“I don’t like her name,” I said flatly.
“Huh?” Mom said.
“Charlotte. A nice name by itself, but you know we are going to end up calling her Char like Kathy did. It’s just easier to call when you want her, but I don’t like it,” I reiterated.
“Or holler when she steps on our feet, ” I added. The horse had no idea where she ended and we started. Made for a lot of bumping. “In fact, I think I’m going to give her a middle name. So when we are really irritated we can yell it out, like you did when I was young.”
Mom laughed. “Like I haven’t done that recently! What’s wrong with Char?”
“It sounds harsh.”
She sighed, and we went back brushing the horses.
The next day she said, “Hey, your mare is one busy mare. She had her nose in more areas of that paddock today! Think maybe we should call her Charby.”
“Charby?” I questioned.
“Yeah, Charby. Cuz she’s busy as a bee!”
busy as a bee: to be very busy. This phrase has been around for centuries, as it first appeared in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales in the late 1300s. It’s popularity hasn’t waned all that much.
Ey! Goddes mercy!” sayd our Hoste tho,
Now such a wyf I pray God keep me fro.
Lo, suche sleightes and subtilitees
In wommen be; for ay as busy as bees
Be thay us seely men for to desceyve,
And from a soth ever a lie thay weyve.
And by this Marchaundes tale it proveth wel.
–The Squire’s Tale
PS – My horse’s name really is Charby, and she was named pretty much as described.