That thing that Juliet said
May 25, 2010
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I once had to go to this stupid staff retreat where we did a whole bunch of pointless shit. The only thing I liked about the waste of time was the icebreaker thing we did at the start. Our facilitator asked each member of the group to say what we did at the organization, our name, and a simple anecdote about that name. We could say anything we wanted about our name: where it came from, what it meant to us, or just how we learned to spell it. In our small group of about 20 people everyone seemed to have some very interesting things to say about their names. It lead me to ponder the very question that Juliet posed: what’s in a name?
Take my name for example. Although you all know me as Mikey my given name is Michael Paul. Upon first glance it would seem as though my parents are devoutly religious people. In fact, my parents are only devoutly religious when I talk about being an atheist or they are trying to guilt a member of my family into doing something. The real root of my appellation is much less divine. I am the third boy of four born to parents who wanted to have a daughter so badly that they had four kids. My oldest brother is named after my father and my second oldest brother is named after my mother’s father. When my parent’s were preggers with my ass, I think they just assumed they were having the girl they always dreamed of so the only name they had picked out was Michaela. So, my first name got a sex change shortly after I was born.
However, the true trashiness of my name is the source of my middle name. Once my parents had gone and lopped my “a” off to create a more masculine sounding first name, they had the task of giving me a middle name. I am sure they racked their brains over and over looking for the perfect pairing with super generic first name. But in a flash of genius my mother had it! She had the perfect middle name…and where did it come from? Was it Gestalt? Was it God? Was it Gilbert Godfrey? No…although I kind of wish it was the last one. My mother came up with my name because it was the first name of the boy who took her to her prom. That’s right folks! Your favorite blogger is named after a man with muttonchops who wore a powder blue tuxedo.
Now that the shame of my name has been made public, tell me what does your name mean to you. Did your Mom or Dad name you after the family dog? Or worse did you get named after a relative you grew to loathe?