Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sibling Rivalry

This is the diary I found yesterday. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading through it. Even though I was only about 9, the quality of the writing is slightly better than what I put here on a regular basis.

I have two younger sisters, both of whom now live far from Mathews. As the oldest sister, I was often put in charge of them, and this gave me an unnecessary license to boss them around. And torture them.

I will save the stories about how I bossed and tortured them for later. This is more about some of the minor flare-ups caused by irritation. You know…you live with someone for so long, there’s really not much else to do, little things start to irritate you, and because you are bigger and older you start things.

Such as World War III.

For example:

Saturday, January 26, 1974

Dear Diary,

Today it is raining. I came home from Nanny’s. When I got home I played with my horses. Middle Sister always cries when you touch her horse. She is a big crybaby (underlined so many times there is almost a hole in the page).All she does is cry. Today I just stood and looked at the rain.

-Chesapeake Bay Child

*I’m talking about plastic horses here. More importantly, if it’s true that I was only playing with my horses, then why would I be touching Middle Sister’s enough to make her cry?

Answer: Because I was the older sister and I could get away with it.


Or this:

Tuesday, December 23, 1975 (a year later)

Dear Diary,

Today I walked down the street with Nanny to go to the store. After that Mamma came and took me home. When I went to my room it was a mess. Middle Sister hadn’t made up the bed or anything. She likes to live like a pig. I just cleaned up my room the other day.

-Chesapeake Bay Child

*My grandmother Nanny lived in the next county over and had no car. We would have to walk about two miles to get to the grocery store. More importantly, the biggest pig in the family was me! If I did in fact clean that room up, it would have been the first and last time.

I did cruel stuff to both of my sisters. I can’t even tell you some of the things I did because they’re so awful. A less awful thing I did often, especially on long car trips, was to lick my hand and then wipe it on their arms or legs, any exposed patch of skin. This was usually because they were getting too close to me. They had crossed that invisible line that separated my territory from theirs. Then they’d holler, “Mamma, Chesapeake Bay Sister is licking me,” and start to whine and cry or something. If one of them licked me back? It was full-on war.

Many times my mother nearly had an accident in the lime green VW bus due to such fights going on in the back seats. The beauty of the bus was we were so far back she could not reach us. It is a wonder my poor mother has any marbles left after all those years of our fighting.

Now that we’re older, we have put all these silly tiffs aside. When we see each other, we don’t lick each other. I don’t touch their stuff.

I will say, though, that both of my sisters have this irritating habit of wearing too much lipstick ,and when they drink coffee or wine their lipstick marks are all over the glasses and cups (and I find the glasses and cups all over the house). They wear so much lipstick that sometimes even the dishwasher doesn’t get it off. And no way am I putting my hands in those glasses to wash that stuff out. No way.

That would be just like them licking me.


Mental P Mama said...

Gah. Sisters. I love the strident underlining in the diary. Have almost ripped a hole or two myself...

Bear Naked said...

I agree with you about lipstick marks on glasses and coffee cups.

foolery said...

Never had sisters (I have an older half sister whom I wasn't raised with) so I don't know about sharing clothes and dolls and stealing each other's boyfriends. I missed out big time. But I DO know from territory marking, having had two pesky little brothers. We tended to end our brawls physically -- not so much licking as punching, kicking, scratching (well, the scratching would've been me; I had to remain a LITTLE girlie, after all) and wrestling and brutal tickle fights. Good times.

I get to experience the sisters stuff through my girls, I guess. One already has a diary and she's poised to write horrible things about her mother. Gulp.

I want to see more of the VIEW! Holy cow, woman -- you've been holding out on us!

Anonymous said...

Um, let's see....I can add a little to the "torturing your sisters" that you "forgot" to embellish upon. Let's start with the pool game called CLAM where one of the younger sisters would have to swim under your legs at the pool, only to be distracted by a strange yellow mist...and then there's the game of " football ". Your instuctions were as follows: place your head on my butt and when I yell "hike" you run backwards. WELL WE NEVER GOT TO HEAR THE WORD "HIKE" BECAUSE YOU WOULD, POOT ON OUR HEADS!!!!!!!!!!!! I fell for it every time because you were my older sister ( still are ) and I looked up to you so much ( still do !) BOTH of you!!! Diane did WAAAAAYYY too much licking. Still grosses me out. YUCK.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

mpm - great word-strident! can you ghost write for me?

bn - lipstick marks are the worst.

foolery - this is just the tip of the iceberg. i was trying to be "polite," but thanks to Little Sis below, we might be wagint another war. we had awful fist fights. terrible. biting, scratching, pulling hair, pushing, etc. and that was just with our mother trying to break it all up.

