Her name means princess, but she prefers Queen

I remember when my baby sister could not make her face mask whatever mischief she was getting into. Adolescence beat some acting skill into her, so now her gorgeous green eyes can mock you teasingly, her face become a wall of inexpressiveness, her mouth curl in flirtatious contempt even when she's nervous as all get-out. But sometimes, seeing as I'm her sister, I can get her to break into the open-mouther grin from her five-year-old self.

She is multi-talented and handy, and I am always begging for the product of her most recent interest. She aims to please. Last year for Christmas she promised me a poem. Which I still have not received. Nor have I seen evidence of her beginning to knit the shawl she promised two years ago.

Her hair has gone through every shade from strawberry-blonde to (its natural) deepest brown and every length from closely cropped to flowing down her back, and it always looks great, even when the cut and dye job are her own.

No matter your gender, I am quite confident she could kick your ass. She is 5'9", the captain of the women's crew team at her school, and built. You have to respect that. But if you're a girl, you'll still want to be friends. If you're a guy, you'll want more, but she's too good for you.

A staunch defender of women's rights, she sends me pop science articles on a regular basis about the health risks to mother and baby of having a child after age 30. [I'm 24. This has been going on for three years].

She wore a tiara to the party she threw herself this past weekend. People thought it was appropriate, not ironic.

Tonight, on her actual factual 21st birthday, she got tanked at dinner on half a bottle of Chilean champagne she's been saving for a year and a half and is now home doing homework. She's just waiting until I can get up there to show her how it's done, right. Happy birthday, Sarah.


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