Thursday, July 15, 2004

Brothers Who Care About Each Other

Brothers Who Care About Each Other

If you have brothers, you have a sense of humor.

When I was 9, my younger brother, 7, and I would walk to school. There wasn't a bus system in our neighborhood. The school was in a very old building and seemingly didn't have much of a budget to financially support a fleet for transportation but we did have crossing guards. They could afford crossing guards which were probably just volunteer students picked to hold an octagonal sign and get their peers across safely.

On the path to school, we always had to go over these railroad tracks which were active tracks at the time, so they did get used on a regular basis by trains always heading somewhere. And walking all the way to school can get mundane sometimes, so I thought I'd play a little joke on my brother and make the trip interesting that day.

We came up to the railroad tracks that we've crossed a hundred times before and I noticed a train sitting on the track, probably 1000 feet to the east, pointed our direction. The train was either not moving or moving slow enough that I decided to lay on the track, flat on my back and see what my brother's reaction would be. If only I had some rope and a sinister, mustached man in black to tie me up.

My brother went ape. You should've seen this seven year old screaming and crying for his older brother to hurry up and get off the track before I got squashed or diced into a million pieces, organs strewn everywhere by the train that's a thousand feet away moving at a turtle's pace. I was no where near in danger of getting hit so I wanted to see how long my brother could keep up the bloody murder screaming. Apparently a good thirty seconds before I decided to end it. It took the rest of the trip to school to get him to calm down.

I look back on this memory fondly and it makes me smile.