"I do not claim that I can tell a story as it ought to be told. I only claim to know how a story ought to be told." -Mark Twain


Tell All Tuesday--Names

Southern parents love to name their babies
double names.
And yes, I realize we are in Oklahoma, and not the deep South, but we are Southern to the core.
I realize that most people have a first name and
a middle name,
but in the South,
that first name and middle name
And if you expect someone to answer by just the 
first name,
well think again!

For instance, I grew up on a Leave It To Beaver
kind of street.
My mother's best friends..(on said street) were:
Mary Sue, Mary Lou, Mary Frances, Betty Lou.
Esther Ruth lived just around the corner.
(And then there was Shirley, but she was a Yankee, so that does not count!) 
We love our double names.

Then there is my mother's name...
You didn't think she would be left out of the
double-name-game-did you?
(When I was little I thought one could only become a mother if they had a double name.)
(And were a Republican!!!!)
My mother's name is
Nina Gay.
That would be a long I...on the Nina.
(As opposed to Nina' of the Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria.)

Whenever my mom gets phone calls at home
and the caller asks for Nina' Gay (and says it like the ship), or just Nina (either pronunciation) she knows it is no one she needs to talk to!
Family legend has it that my
great-great-grandmother got the "Gay"
part of the name from a street in New Orleans.
My great-grandmother was the first Nina Gay.
I also have a cousin named Nina Gay.
And while we are on the names of cousins, we also have a:
Norma Zae, Nelda Faye, Norma Dean, and Nina Beth.
(I have many other cousins as well, but their names don't match the story as well!)
When I was born,
as the oldest,
bore was fortunate enough to be named
after both of my parents.
The "Lori" comes from my dad "Larry" 
(I wonder how many Lori/Larry father-daughter tandems are in this world????)
And then the "Gay" came from my mother, Nina Gay.
She loved keeping the "Gay" middle name going...
four or five generations 
after that street in New Orleans discovery.
(Let's face it...29 52 years ago, the word had a different meaning.)
And so it would be that to my
and dadsometimes
and grandparents
and family
and my best friend Lisa,
and the Hubby
I would be known as 
Two words. The first and middle name thing.
But said quickly enough to become
If I even mention to my mother
that I am not a big fan of
she pouts.
Then she tells me (and I quote)
"Well, Lorrrriiiiiiii. Gay means happy. It's a beautiful name."

As I got older I learned that it was just one of 
those battles I could not win.
I quit fighting it and just answered
(with a smirk)
My sister, (who is one of 6-people-with-Kathleen-for-a- middle-name-in-the-family, but that is it's own blog post)
LOVES to revel in the fact that
I was blessed with 
In fact, she is the one that bought me the magnet, pictured above.
(A side-track story: My sister's children call me Gay-Gay. My cousin Nina Gay's granddaughter calls her Gay-Gay. When we were on vacation together in Seaside, there was always some little one calling out, "Hey Gay Gay"...to one of us. Hmmm. Just imagine how cute that was!)
OK...back to the story....(as I am sure you are on the edge of your seat).

When we bought our new (old) house
 I have mentioned it came with zero appliances.
The lady that had the house 
had bought it for a Bed and Breakfast.
She never got the B and B open before 
she lost the house.
That is all the info our real estate agent 
had about our house almost becoming a B and B. 

we still needed to get a fridge.
We wanted a brand new one, and began to look around
at any deals we could find.
Finally, we found one that
was Lorigay
and affordable.
We drove to OKC to buy it.
We looked all around, and then looked around some more,
then FINALLY were ready to purchase.
The salesman took us up front to pay
and get our address for delivery.
We gave him our address and he said, 
"Oh yes. We already have you in our system."
(Hmmmm. I don't think so. I am a Craigslist Queen).
What I actually did say to him was, 
"Really?  I don't know how that would be, 
as we have not bought any appliances here before."
To which The Salesman said to us, 
"Yes. A whole kitchen full of appliances...
 sent to
Norma Mae's Get-Away."

What are the chances?
We had gone into OKC to buy the fridge.
There were a million places we could have gone.
And we picked the one place that had a connection 
to our home!
So the almost-was-B&B
would have been
"Norma Mae's Get-Away"....
.....Just another sign
that this house was meant to be...
for me us...
"Lorigay's Get-Away"!

Now that was a heck of a yawn yarn wasn't it?
Here's to 
Norma Zae, Nina Gay, Norma Dean, Nelda Fay, (the other) 
Nina Gay and Nina Beth...and everyone else that is blessed

Edited to add: We have no idea where all those appliances are that were bought for Norma Mae's Get-Away. There was nothing here but an ugly sink. And NO! I did not name either of my daughters' my middle name. The long tradition was broken. YES! My mother pouts about that still !!!!


  1. I enjoyed this story! My mom and dad are from the south (Arkansas)though they moved to Michigan before I was born (I'm now 53). Her name is Mary Elizabeth. Michigan people call her Mary. Arkansas people still call her Maralizabeth...so I totally relate. Thanks for sharing.
    Had mom and dad not moved to Michigan I am sure I would be Sharonkay!

  2. Oh...and I love your house!

  3. Oh how cute!! I know what you mean about the double names...grands were named Mary Jane, Emma Jane, and Ella Jeanette! Love your home!!

  4. I thought I got short changed, Lorigay, 'cause I didn't get a double name like you, KK, Lisa Ann, Cindy Lou, Amy D and Ruby B. I had to live without it. *sniff* Oh, and don't forget Mary Hill. (I never did figure out why they called her by both names.)
    Enjoyed it, even if it made me jealous. :)


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