The Mother Of All Eulogies

Today, my friends, we celebrate the life of a great woman. The kind of woman that you all wish you could be- yes, even you Billy. (Remember to wink at Billy and initiate gentle laughter. Nod head in gesture of solidarity with great Aunt Bess).

Cheryl began her life as the eldest daughter of a sharecropper.

As much as this simple life gave her a life long respect for hard work (pause for effect) and animal husbandry, she longed for the bright lights and asthmatic exhaust of the ‘Big City’.

She began her journey early, tickling the ivories on her mother’s Wurlitzer, to the (with emphasis) Glory of God Almighty at the now disassembled Four Points Congregational Baptist church in Omaha. She always said she had nothing to do with that by-the-way (chuckle softly but into the mic).

By twenty-one, Cheryl had a created a small act and booked a one week gig, behind the headliner, at the now defunct Kitten Lounge on Route 69, again- nothing-to-do-with-that. (If muttering is heard, clear throat and regain attention of crowd).

She was ‘officailly’ discovered by Big Bobby from the House of Blues, and within 2 years had a H-U-G-E following, that included Buddy Holly, Ritchie Vallens, Patsy Cline, Jim Morrison, and Kurt Cobain, and as you will remember, the Federal investigation concluded, she had nothing to do with any of these untimely deaths (finger wagging may be necessary).

Remember that. Her children are present (stern look needed).

As this list concludes, Cheryl appealed to a cross of cultures. She actually coined the phrase, “multi-cultural & non-denoimnational”(raise a eyebrow and scan the room, letting that sink in), as well as, inventing pantyhose and the internets (again- pregnant pause).

Is there a word that can envelope the spirit of the woman? The joi-d’vie? The AWESOMENESS of her influence? 

Maybe ‘Renaissance’? Or, ‘Her Majesty’? Okay. Two words. (laugh here).

Alas, she left it all for love, married a middle class white boy, moved to the burbs, and had two kids. 

May she Rest in Peace 
with a stiff Jack & Coke, smooth jazz, and a side of sass.

Because there’s always a sucker willing to pay for sass…

Her words, not mine. 
(cue: The National Anthem)

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