Thursday, July 28, 2005

Fractured Fairy Tale

"You have four older brothers? And you're the only girl?! You must have been so spoiled growing up! Were you their little princess?"

I get this a lot. Clearly from people who did not grow up with four older brothers. I dont know where they get the idea that I had a fairy tale childhood just because there were four boys in my house. I mean seriously, think about that image. A house full of stinky socks, stinky boys, and stinky athletic equipment. I now know where I get my super sensitive sense of smell.

I called them "the boys". To this day I still do. And I'm not saying the boys didn't spoil me in some ways. I was theirs, in a sense, and they made sure I was included in almost everything. They celebrated every first - first new teeth, first day of school, first dance recital. They created my own corner in the basement and made all of my birthday parties the event of the season. They let me hang out with their friends, and taught me all about sports. In many ways, the boys raised me.

But boys will be boys - so my fairy tale is definitely a fractured one. They tormented my friends - especially those that were unfortunate enough to develop crushes on them. They tickled me until I cried, or wet myself, whichever came first. They insisted that I needed a bra for my knees since they stuck out more than any future breasts ever possibly could. I was their personal slave - it was my job to change the channel (no remote control back then, but then again, only about four channels to choose from), to keep them fed and watered, to never ever tattle, and to run all over the house to find whatever it was they couldn't find at a given time. It should also be mentioned that I have had long nails since I was a toddler because my brothers told me the only reason I had been brought into the house was to scratch their backs.

I say brought into the house, and not born, for a reason. I don't remember exactly when it happened, but there came a time when I was very young that my brothers felt the need to reveal the truth to me. I was not, in fact, their real sister. I had been adopted. When I was just a baby, a policeman found me abandoned in a basket and brought me to the house. He felt our family would be perfect since there were only boys, and these boys clearly needed a little sister to scratch their backs and do their bidding. It was important for me to be good, or the police officer would have to come back and find me a family to live with up in Atlantic City.

The policeman's name was Officer Krupke.

For years I would pout whenever the dreaded Officer Krupke was brought up. It can't be true! I had heard the stories about when I was born from my mom. How she could hear the Miss America parade going on from her hospital room when she was waiting for me to arrive. How the whole town made a fuss because finally a girl was born. How the prim and proper lady across the street came running over in her nightgown when she heard the big news. My brothers, the big poopyheads, had to be lying.

I remember in vivid detail when my brothers told me that a very special movie was going to be on television that night and that we would all be watching together. My parents said I could stay up late to see the whole thing, and I was very excited. I brushed my teeth and put on my pajamas and went downstairs to the living room. My brothers seemed to be more excited than I was, and they took great pains to make sure that they were all sitting around me when the opening credits of West Side Story came on.

I loved it. The singing, the dancing, the fighting! It was enthralling! How cool of my brothers to make sure I didn't miss this! I don't recall how far into the movie it was when I heard the Jets break into the famous Gee Officer Krupke song. I just remember that when the boys - who had been waiting for this moment for most of my life - saw the recognition in my face, and heard me scream "HEY!!!!!! That's Officer Krupke!!!!!" - they finally knew what it was like when they tickled me.

Krup you boys.

52 comments:

JJ said...

So funny. As an older brother to two sisters, I know... Oops, there's the phone. Hold on, I'll get it.

Hello? Officer who?

Brooke, it's for you.

Brookelina said...

Et tu, JJ? Krup you.

Übermilf said...

It's also because you're the youngest. I had an older brother AND sisters, and their equally viscious in their own ways.

My only weapon against my brother was to spray him with perfume.

And, they keep that older brotherness about them. My husband is the oldest. He still loves to tease and torment.

The Moviequill said...

West Side Story is my favourite musical and I hate musicals (if you're going to drag me out to the theatre in a monkey suit, there better be either tits or gunfire)

Jack's Shack said...

That is pretty funny. I have three little sisters, so I can appreciate it.

Ruben said...

