Author: Jesse Stewart

My brother and I grew up in Berkshire County. The majority of our upbringing was in North Adams. I always felt like our relationship was like Kevin and Wayne's from 'The Wonder Years' with my brother taking the role of Wayne and me Kevin. The main difference was Kevin and Waye were a couple of years apart and my brother and I are 8 1/2 years apart. In the show, the two brothers seemed to fight on a regular basis. Boys will be boys, right? That's pretty much how it worked with me and my brother.

One thing I can say about our upbringing was my poor mother. My brother and I would wrestle, break furniture, fight (what brothers do) and my mother had a difficult time controlling it. Sometimes, my dad was able to break it up but it seemed like our fights would just run their course. I'll admit, many times, even though I was the younger brother, I would instigate the battles. I would slip snarky notes under my brother's bedroom door when he was in there or I would just constantly get in his hair trying to be the center of attention that I deserved the body slams and clotheslines I received from him. Add to that, I was a huge WWF (then World Wrestling Federation) fan at the time. So oftentimes, I would start up with him because I wanted to emulate what I was watching on television.

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One incident I remember occurred somewhere between 27 and 30 years ago. My parents had the typical type of kitchen but they had a bar-type setup created where my brother and I would eat. So, my mom and dad would eat at the dinner table in the kitchen. My brother and I would eat at the bar stools behind the bar, in the dining room which faced into the kitchen. So, we could all see each other, my brother and I were on the other side of the wall facing in. There was an opening in the dining room wall into the kitchen for the bar setup. We had meals this way because we had a small kitchen and the table was up against the wall.

One time my brother and I were eating dinner at the bar stools and whenever he would take a bite, I would take a bite. I was being his shadow and I knew ahead of time doing this, that he was already in a bad mood. After a few times of copying him, he threw me on the floor and took the fork he was eating with, and jammed it in my knee. It didn't really hurt. I was more surprised that the fork actually stuck into my knee. When I pulled the fork out, four little drops of blood ran down my knee to my leg. What can I say? It was a different time in those days and boys will be boys. I really did love wrestling with him.

Since we're talking about a story from nearly 30 years ago, how many of these obsolete items do you remember from your youth? 

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