Surf’s Up!

Dear Dan,

I don’t know why, but I’ve been thinking about you and the surfboard.

We had that small blue pool in the immediate backyard. I think this was the year before we got the big pool in the yard across the creek. Mom and I were standing outside of the pool and your were splashing around in the water.

We had a couple of heavy Styrofoam surfboards. You decided to stand on one and try to surf across the pool. We were pretty young at the time. I don’t know if we knew part of the balance thing was due to the momentum of the waves.

You stood on the board and it flew to the left out from under you. You went down in a splash. Up again on the board and it flew to the right out from under you. You went down in a splash. Up again and it shot out, up into the air! This time it came down outside the pool and I had to retrieve it for you.

Mom and I were doubled over laughing. I think I may have had to cross my legs, I was laughing that hard. You were laughing right along with us. And that was the point, wasn’t it, to make us laugh? My brother the clown. I miss that.

I love and miss you, bro.

Who shot Abraham Lincoln?

Dear Dan,

One nice, summer evening, you and mom were playing badminton in the backyard across the creek. As usual, I was sitting nearby, reading. Suddenly, some man came running across our bridge, yelling “Who shot Abraham Lincoln?” We three looked at each other. Mom said, “Well, are you going to win the prize or shall I?” You said, “John Wilkes Booth.”

The man screamed at us in rage! He was talking about his cat — Abraham Lincoln. As opposed to his other cat — Lassie Chicken Noodle Soup.

Our neighbor, Harry, had been shooting vermin in his corn field that was adjacent to our backyard. Harry, being an old man with poor eyesight, couldn’t see the difference between a cat and a rabbit, raccoon, deer or elephant, for that matter. He also couldn’t see the difference between our mowed yard and his planted field.

Harry shot the poor cat in the leg. Unlike President Abe, the cat survived. It learned to get around quite well with three legs instead of four.

I think it was around that time that mom went and had a chat with Harry. I think the zoning ordinance prohibiting discharging of a firearm within 150 yards of an occupied structure was referenced. I also believe threat of calling the authorities was discussed. The topic of “shoving your shotgun so far up your ass it will take an expedition several days to find it” was also raised.

Good times, bro. Good times.

I love and miss you, Danny Boy.