Lynna Clark: The Color Formerly Known as Lavender

Published 12:00 am Sunday, March 25, 2018

Lynna Clark

I saw a funny picture on Facebook. A man was push-mowing his yard through the snow. The caption said, “Welcome to spring in North Carolina.” That sounds about right. Wild garlic poked through the recent snow on the ground giving our lawn an unkempt look; kind of like a wannabe hipster trying to grow a beard. Instead of being cool, he looks like he needs a bath. Back in the day, my parents called them beatniks. Instead of clapping, they snapped their fingers to express their approval. [The beatniks… not my parents. If one of my parents ever snapped their fingers it meant I’d better pay attention.]

Annyyywayyy… I noticed my college age grand-daughter snapping her fingers in approval after a song in church the other morning. It may have been due to holding a cup of coffee in her other hand, but I couldn’t be sure. I can’t keep up any more. Later that day she was writing a speech for her communications class. It was titled “The Color Purple.” I warned her not to watch that movie about Prince all willy-nilly.

“There are some things you just can’t un-see,” I cautioned in my grandmotherly voice. Though I had not personally viewed the film, I had strong opinions.

She laughed out loud but not in a good way. I was offended. Just as I was about to express the fact that I know stuff, she informed me that the movie was not about Prince. She went on to explain the subject matter. At some point I drifted. I wondered about Prince’s identity and his connection to Oprah. If he is the artist formerly known as Prince, what pray tell, is his new name? Apparently he is fine being called “the artist formerly known as Prince.” Surely someone could shorten that for him.

Maybe just use the first letters as in texting. He could be TAFKAP.

I felt rather proud of my idea and continued to think on it while my granddaughter read her speech about purple. It contained a quote from the movie which was thought provoking yet included a question about God being ticked off… only they used a term that was rather crude. Once again I dared to help.

“You could use air quotes when you get there and substitute urinated,” I helpfully suggested.

She laughed again but not quite as loud when she realized I wasn’t kidding. “No Grammy. The phrase means ticked off. It’s not about the bathroom habits of the Almighty.”

I decided not to share with her my solution to shorten Prince’s moniker, though I still feel it’s a good idea. I mean, why would anyone want to go by such a strange title?

It would be like introducing myself as “the chick with hair that used to be red.”

By the way, did you know Prince is dead? Well of course you did. Everyone knows stuff like that but me it seems. One thing is for sure. If I ever watch a movie about the color purple, I hope it includes a tutorial on how to grow lavender. My yard is a mess. Wild garlic is sprouting everywhere giving it an unkempt look. What? You thought those were wild onions? Nope. It’s wild garlic.

See. I know stuff. Feel free to snap your fingers in approval for TCWHTUTBR.


Lynna Clark lives in Salisbury. Read more at Lynna’s Wonderful Life at

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