Friday, January 25, 2008

But He's Your Brother (in an Italian accent)

Today's Robert's birthday. Robert's my older brother. He turns 36 today. He's probably the best brother ever. I got pretty lucky.

I followed in my brother's footsteps early on. I wanted to be just like him. I was a total tomboy. Played in mud puddles, collected tadpoles, built tree houses, rode a BMX bike ... Robert was my inspiration.

Robert loved his baby sister. He protected me from bullies, strangers, wildlife, his stupid friends. We spent our summers tromping through woods behind our house exploring and making up stories and adventures. We ate cheese bread and watched The Price is Right religiously over the summers. He let me tag along to the movies with him and his friends, Iron Eagle, The Last Starfighter, Return of the Jedi (couple of times), Dune, War Games ...

As we got older, I continued to walk a few steps behind him. He was in the gifted program. I was in the gifted program. He was a Webelo. I was a Brownie. He took piano lessons. I took piano lessons. He became a Boy Scout. I became a Girl Scout. He went to Stanton College Prep. I went to Stanton College Prep. But that's where we hit the fork in the road.

Once we hit junior high things changed. We weren't as tight. Cool came into the picture. I wasn't very cool and Robert was. I rode in the front of the bus, he rode in the back. He hung out with the cutest boy in school. He surfed, drove a MR2, had a band called the Surfing Watoosis, played drums and got to see REM in concert. We fought a lot. Mostly over stupid stuff ... borrowing clothes, car rides, borrowing music ...

Before I headed to Boston for college, I made a point not to talk to my brother. Keep him at a distant. I figured if I didn't like him, I wouldn't miss him. It didn't work. I missed him like crazy. Probably some of the best times we had was when I took a semester off college that following January. Every night we'd get Krystal burgers and watch The Wonder Years. We became pals again. The older we get, the closer we get.

Today my bro is a family man not too far from where we grew up in Jacksonville, FL. He has 3 kids and another one on the way. He's the best dad I know. Besides my own. I was just telling a friend over coffee that I got really lucky. I landed a kick ass family. So Happy Birthday, big brother. I love you so much.

1 comment:

Mark said...

Dude... it's an Italian accent!

"Es your Brathur, Charlie...but ees your braathur!"