“I really like it when we put all of the cards in the same direction,” I said, noticing the sorted piles had all lined up accordingly. Which probably meant that I was —
“You’re maybe a little OCD,” she noted, speaking aloud what I had been realizing all at once, yet again.
Which was weird, because I didn’t think of myself really as being all that obsessive about disorder. And yet, well, there it was.
As a form of collecting and organizing the world — I very much compulsively appreciated order.
Ultimately the game — Bozo — was about a series of numbers. Like most games.
But if you plotted the numbers into a narrative of cells, the collection of slopes told an entirely familiar but more interesting history.
They are words you give over completely as gifts, handwritten, not stored in some outbox enveloped within of SMTP headers or iMessage read receipts. A few drafts rest in my notes, but otherwise, all of those words were just out there, mostly forgotten.
Once we were both old enough to write clearly, any co-signed birthday cards became a sibling competition of sorts, for who could say more in the inscription. Not that emotional sincerity had to be a competition. But of our sibling rivalries, it produced some of the best results.
I’ve ceded that competition to her husband, who is her worthy opponent and turns thirty today.