Summary: The gift-wrapped 12-by-12-inch package was never a surprise. My brother and I had a system for our birthdays. I’d pick out a record I liked, and he’d point to his favorite in the music store. This is the lead of a personal essay about tracking our milestones in life through those of older siblings.
To read the complete essay, published on Nov. 3, 2002, go to The Dallas Morning News archive.