I think that was my best birthday ever.
Well, not because I threw my back out, of course. For those of you who have never done this, it's a wrenchingly painful sensation that usually results in several days of bed rest because you can't do anything that requires being perpendicular without excrutiating pain. I don't recommend it.
At the time, I was living in Troy, NY with sandramort. I had a Spanish class that night at a local community college. The community college was across the street from a local game shop, and noramlly after class I went to the gaming shop. There, I'd meet up with sandramort, hotspurre, tetsujinnooni and a bunch of other people who, knowing the internet, probably do have LJs but I don't know about them*. We'd all play a collectible card game, Jyhad.**
Having thrown my back out, I mentioned to Sandy that I wouldn't be going to class because I couldn't possibly sit in a rigid chair for three hours.
Sandy looked alarmed. "OK ... but you will be going to the gaming store, right?" she asked anxiously.
I looked at her in disbelief. "I hurt too much to go to the class I'm paying for. I'm not gonna make it to the gaming store, either."
Very disappointed, she went away. I lay down on my bed because that didn't hurt.
A few hours later, the entire gaming group -- about eight people -- descended upon my bedroom. "Happy Birthday!"
hotspurre and sandramort had been planning a surprise party for me at the store. When Sandy realized I wouldn't be there, she started making phone calls. New plan: everyone come back to the apartment!
My bedroom was small, about 8' by 11', and it was almost completely filled by my king-size bed. But somehow, we managed to fit everyone in. We had cake and presents seated (or lying, in my case) on the bed. The present I remember best, amuzingly, was a tiny address book that Sandy paid probably $0.25 for. It was a great size for carrying in a purse. I used that book for five years, until I got rid of my landline and switched to the cell phone that now holds all my numbers. But I still have that little address book.
Later, on FurryMUCK, I would boast of the occassion: "I got to play with eight people in my bed for my birthday!" Of course, what we played was Jyhad.
It was the first and only surprise party I've ever had. It was awesome, and I was very surprised. ♥
* At the time, aloyen was also in the area, but I don't think he played Jyhad so he didn't usually meet us at the store.
**This was shortly before Jyhad was renamed "Vampire: The Eternal Struggle". We all thought "Jyhad" had more character as a name, especially since no one was going to use the full name of the new game and it ended up going by its acronym, "V-Tes". The name change was made for branding purposes, to tie it more obviously with the White Wolf RPG that it was based on. Of course, post 9/11, Jyhad definitely would not fly well as a game name.