A story about Brother #5

I have 5 brothers. Actually 6, because my sister got married.

Boys are so much different than girls. I would never say in bad ways, but  sometimes I wonder about them. Their lack of fussiness, one of the many reasons I love them, at times has provoked a face-palm or two. Like just a few days ago…

I was in the kitchen, probably cleaning; it gives me more satisfaction to make the kitchen clean than to eat breakfast (I can’t enjoy food if the place where you prepare it is dirty. I just can’t), so I often find myself with a cup of tea in one hand, putting away dishes and sweeping with the other.

I looked over, and Jaiden, the youngest at 9, was pulling homemade jam from the baking cupboard.

“Stop.” I commanded.

He paused and looked over at me, half empty jam in his hand.

“What?” (Jaiden is the best at saying this with the most deadpan expression)
“Is that jam?”
“Yeah.”
“IT WAS IN THE CUPBOARD?”
“Yeah?”
“You can’t eat that!!”
“W-why not?” he asked in great consternation and frustration.
“Because it doesn’t go in the cupboard!!” (I thought that was obvious. Whatever.)
“I-I didn’t put it in there! That’s just where I found it! Someone else put it in there!”

I snatched the jar from him. It wasn’t cold,  just mildly clammy. Thawed juice sloshed around the stuff in the middle that had a canned cranberry sauce-like consistency,  and I didn’t trust it at all.

“I don’t care, Jaiden. Jam is made of fruit! It goes bad when you leave it out! It has to go in the fridge! I’m throwing this out. Go find some other jam.”
“But-but (he talks so fast he gets ahead of himself- it’s not a stutter.) There’s no more jam in the fridge!”

Jaiden says lot if things like this: I don’t have a single pair of clean pants (that’s why I’m wearing my brother’s).  That lost library book isn’t anywhere to be found in the entire house. I’m so hungry I feel sick. There’s not a single portion of jam in the fridge. And he usually knows all this without even looking, too.

Without saying much, I opened the fridge door. After 4 seconds of looking, I grabbed the jar of jam that was on bottom shelf, right in front, and handed it to him.

“Oh, thanks.”
I continued cleaning, thinking, You’re gonna need a wife someday, pal.

Boys.

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4 thoughts on “A story about Brother #5

    1. The funny thing is I moved to Tanzania a little over a year ago to a village without electricity, and by necessity learned that jam has a long outside-of-the-fridge shelf life. In fact most foods do. I’m laughing at my younger, less experienced self now.

      (And also, in my defense, it was my mom’s homemade blackberry, so not as resilient as the factory packed kind)

      1. I realised only after commenting that you posted it over a year ago, but thanks for replying 😉
        True, my mom started making jams recently too and I’d prefer not to eat those unfrigerated.
        How has it been moving to Tanzania? Do you write about it anywhere?

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