Guest blogger: My sister Eileen celebrates my 40th (with editor’s notes)

Not too long ago (18 months), when I turned 40, my younger (but not by much) brother Tim outed my age on this very blog (NYTimes actually broke the story first). That’s fine. It’s his blog. Freedom of speech and all that (damn straight sista!). So I thought I’d return the favor.

“Hey Tim, take some time off and I’ll write your blog for you! But it will be about YOU turning 40,” I texted him with a smile on my face.

He didn’t exactly jump at the idea, but in his calm way replied, “Ok, what’s fair is fair.”

That was very nice of him (never thought she’d actually do it.  Blogging is yeoman’s work.). But the tone of his text seemed to imply that I had dirt on him that I might share. SPOILER ALERT: I have NO dirt on him (she is being kind). None (ok, I actually pay her to guard the closet where I hide skeletons). It’s so annoying. He’s a really great, smart, talented, and loving  (handsome?) guy, who is making it very difficult for me to be as witty and clever as he is (especially when I have final edit). Aside from a bad mullet in the 80’s (let’s see, it worked for Hasselhoff, Lionel Richie, Dan Marino and Jo Polnychek—need I continue?), he really didn’t have any missteps that I can playfully share with all five readers of this blog (hey!  we’re up to 8 now.)

To an outsider, it might look like Tim’s life has been a walk in the park (some weird things happen in parks too). He grew up in a loving home, has great friends (a few are a little shady), got a great education, traveled across the country, settled in Atlanta, married a great girl  (hi fellow reader, Kristen!), has two beautiful children, and runs a great business with our brother Bill. [Plug from a proud sister – check out their website: http://www.sullivanfinerugs.com/ ]  (no kidding around, please buy some rugs.  I’m approaching retirement age!)

And he accomplished all of this after losing our parents before he even left for college. Sure, he had a ton of support. We all did and still do – we are very lucky. But Tim had to do the heavy lifting every day to put his life on the path that he did, and did so well.  (No one wants to see a 40 year old man cry...)

Tim got a great education because he studied hard (I prefer to be deemed “gifted”)and always made education a priority. He took sports as serious as much as he had fun with them. He’s great at basketball because he practiced like a crazy person (still waiting on that scholarship offer). You can’t sink free throws because you’re athletic (used to be able to dunk a volleyball!). You have to be dedicated and put the time in to be good.  (Admittedly, the free throw line was more my milieu.)

Now he’s an avid runner (bad calves, going to see the doc on Monday!), which for some can be a sport where you can find some time alone. But he decided to use his passion for running to create an annual community 5k that raises money for his neighborhood park. Tim, you’re killing me. Give me some dirt.  (Talk about gifted, how about the acting job my skeleton-keeper is doing here?)

Tim’s the type of guy who will stay calm (mildly sedated)when others lose it. He’s the type of guy who makes the time for others when he barely has a minute to spare with his own busy schedule. And he’s the type of guy who flew from Atlanta to Rhode Island last summer (private jet—set her down right on Central Beach Quonochontaug!)) to spend about 48 hours with us during a family vacation to surprise our brother Mike, who too, was celebrating a milestone birthday. He’s THAT GUY.  (Private jet guy??)

So, to those who know Tim (and the rest of the interweb that is certain to be riveted by my passage of time) , raise a glass and join me in wishing him a happy 40th birthday on Thursday, May 31st, and hey, all weekend long if you’d like! I will be! With him! And to those who thought we were twins when we were younger, with our matching curly hair (I’m MUCH taller nowJust sayin’.), go ahead and keep thinking that because it shaves a little age off of…my age (which is now 41 ½). THANKS.

Signed,

Tim’s (barely older and much loved) sister Eileen.

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