Names Have Been Changed So My Family Will Speak To Me
by Kathy Wooton M.D.
I started this column so I could share my writing with a wider audience. While my family has been very supportive of my writing, there has been more than a little concern voiced about preserving family anonymity. My daughter recently put it this way - “Mom, if you write about something I did and my friends read it, I'll just die!” My son's reaction was similar, if not a bit more troublesome - “Mom, if you write about me and my friends read it, you'll so wish you'd died!” And my husband, well, he made me swear on a stack of Bibles that nothing I wrote would ever be traced back to him.
For heaven's sake, I'm writing humor here, not “Family Dearest”. Still, they have a point. My family does have a right to privacy. So, I am posed with a dilemma - how to share the humor in my everyday family life without revealing an iota of my actual family life. I've stumbled upon the perfect solution - aliases!
My family had discussed aliases before, and everyone liked the name Billy. With a little compromise, we have chosen our new names. Without further delay, let me introduce the Billsons!
Starring : Bill Billson - my tolerant husband, aka Dad and Dr.
Billma Billson - me, aka Mom, aka struggling humorist and Dr. Billma Billson
Billamina Billson - my 16 year old daughter and future broadway star
Billy Billson my 14 year old son, who will one day rule the world
Co-starring “The Screaming Billies” - the family parrots, most of which can talk, clearly.
That leaves the two dogs sans aliases. Calling them BillyDog One and BillyDog Two sounds too Seussian. I could call them Mutt and Jeff, but one of the dogs is already named Jeff. What if I call the wrong dog Jeff? Will they get confused and suffer deep psychological trauma?
Of course, there are bigger questions here. Do the dogs possess anonymity that needs preserving? If they can't retaliate with their own tell-all book, should I care if their names are dragged into the mud. Seriously, any animals that drag their butts on the ground, in plain sight and with great relish, are not looking for anonymity, they're looking for an audience. And thanks to the internet, an audience they shall have.
Introducing Jefferson and Mister Biggles. Someday, they'll be stars.
©2007 Kathleen M. Wooton, M.D.
About the Author:
Kathleen Wooton M.D. describes herself as a budding humorist when she's not fulfilling her other roles as a physician, wife, mother and pet owner. She says being a woman in today's complex world requires some re-evaluation of some time-honored traditions.