Happy Birthday Birminghaaaaammm!

Back in August of 2003, I got a job as an unpaid production assistant on an independent feature that was so bad, it will never see the light of day. A few weeks into pre-production, I met Birmingham, who was hired to be the film’s art director. During the month of production, he spent most of his time trying to get in the pants of the flighty 18-year-old production assistant until she left, and he started spending more time with me, even though I was repulsed by his egregious attempts on the barely legal girl.

But eventually he broke me down with free massages on the back of the art truck, and constant encouragement to just take a break and eat a twinkie. The day after the production wrapped, we went on a date at a restaurant and I learned he didn’t actually live in New York City, he was just staying with a friend for the sake of the production. The Hudson Valley was the place he called home. Despite that, and despite the fact that he put his arm around me on the walk back from the restaurant (which I thought was rather forward), we kept going on dates. Eventually, we were dating.

FUN FACT: Birmingham is not really his name. A year into our relationship, he bought an army jacket at a thrift store with the name “Birmingham” sewn into it. When you’re mad at him, you can shake your fist and yell “BIRMINGHAAAAAMMM” as if you are his drill sergeant.

By sheer coincidence, I got a great job opportunity in the Hudson Valley in 2005, and that’s when I moved to the farm. I didn’t move up here for him, but it helped that he was here, and I already knew my way around. Then, he got a job in the middle-of-nowhere town, and moved and hour away. That distance issue, among other things, is the reason that we broke up last December. But we missed talking, and we got back in touch a few months ago. We’re not officially together, but we do go out on occasional friend-dates, including last night, when we celebrated his 33rd birthday, which is today.

I told him we could go wherever he wanted, and he chose Thai Spice, MY favorite new restaurant. That’s the kind of guy he is. Thoughtful. Indecisive. Over dinner, I told him I wanted to write a post today about him for his birthday, partially to honor him and partially because I have nothing else to write about. He said, “cool,” so here it is. He also gave me permission to post pictures because he forgot that I have shots of him sleeping, one wearing a bathrobe in the Waldorf Astoria, one wearing a cape and standing like Superman, one standing around with a cantaloupe on his head, some of extreme close-ups of his nose hairs, and this one, where he stuck a mustard packet on his forehead:

I mean, other than the fact that he likes to clean surfaces until he sees his face shining in them, you can see why I like this guy, right? Some other things about Birmingham:

He’s a good art-guy. He went to college for art, but nowadays you might just find him working really hard with crayons (preferred medium) on trying to solve the maze! Also, he likes to make art while making art, hence the sculpture in the foreground.

Both his parents came here from Ireland in the 60’s. Hence, he knows his way around a beer, especially a really gigantic one. Sadly, he cannot perform an Irish accent on queue, like my next boyfriend will be able to do. (Or Scottish, I’m not that picky.)  EDITED TO ADD: He’s actually not that big of a drinker, which is nice.  I just think that photo is funny.

Dude looks good in a suit. This was from our summer of a million weddings.

But if I were asked to sum up our entire relationship in one photo, that’s easy, it’s this:

I’ll let you form your own opinions from this point forward, but I want to you know that I didn’t know he was doing that until after I saw the photo on the camera. Even with this obvious harassment, I like the dude, and I’m sad that it’s not working out happily ever after. But I do hope that we stay in touch, and I hope that If I have kids, he gets to know time. And for everything he’s done to annoy me in my life, my sincerest hope is that he has kids of his own. And that those kids are extremely attractive teenage girls.


24 responses to this post.

  1. Sounds like a grade-A guy! I was pretty hopeful that his name was, in fact, Birmingham, but I’ll settle for it as a cool nickname.

  2. Oh, Birmingham. We all had such high hopes for you, especially after that last picture. And by “we all” I mean me, and by high hopes, I mean that you would just propose already. Still, fun friends are hard to come by, and since it’s your birthday and all I will just say HAPPY 33RD.

  3. Posted by Jessica on June 19, 2008 at 9:45 am

    You both have to be pretty amazing, for you to have written this. That’s all I’m saying.

    And, happy day to the birthday boy!

