Last week — under the headline “Happy 50th, Keith!” — I posted congratulations to Weston’s Keith Richards, on the 50th anniversary of the Rolling Stones’ 1st concert.
Westporter Brett Aronow did a double take. Her husband — Keith Stein — celebrates his 50th birthday today.
Then she emailed me, and asked if I’d surprise him with this “gift.”
Happy 50th, Keith!
OK, he’s not exactly Keith Richards. But my Keith is the most awesome husband in town. He’s turning 50, and I can’t think of a single present or party that would let him know how glad I am to have met and married him – many years ago!
I call him my Renaissance Man, a la Leonardo da Vinci. Besides being intelligent, athletic, handsome (still sporting all his hair without a gray in sight – unfair!), he is an amazing cook, an incredible handyman (this one surprised me the most because when we met he was an investment banker), a gardener, a metal sculptor, a perpetual student (recently taking Stanford’s free online class on Artificial Intelligence), a web designer on the side, an incredibly generous volunteer, a wonderful son, a great friend, and basically the nicest person I know.
He is definitely a hands-on dad, luckily being able to attend all his kids’ sporting events unless they overlap (then we usually split up). He is the team photographer as well.
He is also well known in town, spectating other sporting events where his kids aren’t even participating. He has spent the last several years full time, completely unpaid, managing and trying to make a difference for Westport Little League, a huge organization (as far as I can remember, we haven’t had our own Little Leaguer for 4 years).
He serves on the Westport/Weston Health District board, the Democratic Town Committee, and has been treasurer for several local campaigns. He’s a long-time PTA volunteer, and he’s even president of our private road association (those of you on private roads know that not everyone volunteers for that job!).
I’m sure I’ve missed some more of his credentials. He stays amazingly under the radar, except to me and those who know and appreciate these qualities most. The most amazing thing is he never complains or speaks poorly about anyone.
I should know all this because we met and started dating when he was merely 22. Recently, in preparation for his big birthday, he has participated in his own version of “Fit for 50,” dropping nearly 40 pounds through diet and exercise. He completed a half-Ironman triathlon. He said, “I thought I was burning calories watching cross country races, but obviously that wasn’t really working.” I’m sure he’ll give out tips to those trying to do the same, just as he happily gives out his favorite recipes.
So this is your birthday card and present, Keith. Happy Birthday, I love you, and look forward to seeing what you can accomplish in your next 50 years! — Brett