I hate to admit it, but like me, he is a tease. I wonder where he got that from?
I'm the oldest of a family of six kids. He's the youngest. In between are one other brother and three sisters.
And oh, those three sisters were fodder for the two of us, particularly, when we were growing up.
Me, the Big Bro, constantly haranguing them. He, the spoiled little mini-me, terrorizing them to no end.
We look a lot of like. And we are a lot alike. Deep voices. Opinionated. Jokesters. I'm proud to say I taught him everything he knows. He's about eight years younger than I am.
When I was 14 or 15 out playing hockey every night, he'd tag along and take the abuse that a kid that age should take from an older brother. I wouldn't cut him any slack.
But if my friends hurt him, they were dead meat, and they knew it.
At home, in our basement, he always wanted to be the goaltender. We had a hockey net set up down there and I'd take shots at him for hours on end. He loved it. So did I.
We spent incredible amounts of time together. I'm glad for that. More than glad.
As I grew older and left home, he was left to his own devices in a lot of ways. He grew tall and big, taller and bigger than me, and we kind of lost touch a bit.
In some ways, he became the black sheep of our family.
But when I went on a trip to India, he sent me a typed letter with no paragraphs that mostly contained a bunch of updates on this and that.
Hidden in there, though, was one sentence I'll always remember.
"I miss you a hell of a lot."
So, all these years later, here we are.
He's got two younger kids, I've got two older kids. He lives with his wife and family in a city about 3 hours away, so I see him at Christmas and at some family birthday parties, etc.
And wouldn't you know it, everything I taught him about teasing has come back to haunt me.
I, of course, have become his No. 1 target to tease, the aging older brother, the Titan of Tease, and now it's time for the younger lion to take on the old dominant male sibling.
He's become the King of Kidding, trying to knock me off my big rock, the one I've been perched on so long (think of the movie Lion King).
All the sisters and my mom and dad and my nieces and nephews know to watch out for me with a smile, they always try to catch me off-guard and tease me first, but they know it'll backfire...
And then Gerry turns up to challenge me for top dog, by taking pix like this...
He took this pic of me from above, showing what is a much larger bald spot than I ever anticipated!! It's accentuated by the camera's flash...but I figure he got me good and won this round.
For our next family get-together, I plan on getting a closeup of his belly, which you can't see in this pic of him below but which is substantially bigger than mine. Buuu-huuu-haw-haw haw haw!!!!