Author Topic: For the person who has everything  (Read 3123 times)

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Pippen

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For the person who has everything
« on: September 20, 2012, 04:23:41 AM »
So it is my Dad's 80th on Saturday and has already said he doesn't want any fuss. As in none whatsoever. He has everything he wants so presents would be pointless and just a token gesture.  We are however going out for dinner that evening with 7 other people for a totally unrelated event.

Would it be out of line if we had a toast for Dad on his birthday or do you think he would be feeling like he had been ambushed? The people involved in this other event know him well but would not be expected to know it is his birthday. I don't want them to feel like it is his birthday thing when it is clearly not. It is just a coincidence.

MariaE

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2012, 04:29:09 AM »
You know your father best, of course, but I wouldn't do it. I'd wish him happy birthday quietly, but leave it at that.

Of course, if he's the type of person to say, "No fuss, please!" but think "Yes, please fuss!" then my answer would be different. My dad would mean it.
 
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cicero

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2012, 06:36:35 AM »
what maria said. WIth my father - he says one thing but really means something else (at 81 he hasn't mastered the "say what you mean and mean what you say").

I would still get your father something, and do something - but not at the dinner you mentioned. buy him a cake, take him out for dinner, take him out to a show, send him a card, etc.


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QueenofAllThings

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2012, 07:07:08 AM »
Well, skip the singing waiters - I HATE that! A simple raising of your glass and a "Happy Birthday, Dad" is enough, I should think - enough to let him know that you haven't forgotten him without making a fuss.

A nice birthday gift for the person who has 'everything' is a framed photograph - of graddchildren and/or children, a favorite pet or vista, etc.

violinp

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2012, 07:28:18 AM »
A simple toast at dinner would be lovely and thoughtful.
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Kiwichick

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2012, 07:37:42 AM »
It's pretty rude to ignore someone's stated desires and he has 'already said he doesn't want any fuss. As in none whatsoever.'

A toast at an unrelated event is a fuss even if it's a small one.  Take him at his word and leave it alone.

Amava

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #6 on: September 20, 2012, 09:51:33 AM »
It's pretty rude to ignore someone's stated desires and he has 'already said he doesn't want any fuss. As in none whatsoever.'

A toast at an unrelated event is a fuss even if it's a small one.  Take him at his word and leave it alone.

I agree. Respect his wishes.
He said "no".
I wish I could get people to do that for me, too. If I say "don't mention my birthday" or "I don't wish to acknowledge my birthday", I mean it! And I definitely don't want to be put on the spot about it in company!
Oh well. Maybe by the time *I* am 80, people will have learned that. :P

(Though strangely enough, I am considering doing something for my 40th... not sure yet though.)

lady_disdain

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #7 on: September 20, 2012, 09:57:31 AM »
If he has said no fuss whatsoever, doing a toast would be against that. The main question is - why do you want to do a toast?

My BF is like that. He would be happier if his birthday didn't exist. I, on the other hand, am a birthday person. I love baking a cake, cooking a special meal and pampering the birthday person. I want to do that for my BF. In the end, however, I have to acknowledge that I would be doing it more for myself than for him so I don't. It is hard. I feel kind of bad for not doing anything for him but he doesn't want it. If I did anything, it would be to make me feel good not him. So I take a deep breath, hold back and let life go on.

SuperMartianRobotGirl

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #8 on: September 20, 2012, 10:03:19 AM »
Yeah, I agree that if he said "no fuss whatsoever" that would include a fuss. I don't understand why you want to do one when he said not to do anything?

TootsNYC

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #9 on: September 20, 2012, 10:52:28 AM »
Asking him to spend time with you is not "a fuss," but toasting him in front of other people, especially on an occasion intended for something ELSE, *is* a fuss.

I think it's especially important not to do this on an event planned for something else and involving other people.

When you see him that day, give him an extra hug. And call him a little more often, or something.

Hmmmmm

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #10 on: September 20, 2012, 11:49:05 AM »
I think you need to confirm with the organizer of the event to make sure they don't mind sharing the attention.  But if close friends and family I can't imagine anyone not wanting to have a "In addition to celebraing X tonight we are so pleased to hav Abe with us on his 80th birthday.  Let's all drink a toast to this wonderful man and friend."

joraemi

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #11 on: September 21, 2012, 07:44:59 AM »
If I were one of the other attendees and you suddenly toasted your grandfather's birthday, it would make me feel uncomfortable - as if maybe I missed the memo that we were commemorating his birthday at this dinner.  If I were your grandad attending this unrelated event and you suddenly toasted my birthday when I asked you not to, I would feel awkward and put on the spot - again - not happy.

I vote no.  When he arrives I think you can offer a hug/kiss, birthday wishes, "Hey gramps, stop by my car after dinner so I can give you your card." and call it a day.




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camlan

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2012, 08:10:07 AM »
Twice I've had people not listen to me telling them that I didn't want to do anything for my birthday. There have been parties, and I've had to be gracious and go along with them, because it is hard to storm out of your own house at 8 pm and find anything to do for hours until everyone leaves.

So I vote don't do anything at this dinner. I was not happy, to put it mildly, with the people who forced the parties on me.

However, you could call your father and tell him that you would like to do something, just the two of you, to celebrate and commemorate this milestone birthday. Offer him a few suggestions--a birthday lunch at his favorite diner, a fancy birthday dinner, an afternoon fishing (or whatever his favorite hobby is), a day where you visit him and take care of all the little things around the house that he can't get to anymore, driving him to visit an old friend who can't get around much. He'll either pick one, or he'll tell you that he really doesn't want to do anything. And then you can rest easy either way, because you will be doing what he wants for his birthday. Whichever way it goes, a card should be okay, as well.

I discovered that my dad really liked to be taken out to breakfast for his birthday, at a coffee shop where a lot of his cronies hung out. He not only got time with his children, but he was able to show them off to all his friends. Not a big deal for us, but it meant something to Dad.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


Oh Joy

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #13 on: September 21, 2012, 09:26:55 AM »
I see birthdays - at least those where the honoree is declining attention - as best viewed first from the standpoint of the purpose of marking the occassion.  If the honoree wants no attention, why would someone force attention upon them unless it was for the benefit of the person doing the forcing or of other guests?

In this case, I suggest the OP ask her father once if he'd like her to offer a toast in his honor at the dinner, and act upon his response. 

I also suggest privately saying 'happy birthday,' and sharing a warm feeling or memory from years past, or thanks for a lesson learned from him long ago - especially if she didn't understand or appreciate the lesson at the time.

doodlemor

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Re: For the person who has everything
« Reply #14 on: September 21, 2012, 11:49:45 AM »
Don't tell anyone that it's his birthday.  If you do others are likely to make a fuss, and your dad will be embarrassed and upset.