Life, as we know, proceeds in fits and starts; and the events that comprise the starting and fitting are as variegated and incommensurate as soliloquies and sand. We nevertheless mark the passage of life with equal units of equal length; and we are especially fond of decimal multiples.
Having been inordinately busy of late with sundry starts and fits, I have only recently realised that the birthday I celebrate today is a square birthday. This, it seems to me, is at least as justifiably noteworthy as a birthday ending in zero; and the gap between my last square birthday (in 2001) and the next (in - gulp - 2029) is surely as portentous.
It is portentous, too, to consider the fact that there may be 20 million other people celebrating their birthday today.
Happy birthday to all of them.