50 years old? Funny idea, it seems so casual to express your age at the DMV before they digitally mash your fingerprints, and then they coldly snap your candid jailhouse photo with your eyelids half-shut, that hopefully does not end up on the evening news. But, like the day you were born, or the moment you will die – they are specific dates to your life’s journey. I wonder at what point in our life we stopped expressing our age in months or halves, as in, “I’m 5 and 1/2 or, I’m 7 and 3 months.” And we begin to round down our age? “I’m 48, but I’m closer to 49.” No, I’m 48 until further notice, thank you very much gray hairs.
I think life is meant to be lived in the present tense, because as we age, we begin to realize we don’t get a lifetime mulligan, a do-over, or any real second-chances. Right? We live, right now!
So, my lovely sister has lived to the age of 50. Yeah! I won’t show her picture, that would embarrass her, you see, she’s a bit shy. But, I bet those reading this blog post can remember a traumatizing moment from their childhood’s with your brother’s or sister’s nearby mentally recording the moment, that on special occasions like birthdays, weddings or funerals they decide to remind you about?
I remember the time my sister stood there barefooted in the JCPenney’s department store near the girl’s brown changing room curtains. She appeared humiliated from being the ‘adults’ – blushing Caucasian, child-spectacle-on-display, as she modeled what would now be considered on ETSY ‘a vintage red colored Polly Flinder’s dress’. Her brown haired, five-year old brother, (that would be me), was nearby with a mischievous smirk, pleased that it was her turn to be the seven-year old spawn being gawked at as if she were not there, and being talked about in the third-person. And not to be forgotten the unmerciful parental dapping of their saliva onto a handkerchief – to wipe away your childhood grime. Oh that smell, YUCK!
I have more memories, but I’ll keep them hidden. I have a strong sense I have the proverbial, ‘sword of my sister’ hanging above me, that if I share more examples, Damocles would nudge her to use it. And I don’t want to be sliced up into sushi sized pieces to entertain her two, now adult, young men. After all, she’s a lot smarter than me.
However, I should point out, our DNA was sprinkled with 23 defective, drunken, dark Appalachian coal dusted chromosomes, but brightened from an altered genetic code that had bloomed from 23 sober religious tolerance chromosomes that had been driven from Route 66’s termination point, navigating east, from a time when young men were advised to go west, as they were called by God direct from California – with a brief stopover to pay their respects in a Kansas farm’s cemetery.
It should not be overstated that sometimes in life, luck counts, and even though we did not win Gold at the Sperm Olympics, and they did not play our countries fight song, we did get a respectable fourth-place ribbon, and a friendly pat on the back.
By the way, it would be easy for me to provide visual proof my sister wore ‘cat-woman ’ framed glasses, that might get her noticed today as a fashion trend setter, but there has to be point when sister-cruelty ends, and the half-life adds up to a whole memory.
And if you possess a kind beating heart, I think there are childhood wounds that need to remain encased within a psychic nuclear fallout shelter. A location remembered and only to be expressed by the sibling’s quick glance to the other, and followed by the ‘let’s move on’ shrug. I think that’s why God invented bourbon, and the responsible consumption of said auburn colored Kentucky nectar with shaved ice, for those special occasions when a good laugh needs to be artificially induced.
So, to be specific, my sister has entered her 50’s. But that’s not specific, in her 50’s? In reality, she has just barely crossed that middle-aged, date-line, but even so, she had a birthday. I, of course, was not there – which is typical for me.
But as I sit here writing, I don’t think this younger brother can express how much he loves his older sister using the King’s English. And I don’t know any other language. This younger brother only possesses modest writing skills, with rudimentary grammar knowledge.
I might do better if the words I’ve hooked together were expressed via the hillbillies’ red-neck language, and then read out loud with a twangy preacher man cadence. But I hide my Kentucky accent, thanks to a loving Nebraska influence. And I get uncomfortable watching someone speak in ‘tongues’, or I hate feeling trapped in a church service being assured I had chosen the wrong fork in the road, and I am heading down the evil path to burn in Hell, and then endlessly being spit-roasted by a fire breathing Satan.
Even so, given my defective nature, I can write a simple, clear note in the present tense to my still quite pretty sister, who has clear blue, doe-eyed eyes.
I love you.