By Virgil Vaupel
Thanks For Listening 

Little Sisters

Ya Just Gotta Love 'Em


I’m the only, and oldest, male sibling in a family that consists of one full sister and four half-sisters, which poses the question right off: Do four halves make two full?

They are, in order of birth, my sister the teacher, my sister the bookkeeper, my sister the hippie/chef, my sister the nurse and my sister the jockey.

Today we will deal with my sister the hippie/chef, whom I will call Tia. Those of you who know her do and those who don’t don’t.

To show you her somewhat questionable degree of mental acuity, I’ll relate these true stories.

In the Skagit Valley of Washington there are a number of farms that produce a bazillion tulip bulbs every year. It is customary for high school age girls to “work in the bulbs” for spending money. They pick the bulbs, clean the bulbs, package the bulbs and ship the bulbs. A lot of the bulbs stay in the Skagit Valley for local sales.

Sister Tia was one of those workers for the six years she spent in high school, so you’d think she had it all figured out where the majority of these tulip bulbs got shipped to. (Shipped to? I know. Just leave it alone.) But as you will see, perhaps the “bulbs” she smoked as a youngster affected her thinking a bit.

Maybe 40 years later Tia and her BFF, both Master Gardeners, thought it might brighten up sister Tia’s backyard if they planted some tulips, so they got out their Burpee seed catalog and ordered several packs in several colors and sat back with a glass of wine and waited delivery.

A couple weeks passed and no bulbs. They poured more wine, lit up a doobie and waited.

Finally a letter came.

It read “Dear Ms Tia, Thank you for your order for tulip bulbs but we are very sorry to tell you that it might be some time before we can ship them to you because our order of bulbs hasn’t arrived from the Skagit Valley, Washington State, USA, due to inclement weather there.”

The letter was postmarked “the Netherlands.”

When they ordered from the catalog they didn’t realize the bulbs they ordered would have to make the round trip from the Skagit Valley USA to the Netherlands and back to the USA. They didn’t read the fine print.

Another time when Tia was in her hippie stage, she and her husband set up a tent on our step-father’s back 40 and were living there. Tia told step-dad Delmar it was so they could “get back to nature and experience the outdoors.”

Things went along fine for about four months until one day Del and his sister Lil were strolling out in the back 40 when Lil exclaimed, pointing at a particular plant, “Dellie, that’s cannabis.!!!”

Del said “Yah, I know. Tia and her husband planted them a while back but I haven’t seen any tomatoes yet.” See, up til now Del had led a sheltered and trusting life and he was very fond of Tia who could do no wrong.

By now, very agitated, Lil yelled at Del “Tomatoes hell! Delmar, that’s marijuana!” (Even at the age of 65, Lil knew the difference between marijuana and shinola.)

See, Tia and her espouse didn’t explain to Del that the tenting thing was to protect and watch over their quarter acre of seedling “miniature tomatoes.”

The fire that night on the back 40 included the tent, the plants and could be seen (and smelled) for miles.

And then there was the time Tia and I (me) went out to our friendly neighborhood bistro for a sip of suds. It was very crowded that night and with nowhere to sit we were standing at the bar minding our own business and chatting about old times in our dis-functional family household.

The band was very loud and we were being jostled by folks heading out to the dance floor when suddenly or sooner this big, big feller – 6-7 and maybe 310 – accidentally bumped Tia very slightly causing her to spill a drop or two of her Black Russian Prune Tang. (That’s Kahlua, vodka, prune juice and Tang. Well, then, what would you call it?)

The very last words I heard were Tia saying, in a very loud and threatening voice, “Watch it you big dumb bozo or my brother, while pointing directly in my direction, will kick the %*&^$% out of you.”

Sister Tia visited me in the hospital several times although we didn’t talk much, me with my jaw wired shut you see. We usually still avoid talking about the incident when we visit nowadays.

Little sisters … ya just gotta luv ‘em!

That’s it for now folks. Thanks for listening.


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