Thursday, March 02, 2006

Happy Birthday, Kim

Today is my sister's birthday; since she tends to operate on the same schedule as normal people, she's not awake right now, so she doesn't realize that she's now one year older.

To the left is the picture of Kim and Mom and Me from many, many years ago--I think the picture dates back to 1965, in fact. For years now, I have joked that Kim was my "older sister," and I have actually managed to convince some people of that fact (it's amazing what people will believe if you keep saying it frequently and loudly...). There you have it: proof positive that Kim is actually my little sister. Cherish it, Kimberly--I'm going to stick to the other story, and this may be your only corroborating evidence!

When Kim was born, way back in 1961, we lived at 123 Plymouth Road in Garden Lakes, a subdivision just outside of the Rome, GA, city limits. It was our second home on Plymouth Road--we had moved from 119 to 123, jumping the house next door like we were playing some strange checkers game, because it was a slightly larger house. Alas, not large enough--it was a two-bedroom home, so Kim's arrival into my world meant that I had to share a room with her until April, 1963, when my parents built the family home on Marchmont Drive in Rome. I doubt that Kim even remembers the Garden Lakes home, since she would have been just a month over two when we moved.

Kim was a loud baby; she didn't seem particularly pleased with anything, and she let us know. While I remember her frequent protestations about this and that, I somehow managed to sleep through the cacaphony nevertheless (it's amazing how children can sleep through pretty much anything, isn't it?). Even so, I remember being Less Than Pleased at having to share my room with this new invader, so I was quite happy when we moved to a three bedroom home in 1963 and Kim got her own room.

As we grew up, Kim was a frequent invader... errr, visitor to my room--usually choosing to pay those visits while I was out. The purpose of most of those visits, I believe, was to raid my record collection; Kim would frequently take my albums to her room, playing them on her crude record player. It skipped a lot, and Kim learned early that she could stack quarters on the tone arm to make it gouge right through the skips. When that didn't work, she would use her thumb instead. The result? A lot of my records have random percussive outbursts that weren't a part of the original recording...

In spite of her role as a musical vandal, I don't recall any animosity 'twixt the two of us beyond the normal childhood bickering. Kim was only ten when I got married, so I wasn't living at my parents' home when Kim went through her turbulent teen years. I would pay frequent visits, so we would see evidence of her latest misadventures--a broken sliding glass door where she pushed the chair backwards into it by mistake, a collapsed hallway ceiling where she tried to sneak out through the attic for some reason and discovered that sheetrock is not designed to hold the weight of a human body (even a young one)...

Even though I wasn't with her sufficiently to serve as the usual ideal role model that I have always been for this wayward child, she turned out quite well, I'm proud to say. Must be in the genes...

Happy birthday, Kimberly!

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