I can't resist this one!
As a red-headed child, I was forbidden to wear red. My father always told me red was a bad color for a redhead, because it clashed with their hair. Over the years, I learned to HATE the color.
It is the color of anger, of murder and blood. It is the haze that settles around me when I am furious beyond words. It is the color of whores and sex without love. It is the color of freshly slapped flesh, of a babies diaper rash, of roses- the one flower I never liked.
The my older sister, who was also a redhead, hand made me a sweater. Red. Red, she said, because daddy never let her wear red, and she always wanted to. Red, because Dad would never tell me I couldn't wear something she had made me.
Still I was careful to wear it when he wasn't around. It was cozy, made with love, though I secretly wished it were green.
Red was my fathers name. It was what everyone called him, even his own mother. He was not a perfect person, a big, alcoholic man who smoked cigars constantly and drank pots of coffee so strong no one else would want any. When he yelled the whole neighborhood straightened up and behaved.
I couldn't name a child after him; his 'real' name was one none of us liked. But, I wanted to honor him.
I opened a small restaurant. I called it "Red's Cafe", after my dad.
But the patrons only saw that it was named Red's and that I was a redhead. Soon, they called ME 'Red'.
And after a time, I began to like it!
But when the business failed, I felt like I had dis
honored my father. I had lost his namesake.
And then I got a computer. I needed a name. A name that fit me, that would give people a bit of who I am, without telling them too much. A name I'd recognise and that was quick and easy to spell, since I couldn't type.