Mostly Cloudy


On his 23rd birthday, life is good

By Bryan Richardson

I bet you didn’t know that you’re reading this wonderful edition of the Manhattan Mercury on the anniversary of one of the greatest days in American history.

I’m sure you automatically thought about May 27, 1994, the day when Rush Limbaugh married his third wife, “The Flintstones” opened in theaters and the Arsenio Hall Show had its final broadcast.

That was a monumental day, but I’m referring to May 27, 1989, the day of my birth. Yep, I’m now the big 23.

I know you’re thinking to yourself, “I can’t believe I forgot Bryan’s birthday was today.” Don’t freak out. You can save your last-minute purchases because I’m not interested in material things.

All I need to be showered with praise. If you see me out and about, just thank me for all the awesome work I do as co-senior writer. That’s not a real title, but it makes me feel important.

Here’s a little insider secret: I actually wrote this on Friday, the deadline for our columns. Still, I imagine that by the time it is Sunday, I will feel so much wiser than I did Friday. I can feel my wisdom senses tingling as I type this.

Another year on Earth is like an award of sorts. A milestone has been reached, and you’ll get a party in your honor if you’re lucky.

So with that being said, I would like to give my acceptance speech for a successful 23 years of living.

First, I would like to thank God. Without Him, none of this would be possible. I just hope He doesn’t make me look like a fool for assuming I’ll make it to Sunday.

I would like to thank my family down in Texas for continuing to show me love and support. I’ll try to call more this year. I know I’m terrible at that. See, I’m feeling wiser already.

Special shout-out to my mom, aka my birthday buddy. May 29 is also one of the greatest days in American history. Maybe I’ll make it home for another tandem celebration next year.

I would like to thank my girlfriend for coming to Manhattan for this lovely occasion. You’re still around somehow. It’s probably all the money I’m making as a reporter.

I don’t want my friends to think I forgot about them. Thank you for keeping in contact with me. I appreciate hearing about how terrible your lives have become. It’s nice to know I’m so much more successful than most of you.

On that note, I would like to thank the Seatons for owning the newspaper that allows me to have the previously mentioned bragging rights. Thank you to Bill and to Javier – now in Iowa – for working editing magic to make my articles more presentable.

At this time, I will allow my fellow reporters to thank me for all the guidance I’ve provided them this past year. (Pause for co-worker gratitude) Thanks for those kind words. My only wish is that I could remember your names. It’s a little embarrassing considering how long we’ve worked together.

To the girl who said that I’m faster than the fastest white guy because I’m black, thank you for the confidence boost.

Finally, I want to thank myself. It’s been a longer journey than usual this year considering it was a leap year.

I wrote some good stories, I wrote some not so good stories. I’m positive not everyone has been pleased with all my articles, but that comes with the territory when you’re an award-winning journalist. I won my third award this year. Third place, baby!

I could’ve let the outside forces deter me on my path to greatness, but I stood tall and said to me, “You’re the best around. Nothing’s ever going to keep you down.”

The march to age 24 begins. I shall seize the year with vigor. To close, I’d like to share a popular saying and my personal motto. You only live once (YOLO).

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