“This is probably the biggest moment of my life and you are brewing beer.”
I work retail. I always have. I tried to get out once but for whatever reason I ended up relapsing. A retail schedule enables me to forget what a weekend is and get excited for a Monday or Thursday like they are a Saturday night. It's not out of the ordinary that I find myself day-drinking on a Monday after working 8 days straight and calling a friend to see if they want to hang out. “I would but it's noon. On a Monday. I am obviously at work.” Is their normal response to my invitation. Over the years I have learned how to have fun on my own and have taken up many hobbies. I started a candle company once. Then started a repurposed furniture website with my girlfriend. I took up golf. I even took up brewing my own beer.
This bring us here. One day, on my lonesome, I got the required ingredients to make a porter and set out to spend the afternoon brewing. I cranked the jams danced around like a moron to Hall and Oates enjoying the day when I turned around to see my brother standing in the doorway. Staring at me dancing he raised an eyebrow; as if it was me interrupting him at his house. Startled, I switched off the music and asked him what he was doing. Shouldn't he be at work? He doesn't work retail?
"Grab me a beer and sit down. I want to talk to you." He states taking a seat at the dinning room table placing a bagged present between us. He seem to have something on his mind. "Who is the present for?" I ask and start digging around. He promptly slapped my hand like you would with a child about to touch a hot stove. "Hey, wait a minute. It's for you but hold on." We both cracked open some Busch tall boys, dad's favorite, and tried to make small talk. We both really suck at it and finally gave up. "Okay, fuck it. Open up the damn present." He stated and grabbed his phone to take pictures of me. I kept thinking how weird it was that he wasn't telling me anything about this and it wasn't my birthday. I slowly opened the present as he snapped photos eager with anticipation. Two cigars fell out wrapped in pink and blue ribbons. My brain froze and then time stopped. There was a shift in the universe. Are we adults now? In a matter of milliseconds billions of questions raced through my head. I snapped back and felt like I was in a washing machine, my vision blurred and the room turned upside down, colors blending together. My body couldn't keep up with my thought process as I blurted out the only thing I could think of...a faint but prominent "Huh?"
To my knowledge he had been seeing someone on and off. Nothing serious, right? I had been with Jamie for a few years now and for some reason my first question was "Jamie's pregnant and this is how she wanted to tell me?" He stared as you would to a complete imbecile. I don't think I have seen a face of more disgust or disbelief. He had to be thinking to himself "No. There's no way he is this stupid." He final spoke "No you fucking idiot! Your going to be an uncle!"
Pete - I will never forget that day and love you man. Declan rules.