My Brother is a Spectacular Man

I drove to Idaho to hang with my brother this weekend. He and I don’t get a whole lot of time together and I haven’t been up there in five years or more, so the trip was overdue.

This weekend it struck me once again that my brother is a spectacular man. Being over four years my junior, I always thought of him as my little brother. But he’s not really, and hasn’t been for a long time. In fact, often I feel it’s the other way around.

He was 14 when dad died and he was an infant when mom died. Think about that for a second. Not that our family has the market on tragedy or anything. But that one fact seems sharper when I think of my brother, the youngest.

If he turned out to be a career bank robber you might say, “Well, he did lose his mom so young and his dad when he was a teen. Such formative years.”

But somehow, in the way the universe delivers somehows, the opposite happened.

My baby brother is generous, absolutely overflowing with love and so friendly it still surprises me when I witness it. He works and plays harder than anyone I know. 

He told me a little story this weekend about a foreign couple who approached him outside a store. They were new in town. English was not their first or second language. And they were hungry.

He took them into a grocery store, and spent the next several minutes going up and down the aisles, letting them fill the cart with whatever they needed.

That story isn’t even about charity. It’s more than that. It’s about seeing an individual for who they are and doing whatever you can to leave that individual’s life better than you found it.

My brother mirrors the best of me, and let’s me ignore the worst of me for a minute. He is so much that I wish I was. But since we’re brothers, I’m vicariously in there as well. It’s a comfort.

We have the same laugh.

We both respect other people until they give us a reason not to.

We both adore our lady and would do anything for our children.

But he has a F350, the biggest truck I’ve ever seen with more features than iOS12. And I have a five on the floor Nissan Frontier, all standard.

We both push ourselves physically, but he does it with a snowmobile going god-knows-how-fast and I do it on a bicycle with finger thin tires.

He lives in the biggest house I think I’ve ever seen. I raised four kids in 1400 square feet.

I’m drawn to social media and he’s just social.

We’re both competitive. And we do fight like only brothers can. But we’re honest and in the end we want the same thing: to be around each other and share our lives with each other.

Sometimes when I look at him, I see that 5 year old toe-headed little shit who won’t leave me and my friends alone. In the same thought, almost in the same sentence in my mind, I just want another hour with him, right there, just us. I want to debate things that don’t matter. And I want to nod, smile and laugh about the things that do.

We don’t have a perfect relationship, but it’s pretty fucking good.

I love my brother. He’s a spectacular man.


  1. My sister moved to Idaho in November 2017. Driving there to see her, I felt many of the same emotions about my sibling as you've blogged about yours. I love this post, and I think you and your brother are blessed. Thanks for sharing!


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