This drawing by Comixpank gives us an idea of what our hero faced.
My older brother was one of those kids, trouble always found him or he found trouble, but they went hand in hand. I was 12 and he was 16, it was the summer and boredom had struck my brother. He was always on the edge of trouble, and this day was no different.
During the day he and one of his friends wanted to try this new thing, getting high! I really doubt back then my brother knew what getting high was, but he was going to try. I preface this by telling you I had no idea what he was up to, I was out in the yard, most likely playing another endless day of whiffle ball with my friends. Mom was out shopping with our neighbor.
My brother and his friend tried to take all pills in the Bayer aspirin bottle to reach this high they heard about. What happened besides a stomach ache?
Mom came home, and as always, in her mom way she did a house check. Making sure the dog was walked and safe, checking the oven, as she always obsessed over a gas leak, and other ‘mom check points’. On of her last checks was the medicine cabinet in the bathroom. Mom also obsessed about the medicine in the cabinet, and our staying away from the cabinet. It was a forbidden place for us. It was then she noticed the empty Bayer aspirin bottle.
I remember vividly Mom standing at the back door calling me into the house. She was not happy. She told me to march up to her bedroom, and I was asking what happened and what I had done. My answer except a slap on the bottom and told to get into her room. I ran up the stairs.
At Mom’s door stood my older brother. He was huge when he was younger, one of the bigger kids in town and yes a bully. I had many a go around with him, and always got the worst of it as he was strong and had size on his side!
He grabbed me by the shirt and slammed me into the wall. Mom was downstairs. He punched me in the jaw and told me I better take the blame for the Bayer aspirin or he will knock the snot out of me. That was one of his famous threats. I was crying and trying to punch him back, when we heard mom coming up the stairs. He slammed me into the wall again and repeated the threat.
We moved into mom’s room. She came into the room with one of Dad’s belts, and was slapping it into her hand. She was very calm. Later in life I learned she sat in the kitchen and had a cup of tea in order to calm herself down before confronting us.
Mom simply asked who was in the medicine cabinet. I had no idea and told her that, she looked at my brother and asked him, and he just flat out said no. Again, I had no clue what had happened. This questioning went on for a few minutes, me not knowing what she meant and him lying. Mom stepped out of the room; my brother turned and punched my arm almost knocking me over. He told me again I better take the blame or else!!
As I stood there, Mom came back in and told us that if we don’t admit who did it, she would take the belt to both of us and then my father would solve the mystery when he got home. My brother was now very vocal that it was not him.
I stood there frozen, when mom stood up and told us both to take down our pants and lay over the edge of the bed. It was then that I decided a spanking from mom would not be as bad as a beating from my brother the bully, so I yelled out that I did it!
Mom looked shocked. She just glared at my brother and told him to leave.
Mom sat on the bed and asked me again if I was the one in the medicine cabinet. I said yes.
She told me to sit down on her vanity bench and walked out of the room. I heard her asking my big brother again and he continued to deny any involvement.
Mom came into the room, moved to her closet and took off her skirt. She wore a slip under her skirt and blouse. She asked me if I took any medicine and I told her no. Please remember I had no idea about the aspirin. She told me that she was upset about me going into the cabinet, but more upset with me not telling her the truth.
I was trembling with fear. It is funny because I remember the relief when she took the belt and returned it to Dad’s closet. Then she walked back in, and took picked up her brush.
She told me to stand up while she took my place on the bench. She lectured me quietly about lying and about the cabinet. Then I was told to pull down my pants and get over her lap. She then to my shock lowered my underpants and held me tight with her left hand. She told me that I was about to be punished for lying and breaking the rules. Then mom gave me one of the longest and hardest hairbrush spankings I can ever remember receiving. I still think that the spanking I was given may not have been as bad as a beating from my brother.
Mom finished the brushing and made me stand in the corner of her room, underpants up, but crying and sore. She walked out and left me there for a while to calm down, and then came back into the room.
It was then she asked me if the aspirin hurt my stomach, and sniffling and sobbing, I told her I had no idea what she was talking about! She said nothing else and sent me to my room. She knew right then I did not do it but I had not told the truth either.
As always I was called down to help with dinner, got a big nice hug and mom told me my father would not know about the episode or spanking. Dinner was fun as always.
Many years later, mom told me that was one of the hardest spankings she ever gave me. She also told me she cried right after spanking me when she left the room. She knew I was covering up for my brother. But in her mind I lied and needed to be taught a lesson.
As brothers we always took care of each other and defended each other but after this episode, I hesitated before taking any blame for my older brother. That brushing was always on my mind!