Today is my Grandpa's birthday. He would have been 86. He was an actor, a baseball player (he was even drafted into the Brooklyn Dodgers before the war), a navy veteran, an Elk, and elected to local government. He was Greek and French, and in his youth had black hair and dark skin. He whistled all the time, and constantly sang songs under his breath as he puttered around the house. He tried teaching me to swing dance, but I was never very good. He collected rocks, and had his own rock cutter. When I was 16, he bought me a dog, the best dog in the whole world, who's sleeping next to my chair as I type this. He loved history and science. He died before the Angels finally won the World Series. He never knew that I would ultimately end up an artist. He didn't meet my husband, who reminds me so much of him.
When he was alive, we always celebrated our birthdays together, because his was on the 11th and mine is on the 13th.
I don't think I've enjoyed birthdays as much since he died.