Saturday, June 18, 2011

Sneaky Kicks, NPR and the Sharp Scissors

There's nothing like a fight between siblings. My legs were skinny and poky and spindly when I was nine. Perfect weapons. My brother, Tim, was eight, and I'd wait to strike. I'd wait until he was watching TV--preferably a commercial, because that's when he was most engaged. Then I'd move in for the kick. It was a basic karate front kick, and it was delivered sharp and fast. Even though it seemed as if there was some planning involved, I never quite thought it all the way through. Because then it played out like a grade B horror flick. I'd run for the bathroom and lock the door. Really dumb, because you didn't have to be MacGyver to pick the lock in our bathroom. And there was no alternate escape route.

Sometimes I think our parents would wait to intervene, probably knowing I deserved what I got. But eventually they would step in. Our older brother, Tom, would scoff at us and tell us we were stupid-- or give Tim fighting tips.

Then there would be a cool down period and we'd be friends again.

It was worth it to be nice to my brother, because he was so much fun to play with. He's the type of person who can invent and create and imagine right on the spot. We made up an entire TV variety show in our backyard once, complete with opening theme song.

One thing that I know Tim and Tom and I shared, without a doubt, was the love of art, including music and writing, because our parents always provided musical instruments, sketch pads, special markers, and writing paper. They let us use the sharp scissors.

So now as twentysomething adults (okay
, twentysomething plus a little), the fighting has gone by the wayside, and we all still play music and draw and write. Hear from Tim today in his NPR interview at KUOW in Seattle!

And in honor of Father's Day, you can hear him read a very funny essay from his blog, Reflections of a Shallow Pond, on another NPR station, KPLU, where he publicly lambastes me for all of those nasty surprise kicks when I was nine--just kidding--he probably should, but he doesn't:

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