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Happy Birthday To Me:

A 14 Step Guide On How To Celebrating Your Birthday The Blackest Way Possible

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1. Wake up at exactly 7:25 am to a call from your mom singing the Stevie Wonder version of Happy Birthday. At this time I would recommend setting up an Excel document to serve as your official count for how many times you’re going to hear this song today. Anything less than three and you probably don’t know a lot of black people. Or you aren’t actually black.

2. If it's cuffing season, your selected draft pick should be making you/ordering you a bomb ass breakfast. 

I’m talking pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, assorted fruits, and juices. A mimosa or two is even applicable here. If in between seasons, I hear toaster strudels are ripe this time of year.

3. Put on some gospel music and clean your house for an hour. You’re an adult, so it's time to start spending your mornings like one. 

May I suggest the smooth stylings of Donnie McClurkin, or Kirk Franklin if you’re feeling froggy.

4. Begin the yearly roundup of Instagram captions that you’re going to use for your eventual birthday post. Might I suggest these based on what age you’re turning:

    1. 23: LeBron year bitchezzzzz!!! #23 #warriorsblewathreeonelead

    2. 26: Staying in for my birthday and treating myself like the boss I am #gottagetmyowninsurance #cantaffordarealparty

    3. 30: #Welp.

5. Hit up your group chat (probably called Bad Bitchez Link Up or Da Bruz depending on how live you are) to figure out the itinerary for the night. Settle on going to dinner and then meeting back at your place to go out because your one designated broke friend can’t afford to do both.

6. Make space in your cabinet for the presumed bottle of Hennessy you might be getting.

7. Make space on your counter for the bottles of Ciroc you’re definitely getting.

8. Assemble the perfect party playlist using a carefully curated rubric based on 90s party jams, respective HBCU strolls, middle school chart toppers, and the occasional trap hit in order to limit a number of dabs that will most likely take place.

9. Having a section/booth is the preferred way to celebrate one’s birthday while at a clubbing establishment. 

I would suggest booking one in advance, but if your pockets aren’t really flowing like that, making friends with a promoter is the next best thing. For every one friend group, there are at least three potential promoter friends circling like vultures. Word is bond.

10. The only acceptable food purchases on the night of your birthday are lemon pepper wings. Extra wet. Anything else is blasphemous.

11. While at the club, it is the duty of your friends to get at least one of the following songs played on your behalf.

    1. Birthday Song by 2 Chainz ft. Kanye West

    2. No Problems by Chance the Rapper ft. 2 Chainz and Lil Wayne

    3. Knock if You Buck by Crime Mob

    4. Pop That by French Montana

    5. Int’l Players Anthem by UGK ft. Outkast

    6. Back That Azz Up by Juvenile

12. If your friends fail to complete the above, you now have 364 days to find new friends.

13. Leave the club exactly one hour before it closes because nobody over the age of 23 waits for the lights to come on to tell them to take their asses home.

14. Arrive back at your home and take this time to get all introspective and shit. Realize that another year has gone by and you still haven't done all the things you want to do. 

Have an irrational breakdown over the fact that you're "old" even though the average life expectancy is 79. Tell yourself to chill the fuck out and eat a whole pizza by yourself. Go to sleep watching Boondocks reruns on Netflix.

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Carrington Kinsey is a Beyonce connoisseur and a Goofy Movie enthusiast working out of New Jersey. He co-host the pop culture podcast Dial Up. You can follow him on Twitter at @callmekinsey