“If you have two legs—run; if you have one leg—hop; if you have no legs—fly!” from The Secret Language of Birthdays by Gary Goldschneider & Joost Elffers

Emma cArthur by © Emily Dozois

Image © Emily Dozois

An Interview with Emma

Q. What is the best memory you have from a previous birthday?

A. My best memory would have to be from my 16th birthday. My mom threw me a huge potluck dinner with all my family and a dance with all my friends after. My favourite part was that I got to play with my younger siblings from both my mom and dads side all at the same time.

Q. How about the worst? And why?

A. The worst birthday was probably my 20th. I was living in Kingston while going to college and didn’t have a whole lot of friends in the area. I started planning my birthday way in advance because I wanted all my friends from out of town to be able to make it in. It wasn’t going to be anything huge, I just wanted to get everyone together and go out to a bar and do some dancing. Unfortunately for one reason or another, none of them were able to make it and I ended up spending the night alone. The next day I called my family to come and pick me up and spent the rest of the weekend with them, so it wasn’t a total bust. The night alone was a real bummer though.

Q. What was the present you’ve received for your birthday that surprised you most?

A. For my 18th birthday my mom bought me a beautiful gold diamond ring. I’ve been wearing it ever since and I get compliments on it all the time. Definitely my all time favourite birthday present!

Q. Is there a food or dish that you insist on eating on your birthday?

A. Every year my grandmother makes me a dessert called Mississippi Mud instead of cake. It’s basically several layers of chocolate pudding, cream cheese, and whipped cream on a graham cracker crust. Absolutely to die for.

Q. What do you believe is the most important aspect of celebrating a birthday?

A. Whatever makes you happy! It’s the one day a year you have an excuse to make things all about you, so you should take advantage of it every year.

Q. Do you have any traditions or thing you always do to celebrate a birthday? What is it?

A. Typically my family gets together for dinner, and the birthday boy or girl gets to choose the menu.