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Thursday, March 16, 2006

My aunts and uncles serve one purpose for me--to remind me of what could have been.

"We're lucky as hell," I told my sister around Christmas time. My aunt was in the other room screaming at her children and grandchildren to "Just be still goddammit!" Her daughter, two years my junior, was absent-mindedly clutching her newest child while focusing on the plate of ham and green beans on her leg. The kid was only about eight months old and already looked maladjusted.

Madge glanced uneasily at the child's position on our cousin's knee. "I know," she said, "Mom and Dad rule."

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