It’s July, so Quarantine Birthdays are no longer novel, but it’s our little household’s first one. It snuck up on me, and I was not well prepared.
“What do you want for your Quarantine Birthday?” I asked Sal a few days ago while we were driving to the beach.
“You know, I was going to buy these Crocs for work, but then I thought, it’s my birthday, I should let someone else buy them.”
“So you want Crocs?”
“Yeah, that would be nice.”
“What kind of blue do you want? Like, a blue blue, a bright blue?”
I should pause here and mention that Sal only wears blue. It’s been this way for more years than I can recall. One day, he just announced it: “I’m only wearing blue now.” And that was that.
“Whatever is fine. A regular blue would be good.”
I’m not fooled by this. I’ve lived with an artist long enough to know that there are right and wrong blues, and “regular blue” is relatively meaningless. I search for “mens blue Crocs” and start scrolling through images.
“Like, this one…it’s a periwinkle…or cornflower kind of blue…something like that?”
“Is it purple?”
“Um…kind of. There are two here. One is more green-y and one’s more purple-y.”
“Like a pink tone?”
“No, like one is teal-ish and the other one is a periwinkle…”
There are a shockingly small selection of “mens blue Crocs” in size 10 on the internet right now. I am not winning here.
“How about rainbow Crocs?”
I should pause here and mention that Sal recently modified his Blue Only rule out of professional necessity. He was teaching for a community center that did not allow blue due to gang related issues; so now he wears rainbows occasionally.
“Sure, that would be fun,” he says.
“Ooo, this one is tie dye. Looks like paint got splashed on it! And it will arrive on your birthday.”
Today is Sal’s birthday, but the Rainbow Crocs have not arrived. I wake up early, make a pot of coffee, warm up some pancakes, and prep the preschooler.
“When your daddy comes downstairs, say ‘happy birthday’!”
Sal comes down with the baby and the kid gives him a hug and says: “Happy birthday, Daddy! Remember that when you have birthday cake you don’t eat all of it, we all get some.”
Happy Quarantine Birthday, Sal!
What am I grateful for today?
Sal is very easy going. I was going to make him tacos for dinner, but had to work a bit late. He convinces me that all he really wants is chicken nuggets. “Throw some sauce on them, with a tortilla and cheese,” he says. “That would be really good!”