Friday, August 13, 2010


My first birthday present today to myself was to re-read all of my Politics posts and congratulate myself on a bunch of prescient (note the dates), cogently written, insightful, beautifully formed little essays. Dang, they're good. I kid you not. Go ahead, read 'em if you haven't already, you'll see what I mean; there are only eleven of them. You don't have to agree, simply admire. Time or Newsweek really ought to use me as a contract consultant, Don't you think?

Now that the Leo-nine narcissism is out of the way, the bad news is that I'm 68. The good news is that I may become 69 in a year. My brain doesn't feel that old but my bod increasingly does; I won't list my physical afflictions because no one really wants to hear about them, including my doctor. It's enough to say that I do my utmost to just keep moving, even though my 'wheels' seem to be progressively morphing from round to square. Or maybe oblong is more accurate. Sigh. It could be worse. (It can always be worse).

My second BD present to myself will be a dinner this evening at our best local Dago restaurant, Mezza Luna (yeah, the same chain where OJ and Nicole were last seen fighting). You used to could get Gulf oysters for half price (.50) during Happy Hour but no longer. Them days is over. Nowadays they get most of them off the coast of North Carolina. I like them better than Gulf oysters, actually, but they cost more. But after the first of two martinis, the taste doesn't really matter. After the second martini, I don't really care--on to the entree.

I resigned from my church job a few days ago. I gave it a good go for a season, but I'm afraid that kind of work just isn't for me anymore. There were good reasons I left that kind of work in 1985 and apparently those reasons haven't gone away in the interim. I will miss those few wonderful people, though, a few of whom I came to really love in my short time with them. My teacher Jim Vail just took a new church position not terribly long after resigning from the one he had held for forty years. He's 86, I think. Some people really do love it and I'm glad for him and his new church home.
I'm a lucky man as I begin my 69th year of adhering to the planet: families old and new that love me, two fine grandsons, a good woman, a good dog, enough money left after the Bush Debacle to live decently and travel a bit for a few more years, a fairly busy lineup of professional engagements to keep me both interested and involved, including a Christmas concert with a superb choir on Taiwan come December.

And I do love the slower pace of retirement; I am stunned by what I used to pack into a day for thirty-seven years.

Happy Birthday to me.


karen said...

happy birthday, indeed! so sorry to have missed your trek out west (i actually went to chorus america this year... same weekend)... anyway, hope you are well. thanks for the blog updates!

Dominic said...

lovely to read your posts dr. dehning. love this birthday one for sure! happy belated... miss you much, Dominic

Karen Schrock said...

After a long summer of traveling, moving and renovating my new home, I'm catching up with people (mostly via their blogs... what have we come to in the 21st century?!). It's far too late to say happy birthday, but I wanted to let you know this post made me happy. I'm glad you're surrounded by people and animals who love you! I'll let you sort out who are the people and who are the animals...