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  • Writer's pictureKyle Lee

His Name is Bob, They Call Him Sir

Freckles are splendid things, even if popular opinion would tell you otherwise. Some hate them whereas I have come to accept them with a humor that pretty much is only funny to me. I often joke that I am part leopard (because I’m too slow to be part cheetah) due to the many spots I possess. I’m like a map without a legend.

In college, I took a poetry class where one of the presenting authors wrote the line “drawing constellations on my skin.” Many in that classroom did not understand nor could they. The line drew comments of confusion and remarks of “take it out.” I, on the other hand, was quick to speak up, stating that anybody with massive quantities of freckles knows the truth and impact of that line. Looking at my arms alone, there are numerous obvious patterns with their own mythologies to explain them if I so endeavored. My favorite is what I call the “Western Cross”. Four of my larger and darker freckles on my bicep align perfectly to be a cross and should I ever get a tattoo, it would not be hard to pull off the infrastructure of the design.

But why do I need a tattoo if I’ve already got a playground of “connect the dot pictures” printed in flesh?

My daughter, while not having the same amount of freckles I do, owns a few distinguished ones of her own. Two in particular on her shoulder looked like eyes. When she swam competitively, she’d write the numbers for her races on her forearm in sharpie. Then to complete her ritual, she would draw a smile under those two “eyes” for good luck.

And the constellation’s name was Bob.

The absurdity of Bob she takes from me. And in turn, I took it from Rowan Atkinson. If anything is to really blame, it would be a youth spent watching late night PBS on Saturdays. See, not everyone had cable TV. We made due with what we had. Plus, Bob is a funny name, and I will feign death on that hill.

Even still, Bob is a thing and has spread as things are wont to do. My daughter once participated in a swim competition that gave out rubber ducks instead of medals and to say the idea generated excitement amongst the competitors is an understatement. The kiddo won her race and picked out a unicorned duck, majestic and colorful. She loved that duck and was so proud she had won it.

And she had given him a Bob.

Whether you follow the chain or go down the rabbit hole, I hope you see that something which could be perceived as a blemish by some can just as easily bring great joy. Whatever it is you think people try to degrade you with, turn it around. Find a sharpie and give yourself a Bob. Then they can call you ma’am. Or they can call you sir.

Whatever it is, there should be some respect on it.

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