Cast of Characters—Uncle Bricksalesman.

My brother in law can tell you the difference between Cinder block and the brick on your house. Not just the obvious stuff, but what clay it’s made out of, what temperature it was cooked, and what the breaking point it has.

Seriously, how am I supposed to write a funny blog with that material?

When I proposed to my wife, I found that it was the right thing to do to first approach both of her brothers and ask for their blessing. I did this because they were my friends before I dated my wife and it was the hoss thing to do. When I asked Uncle Bricksalesman, he gave his blessing but then decided to threaten me. He kindly let me know that he would end me if I hurt his sister ever.

I couldn’t help it, I laughed. I meant no disrespect, but you have to know Uncle Bricksalesman. He is over six feet and an x-offensive lineman. Sounds tough right? But I know that he has a soft gooey middle.

I know that he had never ever really been in a fist fight before. I know that his older brother, the Hippie, had maybe just punched him once. I know that his family is keener on a good debate than a good asswhip. In my head I think he imagines a good fight to be a couple of guys, in very tight speedo’s, putting their “dukes” up and protecting their handlebar mustaches.

I come from the trenches of southern Arkansas. And yes, I fight dirty. From ages 3 through 14, my life was one beating after another. I once got beat up because I was playing with some other kids tire. There are no roundhouse, karate kid crane kicks involved in real fighting. There is no “bell” to start the round. It usually begins by the sucker punch, and god love him, my brother in law is just not a sucker punching kind of guy.

But this is not to detract from his loyalty or sincereness of the threat. He loves his sister so I can appreciate that the hossness in him demanded that he make the threat, and I respected him more for it.

Besides being a fantastic brick salesman, he is in a cult. We have tried to deprogram him, but it is no luck.

He went to school at Texas A&M. For those that don’t know, you are quickly brainwashed into that society and everyone else should love you more for it. Their “traditions” are really rituals that if the state allowed would involve some goat sacrifice. These guys are fanatic about their school. It’s scary that they know who the fourth leg on their relay team is. Not only do they know, but they have no problems in telling you that they know. When you meet an aggie for the first time, this is how the conversation usually goes:

“Hi, I’m Uncle Bricksalesman. Gigem Aggs”.

“Excuse me?” you say.

“Did you know that Aggies are great and wonderful. Gigem.”

“I’m just trying to pump some gas pal. I don’t have any money”

“Did you go to A&M? Gigem.”

“Seriously man, I think the soup kitchen is just down the road.”

“A&M has the best sports teams in the world and the best academics. Gigem.”

“I need an adult over here! Adult”


But Uncle Bricksalesman is more than a maroon colored brick. He is a single maroon colored brick.

In a time when all of his brother’s and sisters are married and have kids, he is the black sheep that won’t settle down. This has caused quite the uproar with his grandmother, who thinks that he is gay. Don’t worry ladies, I can assure you he is all man.

He just has no game, god love him. I have never seen anyone that can introduce himself so easily to a group of random strangers but fail to close the deal. Watching him in action is like watching a plane crash on the landing. So almost there, it’s just that front wheel that buckles under the strain. Pull up, dear god, pull up.

But it appears that he is enjoying the single life, which gives him time to be superuncle. Seriously, I have 3 nieces and a nephew, but I can’t compete with him. He is superuncle and all his nieces and nephews seem to love him. Our shared niece, the Hippie’s first child, will choose him over me every time. So would I. He has a charm that people seem to gravitate towards. It’s that soft goey middle, it was made for hugging.

Uncle Bricksalesman can be a very complex individual though. Is he Uncle Bricksalesman today or is he going to be Mr. Miss Graduation Deadline guy. Or perhaps he is Mr. Cultmember, Mr. Birthmark Hairy Patch, or Mr. Hey Cow! Mr. Hey Cow is when you are driving in the country and you play a game where you stick your head out the window and yell “HEY COW!” as loud as you can. If the cow looks, you win. I have no idea what you win, but a victory is a victory nonetheless and he is the champ at this game. I understand that this makes us all sound very, very hick, but that’s who we are.

Uncle Bricksalesman’s greatest attribute though is getting in between different warring clans within the Hossman family. He is the peacemaker, which is good for my wife’s family because otherwise I would have ruled all by now. We all feel a little guilty for getting him involved in all our drama when he has nothing to do with it. But he is the Gandhi of our family, calmly fasting in-between 2 competing armies. Hoss vs. My Wife’s nutjob family. Yes, I realize that this may be an unfair characterization of my Wife’s family, but It’s my blog. Don’t make me take my ball and go home.

But I am the outsider coming into my wife’s family and he has welcomed me. Maybe I should have taken his threat more seriously. Maybe he meant that he would set up a debate concerning Aggies Vs. Non Aggies and I would be forced to listen and convert. Ok, that brings a new realm to this. He is a sneaky bastard.



  1. HoorayForSaturdayApril 23, 2007 at 6:52 AM

    You are so correct on that. I have a cousin-in-law that went to grad school at Texas A&M and those Aggies are hard core.
    Only other place I know that might be worse is where I went, LSU.
    Geaux Tigers!

  2. Huh...what year did they stop doing the goat sacrifice? I know they were doing them in '68.

  3. try walking on the grass and I'll bet you see some sacrifice