Thirty One

Last modified on April 7th, 2008

I’m sitting in a hotel room, in Calgary, lying in bed in my boxers, eating some nachos that were delivered via room service. That, people, is how I rang in my 31st birthday tonight. There were lots of parties going on in Calgary, but truth is I just wanted to relax, watch some TV, and reflect on another year.

I actually had the perfect photo to put up here for this entry. It was a shot of me with a bunch of other photographers at the Junos, all hanging out with Russell Peters after the awards. I thought it would be a fun shot, and would sort of sum up this weekend for me in a photo. But when I approached the photographer who took it and asked for a copy, he turned me down.

I’d be lying if I said that event didn’t bum me out a bit, because it did. But ultimately it just made me thankful that I am the person I am, and that the world I normally live in doesn’t contain any people like that.

But in terms of birthdays, it’s funny how fast time flies. Some days I wake up, and for a brief moment, think that I’m somewhere else. Some other time, some other place. Like when a summer breeze takes you back to a bike ride as a kid, or the sound of the surf to the thoughts of an old vacation. A creaking floorboard that reminds you of footsteps that once walked there. The traffic lights streaking across the room at night, like memories of dancing candlelights.

I never really knew my great grandmother. Because my family is Ukrainian, and our grandma is known as Baba, everyone got used to calling my great grandmother “Baba Grandma”, which I guess the adults figured would confuse us kids less. Before she died, years ago, she had a conversation with my dad, one that he still talks about today. She told him that every day she woke up and felt like she was a 16 year old girl again, a girl that loved to play with dolls, run through the fields, and play outside with her friends. It was only her reflection in the mirror that gave her age away.

I have so much to be thankful for. I have great friends, loving family, and the person I’ve become in my 31 years is someone that I’m proud of. While I’m not perfect, I do the best with what I have, I admit when I make mistakes, and I try to move two steps forward for every one I fall back. And despite the bumps in the road, especially over the last year and a half, I really have been blessed with good fortune my whole life. I mean, here I am, a computer dork, at the Juno awards taking photographs. It’s a rare opportunity, and I’m really thankful that good forture has blown in my direction more often than not in my life.

The next year will be different that the last two. It will be a year without surgeries and without hospitals. It will be the year where I move past the ugliness of the past and restart the engine that stalled a few years ago. And in that regard, I’m really looking forward to it. Part of me feels like it’s a chance to start over again, to put things right that somehow went wrong, to make new friends, and to have a little fun along the way.

I have a plane to catch in the morning, so I’ll leave it as that. But I just want to thank all my friends and my family for being there for me during the last thirty one years.

Also, as an added birthday present, Google is featuring the last plugin I wrote, WordPress Without Borders, over on their coding blog. It will end up over at BraveNewCode in the near future.

29 responses to “Thirty One”

  1. Amy says:

    Happy Birthday Duane!

  2. Rebecca says:

    You beat me to the punch – my post is scheduled for 7am PT hehe

  3. Gregg says:

    Happy Birthday! Take it from an old fart, life gets richer as you accumulate more and more experiences. Unfortunately, it’s downhill from here on for the bod.

    How were the nachos, btw?

  4. Julia says:

    Happy Birthday Duane.

    Welcome to club “31”

  5. Boris Mann says:

    Happy birthday, dude. I helped you break your glasses last year, here’s to seeing that engine get kickstarted in 2008. I’m feeling pretty pumped myself….

  6. Kevin says:

    Happy Birthday Duane!

  7. Dan says:

    Happy Birthday!!

  8. Mom says:

    Happy Birthday Son!!! To the future great years to follow!!

  9. Dale says:

    Hey dude – I’ve got your reservation for a home when you’re older lined up.

    All the best on your happy day. Get in your birth-suit and dance, dammit.

  10. Happy birthday! Those nachos look great 🙂

  11. John Biehler says:

    Have a great birthday dude!

    Too bad the nachos weren’t in the shape of a cowboy hat – I thought they had those in Alberta.

  12. Dave says:

    Add my birthday wishes to your collection Duane!

  13. Raul says:

    Feliz cumpleanos Duane,

    Hope you are having a great one!

  14. Amanda says:

    Well bro you are a real old fart now!! The nachos look awsome. Wish we were there to join you. The 30’s have been the best years for me so far. I hope they will be the same for you. There is a freedom of enjoyment that comes with the age, the ‘I am old enough to do what ever I want now’ and the joys you take in every minute of free time.
    Have the best day and a great year… you!!!

  15. Well a lot of people beat me but who else would dedicate a post on their webpage just for you Duane. Well not just you my son is in the picture and it was his birthday. You just kind of tagged along, but who is splitting hairs.

    Happy Birthday Duane !!

  16. Pamela says:

    Happy Birthday Duane! Great Juno pictures!

  17. Keira-Anne says:

    How come all your friends resemble soccer balls? Okay but seriously, have a super Happy Birthday! I hope it’s a fantastic day for you. Looking forward to guac and nachos tonight!

  18. Arieanna says:

    Happy Birthday! Was great hanging out with you at the Junos!

  19. kasia says:

    Happy Bday Duaner. That was a really nice post. You are so much more than a ‘computer dork’ though yes, that’s a fun part of you too.

  20. Jill says:

    Happy Birthday Duane! You were totally my hero this weekend with your Juno adventures. I wish I could have the same opportunity. Try to avoid any glasses smashing or eyeball crashing incidents today and hopefully you’ll get a better start on the next chapter of The Duane Storey.


  21. mel says:

    Happy Birthday Duane! I noticed your bday on Facebook and I haven’t visited the blog (or any blog) for a while – I can’t believe you’re at the Junos! You’re hilarious. You’re all over the place with the Canadian celebs. haha. I have a new goal for you: “Canadian Idol” 🙂

  22. PatZ says:

    Happy Birthday!

  23. Jennifer says:

    Happy Birthday, Duane! Hope your day is awesome!

  24. Mitch says:

    Happy Birthday from the Low-Tech guy. Make a decision to make this the best year ever. Cheers!

  25. Eva says:

    Happy Birthday, Duane! 🙂

  26. Phaedra says:

    Happy Happy day! and natchos! whoo-hoo!

  27. Kirsten says:

    Happy Birthday Duane!!!

  28. deb says:

    Hey, was just popping around the blogosphere and ended up here.

    Good timing…just in time to wish you all the best on your birthday.

    And what a jerk that guy was…didn’t his mother teach him to share? 😉

    Hope it was a happy day for you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *