My brother-in-law has called me on the phone.
He says, “I want you to know I love you.”
I say, “Thank you Ron.”
“And,” he adds briskly, “although you have always been an irritant in my life you have made me a better person by doing it.”
What? He loves me but I irritate him? I irritate him?
“And whenever I need help you are always there for me and you always stand up for me, no matter what. And I love you for that.”
“I am an irritant?!” I say.
“What do you mean I’m an irritant?!”
“Ah…well…I really don’t know…except that you always call me on my stuff and tell me, bull’s eye, whatever it is. You are always honest with me and tell me straight and you tell me to knock it off.”
“Well…I don’t know…but it’s a good thing I married your sister and not you. I just know that you have always been an irritant in my life and I love you.”
“Gee. Thanks for the call, Ron.”
Later that same evening my cousin Elaine sends me an email. (more…)