Yesterday my "little" brother Robert turned 21. Here are a few random memories of one of the coolest kids/men (MEN?!) I know.
1. One time after we had gotten an extended downpour, the bottom of the hill in our side yard flooded. My parents let us "go swimming" in the flood water (yeah, disgusting, I know) and videotaped our shenanigans. When you watch the video, you see us splashing around happily, when suddenly Robert stumbles upon a huge branch. His tiny frame struggles to pull the branch up out of the water, but once he's got it, he lifts it up, points it directly at me and starts going, "Dsh! Dsh!" - i.e. shooting at me.
2. In one of our more violent arguments, I pinned Robert to the ground and rested my elbow against his temple, then growled, "If I push hard enough, I can kill you." Yep, that's me - the loving big sister.
3. When Robert was probably about 4, he went missing one day. My parents and I were looking around the farm frantically, and my mom called the local police, then told me to go to the house and call 911. I wasn't quite to the house when Mom yelled to me that they had found Robert. He had decided to go on a "walk with Sukie around the pond," neglecting to tell anyone.
4. One day, Robert and I were both very young - I would estimate that I was probably 5, so he'd be about 2 - we were downstairs playing while Dad had gone upstairs to shower quickly. In the 5 or so minutes that Dad was upstairs, Robert dragged out a tiny stool/chair we had and fell off it. I yelled up the stairs to my father, "Dad - Robert hurt himself." This was nothing new, so Dad responded, "Okay, I'll be down in a minute." I paused and said, "Okay, I'll try to clean up the blood by myself." Needless to say, that brought Dad running, face half lathered with shaving cream. Robert ended up getting stitches in his chin.
5. A short while later, he fell off a [parked] tractor and had to get stitches on his head. In elementary school, he broke his foot by doing a back flip on a trampoline... and missing the trampoline on the landing. Freshman year of school, he dropped a tuba on his head, resulting in more stitches. Freshman year of school, Robert also broke his wrist by bouncing off of one of our friends after jazz band. He also broke his collar bone in high school at soccer practice.
6. One morning on the way to school (when I could drive), I was in a hurry and asked Robert to tell me if anything was coming before I made a left turn. He responded, "No.... wait, yes. Yes!" This was another tense moment in our relationship.
7. Back when I was still bigger than Robert, we used to play tackle football in the kitchen, much to Mom's chagrin. Instead of tackling him, I would pick him up and carry him back for a loss of yards. Our games never lasted very long.
8. When we were little, we played with mini cars and trucks, and Robert would always make sound effects for the people driving his cars, especially when they were going to and from their vehicles. These sound effects consisted of: "Open door, walk walk, close door, walk walk walk..."
The past 21 years with you have been a lot of fun, brosive.
Happy [belated] birthday - I love you!