Free Pizza at The Museum — Well Not Really– But A Name Can Still Make Your Day!

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Come meet Gaby and Jayne at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum— as well as the curator Jennifer Fenwick Irwin. No pizza for you– but a great exhibit called,”They Left Their Mark”.

Here is a story of a name…

Linda (Darnell) Susan (Hayward) Knight always hated her name, because in class there were at least three girls with the very same name. So, much to her Dad’s opposition, she decided to change the spelling of her name to Lynda. After all, if she was going to be a famous fashion designer, her name had to be slightly cool or have an edgy spelling.

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She was so enamored of the way her name looked now that she began sending away for free stuff. Each day after school she would walk across the street, march in to the Post Office, and open up the family’s mail box. Her father would not touch the mail addressed to Lynda because he thought she was being ridiculous.

Most days, the box was full of the many free travel brochures she had requested; all addressed to someone named Lynda not Linda. She decided that once she got out of school, she would travel the world designing for the rich and famous, so she really needed this incoming travel information.

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Lynda entered contests daily by the loads, all with her newly made up name. She won a pen on the Canadian TV show, “Razzle Dazzle,” hosted by Alan Hamel and a talking turtle named Howard. She loved Howard and he read her winning story aloud on the air, and then carefully spelled out her name as L y n d a.

One day, while reading Seventeen magazine, she saw that a movie studio was having a contest seeking someone to play a part in the upcoming film, “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter”. The movie was to be based on the Carson McCullers novel of the same name, which she absolutely loved and had read many times. Lynda had long blonde hair and was in her anorexic stage, weighing approximately 105 pounds, and of course, she had a great name now. She read the instructions over and over and thought she would be perfect for the movie.

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One day, a letter from Seventeen magazine arrived in P.O. Box 35 and Lynda opened it with glee. To her complete misery it said that yes, she could have been a contender, but sadly she was Canadian and the contest was only open to US citizens. Lynda became very upset as she had been denied the chance simply because she lived on the wrong side of the border.  Had they not seen the way her name was spelled? After that fateful day Lynda decided to go back to Linda because as William Shakespeare once said:

“What’s REALLY in a name?”

To begin to make the world a better place you need to start with yourself — no matter how your name is spelled. And she never changed her name again.

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About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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