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Winning and Losing 2006

34 TodaySo it’s 365 days since I could last say “It’s my birthday”.

Birthdays are often the time to take stock of ones lot. And I like to do this every year. The other day, I made a list of what I’d done on previous birthdays in my life, and for various reasons, I could initially only come up with bad birthdays.

I vividly remember my 18th – the time when my best friend ran off with my girlfriend.

My 24th when I had a huge fight row with my girlfriend because I’d got a card off of a female co-worker, who was genuinely just being friendly but somehow it got interpreted as “Happy Birthday Geoff, would you like to jump into my knickers?”.

My 30th when I was having a particularly shit time of my life, and I had a massive birthday party sandwiched between two rather emotional counselling sessions. Sad – forced happiness – sad again. Weird.

A year later and my 31st when I spent fucking ages organising a kick-ass treasure hunt for all my mates, only for one of the participants to get in a strop and ruin it for everyone else.

And even last year when I decided to be a miserable bastard generally and not open any presents all day or get in a jolly birthday mood.

But then I also remembered some good ones. Going right back to when I was eight years old and my mum took me on a big day out in London. We did HMS Belfast, Tower Bridge and the Tower of London. And I got to ride on the tube a lot – so blame my mum for my obsession.

And I remember my 21st where I’d just started at the BBC, but I hadn’t told anyone it was my birthday. Somehow they found out, and at 4pm in the afternoon they called me into the conference room ‘to fix a problem’, only to find that all my colleagues were waiting to suprise me with an ‘afternoon tea party’ – in the office! It was excellent.

So. Birthdays can have a profound effect. And this – the turning of my thirty-third into my thirty-fourth year, and the first time I have not been on home soil – I am determined to have a good one. A very good one.

However, in the spirit of reflection, I thought it only appropriate that I compile a little life balance sheet, just to see whether I’m still making progress over what’s happened to me in the last 12 months. So, here goes:

1. Gained: A beautiful fiancee.
2. Gained: Knowledge of all things US compared to the UK.
3. Gained: Stress. Through moving ones entire life 4,000 miles west. [See ‘1’]
4. Gained: Superb travel experiences
5. Lost: About eight pounds on average. And no sign of it coming back anytime soon.
6. Lost: Some of my brown hairs. Leigh says she can see some grey ones starting to poke through. (I’m in denial)
7. Gained: A negative bank balance. (That’s actually technically a loss, but I’m trying to confuse you on purpose. Hey – it’s my birthday, I can do anything I like, right?)
8. Lost: The ability to pop round and see my friends and family back home.
9. Gained: Someone that I have and can tell things to about my life, more than I’ve ever done with anybody ever before. [Again, See ‘1’]
10. Lost: A feeling of stability. [See ‘3’] Because I don’t know where I’ll be in the world in another 12 months time. I absolutely have no idea. Which is scary, and great all at the same time.

So, there you go. Pluses and minuses. Ups and downs. Goods and bads. Which is overall you’d have to say is a good thing because if life was too easy, then … well – it would be too easy wouldn’t it? And then you’d feel like you’d never acheived anything.

And at the very least, I find myself in a state (geddit?) that I would have never have predicted that I would have been in 12 months ago. It’s a funny old world sometimes.

Happy Birthday to me.

(oh, and thanks by the way to mccullochlog blog from whom i just stole the idea for this post and changed slightly. he is also a brit moved to america who turned 34 this year)

41 responses to “Winning and Losing 2006”

  1. Amy says:

    Happiest of Birthdays Geoff 🙂

  2. Actually, you’re turning into your 35th year.

    Happy Birthday.

  3. Tugs says:

    Happy Birthday Geoff! You’ve turned 34 only three days after me.

    Like you, I’ve tended not to have great brithdays in the past, but this year I’ve had a blast, celebrating with loads of freinds and colleagues over the past few days. There’s more to come this weekend and I hope you have a similarly excellent time.

    Best wishes and Happy Birthday again.

  4. Paul says:

    Do you share your birthday on 22nd Feb or 18th Aug? Then that must mean you are BOTSD! Oh what fun I had in London last November! Happy birthday mate!

  5. CV says:

    Happy Birthday to you
    Happy Birthday to you
    Happy Birthday dear Geoffy-weff
    Happy Birthday to you!

    (Hooray)

    PS Apols for the Geoffy-weff, but Geoff just doesn’t have enough syllables for the metre of the song!

