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I grew up in Colorado at the foot of the Rocky Mountains, then lived in Denmark and traveled throughout Europe before coming back to Colorado. I have two adult sons, whom I cherish. I started my writing career as a columnist and investigative reporter and eventually became the first woman editor of two different papers. Along the way, my team and I won numerous state and several national awards, including the National Journalism Award for Public Service. In 2011, I was awarded the Keeper of the Flame Lifetime Achievement Award for Journalism. Now I write historical romance and contemporary romantic suspense.

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Seductive Musings

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me — sort of, Part I

I was born in the middle of a day that doesn't exist all that often — February 29. While family members are quick to argue that this explains my, er, quirky personality, I like to think it means I'll always be youthful. After all, I have four times fewer birthdays that the average person my age.

Yes, today — or maybe tommorrow — I turned 10.75 years old. I'm the youngest mom, the youngest newspaper editor and the youngest romance novelist you've ever met. Hell, I'm even younger than my own children. Weird, but true!

People think it must be fun to have a weird birthday, and it is. But it wasn't so fun when I was little. Imagine being four or five and being told, "You don't really have a birthday. I guess you don't get any presents." That's a dire pronouncement to the ears of a child. No birthday? No presents? No cake? It's enough to make a tot sit down and cry. And I did.

The cruelest cut came from my hag of a Sunday school teacher, who had a plastic cake she used to celebrate each months' birthdays. When February came, she brought the cake out, sang happy birthday and left me out. Then March came and she forgot. When I whined about it (I think I was five), she said, "Well you don't really have a birthday do you?" Beeotch!

When I was little we celebrated my birthday on February 28 with the usual stuff — cake, ice cream, presents. When I got older, I began celebrating on the nearest Saturday night and reserving the entire week for my own amusement. If I didn't have a single day that was my birthday, then, dammit, the whole bloody week was my birthday.

These days, at the ripe age of 10.5/10.75, I'm not so sure I care whether it's my birthday or not. I just want to continue having them because the alternative — death — is unappealing at the moment.

But next year I have a real birthday. The whole world will live through another Feburary 29, and I plan on doing what I do whenever there truly is a Leap Day — celebrating my butt off.

This just in from one of my dearest friends, journalist Terje Langeland:

"Oh, and happy non-birthday!!!!!!!!!!
(No cake for you.)"
Terje

Hey, Terje, bite me!

In other news: Got slammed with another blizzard this morning. Had a few very close calls during my commute. It's been snowing all day so the drive home will be even more fun. YAY!

14 comments:

Debbie H said...

Very HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!!! Does it really matter which day, as long as you celebrate? I think you should celebrate the whole week, every year!!
My birthday is exactly one week before Christmas and as a child we didn't have much money so my birthday present was "pick something from under the tree, Happy Birthday" Yeah, I was one present short. Not much fun as a tot. As I got older, I didn't even care anymore, at least I still have them and at 51 (yes, I'll tell my age) I feel like I am 30!! The wild child has crept out and is showing me a great time. Planning a trip to Scotland with no family and more girl trips this year!!

Party hard girl, you deserve it!! Wow, 10.5!

Kristi said...

HAPPY "NOT QUITE your birthday" Pamela! ((((((PC))))) Hope you get caught up on your sleep tonight, lass.. xoxo, K

Karen said...

Happy Birthday! How could anyone be so mean to a little kid and say that you don't really have a birthday! Pooh on them.

Have a great birthday week!

Aimee said...

Happy Birthday Chica! I love youuuuuuuuuu!

"Happy birth-day to you, Happy Birth-day to you! Happy Birthday Mrs. President *G* Happy birth-day to you"

That was sung in my best impression of Marilyn Monroe BTW.
Be glad you didn't have to actually hear it LMFAO!

Leiha said...

PC you're going about this all wrong. I think you get to celebrate for the month of your birthday because you're special! That's why I do it, LOL.

Thanks for the birthday wishes, everyone! I really appreciate each and every word.

Debbie, that does seem a bit harsh to have one less present. But I guess parents do what they have to do. And good for you for letting that inner wild child out. You SO deserve that trip to Scotland and all the girl trips that will follow.

Thanks, Kristi. I'm going to try to get sleep tonight. Tomorrow is an especially early day. Thanks for the good wishes.

Karen, thanks for sharing my indignation. There's still a tiny part of me -- my inner 5-year-old -- that gets irritated when people say, "You don't have a birthday." LOL! I need therapy to get over Sunday school.

Aimee, thank you for the beautifully sung (I'm sure) birthday song. I love you, too, girl!

Leiha, good idea! To hell with a birthday week. It's a birthday month. Or next year maybe it's just a birthday year. It will be a Leap Year, so why not. :-)

Ben and I went to Laudisio's -- the restaurant mentioned in Extreme Exposure for an early but lovely dinner then went to Borders, where I signed their stock, then drove home. My agent called and a very good friend from my earlier newspaper days called with birthday wishes. And my sons each gave me a lovely card for my birthday.

A very nice day!

zinreads said...

Oooh! So that will be the Theme of the RBL mid-winter road trip next year! *lol* Anyone want to go to Boulder to help Pamela turn 11? *eg*

Ann

Oh, BTW, I'm the guest blogger at Romance Reader at Heart Ponderings -- rrahponderings.blogspot.com.

Come say hi if you wanna.

Ann, that would be wonderful! I would love to have a big RBL party for my 11th birthday. I'd do some serious underage drinking and looking at adult materials. LOL!

So good to see you!

Libby Loo said...

Happy Birthday, Pamela! I'm so glad you had a nice time with Ben. Did you get any good books at Borders while you were there? I love Leiha's idea of celebrating for a whole month, I'm going to see how that goes in August ;)

XOXOXO Libby

Thanks, Libby.

Why, yes, I did! I picked up three more Tara Janzen books in the Crazy series and two JR Ward books. Yes, you read correctly. I bought TWO paranormal novels. LOL!

It's always so funny when you go into a local bookstore to sign your own books. They always look at you like somehow authors aren't supposed to live in this town. :-)

When's your b-day in August?

J said...

Sorry I missed your birthday, hon.
I was giving my new eyes a rest!

That sunday school teacher would have had to do some fast talking at the pearly gates I bet. That or she is still tormenting children somewhere. You know what they say about who dies young.

It seems to me if it happens every four years then on the other three you can pick any old day you like!
Happy Birthday!!!

P.S. if you YIM me your addy, I'll pop some Tim Tams in the post to keep you going as you write...

J xx

Rosie said...

Well, happy belated birthday to you, sweetie! Since you are a 29th baby, you really should have the honor of celebrating for the whole month. It's quite special!!

And it is not an un-birthday, so you should definitely have cake, and ice cream, and cocktails!!!

Glad you had a nice dinner with Ben. Good for you on getting you some new reads too. You're gonna love the J.R. Ward books. I'm reading the Tara Jantzen series too. I'm only on the second one, though. But really enjoying them.

Again, Happy Birthday!!!

Hugs!!!

Tim Tams for moi?!?

Wow, Joanie, thanks! You made my day. I love those things! I tasted them at an RWA conference one year and had to restrain myself from not eating every single one in the room! Thanks so much!

Thanks for the wishes, Rosie. I haven't had cake and ice cream yet, but I'll work on that.

I've read one Tara Janzen and one JR Ward, and I enjoyed them both, especially Tara Janzen's book. So I have those to look forward to — after I finish my WIP.

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