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The Namesakes

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by Balajee, Dec 24, 2016.

  1. Balajee

    Balajee IL Hall of Fame

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    Sleep well, little Timur, sleep deeply in ignorance, until you wake up to the harsh truth about your name and learn how your parents were trolled for giving you your name. Your name meaning “Iron” in Arabic or Persian has ironically made you the namesake of a genocidal conqueror whose forces thundered across vast parts of central Asia,India and Russia.

    But still what is in a name? Just because your parents Saif and Kareena have named you Timur, it does not mean you will ride on horseback heading a vast army and scare the hell out of millions. First no body, even in regiments called cavalry rides on horseback these days unless they are jockeys or polo players.

    But to look at the flip side of naming ( I just love flip sides or dark sides) it is easy to say rose by any other name would smell as sweet but the bitter truth is people with wrong names can cause a stink. I am sure your parents didn’t consider this little Taimur.

    And boys do these names stink sky high. A couple north-Indianized southie friends of mine naively named their daughter Kusum. And they ran into rough weather when they shifted to Chennai from Delhi.

    The poor girl was virtually reduced to tears when her schoolmates shortened her name to Kusu, meaning fart ragging her away to glory every day. Mercifully, the family shifted back to Delhi soon and the girl’s name was officially changed.

    Forget such names but even the time honoured practice of naming children after gods can cause trouble. A minor scandal erupted when a kid in a neighbour’s family was named Ganesh. The geriatric members of the deeply Vaishnavite Iyengar family went ballistic. “When Lord Vishnu has 1008 names and his incarnations many more, why this stupid name?” said an angry old lady. The father initially resisted bravely but later surrendered under family pressure and the kid got one of the 1008 names of Vishnu.

    To be fair, parents are not clairvoyants. They don’t foresee what their children will become when they name them. A grocer from whom I used to buy stuff for years was named Madan, a name of love god or Kama Deva. If Kamadeva had seen him he would have sent an application to Siva pleading for being reduced to ashes again by his third eye.

    Some parents are extremely name sensitive. A close relative of mine had impulsively named his son Parikshit. He realized rather belatedly that the name means "The one who was tested" or the 'One who went through trials' and hated it.

    His wife suggested that the kid be named Devvrat probably hoping that he would remain single like his famous Mahabharata namesake and she would be spared the trouble of being badgered by a daughter-in-law. But the father would have none of it. He got the kid renamed Devashish or 'one blessed by God'.

    Another relative, to avoid all the naming controversies, smartly called his kid Adhrudh. Five years into naming his kin are still splitting their hairs over what on earth the name means.

    And some names, even though they are not of the Tmur kind raise lot of hackles. A survey some years ago in Tamil Nadu said the least popular name in the state was Abeedhagujambal. Be warned it is a woman’s name. If you want a fancy name don’t be tempted to confer that tongue twister on your male offspring. Even among women, if they go abroad or move out of TN imagine how many guys will tear their cloths and pull their hair while attempting to pronounce that name correctly.

    Lot of Tamil names are tongue twisters. How many people can correctly pronounce the name Pazhaniswami? Be warned the zh here does not sound like zh. It is just a not so friendly distant relative of the original sound. Even Tamils have pronouncing the name and turn it into Palaniswami.

    .

    And all kids don’t live up to their name. Has any survey been done on how many Lakshmis are wallowing in poverty?

    And why humans alone? A neighbor of mine was crazy enough to name his per Alsatian as Subramaniam. The dog indignantly refused to respond to that name. He answered only to a diminutive version of that name Subbu., When it comes to names even dogs have their day.

    So dear little Timur, even you may behave like Subbu the Alsatian and due to sheer embarrassment demand some other name when you grow up. But remember, just because you are the namesake of a genocidal warrior, it doesn’t mean you will become one. After all people named after gods don’t become gods, do they? If I had become the guy after whom I was named, I would have been wallowing in wealth, giving Bill Gates. Warren Buffet and Mukesh Ambani a real bad inferiority complex.

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    Last edited: Dec 24, 2016
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  2. ashima10

    ashima10 Platinum IL'ite

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    When I started I had in mind that you will defend it..than I will be offended with how can they ... it's Missle in pak, then going through I told you are little offended again I thought come on us just a name !! Even the rapist are named Ram singh !! but that was so neat Sir !!!exellent write up ! Expecting a child soon you have given me some names to ponder on as well !!
    I feel somehow sorry for the little kid, most abused child he has become on internet at least .

    Hope he is not bullied in our democratic country with freedom of expression everywhere :)

    As kamal sir would end it
    Joke : what's their in a name writes Shakespeare after writing his name.

    HA HA HA ! :)
    Loved your post !
     
  3. satchitananda

    satchitananda Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    "What's in a name" you say? Well, honestly Balajee, I would not name my child or even my enemy's child Taimur. It really hurts one's finer sensitivities. So much so, that I did not have the heart to even go and look at the pic of the kid or read any of the tweets of protest. I am sure Tarek Fateh would have a lot to say about this matter! :-D

    The word 'drudh' means decisive as in drudh sankalp. So I would guess adhrudh would mean indecisive. I guess the parents are just sub-consciously preparing themselves for the future! :roflmao:

    A relative has a golden retriever (a sucker for being petted) Appachami because he has a natural namam on his forehead! He is a complete baby even though he should be middle aged or older by now! :-D
     
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  4. Balajee

    Balajee IL Hall of Fame

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    Ashima give a deep thought to naming your kid. Often innocent names can stir up controversies. True just because people have divine names, it does not mean they ave divine characteristics. A Ram can have Ravana like character.
     
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  5. Balajee

    Balajee IL Hall of Fame

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    Seriously Satchi? Why make a mountain out of molehill.. Going by your logic, no German/Austrian should name his kid Adolf (after Hitler), no Italian should call his kid Benito as Mussolini had that name and no Spainard should be named Francisco because of Franco. Why should kids be called "Jack" when there was a Jack the Ripper.?
     
  6. satchitananda

    satchitananda Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    I don't know if any Germans name their kids Adolf. I suspect it would be just as sensitive and woe betide the parent who did! I could be wrong. Absolutely clueless about Italians. But Taimur???? Naaaaaaaaaaaaaah! It's just a very instinctive reaction. Can't give any kind of rational explanation for that.
     
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  7. Balajee

    Balajee IL Hall of Fame

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    On second thoughts may be for the sake of the kid, the name should be changed. With increasing saffron fundamentalism, the kid could get traumatized in future because of his name.
     
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  8. guesshoo

    guesshoo IL Hall of Fame

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    If only!!! :roflmao:
    Your post had me snorting so hard that I woke the other half up at an ungodly hour. (All is well though, and my bed coffee should arrive in a mo)

    It is a huge task to name a child and it is super easy to mess it up. Tsk Tsk.
     
  9. ashima10

    ashima10 Platinum IL'ite

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    Ab name change ! Ghar Vapasi !
    I just want to know what made Saif choose this name which means iron but represents such barabaric nature . As reports say he beheaded his mother ! I would dread naming Ram my child although he was maryada purushottam but he disowned Sita ! So what actually were they thinking .
    Off course the child may be follow footsteps of Kalam Sir but what were parents thinking? I would really want Saif should clarify that, he looks like learned man and he must have some reason.
     
  10. satchitananda

    satchitananda Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    I don't know how far it is true, but I have heard that the name 'Sita' is rather unpopular because of all that the original version went through. It is a different matter that in most cases, they don't have to have that name to go through similar sufferings.
     
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