Home > Bitching, My Brother, Shakespeare, Traumatic Childhood > The Time I Realized My Brother Was a Sadist

The Time I Realized My Brother Was a Sadist

Shakespearean Costume

My brother is 12 years older than me, and so could essentially order me to do anything when I was young. He once required that I make him a full breakfast, but I burnt the toast on purpose, declaring it “Cajun Toast” as I seasoned it with hot sauce. Otherwise, I jumped at his every command. He carried me around in a duffle bag for a while just because he could, and I once rode in the trunk of his Mazda since he told me to get in there.

One of my first memories of him are when he told me he had a special surprise for me. Thinking maybe it was candy or something (hey, I was 7), I eagerly followed him up to his room only to find my older sister already in there and NO CANDY. My brother pulled out a globe, and uttered the words that I would soon come to dread: “It’s Culture Day.”

I actually lived in fear of Culture Day for a while. It was more boring than school could ever be, but I felt like I had to pay attention because it was my brother giving the lecture. Pure torture.

You see, my brother is an actor, and at that time he was in college and being forced to read, dissect, and act out all of Shakespeare’s plays. For some reason, he felt he should spread the misery around by plopping his sisters in front of an old globe and reading from Shakespeare for what felt like hours.

We suffered through excerpts of As You Like It and long soliloquies from Hamlet and King Lear, gritting our teeth as my brother gestured and acted his heart out. My sister and I were 7 and 12, respectively, and neither of us had any appreciation for the grand “culture” my brother was trying so desperately to impart on us.

Whenever he brought out the globe, we both ran in the opposite direction.

The only effect all this culture had on me was when I was tasked with writing a short story for school. I ended up writing something starring a pterodactyl named Fortinbras who wore Shakespearean pantaloons and had a key that allowed him to open doors and travel through time.

Lord only knows what my teacher thought was going on in my house.

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  1. February 1, 2012 at 9:36 am

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