I am just finishing 3 days of birthday celebration (Last night was a Peruvian feast at a neighbors.) here on the coast of Maine. But on the eleventh, my birthday, it is tradition to either go to a beach or more recently our lakeside cabin and have a traditional clam bake. We begin w/ crab salad on crackers and Pilsner Urquell beer (Always Urquel) on the dock. When time for dinner, into the pot goes potatoes, lobster, clams (soft shell) and corn on the cob. When cooked, we sit at a picnic table on the dock and dig in with potato salad, cole slaw on the side and a bottle of bubbly to wash it all down. We finish off the evening w/ strawberry short cake. This year, things have been hectic and we decided to go out to camp (local jargon for cabin), spend the afternoon relaxing in the sun and on the way home stop by a local lobster shack. When we got to the restaurant, Ruth & Wimpies, they had just run out of clams! We substituted fried clams as a a starter, and ordered lobster w/ mussels and corn on the cob. The fried clams were fair, the lobster very small, the mussels ok and the corn tasted old. Ruth and Wimpies is noted for their pies but, that night had no strawberry or other fruit pies, so we got none. I'm not usually a fussy eater, but I was so disappointed! I realize now what a tradition preparing our own Downeast clam bake had become. Do you have a tradition with birthday foods? Tell us.