Thursday, April 23, 2009

Unkie Kev

So, I've known my sister for quite some time. Almost thirty years, in fact. I remember when audio cassettes first came out and we'd record radio shows in the living room. Everyone else hated their siblings, but I couldn't see what was so horrible about a big sister. I remember when she thought I was a cool brother and would take me to high school parties when I was like thirteen. I can't believe my parents never said anything when I'd come home smelling like smoke (for the record, I didn't start smoking myself until several years later). I remember really understanding Dylan for the first time when I went to visit her at UW Madison. It was the first time I associated 'folk' with 'cool' - the beginning of my grassroots philosophy of public service, to stretch a metaphor. I remember the crazy pride that filled my chest when I spent a week with her in the Dominican Republic while she was working with the Peace Corps (see the 'Under the Mosquito Net' blog on the right). I had honestly never known any one who was making such a tangible difference in the lives of others. I remember when she first moved to San Francisco. It was so cool to hang out in a different city and know I knew someone, so I belonged - kinda. I remember when she got married to Bryan. I had been going through some tough personal times, but she (they both) went to such lengths to make sure I was okay, despite the heavy plate I know was in front of them.
My sister Bert is one of my favorite people in the world, and I could not be happier that she's going to have a tiny Bertlet that I can be the creepy Midwestern uncle to. Bert, I promise I won't teach him or her any swears until they're old enough to know not to say them in front of you. Just please don't give them the square-head haircut that Mom gave you. All the best from fly-over land, and most sincere congratulations to you and to Bryan!


  1. I just had to comment here, too. This is so touching, and really made me sit here and cry. And not just because I'm all pregnant and emotional. You are the best brother in the whole wide world. I'm so glad to have had a chance to share childhood with you. And I love that our relationship continues to be so close and supportive and just plain fantastic. I love you very much!