My younger brother, now 27 years old, is one of those people who have a life where everything goes just right. He is the youngest of 5 kids and, honestly, it makes all of us absolutely sick. Everything just falls into place no matter what the situation. While in school, he was not a good student by any means. We were all worried about what was going to happen to him with his miserable high school grades and general lack of motivation. After much anguish (mostly from my parents), he was able to get into a state college by the hair of his chinny chin chin. While in college, he met some key folks and was able to secure an internship with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway by the time his senior year rolled around. Several years later, much to the envy of the rest of us toiling officefolk in the family, he landed a job as a media person for one of the more well-known NASCAR drivers. In essence, he has a really neat life and he really enjoys it and it all continues to roll along very nicely. Yes, we are all happy-for and proud of him, don’t get me wrong. It is probably normal sibling rivalry that makes us roll our eyes as he mentions how he hung out with Ben Affleck all afternoon. Or how he walked the red carpet with Paul Newman and Owen Wilson at the premier of that race-car cartoon movie CARS that came out a few months ago.
Naturally, it was not a huge shock to me when my mother informed me recently that my brother has been selected to receive a distinguished graduate award from his college. This award is giving to chosen alumni who have, I guess, found REALLY good jobs in their chosen fields and are a positive inspiration to aspiring students. As my mother mentioned, you sort of think of these awards going to, say, someone who is saving starving children or perhaps solved the problem of world peace…not to someone who hangs out with famous folks and watches car racing every weekend. My mom asked if I would scan a copy of the alumni paper that ran the article on the awards so she could email it to some relatives. Although I am not the one in the family who has the glamorous career, my mother was indeed impressed with the job I did re-touching my brother’s photo for the article.