You know, it figures it would have started right at the exact moment I just happened to hit puberty. The universe has its way of jacking with me like that. It gets a real big kick out of fucking with me, likes to tell me I’m an “easy target”. Yeah, I guess I always have been kinda gullible like that.
What the fuck am I talking about, you ask? And what is this nefarious “it” I’m pissing on about,and what does it have to do with that magical, yet subtly perturbing rite of passage that occurs when a girl takes her first wobbly steps down the golden path of her burgeoning womanhood? And, I don’t mean a bat mitzvah-that’s crazy, I’m not even Jewish. You know what I’m talking about.
That “it” is HER. HER!! Yeah, that her, as in the very famous lady in the picture you’re staring right at, who just happens to bear a name that is just too ridiculously similar to mine? You know who I’m talking about. That Miss Queen Of Media herself (no wait, that’s Perez!)…I mean, you know, Queen Of Pop, Queen of the World, Queen Of Sheba, Queen Of Shame, Queen Fucking Bee..whatever. Fucking queen of everything, MADONNA.
Do you have ANY idea what this woman has done to my life? Beginning at about age 13, she latched on to my psyche like a bloodsucking lamprey and has been gnawing her way through the corpulent bowels of my ego ever since. I mean, you remember when Madonna first exploded on the scene, and began herTerminator- esque quest for her Holy Grail of Complete and Total World Domination? Yeah, it was crazy, right? She was every where, you couldn’t escape her- radio, MTV, (or, Friday Night Videos for lame-o’s like me whose parents refused to get cable), the TV, magazines, album covers, posters, cds and cassettes flying all over the place…bad movies…Madonna t-shirts, bandannas, pins, notebooks,mugs, hats, underwear, outerwear, decorative tea cozys,vibrators…you name it, her face, name, ass, something-was on it. (Ok, I’m making up the vibrator part…but you know, now that I think of it…I wonder why there are no Madonna vibrators, dildos, scented massage oils…you think there would be, it’s a natural market…oh, wait,I’m getting a message here… what’s that? An anal plug? Really???? Ok, so, what you’re telling me is there was a limited edition anal plug Madonna was endorsing somewhere around 1987? Huh, interesting. I was not aware of that. Now, that little nugget should come in handy next trivia night!)
The point is that the 80’s were complete Madonna Mania for everyone, everywhere. Now, just stop for a second and put yourself in the shoes of someone whose name is almost just fucking like hers. It was hell, that’s what it was, pure and utter hell. The moment Borderline became a hit and the world fell under that damn strumpet’s spell, was the moment I ceased to be LeDonna…and morphed into LeDonna, The Ultimate Madonna Wannabe.
I didn’t even WANT to be like Madonna, really…ok, you got me. I suppose there was a certain moment when I would look upon her ever-increasing status as an entertainment, fashion and sex icon with perhaps a faint whisper of envy. And not that I particularly ever wanted to be any such thing myself…you know, beautiful, famous, wealthy, desired by the masses…oh, good heavens, no! Not me. No no no no no no.
Around the Sean Penn had dumped Madonna and she started showing up to awards shows with Micheal Jackson, I threw up my hands in defeat. Obviously, she was a creative force to be reckoned with, and much like that blasted ingrown toenail I’d been battling with since my freshman year that refused to heal-she certainly wasn’t about to give up and just go away, and in fact, was growing larger and more noticeable each and every day. I had to accept that Madonna had become a permanent cross-stitch in the fabric of my life.
It probably wouldn’t have bothered me so much that she had started this fashion phenomenon and all the hip girls were dressing like her and looking cute if I hadn’t been so damn fat. Those ripped tees,mesh tanks and black rubber bracelets that looked so cute on all the skinny girls-if you put that same outfit on me, I looked like something fished up out of the Hudson River. Now I’ll just throw on a dead body and maybe one of those plastic 6-pack holders…alright! Let’s go! I’m into the groove!
Everytime my name was mentioned, I would hear someone-somewhere-“Madonna”? As if, where? Here?! No, dipshit. Madonna is no where in the vicinity, today’s not your lucky day, you didn’t win the lottery or anything. It’s just me. LE-D0N-NA.
When I’m introduced to someone, 9 times out of ten, they will look at me quizically and say,“Madonna?!”, like I’m fucking with them somehow, playing some silly name game. “You’re not Madonna!” is one I get a lot. “I’m NOT?” I’d shoot back in astonishment. “Good God, you’re absolutely right. What was I thinking? There I go again, just assuming the identity of some random celebrity as my own…damn shrink was supposed to adjust my medication. I’m so sorry, this won’t happen again”.
Then I would be forced to clarify. “No, It’s LeDonna, kinda like Madonna, but with an ‘L’ instead of ‘M’…and ‘e’ instead of ‘a’, but it still sounds the same! Oh, and I get a big D, not a little one like hers”.
“So it’s like two names?” gggggggggrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.
I always dreaded the start of each new school year, because it was inevitable at least half the teachers would totally bungle my name, they could never tell if it was “Lee” or “Donna” or “Lee-Donna”,none of which were correct.
“So is your first name ‘Lee’, or is it ‘Donna’, and your middle name’s Lee?”
Yeah, Miss Lady with The Master’s Degree. My first name is Donna, middle name is Le, and my last name is Lee. That makes perfect sense. Donna Le Lee. Donna Le Lee, that’s me! You know, my mother was crazy, and yes, a touch redneck,but she wasn’t so out of her freaking mental galaxy that she would dream up a name as stoopid as “Donna Le Lee”. If she had, I surely would not be standing before right now, because I would have already committed suicide the moment I realized I was actually supposed to spend the rest of my days with a name that sounds like I’m a back-up dancer for Don Ho.
And please, let’s not even get started on my middle name.
“Alright, what’s your middle initial?”
“What does that stand for?”
“No, what does it stand for?”
“No, I mean, what does the “K” stand for? ”
“Honey, are you speaking spanish, is that it, are you trying to say ‘what’? I didn’t mean “que” as in “que-so”,I meant, what does the letter ‘K’ stand for in your name?”
“IT STANDS FOR KAY. K-A-Y, MOTHERFUCKING KAY! AS IN MARY ‘KAY’, RHYMES WITH GAY, KAY!!!! Do you understand me now?”
“Oh, yes, I see, Kay! LeDonna Kay Lee. My, isn’t that just the prettiest name!”
You four-eyed fat fuck of a liar. You don’t have to patronize. I know my name sucks.
Actually, I have made peace and grown to like my name. I think it sounds kinda cool, kinda like a movie star. LeDonna Lee. Which is awesome, because one day, I will be. I haven’t given up dreams of entertainment glory. As long as there are webcams and pornos, I still have hope.