During the summers of my youth, a family from a nearby town rented the cottage next to my best friend’s house on Pine Lake. They had a boy the same age as us and he brought his best friend with him. My best friend, Kim, hung out with them, swam with them, and water skied with them every summer. By the time we were seniors in high school, I became friends with them also, and somewhere along the line they started calling me Moolah. They even selected the graduation card they gave me because it said Moolah on the inside, as in, here is some Moolah for the graduate, but that isn’t what the name meant.
I want to claim that I don’t remember why they started calling me Moolah but, sadly, I must admit it is selective memory loss. It’s a memory forgotten to preserve my dignity. If I ever write a letter to my 16 year old self it will start with “Don’t do such embarrassing things! You will cringe when you recall it. Every time. Forever.”
I suspect that I earned the name Moolah by trying to be just like one of the guys. I probably made an attempt to wrestle or take down one of the two guys on one of those late summer evenings in July. Don’t misunderstand, I had no designs on these guys. Well, it’d be more accurate to say I never once believed they could have any interest in me. So, my actions were akin to stating that I realized we were just like brother and sister. A poor teenage self esteem makes you do the dumbest things. I’m guessing that the girls from their school never acted like I did. So, Moolah meant wild, freaky, aggressive, wrestling Amazonian-wanna-be woman or maybe 300 lb. Viking chick with a mustache and braids stronger than hemp rope.
Often, my iPod randomly selects a song from my RUN playlist entitled, Yetti Woman, produced by the genius but no longer existing Groove Spoon. This song paints the perfect portrait of who Moolah was. The lyrics while not very flattering are hilarious.
Yetti woman, you’re very large, Yetti Woman always in charge
Yetti Woman, run a brush through your back….
…Yetti woman is mean, Bad as Mean Joe Green.
Yetti Woman, you could push a three ton truck up a giant mountain hill, Yetti…
…Yetti kiss and tell but she played in the NFL, Yetti Woman…
Yetti Woman sample by Groove Spoon, November 1, 1992
Luckily, when this song pumps through my earbuds, I don’t cringe (anymore) at the memory it conjures. Instead, I open my arms to
embrace it give it a grizzly-style, crushing hug. Yetti, she’s strong. Moolah, she doesn’t care what you think. Yetti, is mean enough to be tough when it counts. I’d guarantee that Moolah, the Yetti Woman, wouldn’t run in anything but her bare feet!!
Now when I accomplish anything significant, am feeling particularly strong, or just running in my bare feet, you can bet I throw my head back and with a guttural yell declare that I am Moolah, the Barefoot Yetti.