File under : Facebook posts I make to my wife's old classmate, who is now my friend and an opthalmologist.

This is the gist of my note*:

Hello Doctor,

This is such a dreadful thing to have to deal with in the morning, but I fear I must before a great quantity of time has passed. I am absolutely mortified at the faux pas my wife committed last night when she texted you Happy Birthday, thinking that your day of birth was in fact upon that date.

There are certain things we are committed to trusting Mr. Zuckerberg* at this point in history on, and I am confident should it come down to a battle of keeping people’s birthdays straight that he would emerge victorious. I have no doubt it was deeply confusing, and possibly troubling, to receive a birthday message the day before, and as a result, I have little doubt you began to doubt your own reality.

Becca should have thought much more carefully before she texted you on the wrong day, especially on the day before, because it truly is those little actions that can have a giant impact, and I hope that her action does not throw off the rest of your year. I have assured her that you will forgive her, even though it may take me a while longer, and I have told her repeatedly that there is a good chance - maybe a small one - that you will spend the next year having that action NOT affect you in an adverse way. It probably will, but there is a chance it will not.

Again, on behalf of our family, I am so sorry for the distress her early birthday message must have caused you in making you doubt the reality and chronology of your own existence. I assure you that you are just fine, mostly, and that life will go on. It will just be a little different, possibly a lot different, now that she has planted the seed of doubt in your mind about your own existence.

Don’t let it get to you. You’re gonna have some good times ahead, and don’t think of the good times that may have definitely happened if you hadn’t have had this happen to you (they would have been really good). We are working hard to ensure that a mistake of this proportion never happens again for a while, and please accept Becca’s apology for the dreadful and unforgivable mistake she made.

Her heart was in the right place, but...sometimes you just do the wrong thing because of carelessness, or not checking Facebook reminders. I know that I would never do anything like that, but I know there are people in the world like Becca who do do things like that, and I don’t think they should be ostracized from friendship or society permanently. I’m going to start talking to her again soon.

Again, happy birthday, Dr. Andy, on your actual birthday.

Always honest,

Joseph Long


*this is the entire thing