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A Christmas Morning Only A Step Brother Can Remember

  Christmas is here again. The season that sends many adults into depression but all the kids seem to need valium waiting for that magical morning. I
remember the Christmas days when Mighty Mouse was the number one cartoon.
   We were six kids and I don’t know how Mom and Dad did it but each kid seemed to feel as if they had the best Christmas ever each year. I remember the year I received the very first G. I. Joe ever manufactured. It was the package deal including a military backpack, a M-1 rifle, helmet, boots etc.
   He was my favorite gift that year. I played with him all morning and moved on to another toy in the afternoon.
My stepbrother Ronny came to me and wanted to show me something. We walked in the front yard and there was my G. I. Joe set up perfect in a fox hole. There was a small log for him to prop his rifle on. His legs were positioned as a real soldier would. It looked like a perfect was scene. G. I. Joe had all his supplies within grasp for immediate use.
   In the early 60’s children used their imagination for fun.
I was examining the scene very close. I was looking from all angles. It seemed that Ronny had taken care of every little detail. I remember
enjoying how real the setting seemed.
   While I was looking I noticed that Ronny had backed up and I heard the sizzle of a fuse on a cherry bomb. The cherry bomb flew right by my head. He yelled, “In coming!!” It landed in the fox hole and
exploded. Kaboom, the explosion happened and a big fire started. He had placed a mayonnaise lid filled with gasoline in the bottom of the fox hole.
   One leg was blown off and his face was on fire. My G. I. Joe was a casualty on Christmas Day. So much for the season to be jolly.

The Next Year …

   The following Christmas was great. A pool table was left by Santa for all of us. The piles of toys seemed larger that year and everyone was very happy with what they received.
   My stepbrothers Ronny and George Jr. received a cool, electric figure 8 race track with red and blue Corvette cars.
For the next month I tried to play with the race track over and over but they wouldn’t let me play. One day I got
frustrated and went whining to Mom to tell her they wouldn’t let me play with their race track. She looked at me and said, “Their race track?” “That track is yours!”
   At that moment I knew they had gotten up early and moved the track from my pile of Christmas toys and placed it in theirs before any of the adults woke up.
   I went in and snatched those cars up. The bumpers and fenders may have been cracked from the abuse but they were mine and they never were to play with them again.
   I am sure every family has stories about Christmas to share.
   I hope they are more pleasant than these but the key word is, family. Merry Christmas to all of you and please have a safe Holiday and get up early.