Friday, October 10, 2008

The "crazy one" in the Family

Last winter, Sunshine asked guest bloggers to write about the "crazy one" in the family. She asked if I'd tell a story about well --- you know, the one person in our family we all have, yes, that one. The one you hoped was not really part of the gene pool.

When I read her request, I froze. Wow, our immediate family is 30+ strong, how do I pick just ONE? We are all that "one weird relative".

(Sheila and Gary ... you may think you are in-laws but after time served being married into our family for so long, yep, you're one of us.)

I could tell a crazy tale about each and everyone of us and plenty about myself.

How about the fact that nothing is sacred in our family when it comes to pulling a prank or practical joke on each other.

Years ago I had an apartment with two cats. I wasn't supposed to have cats, so I kept pretty quiet and to myself. When I went on vacation, I asked my family to come in and care for the cats. I asked, "Please, keep things on the down-low." When I came home and opened the door it appeared there had been one wild orgy/party/blowout through out my apartment. They went to great lengths to stage a sight that would put any given frat house to shame. I think by the time I returned all the beer bottles and cans, I made over $100 bucks. Booze bottles probably filled a garbage can. Bras and panties were scattered all over. A mannequin was set up (R-rated) in my bed. A beach scene was on display in the living room ... beach towel spread out, umbrella, shells and sand! Two-thumbs up ... it was awesome.

Or the time my sister Sandi and her husband went on vacation. (yeah another vacation sitting duck story) She knew better than to leave her key with anyone. She didn't want to come home to a party scene. That's okay, instead she came home to find her house on the market. We planted a local Realtor's "For Sale" sign in her front yard.

And poor brother Mike. To this day I don't think he knew what zapped him. This was way back before the fake winning lotto tickets were known to all. He had taken me out to lunch and picked up the bill. He wouldn't let me leave the tip. So ... I sent him a thank you note and enclosed a lotto ticket. I warned his wife Sheila, because the joke was to be on him and I didn't want her to fall for it. I wanted her to report his exact reaction. He fell for it hook, line, and sinker. He was freaking out and called me so excited. His scratch off was a believable 10K or 100K, I forget ... the reaction was priceless. He went on and on and Sheila was in hysterics in the background. She finally had to get him to read the back to "see how to claim the prize" before he realized it was fake. I don't know if he really ever forgave me.

Just how low can we stoop for a joke? Low. When my brother (sorry Mike, only bro, you were an easy target) was little, he couldn't pronounce polio. He'd say "poi-yo". For years later, my sister would always try to get him to say it correctly. He'd stick to his guns, even as an adult, and would never fall for any entrapment of pronouncing it correctly. In his late 20's he had an injury and was in a coma for awhile. When he came out, to encourage him to speak and jar his memory, we all took turns taking him down memory lane.

That's when my sister Sandi had a scathingly brilliant idea. We were talking to him, asking questions, asking him to pronounce things. He was at the later stages of recovery and eager to prove things were coming back. Sandi asked him, "Do you remember getting vaccinated as a kid for that childhood disease ... what's it called? They one where kids can't walk?" And he answered "Polio?" As quickly as the word came out of his mouth he started laughing and cursing at her ... he knew exactly what she did. And thank God, he recovered 99% ... the other 1% can't be recovered ... it's part of the crazy gene we all have.

Yes, we are a clan of crazies ... each and everyone of us. But, unite we stand. All for one, one for all.

We got each others backs ... just don't turn it, hee-hee-hee!


Ree said...

I love the For Sale sign idea.

sgk213 said...

A nice trip down Memory Lane.

Betty said...

Wow! What a family! Reading this makes me realize how serious (and DULL) my family was. No wonder we've kind of disbanded......

Thanks for the laughs.


dkuroiwa said...

I do love a good family joke...your family sounds like a real good time!!
My dad's family has a huge reunion every two years...i think last year we had, on the second day, about 145 people for lunch!!!
I do understand that whole "don't turn your back on a family member for one moment" idea!!! Just makes life a bit more interesting and fun, don't you think? :-D