You know, this whole interviewing my family thing is kinda fun. I’m considering expanding the scope to include extended family as well. This could be fun. Of course, if you don’t know anyone in my family (and most of you don’t), it’s probably a little less interesting, but like I always say, that’s the way it goes. It’s my blog. You’re more than welcome to start your own.
My sister (Cari-Lynn) completes the family interview trifecta today. She’s a year-and-a-half older than me – born in August of 1969. Applying no revisionist history, I can tell you that my sister and I got along pretty well. There were the inevitable dust-ups between the two of us that happen with all siblings, but by-and-large, they were minor and we were probably better than average when it came to getting along.
Both of us had non-standard upbringings to a degree, but hers was much more askew than mine because she was a very competitive figure skater. I don’t just mean competitions on weekends, either – we’re talking about not attending school full time, skating in the morning AND the afternoon nearly every day AND competitions on weekends. This required a lot of sacrifice on her part and also sacrifices for the rest of us. In fact, when I was in 5th or 6th grade, I was getting up by myself for school every day and getting ready, because my dad and sister were off at the rink and my mother was off at work. Weird! There was that one day I missed the bus in the morning, too, because I reached a new level on Defender (Atari 2600!). Good times.
Anyway, through all that stuff and much more, we’ve come through relatively normal. She now lives in Brookline, NH with her husband and two kiddos and they’re all doing well. She’s a teacher’s assistant and a hard-working mother. Good for her. She’s also rather funny when she’s drunk, as we all found out one new years eve about ten years ago. That might be the only time I’ve seen her remotely intoxicated……..you can be sure she was sober when she answered the following questions………
1. Mom claims you tried to kill me when I was first born and brought home. Shaken baby syndrome. Are you ever going to finally apologize for that?
No no…that is not how it was told to me! I wanted her to take you back to the hospital for a better product (meaning I wanted another baby from the nursery). But, she didn’t listen to me and we had to keep ya!
2. What is your earliest childhood memory?
You won’t remember this, because you were two. I remember being in the house in Sterling, MA, hanging out with you and Dad in the garage while he was tinkering around with something and me being deathly afraid of a CLOWN PICTURE that mom put up. It totally freaked me out at age 4. (Jeff note: Mom? A clown picture? Care to comment?)
3. Do you ever brag about the fact that you’re one of very few people that has beaten Nancy Kerrigan in figure skating competitions?
No, I don’t go around bragging about it. I like to mention it to people when they think she is “all that.” I am not a big fan of hers for obvious reasons, but, in the long run, she got to the Olympics and yours truly did not.
4. Tell me something you remember that happened in grade school.
Oh my gosh…there are so many memories to tell. I will always remember 6th grade because one of my classmate, Paul Hanna, of whom I was friends with, passed away from a freak accident involving a gun. That was really sobering at age 11.
5. Did you really like that day bed that you had for a while? I have to say, that was one thing of yours that I didn’t like. What was one thing of mine that you didn’t like?
Yes…at first. I begged mom and dad for that!! Once I got it, I found out slowly but surely, it was not very comfortable. That was my girlie girl stage in life. Something that you had which I didn’t like: I was not fond of your apartment at Northeastern U (Boston) with the mice and roaches. Yuck!
6. What do you think was the dumbest/stupidist thing I did while growing up?
There were so MANY when you were in middle school and high school that I can’t choose just one! When you were a little kid, you were always putting small things up your nose!! I remember we almost had to bring you to the hospital because you had a button stuck up there. Mom was trying to get it out with tweezers and you were very afraid. I just remember staring at you and, in my 5 or 6 year old way, shaking my head in disbelief. [Jeff note: I actually remember this!]
7. Did you ever get to drive Mom’s Mazda?
You know, I don’t remember. I am sure that I did because I can feel the fear of God creeping up on me!
8. Tell us something crazy/goofy you did in college.
On Halloween night in 1990, my dorm friends and I dressed up in ridiculous costumes and went trick or treating in the suburban neighborhoods. They were quite annoyed with my friends, but when they saw me, it was okay. People thought that my “older sisters” were taking me out to get candy!!!! We laughed a lot that night.
9. What was the last thing you laughed really hard about?
I laugh a lot with my 5th and 6th graders at school. They are so silly sometimes!! I love comedies on TV and movies. The last time I laughed really hard was at Demetri Martin’s stand up special on Comedy Central. I also laughed a lot when I watched Dane Cook’s HBO special as well. I was barely breathing!!
10. What do you remember about me from my college days?
I remember your mullet hair-do!! Hee Hee! But mostly I remember how your love of music was blossoming. You were always going to see shows at little dives (seeing bands that are now playing stadiums) and telling me about the one dollar beer nights at the “college bar.” I remember that I was overly worried about you “way out” in Ohio, especially the night you called from your dorm room while there was a raging lunatic with a gun shooting randomly around your building!! God, that was freaking scary. [Jeff note: heh. By the way, it was “nickel beer” night……goodness. Beers for a nickel, that’s just wrong on so many levels.]
11. What is your favorite part about being a mother? Least favorite?
My favorite part about being a mom: the absolute joy I feel when my kiddos do something they are proud of. You can’t beat that. My least favorite part about being a mom: lack of sleep and time to myself
12. Complete this sentence: “If it wasn’t for my brother Jeff, I would be ________________.
If it wasn’t for my brother Jeff, I would be TOTALLY LOST. I am so forever grateful that you are my brother and close friend.. There are so many times you pulled me out of a bad place and helped me out. I would not be the person I am now if you were not in the picture. Thanks! [Jeff note: um….wow. I wasn’t expecting that. Thanks.]
13. Have you used that saucepan I got you for Christmas yet?
Yes, I have, thank you very much! Do you know what? Dave has washed it every time, too! (Yes, one time so far, but that counts as “every time” ~ Dave)
14. Do you think more about the past or the future?
I think about both equally. Some of the past memories are fantastic to re-live in my head (like figure skating and our “lively” family events) but others I wouldn’t want anyone to live through. The future is so cool to think about when you have little kids. I always wonder what they are going to be like in high school, or what they are going choose as their professions. I also like to think about how Dave and I are going to be golfing all year round, retired and happy.
Thanks to Cari for being a good sport, even if she did try to kill me.