Doddering old “A.P.” has done it again!

My mother was the youngest of 5 children. Her next older sibling was my favorite aunt, Aunt Ida. She was such a wonderful person, who always seemed to take a keen interest in whatever I was doing. And approval from her was second only to approval from my immediate family. I was sort of her “N.P.” to my “A.I.” Now, A.I. was delighted with our sons. Her N.P. had given birth to a beautiful baby boy named Joshua Ryals Calhoun. His first name was chosen because we liked it, and because of its biblical connections. His middle name was after my husband’s maternal grandfather, Ryals Lafayette Morgan. (Coincidentally, he was frequently called “R.L..” and being a true southern gentleman his middle name was pronounced lah-FAY-ette.) I was privileged to meet him before his death, at the age of 94, and so was our Josh, who was introduced to his great grandfather just less than a year before the giver of his name died. Josh was about 8 months old.

Anyway, the point of this story is that no matter how many times I told her, she insisted on spelling Joshua’s middle name, “Ryalls,” – using two “l’s.” Since it was his middle name, we didn’t use it very often – he was a well-behaved child and seldom required the stern-voiced intoning of his full name, “Joshua Ryals CALHOUN!!!”  So, other than try to remind her occasionally, we left it alone.

I dedicated yesterday’s post to Abby, my N.A. I mentioned in the very first line that she was being married to Keaton “Woodruff.” His name is Keaton Wooden. (I hope that is how it’s spelled!) I was so proud of myself that I got the Keaton part right. For the first several months he was known to me as “Keith.” At least I got the “Wood” part right! So, my dear N.K., you have joined a family rife with name dyslexia. I am so sorry, and offer my sincere apologies to you and the rest of your family. I am correcting the post, so those who didn’t read it yesterday will not know of the error. Now they will, I guess! But I couldn’t just let it go by.

You have the advantage of a family name that is easily spelled (I hope!), and also easily pronounced. N.A. and I grew up with a family name that is neither of those two things. . .Tohline (pronounced t’LEEN). So I of all people should have taken care to get your name right. So, please accept my apologies. I wish I could guarantee that I would never get your name wrong again, but I can’t. As a matter of fact, you will be lucky if that is the only gaffe I make in our relationship! Please forgive me. And for heaven’s sake, consult me first on what you name your children, should you decide to have any. (No pressure, believe me!) That way your child that you might name “Caleb Alexander Wooden”  will not be renamed by me as “Carson Alexei Ruffwood.” God! Please help me!

I wish all of you, my Gentle Readers, better luck with your loved ones than dear Keith, er, KEATON, and a life filled with enough. . .

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