Thursday, April 11, 2019

their favorite sister

Two days ago was National Siblings Day?  Did I miss the parades?  The TV specials?  The sales?  

I don't think Hallmark and the like make much revenue off of National Siblings Day.  It seems to get a fair amount of traffic on facebook, but I don't play facebook.

Still, it's hard to imagine a life without siblings since I have two older brothers.  And I think there is something to birth order and gender that shape us, but there are also many other factors.  As I ponder on the topic, I'm thankful I wasn't an only child.  

I've mentioned my brothers here a few times.  Oldest brother "Hagrid" is relatively older than my other brother "Guano" and me.  Here are the guys from when Hagrid was around 20 years old.

Hagrid is 15 years older, and Guano is 2 years older than me.

So growing up, I wasn't particularly close to Hagrid since he was older, and I only have very fuzzy memories of him even living with us.  He was more like a cool uncle that came to visit often, and I idolized him a bit for being all grown up and such a smarty pants science guy.  

Although my memories of Hagrid living with us are fuzzy, chief among them are quite vivid.  Hagrid had lots of radio and electronic equipment in his room.  I can still picture, from a very short vantage point, the many wires and meters and and other gear sitting atop his desk.  It's vivid in my brain because I knew absolutely that I was NOT to touch or even go near ANY of it.  Oh, the intrigue!  The mystery!  

Sometime in the 70s??

Other than the fear of messing up anything of Hagrid's when I was a toddler, one fond memory of him came later in life when I was still working toward my engineering degree.  I think I was considering options for summer internships, and someone mentioned that one of the companies would be good to get on full-time because they had "great benefits".

Hagrid chimed in then, "Nope, NOPE... don't choose a job because of the benefits package!" And then he expounded on how important it is to enjoy your job and respect your employer, but not because of the benefits package and such.  

Since I had been his "baby sister" for so long, that advice had much meaning for me.  Not only did he give a convincing argument, but he made me feel that he now saw me as an actual adult, worthy of professional advice.

And I ended up with a job I loved after graduating college.  Ironically, with pretty decent benefits to boot.

Guano and I grew up as more traditional siblings - fighting and envying and sticking up for each other.  We were quite close, and I can't imagine things being any different.  I remember once during high school years, I mentioned to a friend that I was meeting Guano for lunch, and the friend thought that was such a cool thing for me to meet my brother for lunch.  

When we were little, he carried much authority over me, probably because I was so gullible.

Our house had a detached garage at the rear of our back yard.  It was easy to climb upon the roof of the garage from the trash incinerator - another blast from the past.  Easy to climb upon, that is, for people more than three feet tall or so.

Guano reached garage-roof-scaling size and strength before I did.  Plus, my fear of heights was already ingrained in me by that time.  But I remember him climbing up there and noting all that he could see.

"I can see Grandma's house, and Dairy Queen..." and a whole list of other majestic sights that I don't remember because he had me at "Grandma's" and "Dairy Queen".  Oh, how I longed for the day I could see these things from up there too.

The day eventually arrived when I was tall enough and strong enough to hoist myself onto the garage roof.  I stood up ready for the eye feast and beheld... not much.

I could see the other houses and trees and stuff around our neighborhood.  In fact, I couldn't really see a whole lot more than I could see from atop the trash incinerator.  I  most certainly could not see either Grandma's or Dairy Queen. 

I had been duped.  For probably about two years.  

And it got me up on that roof.

Thanks, guys!!

Linking up this week with Mama Kat for the prompt:
7. Throwback Thursday: Share a childhood photo of yourself and let it inspire a blog post.


Annsterw said...

Great post!! I feel like I know your brother! How awesome that you looked up t him so much!!!! That is really special! And - what a let down when you could not really see the Dairy Queen or Grandma's...but you were still on the roof!! HA HA! Thanks for sharing those memories!!! HUGS

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

Oh I love this! I love that he told you he could see the Dairy Queen and Grandma's. Probably 2 of your favorite things. I have 4 sisters, all younger than me. I would have given you my right arm for a brother. I would have begged you to trade with me when I was a kid.

Abby said...

Ann, I felt like such a derp when I got up on that roof! That story is hilarious to me... now.

Peggy, honestly I was always a bit curious as to what it would be like to have a sister, but no biggie. It was great having brothers, but there were times I probably would have traded with you!

LL Cool Joe said...

So you've always been surrounded by males? Brothers and sons. I always liked your attitude towards men, now I know why!

Funny about the roof. :D

Madamdreamweaver said...

Those are very charming memories. The roof story is priceless.

KatBouska said...

Okay your brother is hilarious. That would have been a really fun joke to keep going on a younger sibling...but I definitely would have believed him too. lol!

Abby said...

Joe, you are correct! Honestly, I'm often more at ease with a group of males than I am with females.

Madamdremweaver, life would have been so different without those guys.

Kat, it was hilarious AND typical! One of these days, I'll learn.

Casey said...

This is a great post. Thanks for the laughs. Your brother got you pretty good.

Abby said...

Casey, yes. He got me good. It's a natural talent with him

Linda Hensley said...

Love this story :D Wish I would've thought to tell my brothers all the things I could see from the roof!

Dyanne @ I Want Backsies said...

Great story! My brother is 4 years older than I am, and whenever he was gone, I made a beeline to his room to touch all the stuff I wasn't supposed to touch. And I had cousins who were 8, 10 and 12 years older than I, and I was always the annoying little cousin. Then when I was in my early 20s, I became a person to them, and I felt like I had finally made it!

Abby said...

Dyanne, good for you! And honestly, while I knew to stay clear of my oldest brother's electronics, I totally touched everything in Guano's room whenever I had the chance - despite his floor made of lava.

Abby said...

Linda, I'm betting you played a few pranks on those younger brothers!

John Holton said...

"Guano" is an interesting name...