The Easy Part of Easy: So now we have Becky-Vicki sitting at a small round table at the Red Rooster Café in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Sitting directly across from her, more or less, is Larry-George Brown. He just announced to Becky-Vicki that he was her brother. Becky-Vicki sat there quietly but actively processing what she just heard this man say to her. Her first thoughts were generally about his looks. Becky-Vicki first noticed his overly whitened teeth, which definitely did not go with his roughly scarred complexion. His clothes were certainly not new, and they were a little disheveled, in the folds revealed a powdery soil.
Still trying to figure out where and how this guy actually came from, Becky-Vicki, looking directly into Larry-George’s eyes, leaned slightly forward on the table and addressed him in her most aggressive tone of voice that she could invoke, raising her voice so nearly everyone in the café could hear her, she blurted out, “who the hell are you? And who in the hell do you think you are following me? And then telling me you’re my brother.”
As calm as anyone could be, Larry-George answered Becky-Vicki’s direct question with a direct answer. “I knew that you were living in this town for quite some time, but I never had the gumption to come and meet with you.” I really am your brother. The mother and father that you grew up with were also my parents at least in a way. Your mother gave birth to me, but your father wasn’t the sire.” Becky-Vicki sat there quietly listening, trying to figure out if any of this was true. “Am I supposed to believe anything that you have just said? And quite frankly why should I care?” Becky fired back.
For the longest time they both sat there just staring at each other, not saying a word. It was the classic pregnant pause, that is so often used in conversations, like movies and stage plays. It was Larry-George that broke the silence. “I have no intention of pursuing knowing you any further than this meeting. I was put up for adoption after I was born so there is no way you would know about me.”
Discovering for the first time that she had a sibling, Becky-Vicki started to fill emotions she never experienced before. She asked Larry-George, “where do we go from here? I guess… I want to get to know you.” After a moment of contemplation Larry-George responded, “you don’t really know anything about me. I was never adopted. I grew up in an orphanage. Once I left the orphanage I bounced around different jobs, I had no real education. Then I committed a series of robberies, got caught and ended up in prison. I spent five years doing time. During that time I was able to do some research and find out where you were living.”
Becky-Vicki was thinking to herself that she was almost glad he showed up in her life. She asked Larry-George, “what are you doing with your life now?” Larry-George told her, “something wonderful happened while I was in prison. I was writing a book about being adopted at birth and living in an orphanage. I never really thought much would ever happen to my writing. But a fellow inmate introduced me to a book publisher. The publisher helps publish books for people that are incarcerated, and still serving time. My book was published and I am making enough money to support myself, although very modestly, but I am in the process of writing another book.”
“That is fascinating, I am so happy for you. I want to read your book. What is your new book going to be about?” Becky-Vicki was asking questions faster than Larry-George could answer.
“Now that I am a successful author, I’m going to write a book about finding my half-sister and that would be you Becky-Vicki.” Larry-George said that in somewhat of a boastful way. But after all he had been through he had every right to be proud.
In case you were wondering, there really is a book publisher that works with inmates in prisons that want to write books. The publisher is called Beauty and the Beast publishing. We interviewed the cofounder on the Thought Row Podcast. It will be available Friday, May 6th, it’s season 2 episode 18 and will be available everywhere you listen to podcasts.
“The surprise is the prize when thoughts
merge with words.”
Rod Jones artist