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I’m a horrible brother / son

I’m nice enough to my siblings most of the time, and although my parents express concern that I don’t call often enough, we get along just fine. The problem I refer to in the title has to do with birthdays, which I never remember. I can name the month for everyone in my family, and the exact date for three of them, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to raise my head in awareness when the day rolls around. Be sure that when I do chance to remember one of their special days, I lavish gifts upon them like it was their birthday and they just got out of chemotherapy and I just hit five grand on a scratch card. Somehow it never makes up for the three years preceding that I forgot. It’s not that I have a hard time remembering birthdays; I can recite most of my friends’ and even ex-girlfriends off the top of my head, but because I had so many siblings growing up it never paid off for me to internalize the information. Another family member would always remind me in plenty of time, because after all, with seven people, someone is bound to remember. It’s kind of like the picture on the back of a dollar bill or the atomic weight of Mercury: why would I bother to memorize all the details when I can just pull it out or look it up? Luckily I called home tonight on a whim, and my Dad reminded me my mom’s is coming up on the 27th. I should have remembered that, because it’s two days after one of the exes mentioned above. When I told Mom that fact after we broke up, she said, “Well no wonder it didn’t work! She’s an Aries! You’re a Taurus!” She’s priceless.

I wasn’t planning on going back to Gig Harbor over the break, because what would I do? Brett is in Mexico, Lisa’s in Texas, and Erin’s in Africa. That leaves the Martin twins for me to hang out with, and since I wouldn’t have a car and no one wants to drive out to Fox Island to pick me up, I’d be alone and bored for a week. Also, I can’t stand Gig Harbor. You canít find a decent coffee shop anywhere, store clerks never smile at you, the streets are packed with bored, rich teenagers driving their parents’ BMWs, and there are old people everywhere. But, because I’m a bad son, I’m going home on Thursday afternoon for my Mom’s birthday, and you’d better believe I’ll be packing some birthday surprises she won’t soon forget. I’m talking potted plants, Hallmark cards (because I care enough to send the very best. thanks oppressive consumerist advertising!), maybe even one of those giant Mylar balloons shaped like a teddy bear with the words “I love you beary much!” She’s gonna love it.

Also, I’ve inducted two more comics, Something Positive and Sam and Fuzzy into the hall of fame to your left there. The former comprises hilariously sarcastic twenty-somethings and a liquid cat, and the latter reminds me of Bill Watterson’s art combined with Steve Purcell’s off-color writing. Only the very best make it into that hallowed list; many comics are sent crying back to keenspace with their half-clever one liners clutched in one badly drawn fist. Rest assured that these two bear all the proud honor this catalog implies. Looks like I’ll be shaving off a few more precious minutes of my free time every week.

Posted in Musings.


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