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Invisible light

Feeling discombobulated as usual around this time of year – hence the dearth of posts lately – I found myself poking around this afternoon for inspiration at Russell Books, Canada’s largest used-and-new bookstore.

Careening toward the self-help section, suddenly I saw it:


Yule – A Celebration of Light & Warmth…

As if.

I am anything but light and warmth these days. I am invisible.

…Or at least marked down, to half price.

Feeling a bit like A Boy Named Sue, I once again bit on the irony of being named, by my weird parents, after a pagan festival. Emigrating to Canada and using my second name (Fredericka) as a bulwark against the first-name weirdness did not help: North Americans are inordinately fond of short, preferably mono-syllabic names. Therefore, a four-syllable male-derived moniker such as mine was naturally shortened first to Freddy, …then to Fred. Not what a young girl was looking for – which explains why, by the impressionable age of 16 (and under the influence of an art teacher) I returned to my first name. …And I spend a lot of time explaining that, no, it’s not pronounced as one syllable, but two.

Sure wish I could get the hang of that warmth & light thing…

PS: Looking at the editorial description on Amazon, I read that Morrison suggests that “Many people believe that Santa’s reindeer ‘represent the stags that drew the chariot of the Norse gift-giving goddess, Freya.'” Ah yes, Freya. That’s one of my sister’s names. There are seven of us – we’ve got the Edda covered.


  1. Your name is great and your blog is a beacon of warmth and light.

    When I was a kid, the only other Melanie around was in Gone With the Wind (and I never liked her!). I wanted to be all sorts of other names too (for example, Scarlett ;)). Later I came to appreciate the uniqueness of my name, but by that time it had become fashionable. I missed out on all fronts.

    Comment by melanie — December 23, 2010 #

  2. Aw, thanks, Melanie… That means a lot (re. my blog being a source of warmth and light)!
    As for Melanie, don’t forget Melanie Safka’s great “I’ve got a brand new pair of roller skates, you’ve got a brand new key …I think that we should get together and try them out, to see …”
    Roller skates! Keys! Going places! All around the world!
    Missed out? No way! 🙂

    Comment by Yule — December 23, 2010 #

  3. 🙂 When I visited NYC in 1971 somebody at a party asked me if I was that Melanie. I’d never heard of her then! She must’ve been named for that goody two shoes in GWTW too! She’s one of the rare Melanies of my generation. But like me, she turned out Scarlett (i.e. BAD)!

    But as for missing out, I agree. I’ve had an interesing life – and more to come!!!

    Comment by melanie — December 26, 2010 #

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