Those who know me know I'm not a family-oriented kind of person. Actually, I'm kind of like the monster in that classic Bugs Bunny takeoff on horror movies: the only thing that scares me are people. Particularly frightening are those who share the same gene pool with me. I am always fearful that relations will expect a reprieve from my usual tendency to treat everyone with an equal indifference. I have never accepted the received wisdom that demands special treatment for family members. (I guess that's why I'm still single and am happy that way.)
I am not a complete misanthrope however. I freely acknowledge that sometimes only a relative possesses the commonality of nature and nurture to be capable of reading my mind. A cousin of mine is a case in point. We seem to share the same brain when it comes to humor. I can occasionally be sardonic and satiric in expressing my views. (OK, I'm ALWAYS sardonic and sarcastic.) My cousin not only complements these tendencies, he anticipates them as well. It can seem as if we're working from a written script, so perfect is the timing and interaction between us. In fact, it's all spontaneous.
For example, he and I recently exchanged text messages concerning tickets I had available to a Yankee game. Typical of our mutually shared enjoyment of going on endlessly about nothing, this exchange went on for several days when two or three messages would normally have exhausted the topic. The result was a comic bit in which Abbott and Costello meet Monty Python's Flying Circus.
I now present, with minimal editing, this interchange. Some of it may seem incomprehensible but that is precisely the point of why I offer it here. Sometimes only family truly understands us, especially if our thoughts are just a little weird.
Dan: May have tickets to Yankees game on 8/9. Wanna go?
Cousin: hello cousin dan, that depends on whether or not the yankees are going to win
Dan: They will lose as they always do when I attend. Hopefully it won't be a rout.
Cousin: i need a full weather report and description of snacks please
Dan: Hurricane conditions. Bread and water.
Cousin: what is the point spread ?
Dan: 300000 to 1
Cousin: how much is a cup of beer and how far measured in linear feet is the nearest restroom from our seats
Dan: $8 million. 1 parsec. U do the math.
Cousin: is there any time travel or shifting of our molecular structure involved?
Cousin: jumping jehosophat
Cousin: is there any thinking involved, i don't want to have to let loose a thought bomb in the ninth
Dan: None whatsoever. Wud I bring u to anything that required thinking? Give me some credit.
Cousin: I wasn't thinking
Cousin: will we need to bring oxygen due to the extreme elevation of the seats
Dan: Re O2: da bronx ran outta O2 in 79. So it depends on how long u can hold ur breath.
Cousin: will george steinbrenner resurrect himself for this game ?
Dan: God I certainly hope not!
Cousin: perhaps that's what the jews had in mind when they spoke of the second coming...
Dan: Steinbrenner the Messiah? That's mashuggah! (sic)
Cousin: What are the exact time coordinates?
Dan: 2:05 PM EDT LET SSST MWQ1 U1 (editor's note: LET = Local Earth Time; SSST = Standard Solar System Time; MWQ1 = Milky Way Quadrant 1; First Universe.)