Sisters-in-law share name, sense of humor

Saturday, December 3, 2005
Sisters-in-law Ann Dowd, left, and Anne Dowd chuckle over the confusion caused by their first names. (Connie Jo Discoe/McCook Daily Gazette)

Always, she's Ann. Sometimes, she's the right Ann. Sometimes, she's the wrong one. Never is she Anne.

Always, she's Anne. Sometimes, she's the right Anne. Sometimes, she's the wrong one. Never is she Ann.

Sound confusing? That's okay. The two sisters-in-law who share the same name -- one with an "e" and one who is "e"-less -- just giggle. "If they ever see us -- one of us is blond, with fair skin, and one of us has dark hair and wears glasses -- it's easy to tell us apart," said Anne. Hmmm, or was it Ann? "We're both short," Anne said, "But I'm shorter," Ann said. Uhhh, hmm ... or was it Anne?

Oh, dear ... The sisters-in-laws are married to Larry and Jim Dowd, who grew up at Culbertson.

Larry and Ann live on the former Hesterwerth place about seven miles southeast of McCook, having moved here from Virginia in August 2004. "I'm the e-less Ann," Ann said, the Ann with the accent acquired from growing up in Georgia.

Jim and Anne live on J Street in McCook, moved here from Florida seven years ago when Jim retired from the military.

"She's country and I'm city," Anne said. "She's Larry ... land. I'm Jim ... J Street," she continued to explain.

Ann said she oftentimes gets Anne's phone messages. Instead of calling someone back and telling them about Anne, Ann just calls Anne and relays the message. "You need to call so-and-so, or 'you need to listen to this message'," Ann said she tells Anne. And vice-versa.

Neither minds -- "I think it's cute," Ann said.

The similarities -- and the confusion -- continues. "You cook," Ann said. "And I bake." Ann from the south makes a terrific sweet tea -- a traditional southern treat with boiled tea bags -- that Anne (who is a native of McCook) just loves, but that Ann doesn't drink. "I drink soda," Ann said.

Anne has two daughters and Ann has two daughters. "Our oldest daughters were pregnant at the same time," Anne said. "We share our grandchildren," Anne laughed.

Anne said, "We're both 'mouthy,' but Ann's quieter." She continued, with a mischievous look, "I'm the 'evil' Anne -- get it? E-vil. Ann-e."

Both dearly love animals. Anne has four dogs (one is a day-care dog) and two cats in the house. Ann has four cats and two dogs in the house -- and nine cats and four horses outside.

The veterinarian knows each -- Ann particularly for all her animals and both for their involvement with the McCook Humane Society, for which Anne serves as president. Oh, there's another one -- Humane with an 'e'. Anne with an 'e'.

It's scary, but these two women think alike, too. "I called you yesterday to ask about ... " Ann said. " ... the pies," Anne said, and added sheepishly. "Yes, we finish each other's sentences a lot."

What's even scarier -- they grin conspiratorally -- they're looking for an "Ann" -- with or without an 'e,' they aren't particular -- for their brother-in-law, David.

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