Friday, March 25, 2016

The Golden Birthday

I turned 23 on the 23rd.  That's a golden birthday.  I cared about that briefly when I was, like, 5. Well, now I care again.  Sure, it's not one of the big birthdays.  I'm didn't turn 21 or 25, and I didn't throw myself a big fiesta for this birthday.  (To be fair I never do.)  But it is fun to think about me reaching 23 years.  I feel a little relieved if anything.  I'm sitting here at this computer lab just thinking on my journey to this birthday.  Wow, it's been quite a ride.  Really, it has.  This last year was pretty interesting.  I got to work for the Special Olympics World Games and see the Golden State Warriors fulfill my dream and win a championship.  They made another Jurassic Park movie and a new Star Wars movie.  So yeah, I liked year 22.

To be honest I' just grateful I made it this far.  Now, I know I sound dramatic and shit, but I'm serious.  There is an alternate universe where I don't get to see the Dubs' championship parade, Jurassic World and everything else good in life.  The car accident happened 20 years ago and that could have gone many different ways.  I mean, I fell out of the bed of a pick-up truck on the freeway.  I was 3.  You run that scenario back 10 times and I'm not sure I come out of that the same way.  I have no brain damage (that I'm aware of) and I am still breathing.  I don't remember the car accident at all.  I remember the truck I was in and that's it.  Everything I know about the accident was told to me by my mother and my grandma.  All I know is that I was in the bed of the pick-up truck because I wanted to be with my uncle and that a chopper picked me up and took my to the hospital.  My souvenir of the whole ordeal is a few scars on my head from hitting the pavement.

The big scar sits on the left side of my face next to my eye.  It's maybe two inches long, though I think it's gotten smaller over the years.  (That, or my head got bigger.)  I remember growing up everyone and their momma used to come up to me to ask me about the scar.  Everyone in my second grade class eventually asked me the story of the scar.  It made me hate the scar.  I hated being bothered about it, and I hated telling the same damn story over and over again.  I hated that when I used to get haircuts my mom used to ask the barber to leave one side a little longer to cover up some of the scars.  Now, nobody really asks me about the scar.  Either people stopped noticing or they stopped caring.  I'm cool with either.  On occasion somebody will ask me about the scar.  They tend to expect some story about me getting in a knife fight, especially when they hear that I'm from Oakland.  I realize that I can probably lie about the scar and tell some bad ass story about it, but I never do.  Plus, if Michael Jackson's "Beat It" video has taught me anything, it's that all knife fights end in dance numbers.

This being my 23rd year alive I'm coincidentally celebrating my 20th anniversary with my scar.  Did you know that the 20th anniversary is the China anniversary?  Fitting, because I've said for a while I need new dishes at the house.  In the 20 years we've been together I've grown to appreciate my scar.  I'm no longer embarrassed by it.  I look at it like a symbol of my survival.  I'm alive and I'm healthy.  I was given a second chance at life.  I don't know what God has planned for me, but I'm grateful He kept me alive.  I don't take anything for granted, and I try to enjoy life more than stress over it.  And for as long as I'm alive I want to be a positive force in people's lives.  I want to add to their happiness rather than take away from it.  That's been my attitude for year 22 and it will continue to be my attitude for year 23.  I heard your golden year is supposed to be the best year of your life.  It would be hard to top last year, but I'm optimistic.  That being said, I don't want that to be my peak.  Let's keep this run of good fortune going!  Four more years! Four more years!

El Guapo is a talented blogger on the rise, regarded by many as a cross between Homer and Socrates.  Through real life experience and expertise in many facets of life, the Guaps aims to provide readers with unique takes that will enhance the way they think and live.  Keep up with his main blog Infinite Wisdom From El Guapo’s Brain.  NBA fans have to place to go with his basketball blog, Infinite Wisdomon the NBA.  Like him on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter and Instagram.  Leave comments in the section below.  Stay Guapo out there!