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Paper Bag Tumble

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“Hey, J.R., come here,” said my nine-year-old brother Jacob to our younger sibling.
Jacob and I were standing at the top of the stairs next to the open window. Outside, there was a soft breeze, and no one to be seen. Jacob had come up with a plan, and being the little five year old kid that I was, I, of course, agreed to anything my big brother said.
“J.R., come here. We want to show you something,” he said again with a mischievous grin, while I tried not to laugh.
“No!” replied a voice, somewhere deep inside the room the two boys shared.
“Come on J.R.,” I said. “We just want to show you something.”
I guess my little four-year-old brother believed me more than my consistently ornery accomplice, because he peeked around the doorway and asked, “What do you want?”
Then he noticed there was a paper grocery bag open at our feet. Curious, he ventured into the hallway and edged toward us.
“What’s that for?” he asked, gesturing to the bag.
“We want to see if you can fit in it,” replied Jacob.
“Nu-uh, you’re just gonna push me down the stairs,” he argued.
“No we’re not, we just wanna see if you’ll fit,” said the instigator, now also trying not to laugh.
“No!” J.R. said stubbornly.
I was completely aware that he would take my word over Jacob’s, so I said, “Come on J.R., we’re both too big to fit. We won’t push you down the stairs, I promise.”
My young, naïve brother once again showed his never-ending trust in me by carefully climbing into the bag. Surprisingly, he fit perfectly, without tearing the bag at all.
“Whoa! I fit!” said J.R., looking up at us excitedly.
Jacob and I looked at each other with big smiles on our faces. The plan had worked. All of a sudden, he shouted, “Now!”
In a flash, we were giving the bag a hard shove. Then we watched gleefully as our little brother tumbled down the stairs. The bag tore apart the first time he bounced, but he had so much momentum that he continued to roll all the way to the bottom. When he finally stopped, he was screaming at us and crying, so we ran away, tears streaming down our faces from laughing so hard.
I don’t remember if we were punished. We probably were, and to this day, J.R. still doesn’t trust me quite as much. However, I always laugh when I think back to that afternoon many years ago when Jacob approached me with a perfect plan.





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