My Brother & His Motorcycle

My best friend and I started a daily writing exercise about 6 weeks ago. I got the idea from a book I read on writing about food. We compiled an ongoing numbered list of stuff. Stuff could include people, objects, ideas. At the beginning of each week, we draw a random number and then Monday through Friday, we spend a few minutes a day writing about the corresponding prompt. So far we’ve spent a week on carrots, goldfish, names, roaches, broken watch, and this week we drew motorcycle.

We’ve started writing projects together before but I think we appreciate this one the most. For a few weeks after our first prompt, I couldn’t suppress a secret smile every time I came across a carrot. Before writing about carrots a week, I never really gave them much thought. It also has unearthed and helped me record some memories; I never realized how many vivid roach memories I had! I thought I’d share a memory of mine that was my Day 1 contribution this week. It’s about my oldest brother whom I haven’t seen in over ten years. Word on the street, and by word on the street I mean Google search engine, tells me he’s currently in San Francisco. I am not divulging why I chose not to call but suffice it to say, not only have we not seen each other, but we haven’t spoken in over ten years too.

My oldest brother had a motorcycle. I don’t remember what it looked like. I was too young to go investigate on my own. We lived in an apartment so it’s not like my parents would let me roam the parking lot freely. But I always knew that he had one. I vaguely remember sometimes watching him tend to it from the balcony.

I only have a handful of memories of my oldest brother and I treasure each one. I think namely because I have so few and it’s my way of reinforcing in my mind that I have older siblings (all absent).

I think he’s the very first person I think of when I think motorcycle and the first person I knew personally with a bike.

I remember he came home one day (I wasn’t even in school yet) and I was sitting on the floor of our living room playing. It was just us two and he had this smile on his face. Gleeful. Like he just obtained something fantastic and was dying to share with someone. Since I was the only one around, I was that person for him. He asked me if I wanted to see something. Did he describe it as gross? cool? I wish I could remember.

He then turned so I had a direct view of his profile. I can’t remember which side, I want to say his left side. He pulled down his pants all the way to his ankles to show me his leg. Stunned, I saw the biggest scab of my life! He had fallen while riding his motorcycle and skinned his entire leg. Hip to ankle. Red, scabbed, purple, tender, bloody. And he was giggling with delight. I remember feeling dumbfounded, why was he so happy?

That’s all I have of this memory.

It still is the biggest strawberry I’ve seen.