April Fools.

I woke up this morning to learn that someone thought that this April Fools’ Day, it would be just hilarious to create a fake Facebook account for my “slightly younger” brother and send me a friend request and message. I haven’t spoken to Vic in almost seven years, so naturally my heart leapt and I accepted the request. It took me a few minutes to catch on, but there were three mistakes on “his” profile. To be more precise, there were two actual mistakes and an imprecisely listed alma mater (Vic graduated from UNH-Manchester, not the main campus at Durham).

Actual mistake number one, which I’m embarrassed to admit I didn’t catch sooner, was the profile pic. It was cropped from a photograph of my brothers, my sisters, and me from many, many years ago. So I was sitting at my desk, staring at the screen for a good five, ten minutes wondering why Vic was using such an old picture before I realized that the picture was of me, not him. We’d agreed to shave our heads for that winter (don’t ask), but he didn’t go through with it until after the picture was taken… and then it was only because my other siblings held him down while I shaved half of his head. Anyone could have found that picture online because it was featured prominently on the original version of this website and is buried in the public access files somewhere.

Actual mistake number two was the name on the Facebook account: Victor Emmanuel Viscariello. That’s not his name anymore.

Vic was named after the first king of a united, modern Italy. I got the lineage name “Vincent” because I was firstborn by twelve minutes. We used to say that if we’d been triplets, #3 would’ve had to have a middle name that started with an “F” to keep the pattern going (VDV, VEV, VFV, etc.). Anyhow, about ten years ago, Vic went on this authenticity kick and started pronouncing his name “vis-car-ee-ell-oh,” which, as I’ve stated before in this august journal, is wrong. In 2005, he went a step further and changed his name to the more Italianized “Vittorio Emanuele Viscariello.” That’s the name that he’d use on Facebook.

I thought he was kidding about the name change until he showed me the court order and his new license. I joked about it at first, pointing out that Vittorio Emanuele II was a fat Sardinian who didn’t have the good sense to avoid marrying his own cousin, and that if Vic were going to change his name he should change it away from Vittorio, not to it. Then Vic said at least “Vittorio” had had relations with a woman named “Rosa” (one of Emanuele’s mistresses, who shared a name with a girl I liked, but Vic dated, in high school, and yes, we used history to insult each other). This led to a somewhat heated discussion that lasted until dawn and touched on a number of disagreements that went all the way back to our birth. That morning was the last time I saw him in person, and the first time the gaps in our teeth matched.

I won’t delve into our arguments here except to say that yes, paying his college girlfriend to fake a positive pregnancy test crossed the line, especially considering the debt Vic racked up getting back into school after he’d dropped out to work full time– but that was just payback for him tricking me into waiting 20 hours at Hartsfield airport for an old pen pal from Italy, not realizing he had already picked her up at JIA and they were hanging out, doing God-knows-what. Long story short, I think he was just mad because I was born first and got the better name.

Anyhow, whoever pulled this prank really had me going, and I guess I’d see the humor in it if I weren’t heartbroken over not talking to my slightly younger brother for the better part of a decade. I just can’t wait to figure out who it was (and before Doc chimes in, yes, I know it wasn’t you) so I can “congratulate” him.

I might actually deserve this; I played a similar trick on Mole back in college, changing my userid to that of his high school girlfriend. That didn’t go over too well.

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