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Whatís In A Name?
By Charlotte Webb
Sunday, February 18, 2007
Rated "G" by the Author.
How I got my name; tribute to my father
Iím the third child, the youngest child of three daughters born to my parents, Ed and Jean. Anne, Mary and Charlotte. Of the 2.5 children in American families, Iím the half-wit, or perhaps - third is a charm? Iím named after my father, Charles Edmund Webb. Iím Charlotte Ellen Webb. My father was one year younger than I am right now when I was born. Poor guy! Heís gone now. He died in 1997, the day after Saint Patrickísí Day. He loved to read. Westerns were his favorite. He also enjoyed reading the People magazine and the Enquirer. He also liked to watch sitcoms; comedies, mysteries, old westerns and he listened to rock and roll music.
The last several years of his life I got to have my morning coffee with him. Iím truly grateful for those days. It was some really hard times for my family. After I graduated from college, I got a great job making twice what I was making at my last job. I was working with art and loved it. A year after graduating I went to the hospital for a routine stress test because my heart has an irregular heartbeat. Anyway, the IV was inserted into my right wrist and really hurt. I told the tech about it and I was told that the test would soon be over and the IV was left in. To make a long, long story somewhat shorter I havenít been able to use my right dominant hand, without a great deal of pain, since that day. I lost my job. The good news, my heart is in great shape.
After losing our place to live we moved in with my parents. My hubbie was working forty hours a week and going to school twenty, at that time. Fate works in mysterious ways. My Father had been working his own business for several years. I worked for him as his office manager for a while in the early eighties. He was always trying to remake his fortune.
Iím a lot like him. Fortunately I never had a fortune, so no need in trying to kill myself off trying to remake it. He called me the feeling one. He told me I should be a politician except for two things - I was too honest and too passionate. He liked the way I always stuck up for the underdog, as he put it, and said Iíd be good at working for civil rights. Well, I do know the laws and I can make some good points but itís just not my area. I appreciated his appreciation for my, letís say style.
He told stories like nobody else could. Heíd been everywhere and done a bit of everything. He was the only one in my family that seemed to know why I bought my first husband that one-way bus ticket. He was hard of hearing and heíd put in his hearing aids and turn them off. I, being hard of hearing myself, understood why. He spoke very loud, but a quiet man. I speak very soft, and probably a loud mouth at the same time. I went deaf with the measles as a small child and have never spoken up since. I can hear pretty well out of one ear but not the other. I, too, will probably not get hearing aids. Just because, as my Mother always used to say, ďjust because, thatís why!Ē
My Father and I watched and listened to a lot of stuff. Itís kind of funny what goes on around us. He saw the dictionary fly that day, toward my ex-husband. He caught it so I imagine he knew it was coming. His lip service and mine had extended itself to the dictionary level. That wasnít a good thing. My Father knew what was going on the last time my ex visited. When my ex left the room my Father said, ďyou arenít going back to that are you?Ē I shouted Ďnoí. I was so glad that someone had seen my side of it! I stuck to it and havenít seen my ex since. The one-way bus ticket is the end and a whole other story. Daddy pretty much let Mother raise us, no matter what the outcome.
Mother always told me I needed patience. I didnít know what she meant. After all I was two weeks late being born and arrived on the anniversary of her first marriage. Now thatís what I call patience!
I miss that man. I still have coffee with him every morning. I get up and pour coffee into the smiley face coffee mug he gave me when I worked for him, on Secretaries Day. His ashes are in my china cabinet. Heíd have a great laugh over my recent discovery. I had surgery on my hubbies and my anniversary, April 1st. I have four new incisions. Iím now two cysts, two tumors, last tube and ovary, shy. He used to give me a lot of junk about my smoking habit. Heíd get really loud out in public when I was a teen. Iíd just ask him if he knew he was making an ash of himself.
As I have my wonderful smokerís cough and four new wounds, I hold myself and cough. I reach for just one more cigarette and I can just hear Daddy giving me crap about my bad habit, cause he always cared. Then I remember he is an ash now and he really did enjoy my deranged humor. Iíve just had a week off, spring break in Florence. That gave me time to heal and to think way too much! I could look around and see everything that needs done and I couldnít do it! What a deal!
To end this Iíll just say, God is in His heaven, my Fatherís in the cupboard, my Mother is living with my daughter and all is right with the world. Oh yeah, and I wonder what the elves do with their time off?
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