How did you celebrate your 30th birthday?

How did you celebrate your 30th birthday?


I don’t recall doing anything in particular on my 30th birthday. We may have gone out for dinner or something but I don’t remember doing it. I checked my yearly calendars to see if something out of the ordinary happened around September 12, 1978. Nothing, so it probably didn’t have much of an impact on me.

I do recall two small things, however. According to Jack Weinberg, an activist in the 1960’s, don’t trust anyone over 30. I was a little worried that my younger friends would think just that and somehow I had crossed over to the dark side. Starwars had just come out the year before.
The other thing was the women I worked with had decorated up the print shop with birthday signs. I was less than thrilled with this and may have been a little disagreeable. These 40 years later I can see how nice they were and I feel a little sheepish about how self-centered I was. They have all died now and I don’t have any way I can let them know how nice it was for them to do that for me.

Print shop employees: Jan Burgess, Merry Frame, Mary Panek and RJ Thorpe


When you turn 30, it is a true milestone. You must say goodbye to youth and admit to yourself that you are indeed an adult and should resign yourself to it. When I turned 30, I was in my third year of teaching at Prairie View Elementary. I worked with a close knit group of young teachers who were great fun. Our building was an open-space school without real walls between each room. We watched each other teach and helped each other out. We socialized outside of school time and became good friends. I still see a few of these friends from back then when we get together for lunch from time to time in our retirement.

Prairie View Staff

On the year I turned 30 , my friends all chipped in to rent a limo so that we could all celebrate together. At the end of the school day, they called me to the office on the intercom. When I got there, I was met by the limo driver who was dressed in a brown tuxedo. He was wearing a white shirt with brown ruffles. Behind him, I could see a brown limousine parked outside at the curb. My first horrifying thought was that he was some kind of stripper but of course, not even my wild friends would have arranged something like that!

After much laughing and ribbing we all piled into the limo and took off. My friends had brought along Champagne and other drinks to enjoy along the way. The driver wanted to know where he should go and apparently no one had really thought that through, so after some discussion it was determined that we should drive downtown so we could surprise Butch at City Hall. At the time, he was working in the Graphic Services Department whose office was located there. We had a great time riding there and waving and honking at people that we passed along the way.

When we got there, I’m not sure how we let Butch know we were there. That was a time before cell phones so someone had to go down to his floor or something. Anyway, I think he was a bit embarrassed to come out and get his picture taken with us. We were parked in a no parking zone and at one point the mayor came out with someone and gave us some skeptical looks. We determined that it was time to move on. At that point the driver realized that the limo had a flat tire and he didn’t have what he needed to change it. He had to call someone in his company to come and get everything sorted out! It is all a bit fuzzy about how it ended up but he must have eventually driven us back to Prairie View to get our cars. It was a memorable way to celebrate!

This post is part of the StoryWorth project that I am participating in.
At the ButchieBoy main page click the Storyworth catagory to see all the entries in the series.

This entry was posted in Autobiography, Daily life, StoryWorth. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to How did you celebrate your 30th birthday?

  1. Daniel Chen says:

    Karen – It’s fun to read your wild birthday celebration venture. I cannot imagine the flat tired, stretched limo look like, ha-ha!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *