He is not and never will be my cousin.
I have too many of them.
This is the direct result of being sired by a gentlemen whose sibling count was more than plentiful (somewhere to the tune of over ten and under twenty).
I’m not close to all of them, but I know where they are and where their children and their children’s children reside.
We have tangible relationships and we have virtual contact.
I see some of them often and I never see others.
I was taught early on that my paternal grandmother had raised three Asian children who had lost their mother in Cuba. I never thought much of it except to know that I had two Chino tios and the most beautiful Chinese aunt who entered creation.
That was the makeup of my family. We had chinos and there was nothing to be said about that.
It was my given.
There was this one kid In the mix, one of the chino tio’s sons who was a small thorn in my side because he was my cousin Roger’s favorite, and we only saw him on alternate weekends when he was visiting Englewood.
Anytime that Ulises was in town was like when they payed a Batman episode where the Green Hornet was a guest star. There was no Green Hornet but there was plenty of Kato and it made me none too happy. Roger was my cousin and he had to like me best.
Flash forward to twenty plus years later in Miami and Ulises and I run into each other at some place where I avoided saying hello, and we, begrudgingly for me, strike up a conversation.
We get together and we meet for dinner a couple of times. Our wives meet, we meet their son. We follow the pregnancy where they bring a daughter into the world. We go to Disney World together. We become Bayonne and Papa Bayonne to their kids. We help Roger walk down the aisle, several times, and life somehow gives me the cousin I never wanted to have.
Soon, I realized why I never wanted him to be my cousin. I understood why I fought the inevitable bond that would solidify. I knew why he was never meant to be seen in that light that had placed him on my road.
He was never meant to be my cousin, the son of an errant Asian Uncle.
He was meant to be my brother from another mother.
I already have too many cousins to count and he is not one of them.