Writing real-life birthday stories

Writing real-life birthday stories

My old school friends and I reach a milestone over the next 12 months. I want to create a story of the year so here’s the note they’ll each receive prior to their big day…

Hello. You look nice.
From September 2016 to September 2017, you and I know a lot of people hitting a certain age. Contrary to popular belief, I think that’s something to celebrate – I don’t recall my parents still knowing anybody from their school days at this age.*

So I wanted to mark this year somehow. It started with the idea of bulk buying the same birthday card for everyone, with the exact same ambivalent message stamped tritely within. Who knows, I still might do that if I can haggle an impressive enough discount.**

But what’s definitely going down is this. To create a record of our auspicious birthdays, I’ve bought two disposable cameras with flash***, one of which is enclosed. I’d love it if you could take 4 photos on your actual birthday. No more, no less. If that’s really not possible, then some nearby day would be good.

If you could then pop the camera back in the pre-paid**** envelope, also enclosed, A-SAP, as the cool kids in the office like to say, that would be grand. I’ll then keep the cameras circulating. Like a regular hero.

I thought about asking everyone I know who’s hitting a milestone this year to contribute, but this would be a pretty selfish endeavour on my part.***** So everyone who reads this and gets the camera is also someone you know.

When the last birthday’s done in September 2017, I’ll get the cameras developed******, share them online******* and hopefully you’ll help add some captions to the photos we’ve collected so we can write the story of our year.

This isn’t some Facebook-style social p*ssing competition, by the way. The aim isn’t to vote on who’s established the most materially-fulfilling life.******** So take photos of whatever, wherever. It doesn’t matter. But it would be nice if you’re in one picture, at least.

When you send the camera back, it would be lovely to hear from you but don’t feel obliged. Getting the goods back sharp-ish is my sole KPI now that I’m a logistics magnate. Confirming your email address would be helpful though. Cheers.

If you don’t get it, don’t want to do it or have some other debatably valid comment to make, please do get in touch with Customer Services. We aim to respond within one working year.


* Although this may be because I was only 7 and solely interested in The A-Team.
** This is how Clintons Cards went bust. Fact.
*** A deliberately showy touch of class, I thought.
**** Second class, I’m not Roman freaking Abramovich.
***** Actually no, I don’t think that would be par for the course, thank you very much.
****** I’ll probably just pick up one of those 99p Truprint envelopes from a motorway service station. They’re bound to still have those.
******* Whilst retaining full copyright as, naturally, I plan to milk this particular cash cow until my hands bleed pound notes.
******** Although I did stump up for disposable cameras with flash remember so, you know, draw your own conclusions.

RESEARCH QUESTION: How have you recorded/might you record an important year?

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