The other day, a friend tagged me in a meme on Facebook. I’ve been tagged in many and shared and tagged others in probably a few too many. But this one caught me off guard…because it was one of the best compliments I’ve ever been given. The friend wrote, “Jennifer Burke, you are a Dolly.”
Now, I know, I know, a few of you who know me might say, “well of course you are!” And, they’re not talking about my character either but rather, my well, physical attributes. I share Dolly’s uh, blessings.
No matter who or what I’m ever compared to, I could think of no greater honor than to be called a “Dolly.” Growing up, I thought Dolly Parton held magic in her fingernails and I could sing loudly (and out of tune) many of her classics. PS: I do not share her singing blessing.
Dolly seemed real for all her makeup; a tangible being who just happened to understand where I came from because she was from there too. As a young woman in my 20s, building a career in hospital public relations, I was fortunate to see how ‘real’ the Parton family actually was. I worked with the family on an advertising campaign and handled media relations upon the passing of her father. To my delight, I actually got to visit the original Parton homestead in Sevier County and interviewed three of her sisters for print and television. The Parton family was the real deal – genuine, humble and everything I thought they might be.
Now, as a woman moving further away from her younger days, I find myself referring to the wisdom of Dolly more and more. Her wit and advice, simply put, sticks. It makes sense and it’s above all, honest.
In a world full of people who give false accolades and blow kisses in the air, ultimately going wherever it’s popular to go – Dolly remains a spark of humble pie. She knows how to put even the highest and mightiest in his or her place but in a mean no harm way as only Dolly could.
Maybe the best I can ever do is strive to be more like Dolly. If one person thinks I’ve achieved that – I’ll take it. I may not be a “dumb blonde” but I guarantee “I’m nobody’s fool.”