  4. That was the sweetest happy-birthday-to-the-no-longer-boyfriend post I have ever read.

    And Birmingham…I won’t make the comment about why you won’t f-ing propose already, it’s been done and done again. But I will say this: A girl who makes a post like this about her ex, complete with that last silly picture…She’s one in a million. Just so you know. Happy birthday.

  5. Posted by FDP on June 19, 2008 at 10:16 am

    That last pic and the commentary just cracked me up– well done & happy B to B!

  6. Posted by lizgwiz on June 19, 2008 at 10:25 am

    That last picture is priceless. Happy birthday, Birmingham!

    You really, really make me wish I had bothered to take pictures while New Guy was around. (I never remember to have a camera handy.) It actually occurred to me shortly before he left that I had NO pictures of him, so I made him let me snap a couple–on his way out the door for the last time. Literally.

    The next boyfriend (if there is such a thing) is going to get his picture taken a LOT. A) so I’ll have some to remember him by, or B) so I’ll have some to shred if he treats me wrong. 😉

  7. H would totally do the same thing in a picture as Birmingham is doing in the last picture. I cannot tell you how many times I thought we were taking a normal picture only to be suprised by the results. And then I yell HHHHHHHHHHH! but it doesn’t have the same ring to it as BirmingHAAAAAAAAAM!

  8. Those pictures are fun, especially the last one. Love it and your expressions. It’s cool that you two stayed friends.

    Happy birthday Birmingham!

  9. looks like birmingham’s a good sport; it’s great that you guys can still hang out together. happy birthday!

  10. Posted by SisterAlyson on June 19, 2008 at 10:57 am

    I just sent him this text message: “Happy B-Day! 10 cents.”

    I hope he gets it.

    I think that he will both receive it and understand it.

  11. jitterbug!!!

    that was from your comment on my blog : )

    as for birmingham i think it is sweet you guys still hangout so much, and who knows if you guys will ever get back together? hmm hmm? yes? no?

    i think you guys match, i like it.

  12. Happy Birthday!

    I think it is cool that you can still be friends. Because everyone needs a friend to stare at their ta-tas from time to time.

    I know I get tired of staring at my own. Which is then why I wear low cut tops to work. It’s a good ego boost.

  13. So he’s a boob man, then?

    Awww, I’m glad you guys are still friends. Happy birthday, BirmingHAAAAAM!

  14. Heh. Happy birthday, Mustardhead! (Love that you actually made that the file name.)

    I remain baffled that you can remain friends with an ex without your heart breaking into a million little pieces every time you hang out, but maybe that’s just me (and regardless, it’s a topic too big to get into in a blog comment). Whatever is going on with you guys, I’m glad it is (apparently) working for you.

    And again, the important part: Happy Birthday, Birmingham.

  15. I am also impressed by anyone who can remain friends with an ex. You guys must be so mature.

    Happy Birthday, Birmingham!

  16. I second Laurel. I’m very impressed 🙂

  17. I wish I knew him so I could do the whole shaking fist thing.

  18. What a great guy and great photos! Happy Birthday!

  19. Happy Birthday Birmingham!

    My high school ex is one of my oldest and dearest friends now. But we had like 4 years of not talking and throwing darts at each other’s pictures before we got to that point.

    You and B are seriously cool.

  20. Happy birthday to him! Those pics are cracking me up!

  21. Posted by Elizabeth on June 20, 2008 at 6:21 am

    “Noelle will never be able to find anyone else who can remove a 50 year old shag carpet, empty a waterbed from a second story window or make great twice baked potatoes as well as you.”

    You’re the best…..HAPPY BIRTHDAY BIRMINGHAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

  22. Those photos are hilarious. Happy belated birthday, Birmingham!

  23. Payback is a bitch!!!
    personally i think you are way to good for him; but Happy Birthday Birmingham!

  24. He’s CUTE! I live 30 minutes from Birmingham AL. If you ever want your OWN Birmingham shirt, let me know cause I can hook you up!

    You know, we have a huge statue here called Vulcan. His hiny is hanging out, mooning the well to do community of Mountain Brook. You need a pic of that, another man of Birmingham, showing his ass.


    Loved the last photo.

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