My little sister is getting married. I just found out. Not on the Internet, though I had been afraid I might — so had she, apparently. I called her on a night off, which I am still on (hence the typing). Had been expecting it, sort of, for awhile, but still cannot fathom the thought of Bess walking down the aisle to become some man’s wife. Fortunately, the man is worthy, and good for her.

Bess, Bess, Bessie, who was always almost as big as I was and finally grew to surpass me.

Bess the mess: she ripped her tights five seconds after walking out the door every Sunday on her way to church. She had trouble talking then. Made up for it in volume. I thought she was a necessary evil: my fantasies needed a second character; my sins needed someone less adept as the scapegoat. She took everything so seriously; I could crush her with a word.

I was way more intent on growing up and plotted to leave home at 17, before I had even gotten my driver’s license. She left home at 20 (was it?) and moved in with me. Not because she was shy: because she was loyal, I think, to everyone back home, who I considered dead-end people; hicks who would age there where they flash-lived youth. Snob. Yes, I was a snob and still am a snob.

But my little sister is getting married. My little sister. My sweet little sister who cried when I did not: would not: I was a stoic. Nothing could get to me. Ha ha. How wise of me: I laughed when we fought, when she kicked me, to prove nothing could get to me.

As we talked tonight, she said: “When you get back, we can talk about colors and stuff, because you’re artistic but don’t have too many frilly opinions.” And of course that got to me; everything gets to me. My little sister respects me enough to ask for my opinion on random importances. Weird. My little sister, who is nothing like me, yet shares nearly everything with me; who knows me probably better than anyone else in the world. Who knew my snobberies, cruelties, idiocies, pretensions, and loved me anyway. Who is getting married.

Bess. I’m so happy for you. I love you. A lot. I sit here in Durango and try to look stoic as tears well up thinking of you. Congratulations, and peace be with you.

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