Monday, February 8, 2010

All I want for my 30th birthday

This Wednesday will be my 30th birthday.

It’s not so much the turning 30 that bothers me as much as the fact that I can’t stop it from happening. Fortunately, I don’t feel like what I thought you are supposed to at the Dirty Thirty. When you’re a kid and you hear that someone has passed their twenties, they might as well be dead.

I feel as if I’m just now beginning to live my life.

As I mentioned back at Christmas, I will freely admit that I’ve gotten a more difficult to shop for as I’ve grown older. Regardless, I knew I had to find something big for the big Three-Oh. Even though a bunch of us have planned a trip to Vegas in a couple of weeks (and I’m sure that will be big enough), I recently stumbled across the only thing I really want for my birthday.

Andy’s banjo.

A couple of weeks ago, I was on Twitter and saw the following tweet from @theofficenbc:

“Last day to help choose the tokens for MONOPOLY: The Office Collector's Edition. Vote as many times as u want” (and there was also an Internet link provided).

Could it be?

Could the fates really be combing two of my favorite things in the world in the Monopoly board game and The Office TV show AND I have the chance to help choose the game pieces? I clicked on the link and it took me to a magical webpage with both the Monopoly and The Office logos. It had to be like the first time they put ice cream in root beer or the day Chris Farley and David Spade met.

It took me a moment to soak in the grandeur, but once I got my bearings, I scanned over the Office related game pieces that you could choose from.

There were 11 pieces total and the rules at the top of the page stated that the top six choices would be included in the game. From first glance, I wasn’t that surprised at most of the options available. There was Michael’s “World’s Best Boss” mug, Dwight’s bobblehead, Pam’s candy dish, an Office Olympics gold medal yogurt lid (the only obvious omission was a Dundie award).

I couldn’t help but notice a couple of weak entries, however. Such as Michael’s bacon grill and the stupid Princess Unicorn doll that Dwight was selling off in last year’s Christmas episode. Who would ever chose to play with one of those pieces?

That's like getting stuck with the iron or the thimble.

But somehow in my first look, I missed the greatest Monopoly piece ever created: Andy Bernard’s banjo.

You have to understand that Andy and his banjo have provided two of my favorite Office moments of all time. (1) Andy serenading Pam with Kermit the Frog’s Rainbow Connection in his falsetto voice… IN PIG LATIN and (2) Andy and Dwight fighting over new girl Erin with their dueling Country Roads performance.

The banjo has much more of a reoccurring, lasting impact on the show than the bacon grill or the Princess Unicorn.

Without hesitation, I cast my vote and the current voting results were instantly returned.

1. Dwight’s bobblehead: 32% (no surprise)
2. Michael’s mug: 19% (fine with that one too)
3. Pam’s candy dish: 8% (I would never play with that piece, but I get why it’s there)
4. Dwight’s beet: 7% (really? We already have one Dwight related piece in the running!)
5. Michael’s bacon grill: 7% (Um…What?)
6. Princess Unicorn: 7% (Whaaaaaat????)
7. Andy’s Banjo: 6%


Not only is the one piece I care about just barely out of the running, it is right behind the two worst pieces available. I would take the gold medal yogurt lid, or the can of tuna, or the rabid bat over those two losers in a heartbeat.

And why couldn’t the banjo be in ninth place or even dead last just to put me out of my misery. In typical story-of-my-life fashion, it had to be right there in seventh, making me feel like it still had a chance.

I’m not going to lie. I snapped.

29 years of living just outside the winner’s circle had finally gotten to me, so I spent the rest of that day voting for the banjo over and over again. This had become so much more than a board game playing piece. This was going to be my opening round punch to turning 30; I was going to start this next chapter of my life with a win.

I don’t know exactly how many times I actually voted that day (lost count after a couple hundred) but the results never changed. I became infuriated at the thought that while I was voting for the banjo, there was some yahoo in Kansas repeatedly voting for the Princess Unicorn.

Even though the original Office tweet said that had been the last day of voting, I kept checking into the site for the next couple of days and was able to keep voting for the banjo until a startling revelation started sinking into my brain. Maybe I had missed the voting period completely and the results that kept returning were not the updated results, but the FINAL results.

Sure enough, I went to the site one last time this past weekend and you no longer had the opportunity to vote. The final results were posted with the banjo sitting just on the outside in seventh place (and somehow the bacon grill and Princess Unicorn have even passed the beet just for a little more insult to injury). The game is set to be released in August and I would love to belive that I'm strong enough not to purchase it. But, being the fan I am of both entities, I probably will and I'll resent that Princess Unicorn game piece every time I see it.

Just a stellar start to another year on life’s merry-go-round.

Happy birthday, indeed.

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