My brother, Greg, can make anyone blush. It’s usually in a diner when others are eating biscuits and gravy or a six pack of pancakes loaded with every diabetic’s dream.
He also deals with reality, and at this point in my life, I’m grateful he does.
Years ago, he met a girlfriend of mine in a diner. I was also there with my brother, Tom. He was primarily there for the coffee and steak and eggs. Greg was there to evaluate. I was merely in the diner to introduce them to this odd girl they’d never met. My date at the time had a name. I can’t quite recall it. I do remember her profession. She helped impound repossessed cars. What’s wrong with that? I was merely a teacher repossessing and impounding students, so I thought we had a great deal in common. My brother, Greg, frowned upon her as though she was just another one of those dirt diggers, hoping to get whatever money I didn’t have and place it in her filthy back drawers. According to Greg, she wasn’t up to snuff. It was then when I asked Greg to give her a chance. Tom had a mouthful of food. Greg had a mouthful of advice. After speaking to this girl for almost five minutes, he turned to me and said, in his loudest of diner voices, “If you f–k, this up, I will kick the living s–t out of you!” People turned their heads at how vocal he was, appalled by his profanity. Greg was just recognizing her intelligence, beauty, wit, charm and sense of humor all in those five minutes. I wouldn’t say it was his most charming of moments, but it did stick to me like Greg’s gorilla glue always did.
I took his threat into consideration and asked her out for another date, this time without my brothers. She decided, upon my brother’s advice, she would accept, only because she didn’t wish me to get the s–t beat out of me.
I finally figured out the girl’s name and she later became Vice President of a local repossession dealership in Seattle. Britt and I have been happily married for the last 12 years and I haven’t had any s–t kicked out of me.
These days,Greg frequents diners working for tips or free bacon while giving other couples solid advice. Most of those customers end up properly divorced. We were two of the lucky ones.
Tom gave up coffee for smoked trout and hikes.
All is well.