A Special Birthday Post


My brother Justin and me as I get ready to attend my first Rangers game on my 19th birthday.

I’ve had my share of birthdays. The ones that stand out are 17, 21 and 30. To be honest, they’re all filled with great memories. Ones I’ll never forget. Sitting here speaking to my Mom, I’m pretty reflective about my years spent in this place.

I feel pretty lucky. I’ve always had great support from my loving parents, my awesome brother and wonderful friends. Today I turn the big 4-0! Honestly, being 40 is kinda funny. I don’t feel any different. I am still the same happy go lucky nice guy I have always been. I will always be the funny one with the keen sense of humor. A relaxed person who can’t really believe it’s finally come.

“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop to look around once in awhile, you could miss it.”-Ferris Bueller

I think that quote from the cool Matthew Broderick sums it up in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Funny enough, it was on a week ago. Of course, I had to watch it. There are so many great parts. I especially love when he dedicates a song to Cameron, who insists he hasn’t seen anything good yet. Another Broderick classic was on Sundance with Ally Sheedy. It’s ironically Hasan’s favorite. His go to War Games when things get bad for the Devils. DefCon 1 hasn’t been reached quite yet for our teams. So, that’s a big positive.

Even with the Rangers turning into a comical version of the walking wounded for tonight’s game at Winnipeg. What do they have? Like five starting forwards out. Don’t worry. They got the Jets right where they want them. With Hartford reinforcements. So, it’ll be a mix of core guys and AHLers. Fun.

I won’t be around to catch it. We’re about to go out for a special dinner at one of my favorite restaurants in The Heights. It’s gonna be a lot of fun. It’ll definitely bring back memories because we haven’t been there in so long.

I guess that’s when it dawns on you. I really am 40! Time moves fast. It doesn’t stop for anything. Though I must admit my 30’s were pretty cool. I made a lot of new friends. I had a lot of great times. I even saw the Rangers clinch against the Canadiens in Game 6 to make their first Stanley Cup since 1994. I had the video too. It’s on my YouTube channel somewhere. That was pretty special.

I guess what I am trying to say is I feel pretty lucky to have so many people that care about me. Life isn’t so bad. I have noticed that time has slowed down for me. What I mean is if I do something really fun with friends, it feels like time stands still. Savor those moments. They truly will last a lifetime. Sorta the infamous words of Sam Rosen after the Blueshirts won the Cup when I was an excited 17-year old senior in high school at Staten Island Tech. A wonderful school that I still take pride in.

Turning 40 isn’t sad. It’s a time of celebration. Also a time of reflection. I’ve had it pretty good. So, I guess my advice to the younger souls out there is to live. And when you do hit 40 if you’re so fortunate, cherish it forever.

It doesn’t change anything. It just means I’m a little older and wiser. Enjoy tonight’s games! 🙂

Battle Of New York Chief Administrator/Editor

Derek Brandon Felix

About Derek Felix

Derek Felix is sports blogger whose previous experience included separate stints at ESPN as a stat researcher for NHL and WNBA telecasts. The Staten Island native also interned for or hockey historian Stan Fischler and worked behind the scenes for MSG as a production assistant on New Jersey Devil telecasts. An avid New York sports fan who enjoys covering events, writing, concerts, movies and the outdoors, Derek has covered consecutive Staten Island Yankees NY Penn League championships in '05 and '06. He also scored Berkeley Carroll high school basketball games from '06-14 and provided an outlet for the Park Slope school's student athletes. Hitting Back gives them the publicity they deserve. In his free time, he also attends Ranger games and is a loyal St. John's alum with a sports management degree. The Battle Of New York administrator and chief editor can be followed below on Twitter and Facebook.
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