Monday, July 15, 2002

Back when I was 3 years old, I was the king of the castle, the lord of the manor, the bat in the belfry. I was the sun and my parents were the planets, or something like that. Anyway it was just little old me.

Until the day that THEY showed up.

I remember it clearly. I was sitting on the carpet, in our new house, playing with a dumptruck. I remember thinking Batman would make an awesome truck driver. Now, I knew that us moving to a new house had something to do with Mommy getting really big, and that a new brother or sister were on the way, but, well, those were all secondary to Batman driving a dumptruck.

Anyway, the fateful day arrived and two bundles of joy were brought home. My dad layed them on the floor for my approval. Two of them! They looked kinda wrinkly, and their eyes were barely open. They were really small, and didn't have much hair to speak of. Also, they looked almost exactly the same. Identical twin sisters.

So anyway, a year and some change went by, and these two little rugrats were crawling all over the place. It got to the point where I had to set up a special area of the living room for my office. By this time I was almost 5 years old, and had lots of important documents to go over and coloring books to fill in. I mean, I had deadlines, commitments. I was now mature enough to know that Batman had better things to do than drive a dumptruck. It was at this time that my parents came up with the idea of sectioning off the corner of the living room for my little fort/office. My sisters would climb up the side of the little fence and stand there looking at me, fascinated, while I colored, drew pictures, planned ways of conquering the world, etc.

More years went by. The little rugrats grew into young girls. We were the kind of kids that were always fighting, which drove the folks crazy, but we were good at not holding grudges. We could be screaming and thrashing tooth and nail one minute, and side by side happily watching the Muppet show a half hour later, best of friends again. (Well, at least not bitter enemies.)

A good example of this was one evening, I must have been about 11, putting them at about 7 or 8, and I was "babysitting" while the folks were out for dinner. My sisters hated this "babysitting", because as they saw it, I was barely older than them and probably about half as responsible, but there you go, I was officially in charge. Now sometimes I was a benevolent ruler, but this particular evening I was being something of a little tyrant.

So there had come a breaking point where they just couldn't stand me anymore, and they had retreated to their room. I wasn't having that, so I tried to push my way in. They pushed, I pushed, we were yelling, screaming, freaking out. At that moment they hated my guts and I probably wasn't too fond of them either.

Then it happened. The door hinges broke apart right off of the wall. The door kind of hung there in a sick slanted angle. They stared at me. I stared at them. Dead silence for about two seconds.

"Oh shit." Whatever we were fighting about was immediately forgotten. At that point we were all jewel thieves, packing loot in a vault, and the alarm had just gone off and the police were on the way. We had to figure out a way to fix the door before Mom & Dad got home. Of course we soon realized that we were little kids and there was no way this could be accomplished. But the fight was over. We decided to relax, watch TV, and enjoy the momentary peace before the folks came home, saw the destruction, and the shit really hit the fan. (As I remember, our folks were actually pretty mellow about it, must have been worth a broken door for a few hours of peace & quiet.)

Anyway, the reason for this little trip down memory lane is that it was twenty-six years ago today that those two little bundles of joy were brought home and set before me. And even though we drove each other crazy a lot of the time, my memories are full of a lot more joy & laughter than sorrow & tears. The road growing up can be a tough one, and having good people by your side on the journey is a beautiful thing. I had two of the best, and I'll always love them for it.

Happy Birthday S & M!!!!

Love, Big Bro