Roger has a special birthday this week. The twelfth is his 50th birthday.
As always, I wonder what we would have done to celebrate, but there would have only been one way.
A party at our house would have been his choice anyway, a cookout with burgers and his favorite sides, enough pineapple upside-down cakes for the masses. Busch beer.
The boys and I would buy him some shirts from faraway fire departments, maybe a Red Sox hat, and a power tool.
There would be a fire in the back yard for after dinner and cake, and he would be cheerful and very happy to have his people all in one place, and we’d play country music, his favorite.
Now, it’s just another date to wonder, one which chills sloppily atop the others, not leaving when the clock strikes midnight, but resting in their little closet with the missed anniversaries, Memorial Days in May, and the thirteen Christmases that have gone on without him.
The woulds are annoying, quite honestly, so very annoying.