By Sean Patrick
Pelican Publishing Company, Hardcover, 9780882898780, 224pp.
Publication Date: February 1, 1992
You've heard of Murphy's Law and even the
Peter Principle, but here's a new one: Patrick's Law. Patrick's Law, which
deserves at least equal space in the index of life, states that in large
families, the youngest gets the shortest end of the stick.
The youngest has certain traits that can last to adulthood: "His
clothing will mark him and his position in the family strata. His socks will
droop because of a lack of elasticity brought on by age and the larger ankles
of his brothers. The youngest will generally never hold an original opinion for
fear of being informed he is a klutz by at least one of his brothers. He will
always be referred to as So-and-So's little brother and will NEVER (a) get the
Sunday funnies first, (b) go anywhere without telling at least two persons
where he is going, or (c) be able to read a comic while seated on the family's
Patrick's Corner is a collection of stories about growing up
after World War II in a world where family life, neighborhood interdependence,
and nurturing environments were the norm. The author describes how one family's
steadfast devotion to each other and their foundation of moral values helped
them surmount the challenges of poverty.
Told with the sensitivity of the "baby of the family," this
nostalgic reminiscence is full of warmth, love, growing pains, and the
struggles for survival. The author writes about his "comin' up" as
the youngest of six sons in an Irish Catholic family headed by a widowed
mother. Like most brothers, the Patrick boys fought, but more often they were
friends who talked, laughed, and shared their growing pains with each other.
Even if you have never had to wear hand-me-down clothes or been referred to
as So-and-So's little brother or sister, these stories are sure to touch your
Sean Patrick, a native of Cleveland, Ohio, lives in Fayetteville, North
Carolina, where he teaches creative writing at Fayetteville Technical Community
College. He has operated two teen group homes, served as an administrator of a
religious education program at his church, and, along with his wife, has given
lectures on parenting skills. He has written for Catholic Digest and has
also been published in The Liguorian.