Well, you folks have certainly heard enough about Stu. Although I'm sure I've mentioned Barry at one point or another, since he's one of the existing labels on this blog, I will once again delve into tales of this unmitigated jackass. Understand, however, that some of what's to be said here is rather unpleasant, especially when I quote him. If racial slurs and the like upset you, stop reading now.
First, let me tell you that my youngest sibling is handsome, physically fit, and has a ton of charisma when dealing with anyone who doesn't know him. If you managed to have the entire lower half of your body amputated, my brother could eventually sell you shoes that cost enough to require a second mortgage on your home. He's that good. There was even a point during his lower-teens where he was juggling three girlfriends, all of whom were VERY pretty, even to the eyes of a young guy four years older than my brother. (Me, you silly people.)
But Barry is a manipulator. The only reason anyone would possibly be in his life is because they are of use to him. If you think you're his friend, think again. He's using you in some way.
Take his years way back in college. Many of his friends went out of town for college, while he landed an education at a private college still on Long Island. To stay in touch with them, Barry got their class schedules. He would purposely wait until he knew they were in class, and that's when he would call and leave a message for them to call back. In this way, he'd only spend a minute on the phone, calling long distance, leaving it to them to return that call and rack up the larger phone bill.
Then there was the time when I was dating Perlin, who has that cocoa complexion of someone from Trinidad. I don't remember what precipitated the argument, nor in what context Barry used the exact phrase, but her referred to my girlfriend as "a little sand nigger." I snapped, and we got into a physical fight. As fit as he was, I was also fit, and I was holding my own against him...until I fell backwards, with him on top of me. He crushed my chest, tearing the cartilage in the center of my sternum. I was over a month healing that one, and couldn't take a deep breath if my life depended on it.
Okay...Barry moves on in life and gets a degree in marketing. He takes this degree and obtains a job with Phizer. (Yes, the makers of Viagra.) He becomes one of those people who goes from one doctor's office to another, dropping off samples and plugging the pharmaceuticals they offer. You may not know this, but that job pays startlingly well. In fact, my brother was earning six figures! With this income, he bought a house, which he worked on in his spare time to build an apartment that he could rent out. All was going very well for him, and I was actually proud of my baby brother.
But he didn't like all of the traveling that the job entailed. Flying was the worst of it. (And this was long before 11 September 2001.) So he quit his job and returned to school to become...a teacher. And not just any teacher. He became a special education teacher, which tends to require that something extra from the person taking on such a role.
Now, during my brother's return to college, he started dating a woman who was an assistant district attorney. This is a perfect example of irony, when you take into my brother's past involving various illegal activities. (He was a little hellion back in high school.) The entire thing was a fiasco beyond measure. He managed to get this woman to move in and start paying all of the bills while he spent the entire day at school. Then, upon coming home, he would become upset when dinner wasn't waiting for him on the table.
That's the thing about Barry. If you hang around him long enough, he gives away his true nature. Here was a woman who would work up to 12 hours a day, if necessary, paying all of his expenses, and he was still of a mind that the best place for her was "barefoot, pregnant, and in the kitchen." This, of course, didn't fly well with the girlfriend at all. Thus, Barry came home from school one day to find she had packed and moved out.
Good for her!
Somehow, Barry managed to complete his education, and now, oddly, he can't maintain a job long enough to gain tenure. He lives just off center of Nassau County on Long Island, which means he could be working in any number of schools, including somewhere in Manhattan. Oh, but that won't do for Barry. Oh no! He doesn't want to commute into the city, and specifically said, "I don't wanna work with the niggers." Rather than work, receive a paycheck, and get his bills paid, he would rather struggle, all because of his racial intolerance. And what's so incredibly stupid about it is that NY is desperate for teachers! If he would keep his mouth shut, he'd have a stable income.
But wait! It gets even better! My step-mom has family that works in a school that is specifically geared toward special education. She pulled what strings she could and found a job for Barry. He was fired in two weeks. As I understand it, he opened up his opinionated mouth and upset other staff members. That was that.
Oh...Speaking of my step-mom, Barry was actually angry at her and my father when the two of them got married. Where Stu and I were happy that our Dad found someone with whom he could spend his twilight years, Barry was pissed off, claiming, "She only wants to get part of the family inheritance!" To which everyone sat back and asked, "What inheritance?" Barry, it would seem, thinks there's a great deal of money to be had when my father passes on. Wow, is he wrong. If there was a lot of money lying around, I certainly would have received more than $50 for Hanukkah. Equally as disturbing is the fact that it seems he's waiting for our father to die so he can get paid. While the family has had a somewhat bizarre sense of humor about just that, Barry is apparently quite serious.
Let us not also forget that in early 2001, Barry heard that I was about 15 miles from where he lived, that I was homeless, and he couldn't care less. With an entire house to himself, there was no room for his eldest brother.
Of course, this was payback, I'm sure, for when he was 16. You see, Barry got into drugs in some of the worst ways when he was a teenager. One of his chosen substances was cocaine. He was given a choice: give up the drugs and stay, or continue using drugs and be kicked out. He chose the former, but was caught with drugs in his bloodstream. Thus, he was kicked out. Stu and I were given strict orders not to let him into the house. Stu chose to break with rule when Barry would come around. I refused him entry, enforcing homelessness on him. The difference was that his situation was one he chose, while I had my situation pushed upon me. But he got me back, and how.
Not really. Barry and I have very different outlooks on family. Where he makes every effort to push people away, I am the one who gets pushed out. I am lonely because others are unaccepting of my issues, while Barry is lonely because he's an abusive little jerk.
Over the last year and half, we've had a new problem. Our father moved from FL to NY to live closer to family. He's in an assisted living facility approximately five miles from where Barry lives. As I understand it, Barry called once, and only once. That call was to ask if our father could give him money. My father told him there was no money to be given. And that, my friends, was the last call Barry made to our father. Since dad proved he's of no use to Barry, Barry has no reason to contact him.
This is why Dad wants me to contact Stu. Barry, it would seem, is not really part of the family anymore. And I hear all of this via third parties, because Barry also has no use for me. It hasn't been confirmed, but I have a sense my father has disowned Barry. He thinks he's getting an inheritance when my father passes, but odds are good he's now receiving nothing at all.
And that, dear readers, is my brother Barry. May you never, ever meet him.