Year to year, I have to admit, I’ve had some pretty good birthdays.
Part of this might be due to summer weather or no school or one of a dozen other reasons.
Last year kind of sucked. Things were pretty busy and I didn’t think about it until it was too late to plan anything. Rather than do nothing at home by myself on my birthday, I just figured I’d come into work. It didn’t occur to me how many people on the team would be on vacation or that most of the rest would forget, but work I did that day with little to no mention of a birthday. I ended up needing to stay late to work on something to top it all off.
Not this year. This year I promised myself something better. In talks with Davidson, he had mentioned a friend of his doing a variation of a pub crawl, but something slightly more geeky. Geek happens to be my specialty. About a month ahead of time, I sent an email out to all of my very geeky friends. I outlined a two day event of epic proportions to herald this grand celebration of my birth.
On Saturday, August 16th, we would go to Randolph and catch a movie and from there move along the Red Line hitting up the New England Comics in Quincy and Harvard Sq., Newbury Comics in its multiple locations and top it off with Comikazi in Davis Square. Afterwards, we would grab some dinner and retire for the night.
On Sunday the 17th (my actual birthday), we would get an early morning toy run to Toy Vault in before heading back to the house, where we would then play Mario Kart Wii, Smash Bros. Brawl and Rock Band until all hours of the night while grilling up some food.
Things didn’t go quite according to plan.
Early Saturday morning Thanh instant messaged me, that we should head to toy vault that morning and skip the movie since it was just he and Dan that had responded for Saturday’s activities and Dan requested nothing before noon. All things considered, this looked like a fair change of plans to me while keeping in mind the theme of the weekend. So, I drove down to Randolph and met Thanh at his house where his neighbor’s lawnmower was engulfed in smoke. I could already tell that it was going to be an awesome day. We then headed down toward Attleboro. Thanh drove. We saw some interesting license plates along the way. Toy Vault had to have doubled their Transformers selection on display, yet I didn’t find myself really needing much from what was there, which was a terrifying realization. I was also on the hunt for some M.A.S.K. stuff, but all they had were a few drivers with masks and no vehicles. On the upside, they had most of the last couple of waves of Masters Of The Universe Mini-Statues which had since been discontinued. Thanh got me one of those and this. I ended up buying two of the other mini-statues before we left and proceeded to hit the rest of the stores in the area that carry toys or comics; Kay-Bee, Wal-Mart, Target, Toys R Us, and Newbury Comics. It was a long haul with lots of finds. Outside the Newbury Comics, we saw an amusing truck grill. I think it was in Target, we were lucky enough to see the demo XBox 360 sporting the Red Ring of Death.
When we got back to Randolph, I picked up my car and parted ways with Thanh. I went to Bob’s to pick up Brendan and picked up a sweet tire pressure guage for two bucks at Ocean State Job Lot, next door, while I was waiting. We headed to Quincy to meet Dan. We stopped at the Wal-Mart where Dan was waiting and moved along on our way. We hit the New England Comics in Quincy only to find it had closed 20 minutes earlier. After that we headed back to Brighton to drop off all my loot and continue on to Comikazi. Part of that plan involved going back to the Brighton House specifically to get directions. I only knew how to get there by subway. Unfortunately, Toby had decided, earlier in the day, to take down the network and couldn’t get it back up, so he just left it down and left for the rest of the day. We spent the next two hours searching for Davis Square. Along the way, we found some hole-in-the-wall comic shop, which turned out to be a pretty good find. Dan and I both picked up business cards. It stated, “A comic shop for NPR listeners”. I didn’t really know what that was supposed to mean, but they had a good selection.
To make a long drive with lots of monotonous turns and traffic lights short, we found Comikazi after they had closed, but now we would know for next time. We headed back and got dinner at Longhorn’s just in time for Michael Phelps to win his 8th gold medal on the televisions in the bar. After dinner, we headed back to the Brighton House and Dan dropped me off. I was off to bed. I was exhausted and had a long day ahead of me.
All in all, it was a pretty fruitful day as you can tell by the image at the beginning of this post. More photos from the Birthday weekend may be found here.