How can it be that in all these years of blogging, I have never once had a birthday post to one of my very favorite Virgos? Have I mentioned my affinity for Virgos? I have had a plethora of Virgos in my life without ever having sought them out. It just happens. Aside from family members, there is my friend Karen from high school, my old roommate Bruce, my old roommate Tami, and at one point 4 out of 5 directors at work (which is now 2 out of 4). And speaking of those family members, there's the handsome Niko, who just had a birthday last week; the handsome dad, whose birthday is two weeks away, my cousin Billie, another nephew, and the one whose birthday is prompting this post, my oldest brother, Michael. I know! Look at all those Virgos! But today, I'm all about just one--Michael. That's him on the far left.
Michael stands out in the sibling group. Besides being the oldest and tallest, he never had a partner. Roy and I are the brunettes (well, before gray came out to play), while Brian and Kate are the blondes. Roy and Kate have brown eyes, while Brian and I have hazel eyes that used to be brown. Michael? He has beautiful blue eyes, clear and bright--ice, I used to call them, but they're more vibrant than that. And his hair, when he had it, was a lighter brown, like it was in the middle of the rest of us. Michael had his own room, while the rest of us shared. And because he's a leftie, always had plenty of room at the dinner table, unlike a certain baby of the family who had to sit between Brian and Roy and barely had any elbow room.
I adored Michael when I was little. I thought he hung the moon, as they say. We are the bookends, the oldest and youngest, with two years between each of us and our nearest sibling. Brian, Roy and Kate are the stair steps, one after the other. And you know what? He kind of adored me, too. He once played bingo for hours just to win an inflatable dolphin for me at a Mission Day school fair. He walked me home from kindergarten on a cold winter day, walking backward with his coat opened to block the fierce wind from stinging my eyes. One day when I got the wind knocked out of me, he carried me inside and calmed me down until I could breathe again, and then explained what it meant to have the wind knocked out of you. He used to let me sit on his bed while he did his homework, and taught me how to count and say basic greetings in French when I was 7. Michael could walk up stairs two at a time, a feat that I tried to emulate to no avail until I was much older. Michael's room (fastidiously tidy because, you know, a Virgo) was one of my favorite hide outs. He had the good albums. When he wasn't home, I would go into his room and play his records, curled up in a sunbeam on his bed like a cat.
We went through some bad patches--he grew up, I was a bratty little sister; I grew up, he left home--but he'll always be my biggest brother, my Michael. And I still kind of adore him.
Happy Birthday, Michael, and all you other wonderful Virgos born on this fine September 2nd (you know who you are).