Sharon Randall: Everyone wins in Sister-opoly

Published 6:55 pm Friday, July 8, 2016

Nobody likes to say, “I’m sorry.” But most of us like to hear it on occasion.

This morning I called my sister to apologize for things I said last night. Never mind what. Just a few helpful hints for her health and well being.

Simple suggestions like, try an ice pack on your knees. Take a warm bath before bed. Talk to your doctor about those nerve pills that Mama used to take.

My sister is a retired nurse, smarter than I’ll ever be. She doesn’t need me to tell her stuff she already knows. But I do it all the time. And I likely will again.

So today, when I apologized for yesterday, I included all my sins, past, present and future, and she forgave me for all of them. That’s my sister. When it comes to me, her grace knows no bounds. It’s like a “Get Out of Jail Free” card in Sister-opoly.

In all our years, I recall only two exceptions to her mercy. The first was when I was 6 and she was 12. She got mad at me for nothing, slammed the door to our room and wouldn’t let me in. I could see her bare feet in the crack under the door. So I shoved a toy cap pistol through the crack and accidentally broke a few of her toes.

I’m not sure if she forgave me for that. We don’t talk about it.

A few days after I broke her toes, she found a nickel in the sofa cushions and sent me to the store for a bottle of Coca-Cola.

When I returned, she popped off the top, took a swig and passed it to me. I took a swig and passed it back. Then she looked me in the eye and said with an evil grin, “I spit in it.”

I threw up. But I forgave her.

Her other lapse in mercy took place when we were grown women, old enough to know better. I’ve told this story before. I’ll tell it again. Basically, it boils down to this: My sister tried to shoot me. And I do not mean with a cap pistol.

I had taken my soon-to-be husband to the South to meet my family. While we were there, my sister let us use her car. We were pulling out of her driveway when suddenly I remembered what she kept in the glove box.

“Wait here,” I said to my husband, and ran back inside. My sister was watching TV.

“Sissy,” I said, “will you please come get your gun?”

“Can’t you bring it to me?”

“I’m not touching it,” I said.

She grumbled all the way to the car, leaned in the passenger door and opened the glove box. And then, for reasons I will never understand, I poured a Diet Pepsi down her pants.

Not the whole can. Just half.

Her head spun around like Linda Blair’s in “The Exorcist.” Then she took aim and fired a shot, I swear, at my face. Later she claimed she fired into the air so my face was never at risk.

My husband didn’t know that. Suffice it to say her pants were not the only ones that were wet.

Had she killed me, she says, she’d have been set free on grounds known in the South as “the fool needed killin’.”

I forgave her for that, too.

Ten years ago, when I flew back to our hometown for a visit, I was shocked to find myself the victim of a nasty rumor. Seems my sister had told everybody and all their crazy cousins that I had moved to Las Vegas (that part was true) to work as an exotic dancer at a nightclub for senior citizens.

It was flat-out unforgivable, but I forgave her anyhow. She is, after all, my only sister.

We have been through a lot together, she and I. We have laughed and cried, driven each other crazy and propped each other up in times, good and bad.

Isn’t that what sisters are for? We don’t need to give advice or tell each other what to do. We just need to listen, say we’re sorry and try to offer grace.

That’s what my sister does for me. And I try to do it for her.

We’re not perfect.

We’re just sisters.

And so far? At least one of us hasn’t tried to shoot the other.

Sharon Randall can be reached at P.O. Box 777394, Henderson NV 89077, or on her website: