Written in Kerala, India
Posted from Delhi, India
Geoff, Julie, Katy, Matt and I sit in a bar and order a drink called "Scooby Snacks." It's bright green and has milk in it, and I think it's delicious but it makes Julie kind of dry heave. We're all exhausted, it being 6am on the east coast, but we're happy to be together and we're yammering on about I don't even know what. Katy is wearing these really cute red shoes and her hair is very very long. Geoff's phone rings, "it's Jason!" and we learn that the birthday boy, the reason we were all in Vegas and drinking at 6am east coast time, is at the airport, is at that very moment being told to hang up his phone so he can go through security and get on a plane.
It is one year later. Katy's hair is short again, instead of being together we're scattered to the four corners of the earth, Adam has a new dog, J and Cris have a new baby. But today is still Jason's birthday! Some good things have a way of coming back, year after year. And thank god for that, because Jason is a person to celebrate.
Many of you out there reading this blog know Jason. Rather, you think you know him. But to know the real J is to know that there are, believe it or not, a few people in the world that Jason actively dislikes. And to know the real J is to have many an incriminating photograph of him on your hard drive, just waiting for the day when you need to blackmail him. Except, of course, to know the real J is to also know that you'll never need to blackmail him, because he is the kind of friend who eats all of your food and actually wants to know how you made it, the kind of friend who asks you questions about your law degree when no one else even pretends to be curious, the kind of friend who picks you up at the airport when you could have taken the T, the kind of friend who comes to school with you for a day and gets along so well with everyone he meets that you wish you could have gone to grad school with him and not just college.
Jason was one of the first people I actually trusted at Carnegie Mellon, all those long years ago when I was still trying to decide whether I loved or hated the place. Jason is one of the reasons that I stayed. And I'm so glad that I did, not only because of all of the things that might not have happened if I'd left CMU, but also because of the fact that over the course of all of these long years, J and I have grown up, just a little bit more, together.
So J, on your birthday, I'm sorry that we're all scattered to the four corners, but I can honestly tell you that I can't wait to see what your 40th brings, even if it's still another 9 years away.
<<The authors are sad to report that they didn't get this post up on or before Jason's actual birthday. But they are happy to be the first to share that in his honor, they found a Pizza Hut right in the middle of Cochin (where you can get pizza topped with such items as chicken tikka or paneer). We know that Jason is smiling somewhere, knowing that on his birthday, even though there was nary a sausage in sight, we ate some greasy pizza.>>