It Was 35 Years Ago Today


On December 3, 1968, I was born into a dark, barbaric world of discrimination. A world where the value of your birthright was dictated by the calendar. A world where children born at other times of the year got presents twice-- once for their birthday, once for the winter holidays-- but where the poor, sad children born in December got one "combined" gift. "This is for your birthday and Hannukah, dear." "Uh... gee, thanks. Oh, that birthday gift I gave you last May? That's for Hannukah, too."

It's not our fault we were born near the anniversary of Christ's manger debut. And as for Hannukah-- that sucker bobs and weaves its way around the calendar, just waiting to drive a haymaker into defenseless newborn children. So remember, people-- two celebrations, two gifts.

Think of the children.


How do you feel about two separate gifts delivered at the same time?

Is this more justifiable the closer together the two festivals are? As you say, Hannukah changes ... ah, I'm about to say "Hannukah changes date", which might be a major faux pas because I'm only familiar with the calendar from one particular religion, and maybe Hannukah doesn't change date after all, it's just that calendars change relative to the other and it's clear that I don't have a clue what I'm on about and I'm dearly hoping that you will provide a concise and lucid explanation please.

Happy birthday!

(I will try to remember to leave a separate comment in three weeks wishing you a happy Hannukah.)

Thanks, Scott.

Chris, Hannukah is always on the same date on the Jewish calendar (25th of Kislev), but the Jewish and Gregorian calendars are not precisely in sync. Consequently, the Gregorian dates for Jewish holidays always differ from year to year. Judaism 101 has a good explanation.

Happy Birthday Peter... and I don't think anyone has ever tried to pass my May birthday present off for either Christmas or Hannukah, but please don't give my relatives any ideas - they just might try it!

Happy Birthday, Peter.

Happy Hannukah, Peter.

Merry Christmas, Peter.

Happy New Year, Peter.

way to cover all your bases, dugrless. ;)

peter, i would never send you a single gift for both your birthday and hannukah.

Oh yes. I distracted myself and forgot to say "Happy Birthday". :-) Whoops!

happy bhiarntnhudkaayh. or do you say hbainrntuhkdaahy?

Happy birthday, Peter ... and I've heard a similar sad story just about every year as my wife's birthday is on the 12th. You can be sure that I've never combined her presents!

... Well, except for that one year when she bought *herself* something rather expensive and asked, "Can this be my combined birthday and Christmas present from you?" Of course, I answered, "Uh ... sure?" in a most decisive way.

In any case ... I hope that you had a great birthday *and* that you'll have a wonderful holiday season as well (but as two separate hopes!). :-)


Peter, Happy birthday. I'm glad your childhood trauma didnt turn you into "the grinch who combined birthday and Hannukah!"

BTW, my birthday is in early June and every year when I grew up, it would be exam time. (I grew up in Hong Kong. Dont know about the typical exam season here in USA.) Because of the exams, there would be minimal to no celebration. So I was quite envious of classmates who had big birthday parties in e.g., April or February. There, hope you feel better now.

I had a rather beneficial birthday situation growing up. The girl who lived across the street had the exact same birthday as me. Same date. Same year. Every year our parents had to coordinate birthday celebrations so as not to *konk* heads.

So, in a way, I got to "celebrate" my birthday *twice*. Once during my party and once during hers. And our birthdays were right at the beginning of August - smack dab in the middle of summer and a good five months away from Christmas.

My wife's cousin, OTOH, was born on December 26th. Ouch!

Peter's memory is a little lacking in the truth department. We always gave him presents for both occasions, plus he had a birthday party as well...just trying for a little sympathy it seems. For this birthday he got a really BIG present...he wanted an All-Clad frying pan and he received the whole 7 piece set, plus extras. And Hannukah isn't even here yet.

Can you believe I thought it would be great when my mom learned how to use a computer?

You'll notice I didn't mention my parents in my original post. Other relatives and friends of the family committed the merged gift faux pas, but I don't recall any parental incidents-- though it's best not to probe too deeply into parental gift-giving lest we be visited by the Ghost of Clearance Sales Past.

Socks, anyone?

Speaking of this year, the All-Clad set (and collander) arrived today. Now the reorganizing of the kitchen cabinets begins. Thanks again, mom! Love ya.

Guess who sent out the Hannukah present? Love ya

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