Tuesday, March 10, 2009

What's in a name?(What's their name?)

Have you ever asked yourself what is really in a name?

What defines you to someone else?
What makes them remember that your name is not Fred or Antoinette?
Because often, if you're in this fair country of ours it's not the name that people will refer to you. I mean what is really in the use of a name. It's whole idea is to give you an individual persona but it's real usage is only to identify you in documents, across a crowded room and by the police should they ask your friend who it was that drove them from the scene of the crime.

But the real heart of your personal moniker is the nickname, especially in your local neighbourhood and workplace. With such a diverse creative flair in most people Darren can become anything by shortening from D to Dazza to D-ren then to lengthening it to something like Dublin Darren even if he’s from Bangalore and has a liking of Gridiron. And with our current trend of expanding nicknames Dublin can change to Ireland and be Irish in a blink of an eye.

So this very Australian method or renaming people, places, animals and any other noun within sight probably has a lot to do with the fact that few Australians speak clearly enough for you to understand there name. If they happen to be from somewhere like Melbourne. They tend to speak with speeds akin to a Japanese bullet train whereas up north near Cairns the vocals are so drawn out that by playing there words back at double the rate it still takes a minute to say the name Bob.

So the fallout of such a movement inside this country is that no-one actually knows the real name of a person that they talk too and the ‘AKA’ line in the Police report looks more like an internet phone directory. Many a friend gets into a conversation with another on a street corner only to start referring to them as Walker, for walking around all the time.

Still, you can take heart in the fact, that when your parents failed miserably in attempting to give you an unshorten-able name that they didn’t call you Moses or Apple and expect you to go through a playground without any minders.

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