twiin peaks gallery

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Scott and Jen Michalski, 41
Author and Dept. of the Environment employee
Being a twin means having a relationship that’s challenging to explain but effortless for both of us. We don’t need to use a lot of words to communicate with each other—imagine the world’s most comfortable silence. We’re closer than siblings, but we’re not married. When we’re out together, people assume we are boyfriend and girlfriend. We knew each other for nine months before we met another human being—even our mother. Although we are not physically connected, like Siamese twins, for better or for worse, our souls are completely inseparable.

Katherine and Lauren Albert, 10
Identical fourth-graders
We love, in no particular order: muscle cars, Michael Phelps (we’re swimmers, you know?), Harry Potter, collecting funny pictures of cats (including our own, Cheddar and Colby), drawing and coming up with clever ad campaigns, performing in our school band (we play clarinet and baritone horn), going antiquing with our Dad, seeing movies with our Mom, wild animals (Lauren adores lions; Katherine is currently sweet on snow leopards, but give her a week!), listening to our fave pop stars like Katy Perry, Maroon 5 and OneRepublic—and being the same yet totally different. We do NOT like: Justin Bieber. “What an idiot.” (Yes, said in unison.)

Judith Hyland and June Dunton, 87
Great-grandmothers of 16
We are mirror twins and we’ve had a mirror life. We dated best friends in high school and waited until they both got home from World War II in 1946 to have a double wedding. Our father walked us down the aisle at the same time. We even went on our honeymoon together—wore matching gray suits with red accessories. June checked into the hotel first—and the concierge was quite surprised when a woman who looked just like her showed up with a totally different husband a few hours later. He said, “Wow, you’re fast!” These days, the fastest thing about us is June’s driving. So Judith prefers to take the wheel.

Cole and Karsen Smith, 6
Fraternal kindergarteners
We’re in different classes this year—and it’s the first time we’ve been apart during the day. We started a little tradition and didn’t realize anyone else noticed, but here’s what one of our teachers told our Mom: “Every single day, Cole sits on a bench on the playground and waits for Karsen to come out at recess. She walks by, gives him a high-five and then they separate to go play with their friends.” When the STYLE lady asked us why we do it, Karsen simply explained, “It’s our thing.” (“Plus, I miss her a little bit during the day,” admitted Cole, wrapping his arm around his sister.)

Angelo and Mateo Belen, 13 months
Future male supermodels
When we were babies (you know, like six months ago) our Mom used to carry us up and down the steps in a laundry basket. Apparently, we were super wiggly. She says if any marriage can survive “cry it out” with twins, the couple is set for life. For about a month, our whole family slept in the living room together—Mom, Dad and Bruno (our dog) on the couch…and us, Angelo and Mateo, in our swings. The first time we slept through the night our parents celebrated by buying a new mattress. Now we’re the kings of our cribs and whisper secret sounds to each other by the morning light.

Linda and Amanda Nord (age withheld)
Model and musician
There’s a Senegalese proverb that says the dominant twin kicks the other twin out during birth. That was Amanda. She’s a whole 12 minutes younger, likes to take her time. For some reason, people assume firstborn Linda is the more outgoing one, but Amanda thinks of herself as the wild child. Of course, in many ways we’re a lot alike. Our friends call it “Nording out” when we goof around with our unique-to-us personality. Fifty years from now, we can see ourselves living together in a cabin in Colorado, needing no more entertainment than just reading the newspaper to one another.

Jonathan and David Murray, 51
Finance experts and media personalities
During our orientation at Dickinson College, a bunch of senior girls walked up and asked, “Are you Jonathan or the other one?” Having grown up sharing everything—one birthday cake, one birthday card, you get used to being perceived as one unit. There are pluses and minuses to that, but you get a best friend for life. As a kid, you never walk into a classroom or onto a ball field feeling alone or intimidated when your twin is with you. Same thing as adults at a work function or cocktail party. We often turn heads when we’re together. Being a twin is instant attention.

Read about twin perks and quirks >>

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