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To my brother

Nicole Toczauer | Monday, September 19, 2011

Sept. 19: 262nd day of the year (263rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar; Armed Forces Day in Chile; a Christian Feast day for six saints; the day Charlie Chaplin was refused reentry into the US in 1952 until he had been investigated; International Talk Like a Pirate Day; and the day the new season of How I Met Your Mother premieres.

I think the last two make it an absolutely fantastic day.

I even typed it into iTunes out of sheer curiosity — lo and behold, there’s even a folk jazz-fusion song dedicated to the day.

Despite the musical interpretation and impressive list Wikipedia provides when you type Sept. 19 into Google, the 19th of September will always be, first and foremost, the day my brother was born.

A few days after Chris came into the world, my parents picked my sister and me up from the day care that had taken us in during the big day.

I don’t really remember it well, but my parents gave us two tiny tumbling dolls and said my brother had gotten them just for us. Then we all drove back to the house only to be greeted by Sebastian, our German shepherd (aka the best dog ever).

Everyone was finally home.

Over the years, my brother has transformed from a platinum blond haired toddler to a kid who tore apart electronics (and couldn’t always put them back together) to a six-foot however-tall-he-is-now-inch teenager who creates and sells his own iPhone apps.

Today I would like to say “happy birthday” when he blows out the candles. But since I’m not home, and I get this column to do whatever I want with, I’ll write him this:

Chris, you’re the best brother ever — you never went through the obnoxious kid phase or seemed plagued by preteen angst.

Sure, I was afraid I’d come home to find random holes drilled into your wall and electrical wires were everywhere or that you’d built a mini-taser. You learned how to build things very quickly. When I saw you reading massive programming books, though, I was surprised. You were really dedicating yourself.

Then you started making games and eventually got some iPhone Apps together. Even when you were told you were too young, you kept going in whatever way you could. Now you’ve got two on the market and know the ins-and-outs of the App market better than any other fellow your age.

I am so, so proud of you.

So I suppose this applies to everyone with a brother or sister when I say this — if you haven’t contacted them in a while, give them a call today. Send a text, a carrier pigeon, smoke signals — whatever it is, and just let them know you love them. Let them know you’re proud of them and why you’re proud of them. They deserve it.

Because I know one thing for sure — I’ve got an awesome brother.

Happy birthday Chris.