Right … now … in the interests of complete and utter birthday cake-covered full disclosure, it is my birthday today.
And in the interests of making that full disclosure even more plump, I love birthdays.
I mean seriously love them in a would-celebrate-them-24/7-365-days-a-year kind of way way.
So at the risk of looking ridiculously narcissistic and self-absorbed – but surely this is the one day of the year that that is totally and completely justified – I have compiled a list of five fictional characters whose birthdays would be an absolute kick to celebrate (drawn from a series of cool info graphics put together by the clever folk at flavorwire.com).
Happy birthday to …
NATE FISHER (Six Feet Under), born on 8 January 1965
I think it’s fair to say that Nate, who shares the same birth year as me, would not welcome a surprise birthday party with open arms.
Actually if the featured picture of him is any guide, and it is a good one, then it’s doubtful he would want you even remarking on the fact he was having a birthday. (I mean, look at him – a beautiful woman, likely Brenda Chenoweth, his on-again, off again girlfriend in Six Feet Under played by Australia’s own Rachel Griffiths, holding him close and he still manages to look miserable.)
Nate Fisher, played with admirable subtlety by Peter Krause who managed to turn him into somebody likeable and sympathetic despite his often moody, introspective disposition, and yes sometimes annoying self-absorption, was not a spontaneous fun-loving kind of guy.
And yet out of all the characters on what is without a doubt my favourite HBO show ever, and there are a sizeable number jockeying for the honour of that dubious accolade, Nate Fisher is undoubtedly my favourite.
So even though you would likely throw the champagne back in my face, and schmoosh the birthday cake through my hair in a fit of pique, I salute you Nate Fisher and wish you a Happy, ahem, 47th Birthday.
Wow that old? OK you may now officially look miserable.
COOKIE MONSTER (Sesame Street), born 2 November
While the menu might be a tad limited – BYO savoury treats I am thinking – shopping for it would be a snap.
Cookies, and lots of them.
(And an industrial sized vacuum cleaner to hoover it all up later since let’s face it, he has a major issue with crumb spillage.)
But regardless of the limited food options, the party would be raucous, fun and loud since Cookie Monster, is no shrinking violet and as gregarious a personality as you could ask for.
With his origins dating back as far as 1966 when Jim Henson sketched him out, along with two other monsters for a commercial, he has demonstrated that nothing fazes him, and he will have fun as long as his demands for cookies are met.
Of course if you run out of cookies, I would duck for cover as quickly as possible.
MACGYVER (MacGyver), born on 23 January 1951
Can you imagine a birthday party with the ’80s ultimate ironic action hero?
Forgot to go to the store to get ingredients for the cake? No problem, MacGyver would whip you one up with paprika and chicken wire using an old recipe his grandma left him.
No party venue? No problem. Jump out of the plane with him and he would fashion a full balloons-and-streamers-six-course-meal-with-champagne-in-a-homemade-circus-tent somewhere between yelling “Geronimo” and pulling the first rip cord.
While I am guessing his work for the fictional Phoenix Foundation, which saw flung into all manner of hotspots around the world (all of which managed to look eerily like southern California to one degree or another) to rescue lost souls, mete out justice to tinpot dictators and evil drug lords, and resolve lingering issues for friends seemingly incapable of doing themselves, wouldn’t leave him much time for partying, if he put his mind to it, it would be a doozy.
Talk of a MacGyver movie in the works should be reason to start calling the party coordinator I would think.
Best order the paprika now I’m thinking … or you know, an actual cake.
Nah, where’s the fun in that?
LORELAI GILMORE (Gilmore Girls), born on 26 April 1968
You know how at a party, no matter how hard you try to avoid them – feigning death, pretending to speak only Farsi, impersonating a zombie are among a handy list of options I have developed over the years – there’s always that one person who never stops talking and seems to hold you within their orbit like a rogue’s spaceship in the tractor beam of the Enterprise? (Yes I just geeked out on a profound level.)
Well I am confident Lorelai Gilmore (Lauren Graham) wouldn’t be one of them.
In fact, I would happily spend an entire party just chatting to her and her alone.
One of the things I loved most about The Gilmore Girls (2000-2007) was the witty pop-culture saturated wordplay between Lorelair and her delightfully precocious daughter, Rory (Alexis Bledel).
Much like the characters in any Aaron Sorkin drama where words beguile and entrance, Lorelai was a delight to listen to.
And frankly if she invited me to her birthday party, I would be there early, my head brimming with every witty pop culture reference I could find, ready to play verbal repartee for the night.
Now that would be a party where the “I’m a zombie” defense would not be needed.
SNOOPY (Peanuts), born 2 October
I have loved Snoopy ever since I first laid eyes on one of the paperback Peanuts collections that you could buy for 10c-20c in the local second hand bookstores in Grafton, NSW where I lived till age 10.
There were was something about his gleeful dismissal of anyone who stood in his way that engaged me from the word go.
He wasn’t arrogant or rude; just delightfully confident in his own ability to do whatever he laid his paws to – novel writing, Scout leader, Joe Cool hanging at the dorm, or fighting the Red Baron.
Whatever it was he could do it well, in stark contrast to poor Charlie Brown who could never seem to catch a break.
And I am fairly confident that he would be a lot of fun to celebrate a birthday with to.
As long as he didn’t hold the party on a “dark and stormy night” which frankly, given his predilection for starting all his stories that way, is all but inevitable.
* So which fictional characters would you like to party with? Why exactly?