It’s that time of year when my loved ones remind me just how little they know about me: my birthday. “What do you want for your birthday?” they ask. “How could you not know?” I respond. It’s obvious! I want this book, or that gadget, or a new piece of cookware, or whatever. Except I don’t. I don’t really want those things at all.
I’ve somehow reached that age where things that I truly want can’t be purchased in a store—or if they can, I usually just buy them for myself.
So in honor of Monday’s birthiversary, here is a list of the things I really want, but probably can’t ask for and almost certainly won’t get.
- All the laundry to be clean, folded, and put away.
- An empty Instapaper queue, with all of my articles saved in a tidy, organized mélange of Pinboard, Evernote, and DevonThink.
- A CMS with the flexibility of WordPress, the stability of static pages/jekyll/Octopress, and the social community of Tumblr.
- More time alone with my wife
- More time together with our friends
- More time by myself
- Spend more within our means
- To not worry about my kids, to know that they’ll be alright, today, tomorrow, and forever after
- The Presidential election to be over
- My kids to be nicer to each other
- Liberty and justice for all
- To be an early-riser—the kind of person who easily wakes up two hours before anyone else in the house and uses that time to write or work-out or catch up on whatever
- Either a shorter list of books to-read or the time to devote to enjoying them
- Joyous noise
I could probably go on, but it feels a little silly. It is, after all, kind of a silly birthday list, more to-dos than things. Come to think of it, maybe that’s the gift I’ll give myself: this list of things to do and strive for in my 39th year.