My parents had a sick sense of humor like your brothers. They used to tell me"Ruben, we couldn't love you more if you were our biological child. Now that you're older we can tell you the truth. YOU ARE ADOPTED!" I would cry my eyes out and then they would laugh as if that crap was funny and say "boy do you think we'd feed a kid that eats as much as you if he wasn't our flesh and blood".

Brookelina said...

Ubie - I wish I had thought of perfume when I was little. It would have solved the tormenting problem as well as the smell.

MQ - relax. Nobody here thinks you are gay.

Jack - be nice to them! They may be responsible for you in your old age.

Ruben - that just made me spit water out on my screen. LOL! Our families would definitely get along well.

meme said...

Naw, you're still lucky. I had two older sisters that were twins. Torture, I tell you. That is, until I grew taller and and faster (and prettier...hahaha)

gone said...

good memories, could you imagine what life would have been like with out them? Man, I wouldn't give up my sister's and brother for the world. Your brothers were good to you so it seems.

joanne said...

Ooo, so funny! I have three older brothers. Two of them used to torment me too (the tickling, etc.). Brings back memories. They were much older, though (10 and 11 years older) so they would do things like hang me upside down by my ankles and bump my head against the floor.

im here somewhere said...

i am the oldest of nine. i am 5 years older than the next one down adn the rest were all born back to back...and they tortured me!!!when i had to babysit(which was all the frickin time) they woulld chase me thru the house with a butcherknife..bastards.

it was ok when they got older though. they would help me sneak back into the house and clean up my ppuke and move my car off the front lawn when i came home drunk..with the promise that i would let them drink when mom and dad went up north for the weekend...oh, the memories

Egan said...

Oldest of nine? Damn Lilreddramaqueen, you stole my thunder. I am the second youngest of seven, six boys and one girl. My sister is the second oldest and turned out quite burly. The dynamics of a large family are almost as complicated as our own federal government. I got away with murder since I was the second youngest, but was/am a bit attention starved.

MoDigli said...

Very cute! I'm an only child, so I have absolutely no clue! LOL... it was nice to live it thru your story, Brookie. :)

Brookelina said...

meme - older twin sisters. You win. Love your site!

Sarah - I loved having four older brothers - most of the time.

JoJo - my brothers are 13, 12, 7, and 6 years older than me. The older ones were actually kinder than the younger ones!

lilred - damn girl! Butcher knives? That's an episode of Cops.

Egan - I got away with a lot because of being the youngest, but at the same time I bore the brunt of my parents' divorce and subsequent nonsense.

Brookelina said...

MoMo - I've often wondered what it would be like to be an only child. Wanna switch? lol

Officer Krupke said...

Brooke we need to talk.

Officer Krupke said...

just kidding....it's EVP. i thought this would be funny.

gone said...

I was the lonely only who grew up around adults.

And even though I don't relate AT ALL...I still enjoyed this post. Partly because it was so well written and intriguing, and partly because I find your brothers so clever in their torment that I envy them a bit.

darth said...

"boy boy..crazy boy..get cool, boy.."

i love that movie :))

yournamehere said...

Kudos to evil for inventing the false blogger. That is funny.

im here somewhere said...

that was very funny!

btw, two of my brothers are younger than my daughter..my dad needs to keep it in his pants..cause i think their gonna have more..im frickin 29, give it up already dad!

sunshine said...

I have one younger sister (younger by 5 years) and I plead guilty to having teased her on more than one occasion. But I gained new respect for her the day she finally said "shut up, you big dummy!" and hit me over the head with a baton.

The twinkly stars and reverberations of "dummy, ummmy, ummmy, ummy" went on for a good five minutes, like a bad disco song.

Next door to us was a huge Italian family, and little Chrissy (my sister's best friend) was the youngest. She got it from both brothers and sisters. They sat on her and farted on her face, jumped out of the bushes to scare her, and one time her older sister almost drowned her in the backyard pool.

My mother had twins who died of SIDS before I finally arrived. I always wished I'd had that older brother and sister but as I read your post, I'm wondering how much grief I was spared!

