Thursday, September 3, 2009

Birthday Jam

I have a friend, Laura, that I've known since 7th grade, and our birthdays are just five days apart, so soon after moving to Frederick 14 years ago we instituted the annual Larry and Laura Birthday Bash. Sometimes Pam and I would go to her house, sometimes she would come here, and sometimes we'd meet at a restaurant somewhere in the middle. (She used to live in Westminster; now she lives in Glenville, PA, about an hour from Frederick.)

Four years ago she married Paul, who is a really good guitar player, way out of my league, but it's something we share. So now the birthday bashes include guitar playing and singing.

I also have another friend, Tim Quigley, who lives in Hedgesville, WV, who is also a really good guitar player. We'll get together and play, but, once again, he's out of my league. Or I'm out of his. Whatever.

But he and Paul are in the same league, and I've always thought it would be cool to get them together, so this year I proposed that we expand the annual Larry and Laura Birthday Bash to include a couple of other friends. We'd meet in the middle--at my house--and I'd grill steaks, then we'd go out on the deck and jam.

Laura and Paul were agreeable, and so were Tim and his wife Karen.

Then things grew. Pam suggested another couple, Shannon and Jill, come over. Well, they don't play the guitar, but we love their company, so that's cool. Then Angela said that she and Matt were coming home for the weekend and would be there Saturday night. And since they were coming, I told Austin that he and his girlfriend, Ariella, were invited.

First I ran all this by Laura, since it's her birthday too, but she's cool.

So instead of six steaks, I got twelve. Had to get another grill so we wouldn't have to eat in shifts.

We had a great time, just like I envisioned it. We ate, we laughed, and we played and sang. All my friends who have heard me refer to each other finally met and now know who I'm talking about.

Angela made the cake:

Here's a pic of the pickers. Tim's the one with the shiny head, and Paul is facing us. Laura is next to Paul, partially obscured by the umbrella pole.

Big-time fun. A good way to celebrate a birthday, a good way to celebrate friends.


  1. This might be the best pic of me in a long while.

  2. Don't worry, Laura. It's the best pic of me for sure!