Tuesday, October 06, 2009


Complete transcript of a phone call that took place about 5 minutes ago:


"Hi. We're trying to locate Mark Johnson."

"We don't know any Mark Johnson."

"He put you down as a relative. You're not Ruth Anne Johnson?"

"Ruth Anne Johnson died in 2002."

"Thank you for your time." Click.

Flora M Johnson, Ruth Anne Johnson and cat, circa 1990

I didn't get a chance to ask what the heck it was all about. Who is Mark Johnson? It is barely possibly that he is (or was) a relative of mine. My mom, Dr. Ruth Anne Johnson, had only one sibling, Flora D Johnson. Aunt Flora had just one child, Vereene, whom she gave up for adoption. As far as I know, Vereene, whom I've never met except in emails, is my only living relative on my mom's side of the family.

From Family photos

But my maternal grandfather, Ambrose Alexis Johnson , could well have had siblings. My brother Steve would probably know. He's the only one in the family who tracks this stuff. So this Mark could be a cousin once removed or something. I should ask him.

Or perhaps there is, or was, another Ruth Anne Johnson in the world. Johnson is a very common name. There could be a number of them. And Mark Johnson, possibly Marc Johnson? There must be thousands of those in the U.S. Is one of them my second cousin or something? Maybe. Do I care? Not really. But for the moment I'm intrigued.

So all the best to you, Mark Johnson. I hope they're tracking you down so you can inherit a pot of money from another obscure, distant relative of mine.


1 comment:

barrettmanor said...

It was probably a debt collector. In which case you're well rid of them.