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Thu, May. 31st, 2001, 02:42 am
a Jackass by any other name

Ok, so this show has come up a few times recently...
Apparently, one of the guys who is a regular has the same name as me.
I have been talked to because someone thought I might be him.
It has been brought up simply because of a name.
It all seems silly.
[This started off as a post about how Renn Fayre apparently was on the show, but I think I'd rather talk about the concept of the name.]

We are given our names from the beginning, as our culture deals with it. We are referred to by an identification which necessarily has nothing to do with us unless by some chance genetics get something right and our name is perfect for us. I on the other hand, am adopted. There is not a chance my name would have been perfect for me based on my personality alone, unless you believe in nurture more than nature. Personally I believe in nurture, but not enough...I don't think you can grow into your name, really, names mean so little now that they are really just a cobination of sounds, which may or may not evoke feeling in their utterance. So what is a name? We know they are not individualistic, unless they become so recognizable that no one would dare use them again lest they defy the individuality of the person who had "claimed" the name, and the person whom they are naming. It places a personality upon someone, which never really has any hold. Parents name their children hoping to make them accepted, a name plays roles deeper than who we are while we are young, they make us who we are. But why does this utterance mean so much?

I may be Ryan Dunn. The person on television may be another Ryan Dunn. There are at least another hundred or maybe even a thousand Ryan Dunns throughout the country just at this time, maybe more including Europe and other English speaking countries, none of us having anything in common, besides a set of syllables, and parents with similar tastes, urges, predispositions or prejudices. I am Ryan Dunn because my father's father is Scottish, with whom I share no genes. I am not Scottish. I am not of anyone. I am me.

I think I feel more connection to the names, holyloki, or hypnopaedia than I do to Ryan Dunn necessarily. Sure I respond to Ryan, but that is because I have been trained to through understanding of the purpose of a name, to address a person. I would feel odd considering changing my name becaus it would mean I am in a way forsaking my attatchment to family. I don't particularly feel like I should have any attatchment to the name though. While my parents and sister are my family, only 1 of them has the name by genetic descendancy. And only one chose the name(in a sense).

As Evan spoke about creativity in a post just a short while ago, he talked about how the only thing he felt he had started to be creative about was his new desktop environment, which I am proud of him for undertaking. He claimed that for all he had done, most of the environment was created by pictures I had taken. In a sense, this feeling, (while not necessarily true in his case, because I believe setting up design and even choosing my pictures is a step towards creative thought and knowing your preference is half of creativity) is similar to the issue of names. I don't feel it has anything to do with me, regardless of what I have made the name into for my friends and those who know Ryan Dunn as a friend of theirs and not as a TV personality, as slenderly as that title may be conferred upon him. It seems that most of the work going toward that name is someone elses, and in a strange way, I want to strip myself of it. I feel a strange urge to lose this restriction, the idea that my id tag is not something which represents me makes me uneasy, and I want to let lose from it.

Let me know what you think about your own names, how you feel about the identification you have had placed upon you and how you feel about it.
Let me know if you think I should change my name, ala Frankenstein...

And we won't even start with the thing in Big Daddy that made me squirm. I think most of you that know me and have seen it will know exactly what I'm talking about. Heheh.

Thu, May. 31st, 2001 08:41 am (UTC)
warrend: Well...

...now that you have brought it up you must discuss. What made you squirm?

Thu, May. 31st, 2001 11:14 am (UTC)
holyloki: Re: Well...

Think a bit about the beginning of the movie and how it relates to my past...I'd rather not discuss it if you don't already know, which I'm sure you do know, you just haven't put it together or remembered that part of the movie much.

Thu, May. 31st, 2001 01:31 pm (UTC)
warrend: Re: Well...

Oh...yea. OK. It's from when you worked at hooters. Gotcha :)

(PS: I thought hard...I get it)

Thu, May. 31st, 2001 07:48 pm (UTC)
holyloki: Re: Well...

heh...not quite : P but getting closer.

Thu, May. 31st, 2001 09:22 am (UTC)

To quote Office Space.
:Why should I change, he's the one that sucks"

There always seemed to be an abundance of Ryan Dunns around. Hell, there was two in Issaquah, right?

I have always liked my name. Or, at least my first name. I don't really care one way or the other for McFadden.

Thu, May. 31st, 2001 09:34 am (UTC)
lizzimonster: You asked for it, you got it.

As a little girl..up to about second grade or so.. I hated the name Elizabeth and I wanted a name like Jacqueline, or Melissa, which were to me the girliest of the girly names. I'm sure notebooks exist where I wrote my name "Elizabeth J. Horn" in the front. heh. Around the time I got past wanting to have a different name, I got into nicknames. I was Libby, briefly, and then pretty consistently Lizzi until late high school. Only people who knew me really well would call me Liz, except for people who only knew me well enough to know that I didn't go by "Elizabeth," like the headmaster.

When I started writing for the paper, senior year, my byline was Liz Horn. My English teacher was good friends with my women's studies/humanities/brilliant history teacher, and they had a conversation about it one day and then the women's studies teacher brought it up the next day when we were talking about women's names. First, women tend to be given names that have dimunitive endings ("ah" or "ee"): Mary, Carley, Johanna, Amanda, Julie, etc. Secondly, women keep nicknames with dimunitive endings much longer than men do. An Anne is much more likely to stay an "Annie" all her life than a Robert is to stay "Bobby". Why? Having your name end in a dimunitive form like that does not convey maturity. And this, unconsciously, is why I went from Lizzi to Liz. Thinking about that more after class, I've since gone almost exclusively by Liz. And now this is strange in New Hampshire, because when Mari's dad called me up the other day, he asked for Lizzi and I said "Yes, this is Liz," and then made some comment at dinner when her mom called me Lizzi.

On an entirely different note: should I ever get married, I'm keeping my last name. I feel my middle name is a connection to my mother's side of the family, and my last name is a connection to my father and his side of the family. I am who I am, and even if that name is decided by people other than me, I'm keeping that identity because it represents something to me. This is probably why I don't like that Berwick spelled my "name" wrong on that mug - it's a name I've given myself, and after four years they couldn't be bothered to check the "correct" spelling? Just because it's not my given name, I don't think it should be given any less respect.

And last of all: I will never, ever, ever be listed or referred to as Mrs. Ralph Kramden (for example.) Ever.

Thu, May. 31st, 2001 06:42 pm (UTC)
soulone: Last names

Something I found very interesting about my parents....

When they were planning their wedding, they searched all around the area for someone to marry them. Most of the ministers they found were uptight bastards. This is not what they wanted. They were getting married outside at my grandparents cabin on a lake. They wanted something natural and laid back, someone who would do things their way.

What they found was a married couple who performed the ceremony together. Here's the part I found especially interesting, instead of the woman keeping her last name and taking her husband's, he also took hers. They shared the same last name, which was both her maiden name and his.

Pretty cool, eh?

Thu, May. 31st, 2001 08:45 pm (UTC)
lizzimonster: Re: Last names

That is pretty cool.

Heh, your parents are hippies! ;)