Last Monday, on the way back from Pennsylvania, Bill and I stopped by the McDonalds in Downingtown to get a milkshake. McDonalds may have tasteless hamburgers but they have the best milkshakes to be had just about anywhere. We needed a long, tall and cool one after loading my old platform bed in the back of Bill's Jeep for transport back to our home in Delaware.
Bill did the driving since we used his Jeep. My old bed couldn't fit in back of my Subaru Forester. I can get a lot in my '98 Forester with 120,000 miles but my old platform bed was a bit too much even for Old Dependable.
Two and a half hours later after we arrived back at our home in Delaware I found I could hardly get out of the car. I'm usually stiff after that long ride but this time I was in so much pain I thought I would pass out. The pain wasn't coming from my back but from my tail bone. Yes, that right. My nether region (ass) was hurting. And I wasn't even driving.
Like the old man that I am now, I struggled to get out of the car, walking like I had a broom handle up my behind. Wow. The pain. I've never felt that kind of pain before. It hurt so much that at time I thought I was going to faint.
I couldn't' figure out what happened. Surely it couldn't of been from the 2 1/2 hour ride. I've done that so many times in the past four years, make the Run to and from PA. What could it be?
Of course the first thing I thought, I HAVE CANCER OF THE TAILBONE. That's what I always think when I have an unexplained pain. MY TIME HAS COME.
In the past few years I have witnessed so many of my friends and acquaintances meet the Big C. Some have succumbed. I know it is just a matter of time before something gets me. I'm hoping when I pass to the Big Garden in the Sky, I just go to sleep and never wake up. After all, don't we all die just a little bit every night when we go to sleep?
Well, yesterday I solved the problem of the Pain In My Behind. While I was loading the awkward platform bed into Bill's "truck" (that's what he call his vehicle, we don't call it a Jeep even though that's what it is), I backed into a pile of cobblestones and fell flat on my back on the hard, black macadam driveway of my brother Isaac's house.
I fell so hard, the wind was knocked right out of me. Isaac immediately asked me "Are you alright? Did you hit your head?" I told him I didn't hit my head and that I was alright even though I was feeling woozy. I can't remember the last time I fell that hard. Maybe when I was a preteen. Either I fell off of my bike or someone punched me in the stomach, I can't remember which. But I can remember the wind being knocked out of me and being lightheaded. It was scary. One of the few times in my life in which I felt like I lost control.
I was embarrassed that I fell. After all, I am the oldest brother. These things don't happen to the Crown Prince. I always know what I am doing and I am always in control. At least I like to think so. Besides, I couldn't let my younger brother see me show any signs of weakness. Anyone who is the oldest child in their family will know what I'm talking about. The constant, lifelong expectation that the Oldest Child knows all and is ALWAYS in control. To be any different, I would have to relinquish my crown as Older Brother who my younger brothers look up to for guidance and direction. Check out the body language in the picture below. Close but not TOO close. Always just that tad of separation to let everyone know that although we're brothers, there is a subtle but significance difference.
Buck (the nickname that only my younger brothers call me, no one else calls me "Buck") was down but Buck got up.
Looking at the logo that was written on the empty McDonald's milkshake container I couldn't help but think that how perfectly it applied to me.
My ass may be sore as hell but I am still "The Long Tall Cool One."