Monday, March 16, 2009

All in the Family

I don't use Facebook very often because I am lazy and don't like clicking around all over the place to stalk my friends. I logged on last night and had a most pleasant surprise! My cousin, Blair, sent me one of those instant message thingies. He is a very busy college student at Texas A&M, and I am sure he had much better things to do than message finishing off the last of a six pack. At any rate, I smiled when I saw his name pop up.

My brother and sister and I like to call him "Blayah," because that's how his name sounded when our grandparents said it. Granny and O'pa were/are both from Virginia, but somehow adopted the Texas twang after all their years of Air Force moves. Blayah is the youngest of the four cousins, therefore I feel entitled to pick on him as I feel led. As my blog's readerhip has apparently expanded to include the college crowd, I know he'll see this. Perhaps I should also start a series on "it doesn't matter which major you pick because no matter what kind of job you get and how much money you make, your kids are going to bleed you dry."

Anyways, chatting with Blair brought back all kinds of memories. Because he is an only child, he was willing to follow along with just about anything we said. One of my earlier memories of our Texas visits was when we forced invited him to take on a role in our annual Christmas play. Jamie, Alison, and I did the same play every year for our parents, and it usually involved my brother making several quick changes from his Santa Claus costume into an Elf outfit.

The plot roughly revolved around two children who go to the North Pole to convince Santa not to cancel Christmas. They help the elves make the toys, and Christmas is saved. Hilarity ensues. (Don't try to steal our idea. It's copyrighted...probably by someone else.) We decided to make things easier on Jamie that year, and convinced Blair that he would be the perfect elf. Poor Blair couldn't have been much older than three or four, and I don't think he really knew what a play was, much less an Elf. He forgot his lines and kept saying "Let's play da play" over and over during our rehearsals. As the director and star of the show (I was always the star), this was somewhat nerve wracking to me, but our parents all found it endearing. Speilberg wrote in and requested a screenplay version, but we had other projects in the works at that time.

The other reason I loved Blair was because he lived all the way in Texas while we lived in Virginia. Because he is six years younger than me, and lived so far away, it was especially easy to pick on him because he didn't have the advantage of knowing all my tricks. You'd think Jamie, just a year older than Blair, would look out for his cousin, but he wanted to be in on the hazing. I guess he figured he'd been through his fair share. At some point, we got him to believe that an army of the "Brain Washers" from space had invaded San Antonio. I'll never forget the glee I felt when Blair ran screaming from my dad, who we recruited to play the part of someone who had been brain-washed (I think I got my teasing streak from my dad). I am a mean person.

Despite our run-ins, Blair grew up to be a normal person who is not on medicine for psychotic episodes. He must be pretty normal because he just got engaged to Lauren, who I secretly refer to as "Texas Barbie" because she looks just like my perfect Happy Birthday Barbie from 1987. No matter how much your family traumatizes teases you, you can still turn out to be perfectly fine.

Blayah, if you read this, leave me a comment, or I'll send the Brain Washers....Isn't family great?



  1. Blayah, bless his heart....gotta love any guy dressed in a Texas A&M post, 'manda....


  2. Umm...let's do a quick head count of the cousins on the W side: Me, You, Jamie, Blair. Unless my math skills are even worse than I thought, that adds up to 4.

  3. I love to read your posts...great writing gift!


  4. I love it! It sounds just like my family - cousin tormenters, parents who are just as bad!

    I'm surprised we all made it to adulthood without needing tharapy!

  5. A Christmas play each year and the director to boot. Sounds like Miss Tracy and always being the school teacher. Isn't it fun to have cousins to grow up with?!? Someone to tease and not have to live with everyday like a sibling.


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