Interesting footnote: After my mother passed away my sister and I were going through her things. We found the birth certificate for the twins. They had been born exactly 10 years to the day before I was born. My mother never told me - maybe because she didn't want me to feel creepy about it. Isn't that wild?? What are the odds??

Gordy said...

Great descriptions of your brother's pranks..I particularly loved the bra on the knees, although from what others comment about previous profile pics, it seems they may have been wrong?

Melanie was here said...

Brooke - aweswome post.

I am the oldest of 4 (3 girls and one boy) and my brother is the youngest. We used to torment him so much, and still do.

When he was asleep we could kick in his door, run to his bed, give him 3 chest compressions and run out. Talk about a bad dream!

MoDigli said...

See that, evil, you've scared Brooke away with your Officer Krupke persona!


Brooke ~ Let's switch! Or at least give me one older brother. I always wanted an older bro who could look out for me. :)

(see how I've romanticized it?! LOL)

Brian said...

I have a younger brother and I've always wanted him to be adopted. Unfortunately he looks and acts too much like my dad for any of us to deny him.

Evil Petting Zoo said...

Okay it's really me!! I am the older brother. So my brother got to learn from my mistakes. I had an older sister but I was doomed to repeat her mistakes.

Anonymous said...

Brooke, if somebody had the guts to make a movie out of this story, it'd made America so much easier to relate to, unlike stupid action flicks!

Your new fan,

Anonymous said...

er, sorry, I'm unfamiliar with Blogger ways:

Signed,
Tatyana

Lo Lo Lova said...

I am also an only child and after reading your blog, and happy to remember my very boring and uneventful childhood. :)

Great story and great storytelling, as usual!

Brookelina said...

Gee Officer Krupke - krup you!

Jacob - remember all this if you plan on having more children.

Darth - a man singing showtunes about being boy crazy....something you want to tell us? Not that there's anything wrong with that...

YNH - agreed. And I'm honored that he went to the trouble for me and an excellent joke.

lilred - get that viagra away from dad!

Sunny - wow, that is amazing! But it's kind of cool to know that now I would think...has a lovely symmetry to it.

Brookelina said...

Gordy - it was all the angle of the picture...nothing more. ;)

Mel - classic!!! Believe me there was a lot more that they did. I was kind and told only the cute ones.

MoMo- you can have them all. Really, I don't mind. Take them. Today.

Brian - I always wanted a baby sister to boss around. But I'm sure I would have been jealous of her in the end.

Evil - your kids must do this sort of stuff to each other - even if you don't know about it.

Tatyanna - thanks! And comment anytime!

Lo Lo - thank you lovey. When we move to Lo Lo land my brothers can't come.

gone said...

More children? This is the exact reason for NOT having more children. But try and convince my wife of that fact. No dice.

Crystal said...

Makes me wish I had a brother! My mom says God punished my dad, by giving him 3 daughters since he loved women so much. ;-)

Evil Petting Zoo said...

My kids don't do this sort of stuff to each other. They read the Bible and take turns quoting scripture. They are so well behaved. Right...actually it's them and their cousins that are bad. The girls tend to gang up on one of my nephews. There's 5 of them in the same age range and boy can girls be mean.

One day we're all at my mom's house and I walk out to find my daughter and my niece picking on my nephew. They were giving him crap about his pants. My niece says,'Why don't you just leave with your high water pants. Are you waiting for a flood?' *funny how that's still an insult after all these years* My daughter chimes in, 'Hey I didn't know boys wear capri pants!?' My nephew was no match for these two girls and their rapier wits.

Brookelina said...

Jacob - who are you kidding. You're made to be the father of at least enough to make one side of a basketball game.

Crystal - love it!!! Your mom sounds like a very wise - and tolerant - woman. lol

EPZ - oh I know I had it easier than a boy with lots of sisters. I once dated a guy who had four sisters, but in his case he was the great white hope of the family - mr. perfect and beautiful. I avoided his family like the plague as I was convinced they believed nobody was good enough for their boy.

