Tuesday, December 28, 2004

"And so this is Christmas, and what have you done..." Three

What do Denzel Washington and I have in common?

We both turned fifty years old today.

Dad began his long career at Procter and Gamble in the early 1950s, and was hoping to get a position in or near the headquarters in Cincinnati, near his and Mom's families. But the nearest opening was in Cleveland, and upstate they went. When an opening in the "Queen City of the West" appeared in '56, Dad jumped at it. But not before I came along...

Sal and I spent the day at Goodwill stores. After all, the girl loves to shop, and the Birthday Boy gets half-price on the same day every year. We also swung by Mom and Dad's, in the town of Milford, on the eastern outskirts of Cincinnati. The big news there was of how an historic building had caught fire the day before. We drove by on the way through the town. A couple dozen guys were milling about -- probably the same guys who hung out at the Corner Barber Shop. Small towns; you know how it is?

That evening, we had dinner at The Dubliner, an Irish pub in the Pleasant Ridge section of Cincinnati. Irish pubs in my hometown are not like the ones in DC; in Cincinnati, they're for real. I love a genuine neighborhood public house. This night was "trivia night." With a generous gift certificate from my other sister Mary, we toasted the old, rung in the new, and blew the whole wad very nicely. (Thanks, Mary.) Mom and Dad got me a card: "The first 50 years are the hardest." I suppose they'd know.

It's going to be just a little harder to leave here than usual the next morning. I'm not sure why...

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