it’s friday the thirteenth and since 9% of americans think this is a cursed day, and typically most americans are wrong about things, being in the minority might actually make some sense.

yesterday was braden’s birthday.

guys don’t give guys birthday gifts. it’s a rule. we make bets and we throw stuff at one another. it has the same affect.

so this is me telling you america that braden is a year older.

braden is one of the most loyal friends a guy could have and every time we’re in the same room i’m reminded of that. he has always managed to stay true to his roots, walk his own line, and challenge those around him to do the same.

simplicity has always been his game, and principal has always been his story. it’s a rare thing these days to find someone young and principled, and to that i know he openly thanks his parents.

i thank them as well.

especially his father, who once called another man a waste of protoplasm. i digress.

my childhood friends and i have always been a very tight bunch, and despite distance and time we have always kept in tact a common thread of camaraderie that on most levels has a life of its own and on some level owes something to braden.

he has always been the home base of our network, and as the one person in our clan who has undoubtedly strayed the furthest from our home and our group, i owe a large part of my place in this city to his unwavering friendship.

braden is a truly unique animal; on the surface a very simple midwestern momma’s boy who would lay down his life for anyone in his inner circle without a second thought.

but he’s a complex guy, who’s apparently simple life is actually very intentioned and certainly something he’s worked hard to earn. his opinions, like his religion, are his own in almost every way. his trust, deep and infinite, afforded to a very small group of people.

his ability to stand his proverbial ground (he is still a sox fan, for god’s sake)comes with a shade of stubbornness.
his awareness of personal strengths and weaknesses more than reconcile any difficulties his strong personality might bring to the table.

his arguments are never personal.
his gripes, while certainly vocal, contain no hint of malice.

a man blessed with a sense of self well ahead of his years, a family one could only hope for, and a stable of friends and acquaintances who would surely back him to the end, well…is a man who has a lot to be thankful for on his birthday.

and we’ll celebrate him this weekend until the sun comes up.

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