Imagine, if you will, the convergence of a redneck/biker/trucker family and a migrant/hillbilly/rabble-rouser/trucker family. It's like a match made in heaven, though sadly it didn't last. My mom and dad both came into their marriage to each other as divorced single parents with one son apiece. Grand total, I have three brothers, two halves and a full. We're all roughly three years apart in age.
My dad is a genius when it comes to cars. He's like Dr. House for things with wheels and engines.
My mom loves animals and owns too many dogs for her own good, not that I blame her. She also likes puns more than any person should.
My oldest brother is basically a shorter clone of my dad, right down to the red goatee, though he doesn't have quite the same gift with machinery. He's married and has two little blonde girls with ginormous blue eyes.
My second oldest brother kind of looks like Johnny Depp in Cry Baby. He spends his time working out and modeling.
My youngest brother looks, not to be sacrilegious, like a biker version of Jesus. When he smiles he looks like he's baring his teeth. He's a door gunner on a Black Hawk in the army. When he gets out, he plans to tour the country on his Harley.
I'm the youngest.
I think what ties us together is our love of cars, guns, John Wayne, and Johnny Cash.
My parents divorced in 2000. Since then, they've each had another failed marriage. My mom and ex-stepdad adopted a girl from Russia some years ago, but she is now a ward of the state.
My dad is now dating a biker chick with two grown kids just as redneck and biker as the rest of us.
My mom's boyfriend is an old Missouri farmer who likes to call dogs "hounds" and eyes "peepers."
As far as extended family goes, my dad's brother and sister, who are fraternal twins, bought adjacent property and built houses next door to each other. It's like they have their own little compound where they fix dirt bikes and give each other a hard time. My mom has 9 brothers. Their numbers include several truckers, a few ex-military personnel, some mechanics, jacks-of-all-trades, and a Lakotah medicine man. They have some awesome stories about shark hunting and bull riding.
Every once in a great while I wonder what it would be like to have lived in one place all my life or to have a family that had always remained intact. The rest of the time I feel like it's more fun this way.
Listening to: "Crocodile Rock" by Elton John
Reading: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J. K. Rowling