My birthday was last weekend. It was one of those birthdays that end with a five, which rhymes with “still alive.” I’m not saying which, only that I was born before the internet but after sliced bread.

I guess it’s a universal thing that the older you get, the less you look forward to another birthday, but at the same time, you really want to keep having them. As Mr. Bernstein says in Citizen Kane, “…age is a disease you don’t want to be cured of.”

Ok, that’s a rather dark way to look at it, so let’s skip ahead to the next paragraph.
When you’re little, a certain amount of pride is involved with each birthday, and you can’t wait to get older. So much so that you even count halves. For example, when you’re nine, you must add one-half as soon as possible. And it’s hardly ever two-thirds, but I’m wondering if STEM students would go so far as to brag they were, say, something like 9.6666 years old.

But then, as the years go by, you get to that point when you can’t help but squirm a little when it’s your birthday and somebody asks your age. Like my mother. She always said she was 39. Every year. Just like Jack Benny.

Who’s Jack Benny, you ask? Never mind.

Eventually, though, you will reach a point when you stop fudging your age and start bragging about it. Personally, this year I’m torn between feeling like I’m the human equivalent of a fine vintage wine and going to the store and getting stuff to dye my facial hair back to its original brown. On the other hand, who wants to go back? It’s like looking at old photos of yourself and saying to yourself, “Good lord, those bell bottoms. What was I thinking?”

No matter. They say age is what you make it. Mark Twain once said, “Age is mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” By the same token, I’ve always heard that age only matters if you’re cheese.

Anyway, some things I’ve learned as I reached my mumble-mumblety-eth birthday:
* The older you get, the fewer things seem worth waiting in line for.
* Being young is beautiful, but being old is comfortable and relaxed.
* If you don’t learn to laugh at trouble, you won’t have anything to laugh at when you’re old.
* When you are dissatisfied and want to return to youth, think of Algebra.
* I am trying to figure out how I got over the hill without getting to the top.
* One must wait until evening to see how splendid the day has been.
* One of the many things no one tells you about aging is that it’s such a nice change from being young.

Tomorrow, by the way, is Vietnam Veterans Day. It was March 29, 1973, that MACV was deactivated. All Vietnam vets know MACV – Military Assistance Command Vietnam – it was where all the big brass who called all the shots were. Pardon the expression.

I was reading that there are about 850,000 Vietnam veterans still with us who served boots on the ground in-country, and another five million served elsewhere during the overall Vietnam War era. All were called to serve, and none could self-determine where they would go.

If I may, when it comes to the slew of movies about that period, Hamburger Hill, Go Tell the Spartans, and A Bright Shining Lie top the list as the ones with which I most relate. Not to mention Good Morning Vietnam.

We have several Vietnam vets in Socorro and Magdalena and I tip my hat to each and all.

Before I forget it, and most importantly, today marks the last day of the 40-day Lenten season, which means whatever you deprived yourself of seven weeks ago, feel free to indulge tomorrow. Me, I’m thinking of starting with the ears of a chocolate bunny.

I had good intentions back in February of giving up social media for Lent, but it looks like I remain on the road to you-know-where. I’m still considering it, what with the revelations coming out of the unscrupulous harvesting of personal information by unscrupulous whoevers they are. I don’t know what to make of all that, but do like being in contact with my measly number of Facebook friends.

I just wish I didn’t feel compelled to check it more than, say, only once or twice per day. But, as my mother would tell us over and over, “If wishes were horses then beggars would ride.”

Too bad. I’d have a stable full of thoroughbreds by now.

Oops. Looks like I got off track again.

At any rate, today is Maundy Thursday, followed by Good Friday, Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday.

As you may know, a lot can happen in three days.