  6. Mikey says:

    holy crap, it’s like you copied and pasted 😛

  7. TowerBlock Tina says:

    Squashed tomatoes and stew! Have a good one.

  8. Agricola says:

    Happy Birthday, Geoff, and many happy returns. I hope the next year is better than this year, and that you continue to enjoy the good ole US of A.

  9. Julia says:

    Happy Birthday my sweet, and I don’t remember anyone ruining the treasure hunt, so don’t give it another moments thought!

  10. pixeldiva says:

    Happy Birthday Geoff. Have a fab day. May all your gains be positive and your losses negative.

  11. Rudi says:

    Happy birthday, Geoff!

  12. Fimb says:

    Happiest of Birthdays!!

    I’m one of those who, what ever the circumstances, insists on having a happy, non-depressed birthday *L* Sometimes it works better than other. The strangest has to be when I threw myself a birthday tea party in the hospice my dad was in for my birthday.
    And the day after that, I met the husband.. 🙂 so, I reckon there was some karma thing going on 🙂

  13. Chris says:

    Happy Birthday Geoff…
    Long time lurking, first time posting, BBC employee (Telly centre still stands!)

  14. J-Ro says:

    H.B, TG. I was going to text you this morning, but then remembered it costs you money to retrieve…so I didn’t :o)

  15. dan says:

    Happy birthday! You and Leah are hereby invited to beers down at Moe’s Crosstown at your earliest convenience, and this time it’s my turn to pay.

  16. Alan P says:

    Happy Birthday Geoff, all the best from LUL!

  17. Happy birthday, Geoff! May there be many more of them to come.

    PS. I’m still here; I’ve merely been busy and/or absent lately!

  18. Happy birthday!

    What are the chances of having a 34th birthday on a day when a national newspaper publishes an article about 34th birthdays, and how expensive being 34 is?

  19. David - Lightwater says:

    Happy Birthday Geoff!

  20. Simon says:

    Happy Birthday!

  21. Skarlett says:

    Happiest of Birthday Wishes!
    May the coming year bring you joy-

    Warmest Wishes to you Today!

  22. Paul says:

    Bloody ‘ell eh?! What a popular guy. I keep waiting for Geoff to say its all a hoax and he’s joined the Jehovah’s Witnesses!

  23. Richard says:

    Happy birthday Geoff – you’re halfway towards getting your pension now!

  24. Jen and Jon says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY GEOFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Wish you all the best in everything!

    Time flies so fast, can’t believe it’s also almost a year since Tube Relief.

  25. Ciaran says:

    Happy birthday you old git. You are nearly catching up with me for fucks sake!

    At least you ain’t gone bald…

  26. Tami says:

    Happy B-day to you from all of us down here !!

  27. Alan Perks says:

    Sorry Geoff, a day late, but, Happy Birthday!
    I had a beer for you last night when I got in from work!!
    And then some for me!

  28. Joan says:

    Happy birthday to ya!

  29. Leanne & Andy says:

    Happy Birthday mate!
    Hope you had a good ‘n,
    Wonder what the next year holds for you 😉
    Mmmmm, let me guess!

    😀

  30. (damn, I’m just breaking the neat, tidy, 34 comments you had…)
    Happy Birthday!
    ~x~

  31. Mark says:

    Happy Birthday Geoff.

    Don’t worry, over 10 years ago I moved a lot further away for love and I turned 34 this year as well (a lot closer to turning 35 though :o( ).

  32. Brent says:

    Happy Birthday, Geoff!

    I’m one of the many birthday curse victims. While in college, my birthday was always the week of midterms, so that was never good. And now, when you would think that things would go a bit better, just this year I was laid off from my job at 10:03 on my birthday. Wonderful memory.

    Here’s hoping yours goes swimmingly this year! 🙂

  33. You’ve gained lots more than you lost, so it’s a success.

    Happy Birthday, and as long as you are under 40 you are still a spring chicken.

    Tower Block Tina: Are there any photos of Geoff as a lad that you can share? Perhaps having a birthday?

  34. TowerBlock Tina says:

    I do have some rather cute photos, but Geoff might not be too pleased for the world to see them, will have to run it through him first. I have plenty, as he had a ‘party’ ever year until he was about 12, then another one at 18, and me being a keen photographer recorded every moment like adoring mothers do.

  35. geofftech says:

    I can post a picture of me on my 34th birthday if you like… I have plenty… hang on, let me go dig out a good one.

  36. Johnny Alpha says:

    Happy birthday geezer!

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