I was told I was part of the family because of a trade with the Indians. The tribe received beads, while my family got a little papoose with a red spot on her forehead. That birthmark was the true coloring of an Indian girl, me. It might have been okay if my brother and sisters had told me they were teasing; however, this stunt continued for years with little me believing it all. Okay, so I was gullible, but isn't that part of being tiny among the mighty sibs?
They had an 8½, 6½, and 4 year jump on me, and they used it to their advantage. I was their trained mouthpiece in acquiring what Mom and Dad would have never agreed to. As the Chevrolet ventured down the road, with the three of them shoulder-to-shoulder in the backseat while I sat wedged between the adults in the front, he-who-must-not-be-named would point out the window and say, "Look, Joycie. What do you see?"
Next came my hopping dance, "McDonalds! McDonalds! Let's go to McDonalds!" Sure enough the car would slide into the lot for hamburgers, fries, and chocolate shakes, which no one would have gotten if one who wasn't so stinkin' cute had asked.
I was also subjected to constant bouts of tickling from He-who-must-not-be-named and TV high jacking, too. I don't know which was worse: being held by the arms and tortured or forced to watch Bonanza. Tickling is a definite form of abuse, especially when Gilligan's Island is on, but I was too little to stop it.
Then there were the other set ups.
"If you tear your blanket,
you'll have many."
"Why don't you go ask Mr. Slatkin,
the famous conductor neighbor,
for his autograph early in the morning?"
Laughter as a piece of liver is shoved in my mouth
hearing fart sounds as I bite into a chicken butt.
He-who-must-not-be-named gets angry when I write about him, but he was by far the most lethal sibling. I wonder if he would have subjected me to constant torture if he knew that one day I'd have a blog.