Tag Archives: siblings

Old Writing: Part 28::Sibling Rivalry??

I have very little memory of writing this, but I remember reading it. I was a weird teenager.

May 1, 1973

“Sibling Rivalry”

“But mother, I want one too! You can’t give a doll to Heather without giving one to me, you know that!” cried ten-year-old Megan.

“Oh Megan, stop being difficult. You are making a scene. Grandma gave you a new nightgown last week, and this is Heather’s eighth birthday,” whispered Mrs. McLaughlin impatiently.

“If you give Heather a present without giving me one I will tell her what it is!” warned the near hysterical child.

“Oh Megan, whatever shall I do with you?” said Mrs. McLaughlin, turning back towards the toy department. “All right, pick out something under five dollars.”

With an almost satisfied gleam in her eye, and a sinister smirk on her face, Megan eyed the toys with exasperation. “But Mama dear, whatever can I find for under five dollars? Besides, Heather’s doll cost fifteen dollars!”

“Oh well, how about a party dress? You can wear it at Heather’s party.” angry that she couldn’t keep her own child under control, and defeated, afraid of what Megan could do if she didn’t give in, Mrs. McLaughlin gave in.

“All right, if it will make you happy I will get an old dress — but only if it costs more than Heather’s china doll!”

“We’ll see, honey, but now let’s pick out a dress for you.” She then led a satisfied little girl to find a dress.

“Oh Mama! What a beautiful doll, I shall call her Amy,” cried the joyous Heather at her eighth birthday party while Megan looked on in her new dress with envy.

“The doll is okay, but look at my dress everyone, it cost twenty-two dollars. Heather’s doll only cost fifteen! Heather never had a dress as pretty as this one, Mama even said so!” said Megan, distracting attention from Heather’s many gifts.

“Shh, Megan, this is Heather’s party.” whispered Heather and Megan’s mother.

“Shut-up! I hate you! I never get any presents. I hate you all!”

“Megan! I am sorry, kids. Megan is just tired from shopping today. You just on on with your party,” said Mrs. McLaughlin, running after her hysterical child.


“Megan, do you want this top that Kim gave me? Or this Barbie doll from Sandy? Please don’t be angry with me,” pleaded Heather.

“I’m not mad,” said Megan, picking up Heather’s new china doll and looking at it with an odd smile, “but I would like this!”

“Oh, no, Megan, please, not that. Mama gave it to me and I want to keep it. You can have anything else though,” said Heather in tears.

“No! I want this, it is mine anyway. A nice rich man gave it to me and Mother gave it to you because she hates to spend money on you, only me!” lied Megan.

“You are lying, Megan. Go out of my room, you can’t have anything!” screamed Heather.

“Oh yeah” Well how about this?” screamed Megan, throwing the fragile china doll to the floor. “So there, I wouldn’t want that old doll anyway, now!” Megan ran out the door slamming it behind her.

“Oh Amy, Amy, don’t die, don’t be broken please.” sobbed the heartbroken Heather, picking up the shattered doll and rocking back and forth as if trying to comfort the doll — only getting the comfort from the “dead” doll instead. ” Oh, Amy, Amy…”

Arithmetic Workbook and other memorable phrases

Another thing I found when helping my mom sort out her attic was a tape my brother, Kevin, and I made in 1969. I was 13 and he was 6. I’d recently acquired a tape recorder and was practicing my interview skills.



Dona: Hello
Kevin: Hello
D: What’s your favorite subject in school?
K:Um. [unintelligible]
D: No, first — What school do you go to?
K: Highland School
D: What’s your teacher’s name?
K: Mrs. Varisco
D: What grade are you in?
K: First
D: What’s your favorite subject?
K: [Intake of breath] — What’s– Um — No — Ah — Recess!
D: No! Your favorite subject.
K: Uh
D: Like favorite um reading or math or stuff like that.
K: Math? We don’t got math.
D: Math – yeah, don’t you have arithmetic?
K: Arithmetic Workbook
D: Oh, OK. Um — What do you like to do at home?
K: Play with the tape recorder.
D: Oh, tape recorder? Who has a tape recorder in your house?
K: Dona! I’m talking on it.
D: Oh. Um — What else do you like to do at home? Do you help your mommy?
K: Sometimes
D: Sometimes? Do you help her enough?
K: Mm-huh
D: What do you want for Christmas?
K: [Sigh] Dona! It’s too long to tell and I can’t remember all of ’em.
D: Say a couple things.
K: Battling Tops, Bang Box, [sigh] – um, more Lego Blocks, and all that stuff, other stuff.
D: Lego Blocks? Um — Hot Wheels?
K: Yeah, except we didn’t put that on the… Oh yeah, yeah we did. And hot wheels and all that stuff, all that stuff. I don’t know what you guys are gonna give me.
D: I do
K: You know?
D: Oh yeah, I forgot, I was going to show you what I got Daddy.

Here I turned the tape recorder off, presumably to show Kevin what I got our Dad.

D: How many people are in your family?
K: Four
D: Do you have any animals?
K: One

D: What’s that?
K: A dog. We used to have a cat named Puff
D: Mmmm. What’s the dog’s name?
K: Jock — and um — but — our friends were taking him to the farm — to a farm — and then he — the window was open — ah — so um — just so much as he — Puff could get out — jump out.
D: Mmmm
K: So he jumped out.
D: Mmm. That’s sad isn’t it?
K: Yeah — but he ain’t dead or anything — got ran over because he’s smart enough.
D: Mmm, huh. Well. — Is there any problems you have with your mommy? What do you call your mom?
K: Mrs. Patr[ick]

[tape was turned off before he could finish Patrick, I probably said something about how he doesnlt call his mom by her last name, but it was not recorded.]

D: [Are there any] problems at your house?
K: No, not much.
D: Um — Does anyone get into any fights or anything?
K: Sometimes
D: Hmm?
K: Sometimes!
D: Like – how -, are they real bad?
K: No
D: Hmmm, who fights usually?
K: My mom.
D: And who else?
K: My dad.
D: Do you and your sister ever fight?
K: Sometimes.
D: Very much? Is it very bad when you fight?
K: No
D: Do you fist-fight or just talk-fight?
K: Fist-fight and talk-fight
D: Do your mommy and daddy fist-fight or talk-fight?
K: Both
D: Really? They do? They punch each other?
K: No, talk-fight.
D: Oh, I was kinda worried there. Um — um
K: Dona! I was doing something.
D: If. Um.
K: Um

[Tape recorder was turned off]

D: Well, let’s see now.
K: Well, let’s see now.

[Tape recorder was turned off]

D: Do you know any nursery rhymes?
K: Um, yeah.
D: Tell me some of them.
K: Hey diddle, diddle
The cat and the fiddle
The cow jumped over the moon.
The little dog laughed
To see such sport
And the dish ran away with the spoon
D: Do you know any Christmas carols?
K: No
D: Oh…
K: ‘Cept Jingle Bells
D: Well, just say a little bit of it
K: Dashing through the snow
On a one-horse open sleigh
[something] spirits rise [someone started snapping at this point]
Laughing all the way
D: Mmmm, huh. Very good! Um, well — Gonna have to stop now, so, um.
K: K. you say g—
D: What’s your favorite… What is your favorite stuff for supper?
K: Um, mmm yum mmm, — I’m thinkin’. Ahh — fish.
D: Fish?
K: Mmm, huh.
D: Oh, well, let’s say goodbye —
K: You say goodbye first
D: Bye. And don’t you dare say “Goodbye Dick” [whispered]
K: Goodbye!
D: Ok. K: Dick!