Monday, August 29, 2011


DID YOU KNOW that I'm a big sister? Frank was born when I was four and I still remember soon after he came to live with us, hopping down from the breakfast table and taking my last bite of chewed toast out of my mouth and popping it into his wailing maw. Isn't that downright awful, not only the act, but that I would admit it to the world?

I don't write about him a whole lot partly because he's a very private person and partly because we're not as close as some siblings manage to be. As the Fifties turned into the Sixties, he was hip before it was hip to be hip. I was still a disgusting version of Goody Two Shoes. Two very different people. I admired, even if I couldn't emulate his life style. I think, and no wonder, that he found me a bit boring and downright disgusting.

His artistic abilities showed themselves early on and I always considered him to be the one and only artist in the family. Not until I was in my late sixties did I consider putting pen to paper to see what I could draw. He's no Sunday painter. He's a fine artist who enjoyed having a one-man exhibit at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. His last career was designing posters, brochures and the like for UCSB and designing book covers. He's a clever man, no doubt about it.

Maxwell is his constant companion; a little dog with a big personality. Frank has a colorful past. At one time he was one of several artists who bought land adjacent to Mountain Drive. On his portion he built the most wonderful "hobbit house" into the side of the mountain. His taste is as monastic as mine is cluttery. This tiny house was a gem. Alas, I have no pictures of it to send you.

He now lives down in town and he writes that he's just lost 66 pounds.......envy, envy. The picture he sent last week shows him standing between 2/3 of a triptych he painted of the view he enjoyed in his Mountain Drive house.

No doubt about it, he IS the artist in the family. Oh, and by the way he and a friend have a morning radio show. It's called "Frank 'n' George". If you're interested, you can read all about it by following the link.

"Big sisters are the crab grass in the lawn of life."
                                                                          ~Charles M. Schulz


  1. Chewed toast? That's disgusting Jane. I don't remember that, but I do remember you hawking up phlegm in the morning and telling me mother just hadn't cooked the egg whites long enough. And there's this piece of #2 pencil lead still embedded in my left hand. But aside from all that, you were really difficult to get along with. God knows why I still love you, and Bob too, and even the brats. I also love your blog. Write on!

  2. Gotta love brothers!!!!! Frank----so appreciated Jane letting us get to know you better!

    From another Big Sis

  3. I am the little sister of a big sister who was bad to me. Bad, Jane, but never disgusting. PHLEGM as egg whites?

    It's good that we've had this chance to meet Frank.......

  4. And to Frank...the painting is fabulous.

  5. Wow--he sounds great, Jane. You've written of him before, and I see the family resemblance. I burst out laughing when I heard what you did as a child. That's hilarious. And he does sound very talented--you all have artistic genes coursing through you. Oh, and by the way--I'm with you--if the egg whites aren't cooked quite enough, that's just not right...

  6. So you're not the only talented one in your family. Now I wonder what your parents were like!


  7. Frank, I had a friend once who used to say, "Well, THAT rips the rag off the bush!" You were a gullible little kid. I convinced you it was another little boy in the mirror and you believed it for the longest time.

  8. Hi Jane….I loved reading about your brother….somehow I thought you were an only child like I am….you are lucky even though you say you are so different and not close….at least there is a connection. And I love his art work….does he have any posted online under his name??? I'd love to see more. He certainly is a good looking man…..guess looks run in your family;……
    Hope Bob is doing ok and that you are hanging in there. As long as you blog I do not feel as anxious about you…..
    Love, Rusti

  9. Susan H writes: I think I am one of the brats you speak of Uncle Frank. YOu have always told me I am your favorite neice. I remember being told to cover my eyes when, as children, we visited your home and their was a wall with photos on it. I peeked. You remain my favorite Uncle.