I’m far from the first person to do this.

The pandemic that brought social distancing orders meant life as we know it has been canceled. No weddings, no gatherings, certainly no birthday parties with your buds when you turn 15. That’s the situation my son Jack was in with his birthday being this past Sunday.

I knew how much he’s been missing his friends and felt so bad for him that nothing much could happen for his Big One Five. So I stole a page from the playbook that’s been happening across the country and secretly conspired with his friends’ parents to form a drive-by car parade.

It was to happen at 2pm and it worked perfectly. Under the premise of helping me figure out what’s wrong with our lawnmower (that part is true; it’s not starting but it was just a way to get him outside) I had him in our driveway as suddenly a parade of parents’ vehicles crawled slowly into our cul-de-sac with horns blaring. Friends held signs out the windows, shouted their happy birthdays, threw notes (which we disinfected) and genuinely surprised the hell out of him. He has great friends and great parents willing to do this for the kids. It was brief of course and no one got out of their cars and social distancing was intact.

The rest of the day was dinner from one of his favorite restaurants via no contact Door Dash delivery, a birthday cake from ShopRite and we made a nice blaze in the fire pit out back. We do what we can during times we never expected and I’m proud of him for having a great day and not letting this get him down.

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