In yesterday’s post, I painted my big brother, Lew, (as opposed to my other brother, Lew) as a man with a dedication to perfection and a temper to go along with that disposition.
Like most of us humans, both of the twins had multifaceted personalities. Bill’s idiosyncrasies were more difficult to pin-point due to his predominantly easy-going nature. However, Lew was more of a man of extremes. Actually, in Lew’s case, I should make that present tense… he still exhibits some of those old tendencies from time to time.
Lew, the man who got so angry with himself that he threw a bowling ball out of a window on the fifth floor of a building, was the same man who annually rented an Easter Bunny costume and bought a case of eggs.
Dressed in that costume and sweating profusely, he’d sit in the window of Vrabel’s Dairy Store and dye those eggs. Parents would bring their children to see the Easter Bunny getting ready to make his rounds.
In the evening, Lew would have someone drive him to each of the area hospitals so he could pass out candy and eggs to children who were spending Easter in the hospital.
I was his driver on a few occasions. When nurses asked me who was in the costume, my answer was, “If I told you that, I’d be the first person to be killed by an Easter Bunny.”
The man has a heart of gold. But he also loves to tease.
When I was in high school and he was not yet married, he’d wake me for school as he was leaving for work. However, there were times that I’d come out of the bathroom, all ready for school, and find him lying in his bed laughing. When I checked the clock, I’d see that it was shortly past midnight. Lew had just come home from whatever he was doing that evening and was playing with me.
Of course, I’d return the favor when he let me use his car. I’d spend an evening cruising with my friends and return the car with an empty gas tank.
Soon, he learned to loan me his car and his gas credit card. He’d often give me a few dollars for spending money if he knew I had a date.
One more story before I start thinking about tomorrow’s post.
We were rebuilding the porch on my sister’s home in Greentree. Gert’s husband, Mac (real name A.J. Cronin), was there, as were his sons, Terry and Keith, and Lew and I.
At one point Gert asked if we’d like lunch. She was offering bologna sandwiches. Lew said he’d like one with yellow mustard… but he wanted the mustard on the meat – not the bread.
Unless Gert gave him multiple slices of meat (which she wasn’t about to do) there was no way to tell where she put the mustard. Naturally, when he got the sandwich, he complained that she had done it wrong.
Like I said, the man loves to tease… even his big sister.
On a somewhat related note…
When I was in college at Edinboro, I received a letter from Gert. The return address stated it was from A.J. Cronin. My roommate, Roger Frazier – an English major, had picked up the mail and was all excited that I was receiving mail from A.J. Cronin.
When I said simply that it was my brother-in-law, he flipped out. To be honest, I’d never heard of the A.J. Cronin he was referring to. Needless to say, Roger was grossly disappointed when he learned the truth.