Today my "big" brother turns 50.
I have to say "big" in quotes because I'm 6'4" and he's, well - not. But he IS my older brother and until I was about 15 he was also my bigger brother.
Actually, Rick and I are 5 years apart - as are all 4 of the children in our family. And as you can imagine, being 5 years younger than your brother has its disadvantages. As kids, this provided Rick the ability to "torture" me at will through typical big brother methods such as sitting on my chest and hanging a drool string over my face until he sucked it up at the very last second.
Most of the time.
Me and Rick - during prime torture years
Or perhaps this gem of putting a pillow over my face while singing this little ditty (sung to the tune of Allouette):
Suffocation, the game we like to play
First you take a plastic bag
Then you take a rubber band
'Round your head, now you're dead
Ha ha ha ha
Ahh, good times. I will never forget those.
Then when he became a teenager, Rick and I drifted apart for awhile when he was 15 and I was - well, just a snotty little 10 year-old brother. The good news though is that he pretty much left me alone during this time while he proceeded to grow up in high school.
f-b: Rick, me and a friend at the party cabin
It wasn't until I entered high school myself that we reconnected. This time in a good way. Because Rick and I started sharing friends who were in between our ages, we were able to start hanging out together again. This may not have been in my parents' best interest, but we had some really good times nontheless.
A few years after I graduated from high school I went on the road and our quality time became severely limited. Then, about the same time I finally got off the road and bought my first house back in Duluth where we could really hang out together, Rick gets all "Ooh, I want to join the Air Force" and signs up for six years during Operation Desert Storm - and our opportunity for quality time was put on hold once again. Then, of course, as soon as he comes home, I decide to haul anchor and move to St. Cloud - where I still remain 15 years later.
Major Drymouth reporting for duty
Chuck Norris called. He wants his face back.
In fact, Rick is there when I need anything - ESPECIALLY a good friend.
So happy birthday big brother. I wish I could be there today to share it with you but I can't make it right now, so I'm hoping you'll accept my invitation to stop up and hang out this weekend instead. I'll be the one buying dinner.
But when I do come up, I have just one word of advice...
Don't try to hold me down and fart in my face. I'm bigger than you now.