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Wildly Exaggerated: A Very American Half-Birthday

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

A Very American Half-Birthday

You almost certainly don't know this about me, but July 4th is my half-birthday! That's right! This year I turned 32.5, and the entire country got a day off work to celebrate! People were even setting off fireworks! For a modest gal like me, all the attention is really kind of embarrassing.

This time of year also seems to coincide with an annual nationwide seizure of patriotism (unrelated). It's always a little awkward for me, not because I don't heart my country - I do  - but I import virtually all of my news and entertainment from across the pond. As a result, I'm somewhat out of step with the current cultural norms around here - I was embarrassingly late to the Modern Family party, I have no idea which sports season we're in, and for the life of me I don't know if I "realized" my blind date was a serial killer, or if I "realised" it. THEY BOTH LOOK RIGHT!

Upon realiz/sing that I was losing touch with my roots, I decided to get on the proverbial bandwagon for my half-birthday and do it up America-style.

Step 1: Road trip!
This part was easy, since my parents were going to visit my brother in Augusta. All I had to do was hitch a ride, and I was halfway to being a regular Betsy Ross! I have no idea what I mean by that. I certainly didn't sew anything.

Step 2: American cuisine
There was some debate over where we would have lunch, and we were deadlocked between Mexican food and pizza - not very American choices, I think you'll agree! I managed to fix the whole thing up with five magical words: "IHOP has funnel cakes now." And so we went to IHOP, one of the top 20 most American eateries I can think of off the top of my head!* I probably went a bit astray by ordering an omelet topped with hollandaise sauce (patriotism FAIL), but I like to think I made up for it by dutifully coloring in a kids menu.
This is what the CD cover would look like if my cat, my mom's cats, and my brother's cat formed a band. Note blood at tip of giant claw. They're hardcore.
I also stumbled upon a new educational initiative which reintroduces arts education for young children, presumably as part of the No Child Left Behind program. You won't be able to read the light grey print, but it says (emphasis mine): "Use the diagram to the right to learn to read music! Then draw notes below to create a special song."
My parents paid a lot of money over many years for me to learn the secrets I could just as easily have gotten from the diagram on the right WHILE eating a Funny Face Pancake!
Suzuki Method? More like So-Puke-y Method! OUR kids will learn to read music at the IHOP, thankyouverymuch!

Step 3: See a Disney movie
Cars 2, y'all!

Step 4: Road Cuisine
Because nothing tastes better than the months-old junk you dig up off a shelf at a convenience store during a long car ride. I'm not even being sarcastic, either - I love that crap. And since we stopped at a Circle K, I got myself one of the jewels in my country's culinary crown:
It's a frozen Mountain Dew. JEALOUS?
And that was my Very American Half-Birthday Road Trip. Fun, right? It was nice to have a day, just America and I, to reflect on why we like each other so darn much. And if you're one of the people who has dedicated your life (or even just some part of it) to protecting the awesome of America, thank you.

Still, I'm glad we made up with the Brits eventually; there's some really good stuff on the iPlayer this week.

*You didn't think I'd back that up, did you? Well SUCK IT! Here are the Top 20 Most American Eateries I Can Think Of Off The Top Of My Head, as determined by a scientific survey of yours truly staring at the wall and saying, "Hmmm...what else?" until I had filled in all the lines.
1. McDonald's
2. A&W 
3. Shoney's
4. Waffle House
5. White Castle
6. IHOP
7. The Cheesecake Factory
8. Red Lobster
9. Cracker Barrel (aside for those who love Cracker Barrel: I didn't make this, but it's awesome)
10. Taco Bell (that is NOT Mexican food)
11. Fuddruckers
12. Piccadilly Cafeteria
13. Ryan's
14. Steak 'n Shake
15. Every mall food court
16. Dunkin Donuts
17. Bob Evans
18. Denny's
19. Chick-fil-A
20. Anywhere that serves Frito Pie

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1 Comments:

At July 18, 2011 at 8:20 AM , Blogger you-wee because said...

If you are afraid of birthdays (that's definitely the reason you celebrated half-birthdays, although you'd never agree) you should calculate your age in the hexadecimal system!!!

In the hexadecimal system, a 32-year old (young!) lady is just 20!!!

Sounds much better, doesn't it?

;-)

Regards from Germany,

Uwe.

 

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