Sunday, July 26, 2009

Name Calling

“Hey John! I need access to xyz”
“Sure Martin. I’ll need your details. What’s you full name”
“Martin Meganath”
“Martin.. WHAAAAAAT???”
“Meganath”
“Meck-an-at??”
“NO!!! MAY-GA-NATH (pronounced like bath)”
“Dude! Seriously???”
“Yeah”***

“What’s in a name” he said. Thankfully William your parents didn’t give you a name like Dick or something! I can bet you wouldn’t be half as popular. And if you studied in a school anything like mine, you may have even killed yourself let alone have a creative side.

I was listening to this Hindi item song (one of the originals) called “Laila o Laila”. I’m sure every Indian has heard this song (unless they’re pretending). Going back on the origin of the name, Laila is like the Juliet (of the Romeo fame) of India. Or is she really? The name now sounds more lewd than anything. Consider this statement, “Aaja meri Laila”. See what I mean? Personally I think it’s a beautiful name. But it’s amazing how a name can be ruined. Let’s take another example of her beau “Majnu”. He’s like the Romeo of India. Now think about this, “Saale, Majnu ki aulad”. I’ve heard that one in so many Hindi movies. Mostly used to signify a hopeless and helpless romantic. How many of you would name your children that any more. Or for that matter would you even call your son “Romeo”. (The Alfa Romeo is a car. Which means, scientifically speaking it is non-living and hence does not care what you call it.)

I’ve got friends with very normal names. Like Vikram Bhalla, Lynell Fernandes, Rashmi Nambiar, Shweta Gaikwad, Tarun Menon etc. See how well the last name just glides through your mouth after the first name. So smooth! Now try saying my name with the same glide effect! It just doesn’t happen. Does it?? I did know a guy called Benjamin Gole (pronounced GO-LAY). He had a very positive effect on me whenever he was around (I wonder why?). Until I heard he’s in London and now calls himself Benjamin Gole (pronounced GOAL). Very sweet Ben Go”Fucking”Lay! Now that he’s anglicized his name, I’m left out.

I remember this one incident when I was in college. A new Kashmiri girl joined the college. Cute as a dollop of ice-cream. I was helping her fill out some forms (obviously with help as the only intention), when I had to get her last name. “TIKOO”, she said. I couldn’t fill out those forms. I couldn’t even stand. I was laughing so hard, that I developed a six pack in 15 minutes. She stood there staring at me with those very innocent eyes as if to say, “it’s not my fault”. She never spoke to me again.

Please people give your children names that rhyme and match. If you’re about to cross breed, please make sure the name isn’t mutli-ethnic. It sucks to have to try to explain to people how you landed up with a weird ass name.

***E-MAIL from johnb@abc.com
Dear Martin Meganath,
I have given you access per your request. Please check and let me know if you have any trouble.
Regards,
John Blierschinestcsky.

“John, what your last name”
“BLY-ER-CHIN-EST-TSKY”
“Loser”!

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