“Just” Brotherly Love

by Kevin on May 8, 2014

I feel sorry for boys that don’t have brothers. Mainly because that means they don’t have any, or they have sisters. Well, now that I think about it, maybe brothers get the raw end of the deal. My brother never brought over all his girlfriends for a sleep over and we definitely weren’t spoiled like some of the single kids I knew. (That was a reference to being an only child, not their marital status.)

Brothers will do crazy things to each other. My grandmother tells the story of my dad babysitting his little brother by necessity one time. She got home earlier than expected and found my dad on a horse outside and my uncle tied to a pole in the garage.

My brother and I were mortal enemies until I graduated from high school. We’ve been best friends ever since, but how we survived those first few years is beyond me.

Now I want you to know that I was the good brother…mainly because I never got caught beating the daylights out of him. Not that I did it very often; just when he pulled knives on me because I had pushed his buttons all day.

He tried to cut me, hit me with bats, threw things at me, but the most detrimental and often used tactic to get back at me was…

Slap or pinch himself red, and then tell mom that I’d hit him.

You see, mothers have some sort of inherited distrust of older children. I think it’s because their first child was supposed to be so full of love and would one day grow up to be Caesar or something. The first time they held this child in their arms, they had never known joy could be so pure and fulfilling. They also didn’t know this little turdchewer would grow up to be so damn ornery.

Then comes the last child…the lost hope for all of humanity: The good prince! The last child, my brother, would be the culmination of all the knowledge and mistakes now corrected and bestowed upon this little blessing from God and would hopefully make up for the years of heartache and misery dealt by that other one. He would be the light of the house, the hope for the community, the deliverer of flowers and nectar to dying little hummingbirds that were born without eyes or wings…He would be Tristan from Legends of the Fall combined with Antonio Banderas from Zorro and have the mischevious swagger of a half Han Solo, half Gus McCrae.

What he was was a little freakin’ mom manipulator that got his way all the time. Except that one time…(Insert diabolical Thriller laughter here.)

The day of glory came when I wouldn’t do something or another that the little mom whisperer wanted me to do. For some reason, mom had come down to our end of the house (a place she mostly refused to enter) and heard the conversation going on unbeknownst to either one of us.

For once, I wasn’t being crappy. I just didn’t want to play dolls with him. (Sorry Jason, it’s been a while since I was able to lie about something like that and get away with it.) He kept on begging me to do something and after my constant refusal he finally said, “If you don’t, I’ll slap myself and then run and tell mom that you hit me.”

This had happened so many times that I basically was immune to his threats or her punishment, but before I could say anything, a voice spoke up from the hallway.

“Maybe this time I’ll let him do it and agree that you deserved it.”

Angels sang! The air seemed cleaner and baby hummingbirds were healed of blindness and grew four wings. It was like a million dollar bingo game and winning after only five letters are called. BINGO!!

I closed my eyes and savored the moment. I inhaled deeply the sweet fragrance of justice finally revealed. I reached out and touched the wall to be sure that I could feel the texture in an attempt to catalog the moment with every sense God had given me. I listened to the nearly imperceptible frequency of hummingbird wings on first flight.

(Author’s note: I had to put up a hummingbird feeder for my wife yesterday. It was a real nice glass one that lasted about five minutes after I walked inside to pronounce my love and achievement of my manly duty of the day and then it fell off the house and broke. The shame is still fresh on my mind; hence all the hummingbird references.)

So anyway, after savoring the moment and planning a Jean Claude Van Damme beatdown that I was about to deliver, I looked at my brother and felt something horrible…mercy.

Job 19:25–27 (NLT)

25 “But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives,
and he will stand upon the earth at last.
26 And after my body has decayed,
yet in my body I will see God!*
27 I will see him for myself.
Yes, I will see him with my own eyes.
I am overwhelmed at the thought!

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  • Sharon

    This is an awesome story, told with the usual and much loved “Kevin humor” 🙂

  • BWAHAHAHA! I didn’t have a brother, but I was the younger brother and let me just say that I do not doubt the justice due! I certainly am owed a few such claude van damme beatdowns lol!

  • Harl

    I had a sister and we fought like cats and dogs. I was the youngest. But let anyone do something to my sister or me and they had both of us to contend with.

  • Ha! This sounds like my fiance and his brother! There’s four boys altogether, but he’s the oldest and he and his next youngest had this same problem. He claims it’s because they were so close in age. I have three younger brothers but they never fought like this. Wonder what the difference is? Anyway, your story made me laugh! Glad I found your blog!


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