Oh, and here's a Special Note to Little Sister who had to go and specifically define what I had glossed over in the earlier narrative. You can't prove any of that happened. In fact, I think when I was pulling you in the wagon too fast and you fell out and hit your head on that pole, it may have done some permanent damage.

I NEVER said put your head on my butt. I said that I was going to HIKE it to you, and to be correctly positioned you'd have to get CLOSE in.

Clearly we have different versions of the story. And for the love of Pete, will my sisters just get over it already?

Some people. And their lipsticks. And their loose lips!

Grandma J said...

Oh for gosh sakes! I couldn't stop laughing...then again with the comments. The wagon incident was too close to home..but yours was funnier because we didn't have a pole to run into.
We didn't have any licking either, but I can remember coming out of the bathroom and wiping a wet hand on my sister's face announcing "we're out of toilet paper".
I want more!

Anonymous said...

Here's a note to all you lipstick haters: buy a sponge and actually hand wash your glasses/coffee mugs. It comes right off. The only reason I wear lipstick is to take away from the " FRANK BURNS " effect. ( CBW always refers to her own lips as being eerily similar to Frank Burns' chicken lips on MASH- although that's not true ).

ALSO, regarding the "wagon story",um, yes, it most likely DID do permanent damage and I still have the scar.
Apparently you've forgotten the night the BOOGIE MAN was on our dock and we had forgotten to feed the pony. You sent Diane and I out to walk in the pitch black dark for the 200 yards to the pasture, while you stood up there in the light picking your finger nails and twirling your hair, protected by the baseball in YOUR hand. HMMMMMMMMM.

Anonymous said...

Baseball BAT that is....

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

I hereby officially plead The Fifth and have NO idea what anonymous is talking about.

I will say, I was very good at making sure things got done.

I just know I was practicing my swing for the next softball game. That's why I sent y'all out there. By the way, I always, ALWAYS fed that damn pony and dragged water the FOUR HUNDRED yards every single fricking day to make sure she didn't die of DEHYDRATION.

LOVE, and more LOVE, on top of LOVE, with a side of LIPSTICK STAINED KISSES,

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

Oh, and Frank Burns lips? Maybe.

But that's only because I don't trace an artificial boundary the size of Oklahoma around my existing lips and fill them in with lipstick. Which is then deposited on every glass this side of the Mississippi.

Little Sister never aggrevated me as much as Middle Sister.

Until now.

Love ya!
Frank B.

Anonymous said...

"little sister never aggravated me as much as middle sister did"....OK, whatever!! An excerpt from my diary might read...."Today Chesapeake Bay Child bit me. After I stopped crying, we played house. She made dinner. It was rat poison. Just before I ate it, Mamma came downstairs and screamed. We were all in trouble. Just like the other day, when CBC tried to lick me. She pushed me off of my skateboard. I screamed and ran. Mamma said she didn't care who started it, we were all in trouble." Don't quote me, but I feel this is accurate. - middle sister

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

I will confess to this: I did serve up d-con rat poison at a sisterly tea party but I (a) did not know what I was serving and (b) had no intention of having anyone swallow it and (c) was only using WHAT WAS HANDY, HELLO PARENTS??.

Has NOBODY heard of imagination??


Hearts and Kisses and Smiles,


MommyTime said...

Today I just stood and looked at the rain.

This is quite possibly the most plaintive and poignant sentence ever written in a 4th grader's diary. Were it not following tacit admission of having tortured one's little sister to the point of crying by touching her toys, that is...

Grandma J said...

BWAAAA HA! I'm having fun! I particularly like the long walk in the dark to feed the pony...oh yeah and d-con!

I once had my two younger sisters each hold an end of my beach towel, then asked the very youngest (because I had three younger sisters) to continually blow in it until it was dry.

Is there more? can I stick around?

kaffy said...

Thanks for the belly laughs, sisters! I'm sure there are many, many more stories to share. Don't be shy!

Anonymous said...

Funny, speaking of the D CON incident brings back FOGGY memories ( most of MY childhood is foggy,i don't remember many things, wonder why??? )of a certain, let's just call it SAUSAGE PARTY!!???!!! Not the kind of sausage party I like to go to these days( one where all the invitees are MENS )....Oldest sis, I'll be kind and not name her, attempted to, once again, serve a nice, healthy dinner for her two much cared for younger siblings...or so it seemed. Mother came in after we had inhaled the sausage patties, only to find that oldest sister did not THOROUGHLY COOK SAUSAGE PATTIES. I guess she liked the color pink and thought it would be "pretty" on the plate. Or, perhaps there was a motive. One does ponder this in one's older years. Father, who worked about 3 jobs, was trying to sleep while daughters were drinking homemade concoctions to make them vomit.Wretched, hellish noises seeped into Father's window and FAther woke up only to ask himself ," am I in HELL? ". Older sisters DID vomit. I did not, for some reason, even though I was drinking MUSTARD WATER. Perhaps that's why I have a parasite now??? Please, don't feel bad. I was all BIG fun.

foolery said...

