That perplexed me so much that I couldn't come up with anything else for a list.
However, partly to celebrate his gracing us with his presence for a couple of weeks and partly to shut him up for repeatedly telling me my blog sucks because I don't talk about him enough, I'll tell you eight things that have to do with my brother.
1) When we were little, there was a death match nearly every night at dinner about who would get to eat off the cheesy McDonalds plate. I'm talking about screaming, hitting, tears and vows of starvation, all over a stupid plastic plate about how Mayor McCheese was going to get some cold april showers. (It's the one on the bottom right. And no, I have no idea why we only had just the one, or what the hell the appeal was.)
2) This girl, Amy "The Kisser," would smooch my brother every day in kindergarten. But when she started touching him with her tongue, the engagement was off.
3) Every Indian kid has a real name and the pet name for which people will ridicule them for years. At age four, I was in charge of coming up with my brother's and resolutely decided on "Mickey Mouse." Later, because I was so frustrated with his always having to defer to his wishes, I dubbed him "Highness," which became a term of endearment. I've only called him by his real name (and only once in awhile at that) for the last two years, and he's still Highness on my cellphone. However, if anyone else calls him that, I will kick their ass.
4) We watched The Dukes of Hazzard every single summer morning, usually while perched on top of the "car ramp" my brother would build out of the couch cushions.
5) When I went away to college, I forgot to hide the Betamax tape my dad had recorded of Strawberry Shortcake: In Big Apple City off tv in the early '80s. This particular movie was the one tape i secretly treasured beyond belief. Plus it had these badass commercials for Star Wars action figures and the Sit-n-Spin, the toy upon which I built my fame of being fearless at preschool. I must have seen it hundreds of times growing up and sometimes I'd like to put it on when I wanted to forget that I was supposed to be figuring out how to pay for books or what I was going to do with the rest of my life. And, in my parents' house, it was the only videotape earmarked for me. All the rest were designated for the recording of Hindi movie songs or sporting events so my brother could rewatch games he already knew the endings of.
So I was away, and one weekend my mom refused to give him a new videocassette for that Sunday's football match. He couldn't bear to tape over any of his other precious games, so the kid obliterated Strawberry Shortcake and all her fruity friends with some Bears game that they didn't even win. And when I discovered the unforgivable offense, I was beyond irate.
He was sorry, but I didn't realize how much until the Christmas, when I opened my gift from him. This was a big deal, because as a 13-year-old in a pre-Internet household, he managed to figure out what he had destroyed and get an original by using only a telephone and his schmoozing skills. I haven't watched it since that Christmas Day, but I was very touched (I still miss those commercials, though).
6) His obsession with Dave Matthews Band is only eclipsed (as is everything else) by his die-hard devotion to the Chicago Cubs.
7) My brother is notorious for what he says under the influence of surgery-related pain medication. One time after he had come out of an open-heart procedure, his world-renowned surgeon was checking that everything was going according to plan. My brother asked what kind of car the doctor drove and then proceeded to ridicule him beyond belief about his Ford Taurus. The kid has threatened to pulverize men three times his size as well as romance all the ladies in the entire hospital wing (with commentary on varying degrees of hotness to their faces). And I'm sure he has no regrets.
8) He can't grow facial hair to save his life and he barely has any hair on his legs. That last part is particularly annoying.
I have no fear of retribution because he won't see this list until probably next week when they let him out of the hospital. He's having surgery tomorrow morning to move his pacemaker, which they put in his abdomen last summer. Apparently, his body had other ideas all year, as it has refused to completely heal around it all this time. Let's hope it likes the new spot better.
As always, any good vibes are always appreciated. We will be back to our regular programming soon.