By now you’ve recovered from your Christmas food coma and are preparing your liver for the yearlong binge that begins on New Years Eve. Over the past week or so you’ve probably spent time embracing the holiday sprit with several distant family members. There are your grandparents…eager to share their smiles, and in your Grandfather’s case, the muses of a slightly senile racist mind. There are the countless cousins and aunts who you rarely see, and never miss, but they are family all the same. Then there’s that one relative with whom you can truly relate. The indistinguishable Total Frat Relative.
In my case, that relative is my uncle. Though we hail from different fraternities, the connection remains. When you get down to discussing the ripe age of collegiate glory, this relative is more than happy to share stories from his days of alcoholic excellence. You and this family member can connect on a disturbing level of mutual understanding and bonds of debauchery. Back when you were 6 years old he couldn’t tell you about how he got the nickname “Camel” from drinking 20+ beers in an hour, but now you can enjoy these stories together while other relatives discuss teeth whitening and bowel movement frequency.
You may not get to see this character as often as you would like, but that might be part of what makes it such a magical relationship. The fact that he shares your last name, and loves drinking and chasing tail as much as you do, is really all you need to share some laughs on a semi-yearly basis. And by “share some laughs” I mean get inappropriately drunk at the family dinner and then drool hazing stories after you are quarantined to the back porch “for being too rowdy.” That’s when you light up a nice cigar and toast to the good life. Relatives like this serve as a friendly reminder that these decadent years of your life will always be treasured memories, and always give you something to discuss with other non-loser-GDI-poors. Some day you’ll be sharing your own stories of insanity and sexual mischief with young college-bound nephews and grandchildren. I know it’s a little far down the road to think about, but it never hurts to put things in perspective.