Thursday, June 20, 2013

Last First

We just ordered Pizza King.  Tiny little rectangles of pizza heaven will be delivered in 30 minutes or less to the Brown Bungalow.  The kids can’t wait.  Heck, I can’t wait.  (See last week’s blog for definition of deliciosicalitaciousness.)  But, there’s one person that loves Pizza King more than any of us...that’s my brother-in-law Mike.  Several years ago Mike retired from the U.S. Army.  (Thanks, again, for your service to our country!)  To celebrate, we had a huge Kansas.  Guess what-  they don’t have Pizza King in his neck of the woods. 

So, my brother and I decided to take some of Mike’s favorite things from his hometown as a surprise for him in Kansas.  We bought a gallon of cherry flavoring to make his own cherry Mountain Dew, a t-shirt from his favorite local band, and a dozen Pizza King pizzas.  The proprietor was kind enough to par-bake the pizzas, which allowed us to store them in a cooler all the way to Manhattan.  Yes, it was crazy, but we knew he’d love it.  He served our country for 20 years, it was the least we could do!

When we got to the hotel, the chef there agreed to bake the pizzas for us and bring them out to serve to the guests that night.  We were so excited.  There was no way that he’d ever, in a million years, think that we’d bring Pizza King pizza 686.71miles across the country.  Who does that?  Apparently, we do.

It was time.  We knew at any moment the pizzas would be coming out of the oven, pipin’ hot...and that they did.  He was surprised alright, but not more surprised than all of his Hoosier friends.  The hotel chef had cut the pizza into ‘pizza-shaped triangles’.  I know it was the same pizza that we all know and love, but somehow it tasted different.  Pizza King pizza in triangles...that was definitely a first. 

I guess it’s acceptable, maybe even expected, for our kids to have firsts.  First steps, first words, first dates!  But, as adults, we don’t have a lot of firsts any more.   Honestly, think about your last first.  Was it recent?  Did you plan it?

On our last vacation, we made plans for our kids to experience many firsts.  They saw their first Disney Mouse Ears...what my youngest thought were “Disney Yakimas’.  J   They drank their first butter beers at Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  They were even introduced to moving sidewalks at the airport.  Their lives will never be the same.

Firsts are fun.  It was wonderful to see my children have some firsts.  But, it’s even more fun to experience new firsts as an adult.  Last year Synergy launched The Passport that Project Leadership continues to spearhead.  The concept is “1000 Things You Should Do Before You Graduate”.  It’s filled with many ‘first’ opportunities.  The idea was to expand the array of experiences that our local students have before they finish school.  Eat sushi.  Donate to a local charity.  Go to a musical.  Be on the radio.  Ride a motorcycle.  Use a sewing machine.  Find out your blood type.  Plus, 993 more!  And, adults can participate too...either with or without kids.  It’s really a bucket list of sorts.  Check out the Passport Facebook page to learn about local events where you can complete passport activities.  Or, just dive in at your own pace by visiting

Let’s face it...we might not live as long as Betty White.  But, even if we don’t, let’s make every moment count.  So, here’s your mission should you choose to accept it: (1) Intentionally plan to participate in a first, (2) Tell someone about it, and (3) Ask someone...’What was your last first?’  Carpe Diem!

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