On September 16, 1999, I turned forty years old. It was nine days before my father’s sixty sixth birthday. At the time I was working in the customer service department at Citicorp Retail Services on Old Country Road in Melville, New York. I was also a part time student at Adelphi University in South Huntington. My parents appeared not to have bothered to make any plans for a significant party for me. My big day came and went without any significant attention beyond a perfunctory cake, cards and presents. Something happened, though, that should have struck me as somewhat odd. All my mother’s relatives from northeastern Pennsylvania came for a visit from out of nowhere. As a general rule they never bothered to show up for just any birthday or average occasion. That alone should have made me quite suspicious. Since my parents , and relatives in general, had always been quite the colorful characters, though, I just took it for granted that it was yet another of their offbeat moments. Aunt Mary Theresa, Uncle Frankie and Fran were there, as well as Aunt Lauren, Uncle Jim, Noreen, Michelle and Doug. During the time between my birthday and my father’s my parents kept trying to convince me make plans to go bowling with my cousin Larry. My cousins Larry, Gary, Joe and I were on a bowling league, for many years, with the Knights of Columbus’ St. Jane Frances de Chantal council in Wantagh. On the morning of my father’s birthday Larry called and we made arrangements to go to a local bowling alley. That day there was something going on at Immaculate Conception Diocesan Seminary in Lloyd Harbor and I really wanted to go. It was quite a good thing that I chose to go with Larry though. We had bowled a few games when his wife Rose called claiming that her car had broken down in the neighborhood of Katie Daly’s, an exceptionally nice Irish restuaurant on Merrick Road in Massapequa. Larry and I got into our cars and drove to the restaurant. We pulled into the parking lot, walked into the restaurant and it turned out to be such an exceptionally nice surprise party for me. After a nice big meal there we all went back to the house and kept things going for the rest of the night. Perhaps I should have known, throughout the entire week, that something must, by definition, have been going on but sometimes I can overlook the obvious.