Friday, March 06, 2009

HAPPY NINTH BIRTHDAY, BABY GIRL!



My most lovely and silly and inspired and creative and intelligent oldest daughter turns nine today, and I just wanted to wish her the happiest of birthdays and give anyone who wants to join with me the forum in which to do so. Each new birthday of hers is a mixed blessing for me—I love seeing her grow up and experience the world anew each day, but I also want her to stay innocent, to remain the little child who I could once hold in the palm of my right hand, her butt perfectly cradled in the crook of my elbow. And I look to the future with the same mixture of anticipation and dread, having no idea what the world will look like when she’s finally ready to head out into it on her own. But before that time arrives, I have told myself and anyone who will listen that I will be the crankiest of bastards when it comes to being the father of a beautiful teenaged girl for the first time. All you young toughs that come poking around my front porch had better not underestimate my willingness to run you through the psychological wringer, and God help the first one of you who somehow does her wrong—there’s a baseball bat at the ready to apply a Louisville Slugger tattoo to your backside. (Peet Gelderblom and I once vowed an arranged marriage between my daughter and his fine, upstanding, darned-good-looking young son, and I really think it would be much easier on all involved if we were to start the paperwork in earnest on that arrangement.)

I have always resisted publishing photos of my girls because I’m not yet entirely comfortable with the openness of the Internet when it comes to my family, which is why I also have never referred to my daughters by name on this site. Call me slightly paranoid, but in this day and age I think a little wariness and watchfulness has certainly shown itself to be justified and wise policy. But I wanted to share her with you on this day when she suddenly seems to be just a inch or two closer to becoming a young lady and not simply a little girl. The picture above was taken six years ago when she was three. She has changed markedly enough that I feel comfortable publishing it for everyone I know (and those I don’t) to see, yet the picture captures all the goofy charm of her personality that remains in her, amplified by six extra years of exposure to her parents’ senses of humor, to this day.

So raise a glass, have a cookie, see a movie, whatever you do to have an enjoyable night, and while you're doing so please think of her and wish her a happy birthday. She and I and her little sister are headed to Hollywood as soon as I post this for pizza and VIP seats to see Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience at the El Capitan, so we’re guaranteed a good time ushering in a wild weekend of celebration. (Right?) And if you’re near your computer at 5:00 p.m. this afternoon (a mere 25 minutes away at this writing), tune in to Dicey Reilly’s Shake and Pop for a special song block dedicated to my daughter-- I can’t wait to hear what tunes he’ll have in store.

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UPDATE 5:22 p.m.: Dicey's selections? Sponge's punk cover of "Go, Speed Racer, Go!" followed by the Randells' "Martian Hop" and "Rock and Roll High School" by the Ramones. Thanks, Dicey! That was awesome! And Emma says she understands about not spinning some Zac and Vanessa-- we don't want you to get fired, you know.

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10 comments:

Anonymous said...

One of the many pleasures of visiting this site is witnessing the joy you receive in the company of your daughters. Isn't that what life is really about? May your eldest have a wonderful birthday!

Lenny Moore

Peet Gelderblom said...

Happy birthday down there! And Dennis: the contracts (in twofold) are crossing the Atlantic as I type this. Sign the line which is dotted, will you?

Bob Turnbull said...

Belated wishes to your daughter. She's lovely...

My son is turning 9 later this year and you hit it exactly right - I can't wait to see what he's going to do as he gets older and becomes a teenager and a young adult, but I already miss the hell out of his earlier stages. Not a bad problem to have though...

Jonathan Lapper said...

I have always resisted publishing photos of my girls because I’m not yet entirely comfortable with the openness of the Internet when it comes to my family, which is why I also have never referred to my daughters by name on this site.

Same here. Hell, I don't even provide my name and picture.

Happy Birthday Dennis' daughter! Only one year until DOUBLE DIGITS!!! Woo hoo!!!

Scott said...

Please excuse the insufferable nitpicking, but the Randells song is titled "Martian Hop."

Larry Aydlette said...

That was sweet, Dennis! I have the same thought every day: Growing up way too fast. As always, my best to you and yours on this special weekend.

Bill R. said...

Happy birthday, ****!! Is it true you're an admirer of Anthony Mann??

Dennis Cozzalio said...

Lenny, Bob, Larry: Amen. Thanks for your sincere good wishes. Two days later, after much love and a really keen bowling birthday party with all her buddies, I can say with surety that she knows how much she is loved.

Peet: My feather quill is quivering with anticipation!

Jonathan: Oh, those double digits are a fearsome thing!

Bill: She's a huge fan of Anthony Mann. When she saw Bend of the River/Winchester '73 on the New Beverly schedule for May, she circled the calendar herself!

Scott: Consider the nit picked and fixed. Thanks!

Campaspe said...

Warmest belated birthday wishes to your beautiful girl!

blaaagh said...

Oh my gosh, nine years old?! And she could not be more charming, smart, funny, surprising, etc., not to mention a chip off the old block, which is inarguably a good thing! (And her mom's lovely qualities and looks, of course, are also great benefits). Happy (late) birthday to She Who Shall Not be Named! Give her a hug for me.