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22 September 2010

What would tickle you on your birthday? I'm looking for ideas for cheap, fun things to do for people on their birthdays, so I thought I'd put it out there in this form: What sort of thing might tickle you or delight you on your birthday?[More:]

I'll start it off: I'd be delighted if a bunch of people would all decide to comment on my Flickr photos, and bump my pageviews for a day; since I live for my Flickr stream (some days), it would give me some fuzzies to have that happen. What would make you feel warm and fuzzy?
All I want on my birthday is a nice meal with people I love and care about and, sparing that, a nice conversation with them and, sparing that, a nice birthday greeting.

And an iPod bouquet.

I don't ask for much.
posted by gc 22 September | 05:21
A wrapped present. The present doesn't have to be much of anything, but I get very few birthday presents these days, and seldom does anyone take the trouble to wrap the package, even in the Sunday comics.
posted by JanetLand 22 September | 05:57
Something that shows that someone actually gives a damn about me. Not birthday cards bought by my mother and hidden away for my brother to just sign when he shows up late to whatever dinner she's tried to prepare that will likely lead into a guilt trip no matter how little/much I bother to eat. Yes, I am bitter and crankypants and need to step away from the tubes for a while.
posted by sperose 22 September | 08:36
One of the best things I did for a friend was to give his phone number to my mom, dad, sister, grandma, aunt, etc and have them call him and just say something like, "Hey Stewfriend! It's Stew's grandma, and I just wanted to say Happy Birthday!"

He loved it. Still talks about it. And he's a pretty introverted guy.
posted by Stewriffic 22 September | 09:06
Last year I got a parade and a gourmet meal on my birthday, so that was nice. (Okay, technically the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade isn't for me, but I believed it was when I was four and I'm good at deluding myself.)

Flowers make me really happy. Treasure hunts, too. A treasure hunt involving flowers? Killer.

A homemade cake. I make 'em for friends and I can't believe how happy they make people. I also make my own because my family fails a little at that sort of thing, and it feels crappy.

A pinata. I would marry the person who gave me a pinata for my birthday.

Stewriffic - that's awesome.

posted by punchtothehead 22 September | 09:32
I would like someone to accompany me around New York, eating delicious food all day. Yes. Oh, and to not have to worry about a toddler for the whole time I was awake.
posted by gaspode 22 September | 09:36
I would like to go to the Korean Day Spa and have a day. I would definitely want to take a car to and from, and I'd want to spring for a massage and eat at the buffet. Ok, this has stopped being an ultra cheap fantasy, but eh.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 22 September | 09:41
This summer, my nieces and nephews came for a visit from Montana about a week after my birthday. The first day that we all got together, they arranged a beautiful platter of cookies and another of pickled vegetables, along with dip and chips and lemonade, as a little surprise after-birthday party.

It was nothing expensive or fussy, but just a little extra attention to detail and a bit of thought. Their mom (my sister) obviously helped, but the kids were obviously excited to celebrate, which touched me.

As much as I love presents or treats, the little stuff is the big stuff for me: small things that show you're paying attention to that person's likes and needs. One of the best presents I've received last year was a teapot that my sister had kicking around her basement. I didn't have a teapot; she had several, and she knew I needed one. What a wonderful present!
posted by Elsa 22 September | 09:54
Here's a list of gifts I've gotten or would love:

1. A special occasion meal. (For example, my husband always makes me Eggs Benedict on Christmas AM.)

2. Being taken to a lovely locale. For example, I take my husband to our local arboreteum. Parks and zoos are gifts waiting to happen.

3. Music mixes. My husband melted me at various times with burned CDs of Beatles love songs, a Jacques Brel is Alive and Well stage performance, and a mix of classic jazz numbers.

4. Hand picked flowers in a pretty mug.

5. Gushy hand made cards or poetry.

6. Plants.

7. Home made blankets/throws. (I am always cold!)
posted by bearwife 22 September | 11:17
I would love a homemade card. I would love it even more if you wrote some stuff inside about why you like/love me and what our relationship means to you. This to me would be a great gift, something to save and look at now and then. This gift works whether you're my brother or sister, my college roommate, my friend from 4th grade or the friend from work who shares the chips from his lunch because we both know that if I didn't buy them, they have no calories.

It wouldn't have to be any sort of work-of-art card either, just something you cobbled together with some stickers, markers, a picture of a flower cut out of a magazine, or whatever. A present like that says to me: You're neat, you're special, I took the time to make this for you and tell you how I feel about you and I'm glad you're in my life.

Now, if you had a really big budget, I'd love for that card to come attached to a medium-large pair of diamond solitaire earrings.
posted by Kangaroo 22 September | 12:53
A birthday cake. I don't remember the last birthday cake I got.
posted by deborah 22 September | 14:36
A few more thoughts, which depend on your person:

1. I adore brownies, the chewy chocolaty kind, preferably without nuts. I used to have a staff member who gave me a fantabulous brownie on my birthday. I was always so touched that she remembered my weakness.

2. Cupcakes are like birthday cake -- delightful. A little surprise cupcake party would be lovely.

3. IF the person is able and willing to take on the care, there aren't many presents as wonderful as a pet. Pets aren't at all expensive when they come from the pound.
posted by bearwife 22 September | 18:42
For me? A Ghost Tour. Or a history tour. Local legend stuff just attracts me. Or something small that showed a lot of thought went into it. I like to find neat things at flea markets that echo something a friend/family member likes/collects/admires. I collect old books (not first editions, just old books) so perhaps something your friend collects?
posted by redvixen 22 September | 19:15
I'm a few days away from my birthday (NOT A HINT), and I have never looked forward to it LESS in my life. Partly about the age: 55 - now I can join AARP! Also from my media experience, I know I am making a final exit from the "prime demographic" (25-54 for some, for others it's 18-49 but when I hit my 50th I had a good distraction strategy in place AND coincidentally got some good news).

I guess I need a good distraction, because my previous year has been equal parts MAJOR FAIL and partial recovery (unrelated to the Economy), so I have definitely lost ground. But hey, thanks for reminding me, I wasn't planning on hitting this level of depression until 2-3 days before the event.
posted by oneswellfoop 22 September | 20:07
A cake with MY NAME on it.

These days I'm too precious foodie for grocery store cakes, but when I was a kid a decorated cake with MY NAME on it would have been magic from heaven. My mom made a cake, because buying one was expensive, but putting MY NAME on it was not a frippery she went in for. Poor deprived me, eating nameless birthday cake. Wah.

What I do for people I love (or really like a lot) is call and sing "Happy Birthday" to their voice mail. It's dumb, but people seem to like it.
posted by cyndigo 23 September | 19:25
Really discouraged... || Being Poor