That’s no secret. Put two children together for five minutes and some stupid dispute is bound to break out. The wee ones of the world may not be as pure of heart as we like to think.
Bryan Allain reminded me of this when he blogged a couple of days ago about the five dumbest arguments his kids have had. I don’t have kids. But I was one at one time. And so was my brother. And we argued…a lot.
It’s been ten years since my brother and I have been under the same roof. Since then, we’ve both found women we’d rather argue with than each other. But every time my wife and I have some “important” argument over something like potatoes or a lamp, it brings back some sweet, sweet memories of all the battles my brother and I fought. Sure, we found lots of times to team up, but it was in the heat of epic battles that our relationship was forged.
Three World Ending Fights I Had with My Brother
The Back Seat
Of all the ongoing childhood activities, long car trips in the back seat with my brother was the worst. It did not matter how much we were looking forward to visiting Grandma and Grandpa, we made the hours until our arrival miserable for each other. First, our bodily proximity to one another was unacceptably close. Then, he always had to crap up the whole area with all the junk he took along, junk which I spent my time shoving back on his side of the seat. He also had the bladder volume of a thimble, meaning a four hour drive was effectively doubled by pit stops. I always thought he did that on purpose just to extend my torment.
I landed the coup de grâce, however, by getting carsick and getting to switch to the front seat. Winner: me.
Stop Copying Me
I am the oldest brother, and my parents always told me that my brother “looked up to me,” a claim I flatly denied. The way my parents saw it, my brother’s adoration of me was justification for emulating me at every turn. It drove me nuts. I had been told that I was a beautiful and unique snowflake, and it was completely unacceptable to have an identical snowflake following me around. If I was smart, my brother was required to be stupid (which was more natural for him anyway.) Since I was the artistic one, I protested when my brother requested drawing supplies for his birthday. I informed my parents that his drawings of people looked like eggs with stork legs, and thus he was a totally sucky artist and pencils were wasted on him. “Well how’s he going to get as good as you if he doesn’t have anything to draw with?” my parents retorted.
I won that argument by being completely and totally bereft of athletic talent, something that even the most envious brother wouldn’t want to emulate. He joined several sports teams. Checkmate: me.
Go Ahead and Tell On Me
Finally was the age old argument of whether or not he was going to “tell on me.” See, as the eldest brother, I was blessed with the birthright of authority over my brother while my parents were away, which I brazenly lorded over him like some kind of diminutive medieval nobleman. My kingly rule was rarely just or fair. There were a lot of coverups in my administration. Like when I, the responsible brother, convinced my brother to climb into a cardboard box, which I then pushed down the stairs.
The box pushing stunt went exactly as planned, meaning he got just seriously hurt enough that the damage was real, but not visible. But these were always dangerous games, as they always erupted into screaming, punching and threats of telling Mom and Dad what I had done.
But I always won that argument because telling on me would require that he admit that he was the one who got into the box. (Which would prove to them once and for all that I was, indeed, the smart one, and if he is dumb enough to climb into a box, he probably deserves to be pushed down the stairs.) Yep, I remain undefeated.
Man, those were the things that mattered to me, enough to go to war over. Those were my hills to die on. Makes me wonder if the hills I’m willing to die on today are going to look just as epically stupid in ten years…
Your turn! Tell us your stories of victory and glory over your brethren, those world ending, apocalyptic battles you waged with your brothers and sisters before peace was made and you no longer had to live with one another?