A few months after her 38th birthday, the lovely Gina Tanner jokingly suggested that one of our band's open-to-the-public parties be in honor of her 40th. She danced the night away, had a great time, and – incidentally – looked stunning. When asked why she picked that particular evening to celebrate – 19 months ahead of the actual date – she responded: "Because years from now, when everyone looks at the pictures from tonight, they'll say 'Wow! You looked terrific for 40! ' "
Traditionally, big parties have been held to commemorate silver and golden anniversaries. Recently, though, I've noticed several couples following Gina's lead and jumping the gun on their 50th – by a full decade. And I have to tell you, I think they're on to something! Here's why I believe they have the right idea, and why I think there needs to be a special designation for such 40th anniversary gatherings:
1. More parents of the couple will be present. 40th anniversary honorees are usually 60-something. Many of these couples have 1, 2 , or more parents who are not only living, but are spry enough to fully participate in the celebrations. But only a couple of 50th anniversary parties I've ever played featured a parent still active enough to join in. By having your big event at the 40-year mark, your chances are good of getting one of those treasured "4 generations in one photo" keepsakes, with your beaming mom or dad in the shot.
2. More couples will both be healthy at their 40th than will for their 50th. Enough said.
Now – if you're going to make a big fuss over your 40th – does not it deserve a special designation? Actually, it has one already: it's officially your "ruby" anniversary. But it seems to me that a commemoration mid-way between silver (25th) and gold (50th) should somehow combine those two hues. I propose "champagne." It is a perfect bridge on the color spectrum, and also connotes a bubbly and elegant celebratory experience.
Well then, here's to your 40th – your "Champagne Anniversary." You know – maybe I should patent this. It could really catch on! Of course, if it does, Gina will celebrate ours on our 38th. (So that I'll look so much younger in the photos.)
Copyright 2008 by Dave Tanner, Inc.