Yesterday was my birthday and it was a lovely day spent among my Scrabble friends at the Toronto Club. I was greeted with a “Happy Birthday” by Evan Berofsky then I went outside the playing room to eat my dinner. I work in Mississauga, and leave for the Toronto Club directly from work. It takes a good two hours to travel to North York to the Earl Bales Community Centre, and I must pick up something to eat before games start at 7.30. Fraser Simpson came in and gave me a special photo card that he picked up from his recent trip to Cancun. It was the coolest card with cut-out windows and funky photos. Club Director John Chew even brought over a gift bag with two Scrabble books. It was a real surprise to be remembered by so many people. And then the always-late-arriving boyfriend Mark came in, carrying an enormous box with a familiar hot orange Loblaws sticker on it. This was a bakery box and no doubt he had brought a cake to fill the tummies of a room full of Scrabblers. He showed me the cake before Round #1 started: it had an edible imprint of a Scrabble board on it plus the message “Hyvää Syntymäpäivää Craig”. The icer [1] had fit the incredibly long Finnish birthday greeting on one line and didn’t need to squish up the last few letters. The icer even got the six umlauts down perfectly. Wow! And to top it all off, John led the Club in a singalong “Happy Birthday”. I claimed that my face was redder than Evan’s shirt, but I wasn’t really. What a nice way to spend the big 4-2. Thanks very much to my dear Scrabble friends!

[1] Common crossword puzzle clue for “Job in bakery”. Good in crosswords, challenged off in Scrabble, unless you play SOWPODS.

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