These are the stories that get told and re-told every time the whole family gets together.
  1. The time my stepmom gave my sister lidocaine cream instead of Chapstick.
    She used it and then drooled down her chin while they shopped downtown.
  2. The time I was legitimately, full-on choking on a roast beef sandwich in a Blimpie's sub shop and my stepmom shushed me and said, "Be quiet! You're making a scene!" My dad got up to give me the Heimlich.
    She felt awful about it once she realized what was actually happening, but it's too classic not to retell.
  3. The time the neighbor kid was mean to my younger brother, so my older sisters filled our super soakers with Kool Aid and shot it through the open windows into the neighbor's living room.
  4. The time after that, when my dad (the gentlest giant in all the land), broke all of our squirt guns in half with his BARE HANDS. We'd never seen him actually angry before.
  5. The time AFTER THAT, when we snuck into the shed and meticulously glued our squirt guns back together and they actually worked again. But then we got scared that Dad would get mad again, so we re-broke them.
  6. All the times my little brother would say things with his speech impediment, namely "The seletons and monsers are chasing me up the sairs!" because he was afraid to go up our creepy staircase on his own.
    The story isn't that great, but is some kind of ritual that affirms that this now 26-year-old man is the youngest.
  7. The time the four youngest of us went on a cross-country road trip in a rented motor home with my dad and stepmom. We all begged for pie at some diner. My dad caved and ordered two whole ones. Upon discovering that the pie was disgusting, we tried to not eat it. As a non-food waster, Dad made us finish both pies before we could eat anything else.
    We subsisted on those pies for two days.
  8. The time on that same trip when the refrigerator door was broken, so we took turns standing next to it and holding it closed.
  9. The time I was in 4th grade and we all were going into Blockbuster. I was straggling and tripped over a parking spot curb trying to catch up. I fell hard on the sidewalk and started sobbing - in part because it hurt, and in part because my older sisters went into the store without checking on me.
    The worst (best) part of the story is that I proceeded to go into the store and bawl my eyes out while trying to select a movie I'd like to watch.
  10. The time that we were all standing in the living room and my sister Jana silently tipped over, perfectly straight, into the narrow crack between the couch and the coffee table. My brother-in-law was the only one who saw. Despite standing within inches of her, none of the rest of us noticed until she struggled to get up.
    To this day, we are all in awe of the silent precision of her clumsiness.