Big Birthday for a “Big Fan”

Wednesday, 18 June 2008  |  Bullish Insights

It had been two weeks since Michelle contacted me requesting for—of all things—my autograph.  Don’t laugh.  This is serious stuff.  It was to be a surprise birthday gift for her boss, Gen, who she said was a big fan of this blog.  Certainly, I was flattered.  But, more than that, I was in serious doubt that this boss of hers would appreciate such a present.  What would you do with a TBR autograph?  (I had never signed anything under this name and my hubby jokingly said “Tell Michelle to just sign for you.  No one will be able to tell it’s fake since there isn’t an original signature!”

After those two weeks of arranging our meeting, Michelle and I finally met during our Happy Feet Girls’ Night Out dinner last week.  Meek and shy, Michelle approached Marga and I and handed out a birthday card for me to sign for her dearest boss.  I happily obliged—yes, complete with “The Bull Runner” underneath my real name.  Then, she left us to say she’d be right back with her boss in tow for some photos.  Okay!

What happened next was a scene straight out of the movies.  It’s stuff that only celebrities and rock stars experience—and, quite honestly, something that I don’t dream of nor hope for.

Marga and I chatted away while enjoying our buffalo wings and mozzarella sticks when a girl popped up in front of us, her hands clasped in front of her mouth in a futile attempt to muffle her tiny screams of “Oh my god! Oh my god! Oh my god!” in between gasps for air.  Marga and I stared at each other in disbelief.  Looked back at the girl.  Glanced at each other again.  This must be Gen.  

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– with birthday girl, Gen –

Gen continued to shriek for several more minutes before I invited her and Michelle to sit down with us. “Breathe, Gen, breathe.  When you get to know us, you’ll realize we’re nothing to scream over.” I told her.

So, we talked with Gen and Michelle for more than an hour.  And, we learned a lot about Gen—her passion for running, her first race, her dedication to reading my posts (and the fact that she’s read through all the archives), her upcoming birthday, and more.  She openly called me her “Inspirunner,” a clever term she coined for the person who inspires her to plod on—how creative is that?!

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– with Gen, Marga, and Michelle –

It felt a little bit awkward to chat with someone who gushed every so often because she was such a big “fan.”  As Gen sat in disbelief over who she was talking to, I was probably as overwhelmed as she was over the fact that someone could ever react to my presence that way.  It was crazy, unbelievable, embarrassing, and awesome all at the same time.

To Gen, happy birthday again!  Thank you for allowing me to make a little difference in your life.  See you at the races.  And, oh, take care of your shins!

* Photos from Gen