(the actual) Birthday

“Yes, we’re going to a party, party (No we’re not!)
Yes, we’re going to a party, party (No, we’re not!)
Yes, we’re going to a party, party (No, we’re not!)”

(adapted for COVID-19 ‘extreme social distancing,’
from “Birthday,” by John Lennon, Paul McCartney)

Today, they say it IS my birthday; is it your birthday, too, yeah? Happy birthday to me!

In December, as I was beginning to ponder a new year and the one in which I’d turn 60, I thought about what I wanted to do with the year. I decided I wanted to be more present and compassionate and wrote a (very) short piece to capture that intention:


Closer to the end
Than the beginning 

I’ve wasted time
Being absent

December 2019
© Steve West

I also started this blog (albeit five days into the year). One of our boys describes it as autobiographical. Another noted, after some time, that at last he recognized one of the post-70s songs I added. One more liked a personal (yet unattributed as is my practice with the blog) recollection about the weaving of our lives in one song. I enjoy how the blog evokes memories of happy and sad times associated with the music that has accompanied me through my life up to now, and appreciate the personal feedback I’ve received.

This is my 99th post, and 100th song (on February 10, I featured Arcade Fire, and since the official video for “Everything Now” also included the prelude track, “Everything_Now (continued),” there are 100 tracks on my Apple Music library’s playlist, My Song of the Day).

The day isn’t like I expected in some ways, as last night was to be a big party, an event I was looking forward to for many months. Disappointment (and probably a day of self-pity) at the need to cancel it when Sweety was about to send invites a month ago, was overshadowed by much more severe effects the pandemic has had and will continue to have for many people. So, I choose to be thankful that I’m here, healthy and hopeful.

And, I’m super grateful for the incredible response I received to my Facebook birthday fundraiser for Winnipeg Harvest. Initially, I’d set a goal of $600. It currently sits at $1,450 in online donations, plus one $100 contribution by cheque, and $100 to another city’s food bank. Wow!

“They say it’s your birthday
Well, it’s my birthday too, yeah
They say it’s your birthday
We’re gonna have a good time
I’m glad it’s your birthday

(from “Birthday,” by John Lennon, Paul McCartney)

Now you know a little about why this is my song of the day for today. Thanks for joining me here, and please enjoy. Have a party! In your own home! With the people who live there!

Here’s a live performance of the song in 2018 from Paul McCartney’s YouTube channel (you might remember me mentioning Sweety and me seeing Paul McCartney play Winnipeg; if not, please check this post)…

Plus, a bloomin’ fantastic 2011 drum cover by Emily (age 8 at the time):

And, finally, the (2009 remastered) studio version:

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