Dear Sharon in Chicago,
Though we have never been formally introduced, I recently learned how significantly your opinions have shaped the little lady I am today. I do so appreciate that you convinced my mother that to give me a middle name would go against all that was righteous, right-on and far-out. I believe you told her that middle names are as useless as tits on a boar hog or some other pleasantry. And so I became a middle child with no middle name.
I had long ago forgiven my mother for not giving me a complete moniker. I imagined her hugely pregnant, fiercely battling my father to ensure that my first name would not rhyme with my last so that I would not be doomed to a life of a professional cheerleading or motivational speaking. She could have put her feet up and agreed that yes; Charlemagne has a nice ring. Gratitude was required on my part. Decades would go by before I learned of you.
I concede that you did not know that I would grow up in the South. Had you known, I believe you would have gently closed your pie hole and nodded encouragingly while my mother debated various musical instruments that would make lovely middle names. You would have offered your support when she considered giving me two middle names, thus ensuring my acceptance to many private colleges and secret societies. You may have correctly predicted that childhood friends would inevitably invent catchy middle names such as tube sock or airbag for yours truly. If you thought about it, you might have guessed that if I were a steel worker by day with aspirations of going to a prestigious dance conservatory, I would have no way to disguise my name at my big audition yet remain recognizable to the boss I was destined to fall in love with who would help me achieve my dream just like that guy from Flashdance did for Jennifer Beals.
Maybe someday you will shed some light on your beef with middle names, but until then I remain,
Barista TubeSock Airbag