A short while back, my sister attempted to convince my nine-year old nephew that I am, in fact, adopted. This is not true, but sometimes we like to mess with the minds of our children. As proof of her argument, she pointed out a few glaring differences between my three sibling and myself. I am fair haired where the other three are dark (when the boys had hair). I am altitudinally-challenged (spellcheck hates that word) and they are tall. The fact that my name starts with a C while my siblings all start with J is most telling.
It is at this point that my nephew recalled an incident that forced him to move beyond the question of adoption and decide that I am, in fact, a space alien. I realize this must come as a shock to some of you who know me, but he's pretty certain.
Back in the day, when a kid had chicken pox, the siblings were all snuggled in together in order to pass it on. The idea was that by having the contagion spread controlled, a family could get it all over at once instead of having to piecemeal their way through the wave of infection as it traveled around school. I realize this sounds horrible, but it worked for us. Well, sort of.
You see, when the pox first came to our house, the four of us were already inseparable. I do not recall how old I was, but I was young, probably under the age of six. Anyway, we snuggled in and got through it all. So, imagine my surprise when I came down with the chicken pox right before my thirteenth birthday! I was dumbfounded! I had already had it and everyone knows that you only get it once.
That's when my parents confessed that I had not contracted chicken pox with the other three. When the other three had it as children, I did not, despite being put to sleep four in a bed with them. Somehow I had been spared. However, for convenience and to avoid my isolation, they claim to have marked my skin with pen and kept me home for treatment along with the rest.
We don't know how I contracted chicken pox for what I contend was the second time, but there it is.
This little pair of incidents was the damning evidence of my space alien nature as far as my nephew was concerned.
What does this little narrative have to do with anything? Well...
I was, of course, unaware of the line of inquiry until long after the fact. My sister was out on a boat with my two brothers and the kids when she decided to share her findings. During a quiet moment, my nephew laid out the arguments for the adoption/space alien scenario. After all was said and done, they had a good laugh and decided to drive on. As they sped across the water, my sister heard my youngest brother mutter, into the wind, and to no one at all, "Plus, she tats."
If you need me, I'll be winding shuttles by Alpha Centauri.