Oklahoma is an inspired shape choice for lip liner.

I'm in my (almost, mostly) comfy chair, ready to see more fireworks. MORE! MORE!

clap clap clap

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

OK, Younger Sister. Not only do you have an intestinal parasite, you ARE one. Also, your niece and nephew read this blog, so you and your sausage-partying MENS just remember that.

I I hadn't fixed that sausage we could have starved to death. I was practically the second mother to you two, as much as I had to watch you all, and that was no easy task FOR A 10 or 12-YEAR OLD. NOBODY TOLD ME how to cook anything, much less raw pork. I had to figure that out all by myself. AND by the way it was cajun blackened on the outside, so as far as I was concerned it was done.

I believe I have already covered this sausage incident somewhere in the archives. It was not mustard water, but something Dr. Kearney gave us to make us throw up. It didn't work on me either. I had to stick my finger down my throat. And of course Middle Sis would vomit if you looked at her sideways,or if there was a strange smell, such as food that wasn't plain white bread, so she really didn't need any assistance.

Why don't you just e-mail me your sad saga of youth and then I'll comment on it. Be sure to mention your jaywalking incident right before-- or was it after-- the wet t-shirt contest. Oh, and PLEASE don't forget the time I saved you from Jimmy R., the psycho boyfriend from HELL.

I can't wait to see you Saturday night. In fact, maybe that's when we can post your little drama called Youth up here. This ought to be good. Real good. I'm getting ready.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

Oh, and I love my sisters. Even when they behave like intestinal parasites. And even when they get excited when we come within a 10-mile radius of a cash flow machine. With my bank card.

HUGS AND KISSES! Love ya like a sister! (An older sister, that is.) Best Friends Forever!

Anonymous said...

This is too funny! I grew up in Mathews, couldn't wait to leave - now back close by because I find it "calming". Bizarre. The Tin Can Alley story is great - I was looking for something maybe from the teenage years there - we all spent way too much time there in high school, when we should have either been at school, or at night, when we should have been doing anything other than what we were doing....
Keep up the great work!

Anonymous said...

She tried to kill us. At least twice. Don't let her eloquent writing skills fool you.Let's review things, shall we? :
*Fed us Rat Poison
*Pulled Radio Flyer Wagon around a corner too fast and Lil Sis went flying out, as physics would have it because it was at the speed of light, and cracked noggen on corner of bed
*Fed us undercooked Pork Sausage
*Made us, against our will,walk in bone chilling fear to fence to feed pony, knowing all the while that the actual boogie man, or local pedaphile, was on our dock, on the other end of the phone. I know this because I could hear Rusty barking through the phone line when I picked it up.
These are the facts. You decide. And yes, you did save me from PSYCHO boyfriend by telling him to please go forward with you know what. Sorry about the sausage party comment. To my neice and nephew, it's just this thing where men all get together and talk about sausage, how much they love it, and how they just need to talk about it
and revolve their lives around it all the time.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...


I blame my parents.

The End.

p.s. I STILL have that battery-operated toy train that petrified you to the point of tears. And I know how to use it.

p.p.s. I think you should start your own blog about Mens and their Sausage Parties. I'm sure Middle Sister would have a contribution or ten.

OK. Leave it to my sisters to steer this(and me) in the direction of an R rating when I am trying to keep it G or PG (only for son and daughter, mind you).

May I never hear about those sausages, undercooked or otherwise, again.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

OH! And to the anonymous commenter (not my sisters) from Mathews, thank you. And rest assured we are not this juvenile every day.

Just every other day.

Please come back and contribute your perspective. I, too, find this place an oasis of calm in a world of deadlines, stress and ill-placed priorities. It's a great place to live.

cats said...

This is good stuff. I never knew that sweet, innocent, cbw sister, treated you this way. She was always so perfect in public. Track team star, basketball player, and Beta VP. Who would have known? I am rally shocked. I do wear lipstick. I agree with Sister. Get a rag and wash dishes like we do.
My husband hates the lipstick on the cigareete butts I deposit in the ashtray , as well.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

et tu cats?

Wait until you hear my side (not the side here for the world to see, all tainted and such). I'm sure you'll understand.

We still need to do Busch Gardens.