Happy Birthday, Dad

This is the story of my birth. (Based on true events)

On an unusually windy day, January 26th, 1984, a 25-year old Korean immigrant named Larry was frustrated with his wife.

She forgot to wish him a happy birthday. Ok, so she was 9 months pregnant but that was really no excuse. He was a grumpy, grumpy bear.

Then came the call. This has got to be her he thought…better late than never.

Larry, it’s time.

What an odd way to wish someone a happy birthday, he thought. Why yes, it is time.

No you dolt. I’m going into labor.

In light of this new revelation, he could understand why she had forgotten to say happy birthday. But still, it would have been nice for her to say it.

Mind you, Larry was 25 and this was his first child. So naturally, panic set in. He packed the car and gunned it down the driveway. Change of clothes? Check. Video camera? Check. Wife?

He forgot his wife.

He sped back to the house. Luckily she was checking over the apartment and hadn’t noticed.

She told him to slow down, but this was the moment he’d always dreamed about. Not the first child, no… He could go as fast as he wanted and if he happened to get pulled over, the worst that would happen was a police escort. It was the world’s greatest “Get out of Speeding ticket” card and he wasn’t about to waste it.

Speeding laws are there for a reason and on January 26th 1984, Larry found out why.

He screeched on the brakes too late, too late to avoid the pick-up truck in front of him.

BAM! Rear-ended. No injuries thank God, but the pick-up truck didn’t look so good.

A scruffy Caucasian man bolted out of the car. Even from my mom’s womb, I could hear some unholy words.

My dad’s English is no bueno, but it conveniently gets worse should the need arise.

“Sorry! Baby…thank you!”

Then he emptied out his wallet and threw it at the man as compensation for damages.

All told, he gave him $33.24.

They arrived at the delivery room around noon. Contractions were getting shorter and shorter.

But little Chris refused to come out. The doctors have a medical term for this called, “His head is too big.”

It was nearly 11PM before the doctors asked my poor mother for the fourth time if she wanted a C-section.

No, she replied. If I let him win this one, he’ll think he can win ’em all. And I’ve gotta let him know from day one…I’M THE BOSS. (A lesson he learned only too well.)

She looked at the clock. If she could somehow pump out this baby within the next hour, that meant she’d only have to worry about one birthday.

One cake. One family dinner. One birthday song. How efficient, she thought.

And at that, she gave a mighty push. Chris’s bowling ball head emerged but still refused to pop out. That’s when the doctors intervened, using a giant clamp to pull him out head first.

Chris, with his forever misshapen head, was not amused.

Larry, who had done nothing, sat in his chair and moped.

HRMPH. The day was almost over and not a single person remembered his birthday. Meanwhile, all the nurses and doctors, and even his loving wife was showering this ugly baby with adoration and attention. How undeserving… HRMPH HRMPH HRMPH.



“Happy Birthday.” 

And she handed him his son.



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2 responses to “Happy Birthday, Dad

  1. Jennifer Noh

    Aw that is the best birth story I’ve heard! Ahaha, I can’t believe your dad left your mom hahahahahhaha. oh man. And the picture to top it off! Beautiful!
    I’m sure you’ll make a great daddy someday too Christoph! Happy Birthday!

  2. clov3

    Happy Birthday Dear Friend… May you be fed aplenty this week by cheery new East-Coast friends. 😀 Hope you got some good news from HK too…

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