MDH is the youngest of 5 boys raised by a single mother. You could play that song "One of these things is not like the others" to pick MDH out of a line-up with his family. They all have, in varying degrees of intensity, an element of thuggishness and one of them is an outright thug. MDH is the least thuggish.
MDH is actually the most (only) clean cut in the bunch. He's also the only one to graduate from college, the only one with no children, the only one to stay married longer than 5 years, the only one to have lost his Boston accent, and he is taller than the rest by about 5 inches.
He is big into sports betting and drinks a lot. He likes to show off and show people a good time but is very demanding to waitstaff in restaurants which makes it difficult to look forward to dining out with him. He gets belligerent if the restaurant doesn't serve Sambuca with a coffee bean in it. He's a bachelor, a traditionalist and a loud boozy blowhard, but his heart is always in the right place. He violated his probation to come to our wedding.
Las Vegas is the postal worker brother we visited recently. He has 3 boys still living in Massachusetts with their mother. Before he moved to Las Vegas he was the primary looker-after-er of Nanny, stopping in at least once a week and doing all of her shopping for her. He may be my favorite of MDH's brothers. He's chivalrous, kind, sentimental and takes great joy in life's simple pleasures like laying around the pool at Caesar's Palace, red wine and thick steaks. He's laid back and a lot of fun to be around. He's also big into sports betting. He brought a date to our wedding.
The whole situation and thinking about all of them together makes my brain hurt.
Oh the drama.
Miami is the one that has organized Nanny's party. He's an over the top grand gesture kind of guy so MDH has had to remind him several times that it's a party for a 100 year old woman and should really be kept low-key. Especially because Nanny herself has declared that she "hates a fuss", meaning loud music, noisy children and too much commotion. Miami has been calling us at all hours with suggestions for the party and to make incoherent demands. He's invited Ted Kennedy apparently. No one has any idea why.
There is a possibility that Knucklehead won't show up and in these situations that means Ma won't show up either in protest of the terrible way her other sons treat him.
I know this about Miami: he is one of those guys that always has a hidden agenda. You could be giving him a ride to a party and he'll ask you to stop at the bank on the way, and then he'll remember that he's left his bank book at his friend Mikey the Cat's house and would you mind waiting outside in the car while he runs in real quick to get it. Thirty minutes later you'll knock on Mikey The Cat's door only to discover from Mikey's mom that Miami and Mikey have left for the Tavern through the back door. Three hours later Miami shows up at the party pissed drunk and pissed off with you for leaving without him.
Or, on the other hand, Miami is likely to rent a Corvette or some other show-off impractical type of vehicle and then expect us to cart around everyone in his entourage since there's no room in his car.
Miami once invited MDH to the Sugar Bowl or something in New Orleans. He flew down there only to find out minutes before the game that Miami didn't really have tickets. So we're not even 100% certain a hall has been rented, etc. There may not even be a party.
Between Miami and Knucklehead you don't know what can happen, but it's guaranteed to be either annoying or life threatening.
I'm telling you all of these things in preparation for the post I am anticipating writing when I get back. I can't wait to see how it all shakes out.
UPDATE: 11-01-07 5:16am (Couldn't sleep anymore.) Syracuse called last night. Seems Miami is planning a big night out with the boys (his brothers, sons and hometown pals) on Saturday after the birthday party and thinks that I'm going to babysit all of the children. He just assumes I will do this? He has never been more wrong.
That's not why I couldn't sleep. I mean it's irritating and rude, but not worth losing sleep over. I just couldn't remember whether or not I paid my student loan payment this month. I did. Of course I did.