“Are you sisters?” is the most common question I field from strangers when I’m with my wife. “No,” we usually answer in unison, only she smiles while I scowl.
This question angers me for many reasons, but mainly because I resent the implication that I’m fucking my sister. Take note, it’s a very fine line between pleasant small talk and incest.
It also angers me because I’m certain that we look nothing alike. I am the proud owner of a prominent nose, a set of wild eyebrows and prematurely sagging jowls, while her features are perfectly proportioned and her skin makes porcelain jealous. She is polished and put together, while my distinct (and hard to pin-point) fashion style and general demeanor ranges from messy to possibly unstable.
Less than a week from last being asked if we were sisters, and offering the questioner my most disgusted look, I found myself practicing her smile in front of our bathroom mirror where I had propped up her driver’s license.
“You know how I’m signed up to The Lumineer’s mailing list?” she asked as I was serving dinner. “Well, I got an invite to a secret concert.”
My excitement was cut short when she explained that it was not a two-person invite.
“I love you so much,” she said. “I can’t imagine enjoying the show without you.”
I stood in the kitchen with a hand on my hip and the other one holding tongs and considered to wait until after dinner to tell her that I would gladly take her ticket and leave her behind without hesitation or guilt. Instead, I decided to say it right then and there because, let’s face it, I’m an asshole. I began my blurt with, “I love you too, but…I can’t let that ticket go to waste.”
We sat down to eat and continued the conversation.
“It’s not a ticket I can give you,” she said. “You need to show my ID.”
She left for work that morning and also left behind her state-issued identification card
along with a print out of the email confirming her invitation, which contained a long list of demands:
- Be in the lobby at 6 o’clock sharp
- No additional friends or family members will be allowed in
- Absolutely no mobile phones, cameras or recording devices
- A state-issued ID is required to enter the show
Throughout the day I was particularly busy with work, but every once and again I’d remember what was ahead. But instead of rejoicing, I would descend the downward spiral. At best, they would take one look at my ID and deny my entry in the most embarrassing way possible. At worst, they would call the cops and arrest me for impersonating a librarian. To avoid either scenario, I decided to practice her smile.
But the more I tried, the less and less I looked like her and the more and more I looked like a psychopath about to have a mental break.
Not before long, I headed out to the theater. I locked my phone in the car and walked right up to the check-in table armed with nothing but an ID that clearly was not mine.
I was nervous, suspiciously sweaty and smiling wildly. For some reason I kept repeating my wife’s name in my head in the event that I would suddenly blank out.
“ID?” the young lady at the desk asked.
I handed her the piece of plastic and she checked my fake name off of the list and wrapped a black wristband around my arm. She took one more look at the license as she picked it up to hand it back to me. We locked eyes and she said, “Enjoy the show.”
Just before putting the ID back in my pocket, I looked down at her smiling face and whispered, “Thanks, sis.”
(Please note the slightly illegal, alleged events that occur in this story cannot be proved and will be vehemently denied in a court of law…which might also be illegal.)