One of my good friends is having problems with their memory and frankly, I’m concerned. Only two short years ago I overheard them telling someone that they were headed out of town for a few days. Without batting an eye, my imagination and scheming went to work. The home of this good friend is only around the corner from where I live. The home has a picturesque setting with a large deck that’s perfect for entertaining. Surrounded by huge redwood trees and tall California oaks, this home is fully equipped with a trampoline, bocce court, zip-line and much more. This is a most ideal location for a party, especially when the owners of the property are out of town. Fully equipped with party balloons, red solo cups and empty beer and wine bottles, I went to work. After creating an eight-foot banner that read “Happy Birthday Steve”, my family and I got busy dressing up this magnificent deck. None of their family is named “Steve” and none of my family has that name either. Armed with a permanent black marker we wrote names on the cups to make it appear as if an international gala took place in their absence.  We made it look as though the who’s who of Hollywood managed to swing by the birthday party too. Tom Cruise, Angelina Jolie, Ben Aflac and many more had nothing better to do than attend this “Steve’s” birthday party. Taking care to not make a mark or make too much of a mess that couldn’t be picked up in less than five minutes, we laid the empty bottles of alcohol around the deck and in the bushes. Deflated balloons were strategically tied to the back of the patio chairs and made to look as if they were once filled with helium that went flat from a party days before. My family and I posed in front of the large birthday banner for photos to be used at a much later date. Then….we went home and waited. Scheduled to arrive home late on Saturday night, I knew they wouldn’t see the crime scent until the following morning before church. On Sunday morning as I dressed for church, I practiced maintaining my composure; I was expecting to see them at the service. Right on que, I bit my lower lip as I watched her question every teenager that crossed her path. While smiling ear to ear and busting out in laughter she said to each child, “Look me in the eyes and tell me you didn’t have a birthday party on our deck”. One by one they each child swore up and down they didn’t have a party; many of them swore they didn’t know “Steve”. Four days pass while their teenage daughter continued to search out and discover “who” had the party. Enough time had passed; I needed to save any remaining children at the high-school from further interrogation; I text my friends the photo of my family and me behind the happy birthday banner.

The reason I’m so concerned about the memory of my friend is because they are currently away on vacation. They have asked me to take care of their home and pet’s; I’m a very creative pet sitter. Oh how quickly they forget.

Happy Birthday Steve!