just comes around once a year, well, twice for me. Actually, it’s all the Internet’s fault.
It began almost a decade ago when I first signed up for a Facebook account. I was somewhat distrustful of anything online back then. Imagine that, not fully trusting the Internet. Everyone knows everything on the Internet is legitimate and above reproach.
Anyway, with that in mind and realizing there are unscrupulous individuals lurking online looking to steal identities, I decided not to put my actual birthdate on my Facebook account. However, I didn’t want to put it so far away I couldn’t remember it since websites sometimes require your birthdate to authenticate, so I just put it at the first part of my birth month, 12 days ahead of my actual birthdate. That’s right, me and Abe Lincoln share the same birthday.
I figured no one would notice so what could it hurt. Of course, I forgot all about the birthday notification Facebook has. So guess what. On Feb. 1 of each year I get a ton of birthday wishes from friends. This has been extra big since this is my 50th birthday. Each year I feel guilty about it and swear I’m going to change my profile. As you might guess, I still haven’t changed it.
However, this year I’ve noticed a new trend. There are some friends who are wise to my innocent deceit. Folks who know me well know my birthday is Feb. 12 but they feel compelled to play along with my Internet birthday when they see hundreds of other well-wishers. They usually do this by posting something saying happy “birthday” in the parenthesis just to let me know they’re in the loop. As the years have progressed, this group has gotten larger and larger.
Anyway, this is not the first time I’ve confessed to my readers about my fake birthday. However, if I am to be truly repentant then I should back it up with my actions, right? So, this is the year I’m finally changing my profile to reflect my real birthday.
No more procrastination, no more fake birthday even though it probably means some guy in Nigeria will be buying a Mercedes in my name at some point.
Standard reporter Duane Sherrill can be reached at 473-2191.