Marel Lecone said...

No brothers, for me. I always wanted a brother. I guess I lucked out. haha :) Great post, as usual.

NYaquaman said...

My sister has three younger brothers and as seven year olds she tortured us by making us wear a fragrance concocted from every single item in my mother's cabinet. Noxious doesn't describe the aroma.

justanothernickname said...

4 brothers....and 3 sisters.......how cool is that?

im here somewhere said...

my dad is an irish redhead,im sure he doesnt need viagra if he has the same sexdrive as i do....oh yuck, i just thought about my dad having sex...

evercurious said...

I am the oldest and the only girl in my fam. I mostly grew up with my brother Ramsey who is four years younger. He pissed me off one night when my freind was over. We waited until he was asleep to retaliate. She held his undies while I squirted toothpaste all down his crack. The next morning he woke up and went to the bathroom. Shortly thereafter we heard a frightened, "MOM!" He was crying and thought something was seriously wrong. We got in trouble. On the flip side, all the boys in the neighborhood were scared of me. If they picked on Ramsey I was sure to beat them up accordingly. I was a very small girl too.

Girl With An Alibi said...

Great story. Sarah's right you're a very smart, funny and talented woman. I'll have to come visit more often.

Brookelina said...

Marel - thank you. I've often wondered what it would have been like to have no brothers. Sometimes the thought makes me sad, sometimes it thrills me. lol

Aqua - wish I had thought of perfume back then. Damn.

Nickname - that is very cool!

lilred - not an image I needed either.

EC- that is a brilliant story!!! Brilliant!

GWA - Sarah's post today made me cry. I'm still crying - in a happy wow did I deserve such kindness way. I hope I can live up to her words. And as they say - any friend of Sarah's is a friend of mine. I'm on my way to your blog. :)

Bad Maria said...

I was in the middle - my older sister told me that they got me at the Salvation Army and whenever we went there (which was frequently since we had 6 kids and no money) she told me we were there to either (a) exchange me; or (b) to look for my REAL family. At first, I was terrified of the Salvation Army store but then after she cut off my eyelashes when I was 3 and tricked me into eating dog doodoo when I was 6, I began to look forward to going.

Kris said...

I'm new here via PLD - you are hilarious! I bow down. I'm off now to shop around your site.

Krup you boys. Fantastic.

Brookelina said...

Welcome Bad Maria and Kris!

Maria - cut off your eyelashes? I truly hope you paid her back for that one.

Kris - thank you! Heading to your blog now, and Maria's of course!

Lee Ann said...

All in all it must have been great. I have an older brother that used to do the same kind of stuff you talked about. He used to play mind games and do little torturous stuff like barely tickling me in one spot continuously, trying to get me to "cave". I kept saying, "that doesn't bother me"! Until I couldn't take it anymore:) Now he is a Forensic Psychiatrist...haha! I see you are from FL, I lived in Boca for 7 years...loved it down there and miss it sometimes.

Eric said...

My wife is the youngest of 8 and the only girl. I know she can relate.

Brookelina said...

Lee Ann - I saw your post about the gator. Yikes! I am lucky that I have not experienced any gators since moving here 5 years ago, even if I am on a canal.

Eric - wow. Your wife wins! That's impressive. I'm sure her stories are twice as good as mine - haha.

Kristen said...

My friend was one of four boys and he has a little sister. He told this awful story about duct taping her first boyfriend to the inside of her closet door when he showed up for their first date. LOL. She thought he stood her up because he never showed and she cried and cried. Until she found him in her closet 2 hours later. Boys are evil.

Brookelina said...

Welcome Kristen! By the time I was of dating age my brothers were off in college - thank goodness! But of course they would hear about my exploits when they came home for breaks, and then the torture commenced.

Anonymous said...

The part about you being brought into the house to scratch their backs had me cracking up.

It reminds me of my aunt who was quite miserable to me and would make me scratch hers all the time. I hated it. I used to think, does she think I live just to scratch her back! Yes, weird I know, but true.

-Mary