Good evening and welcome to Burger King, can I interest you in a Whopper? says the garbled disembodied voice that is part of the lexicon of Fast food ordering.
Nope Is my reply. I will have a double Bacon Cheeseburger with double meat, plain. Large size that with a Dr. Pepper.
Ok, I will have your total at the window.
Pleasant enough voice, I thought to myself. Pulling my car through the drive thru. Coming to the window I am greeted by a friendly smile and the pinkest hair I have ever seen. That will be $10.86...
$10.86... for a hamburger, fries and a drink.
Let me pause right here to ponder the fact that it is now just as expensive to order a Fast Food meal as going to some of my local sit down restaurants!!
Oh my gosh, I am now officially the grumpy old guy that complains about how expensive things have gotten and how cheap they were in the past. Reminiscing that I have paid as little as .32 cents per gallon for gas back in the day
It won't be long, I guess, before I will be talking about how I walked back and forth to school 15 miles both way, uphill, in a blizzard, while carrying my little sister, two lamas and a saxophone on my back... .
And those were in the SUMMER MONTHS.
(Pulling out my drivers license and checking my age... .yep I am that old.
but back to todays story, already in progress)
As I handed the young pink haired woman my credit card I do what I normally do and say Thank you, and reading her name tag I call her by name.
Side note here... .this embarrasses my son when I do this. I wonder why? Hummmm.
The name on her tag read
Haley but I could not read it quite clearly... and I said...
Thank you Haley, or is it Hawley? I can't read your name tag.
As she turns to me she says, with the biggest grin...
Actually my name is Corey
releasing a sigh, I take my food and drive away singing that line from Garth Brooks,
I'm MUCH to young to feel this dang OLD.
Thinking back, this is not new. The Beatles told us in Rocky Raccoon that her name was McGill but she called herself Lill, but EVERYONE knew her as NANCY!!
My name is Dale, and that is all I have really ever been called. Except when I was in trouble and then, depending on the level of trouble I was in, it was either my first and middle name, Or if I was REALLY in hot water, Like when I would drive my moms car and run it ALMOST out of gas and mom would run out of gas on her way to or from work. It would be all three names.
Man I think I am STILL in trouble for that one.
That never stopped me from looking for a nickname though, ones like
Dawg, spike, bubba, Ike, beanpole or even
Sticks ( given to most every drummer I have known) I think they get that name as a shopping list reminder for every drummers parent to pick up Sticks anytime they pass the music store.
The best I ever came up with, except for the hurtful ones like, 4 eyes, Dale theWhale, fatty or geek, where Dizzy , for my dizzying talent of running off on a tangent right in the middle of talking or even writing Snipitz. Or E-flat a musical reversal of my D-Sharp moniker.
Teasingly kids would call me Dale Evans, the late wife of Roy Rogers or Dale... the red nosed chipmunk from Walt Disney fame.
No matter how hard I have tried I have never came up with one that stuck... until the day my first daughter was born.
The name DAD stuck, with my middle daughter it was Papa, didn't matter which one. I loved them both. In good times and during times of struggle being called Dad or Papa brings a welling up of emotions that you can not imagine until you become one.
The bible tells us that in heaven we will be called by a different name. A name that is reserved for us, and us alone.
A name that is given to us by our creator. What a special name that will be.
Think about that...
Our creator, the creator of heaven and earth, the Alpha and Omega, The King of Kings. The one who has created everything, is telling us that we are SO special that he has chosen a name for us that is just ours.
They say he knows every hair on our heads,
A fact growing less relevant with each passing year as my hairline grows farther backwards.
He knows every breath we are going to take.
We are NOT a number to him or just a face in a crowd. We are HIS son or daughter! We are HIS children and he did NOT have to consult a baby name book to find our name in heaven. He looked at his creation and the heavenly father gave us our name.
As my children have grown and grandchildren were a possibility I thought about what I wanted to be called.
I had never called my grandparents anything but Grandma or Grandmother. Grandpa or Grandfather. I had never known any difference.
When I moved here to the Midwest I have heard them called mema and pepa. Mommie and poppie, ma and pa etc. I told my kids that I did not want to be called any of those things. I wanted to be called grandpa. I loved that name and looked forward to hearing it.
When my first grandchild, Zelda, was born three years ago I was so excited to start watching her grow and I couldn't wait til the day she called me grandpa!!
The day finally came and she looked at me held out her arms and called out excitedly POP POP !! And my heart melted, and I don't want to be called anything else.
In fact, God, I know your listening, so when I get to heaven if its not to much trouble... .
I think the name POP POP will do just fine.
I had to smile as I read this blog. All my life I have been called by a variation of my given name. Growing up everyone called me that (unless I was in trouble), except for my dad. He rarely used my given name either. It is not unusual for fathers to give their daughters some little endearing nickname but mine was different in that the name my father called me by was a different variation of my name. As a father yourself, you can understand how pleased mine must have been when at a very tender age I began to stomp my tiny foot and glare at anyone else who dared to call me by that name declaring, "Only my Daddy can call me that!"
My dad passed away from cancer when I was 16 years old. A male cousin of my mom's, thinking it would comfort me, made the mistake of calling me by that name. My mother sided with me and suffice it to say he never dared to do so again. I am thankful that one day I will be called by that name again, but not in this world.
Needless to say, I understand perfectly what it means to be called by a name given to you by your father, a name that is his and his alone. Every time I recall that, I get teary-eyed for it is indescribable.