25 May 2010
Posted by Paul Anater at 6:38 AM
It's my birthday today. I'm 45 and that sounds weird to me. I certainly don't feel 45 although I suppose that how I feel right now is how 45 feels. It a curious thing to realize that I'm more than half way through and I have to say that where I am and what my life looks like at 45 bears scant resemblance to where I imagined it would be 10, 20, or 30 years ago. Ask me how thrilled I am that none of those old imaginings came true. I'll take things as they are right now any day.
The word for birthday in Italian, cumpleanno comes from the verb compiere. Compiere looks like but doesn't always mean to complete. In the sense that it's used in relation to birthdays, compiere means to fulfill. So my opening sentence, It's my birthday today would read Oggi compio gli anni in Italian and it would translate as Today, I fulfill my years.
I like to think of birthdays as fulfillments rather than as completions. Birthdays in English mark off time served. In Italian, birthdays commemorate a fulfilled life. It may be a semantics game but it helps me avoid dreading getting older. Thinking of my birthdays as fulfilled years rather than completed ones helps me concentrate on what a great, fantastic ride this is. When I think like this, it's easier to be grateful and stay grateful for the amazing people who begat me, the amazing people who surround me and the amazing people I have yet to meet.
So on that note, I am on my way out of town for the rest of the week as of this afternoon. I wrote a bunch of posts for the coming days that showcase my first foray back into the ad game in more than 15 years. I hope it's not too tedious, but I needed to do it as a credibility-building exercise. Bear with me and have a great rest of th week!