Friday, September 22, 2017

A designation, signifier, tag, label, epithet. Call someone by a name and you reduce them to the idea and implications that the sound represents.

In the fourth grade my teacher conducted a unit on the etymological origin of names and the deeper meanings. The name I was given at birth originated first in Scotland, but my parents' familiarity and fondness came out of darker, more recent locale. After three years struggling with infertility, my mother chose to name her first born "Bonnie" after a deceased woman she'd never met, who was thrown from a car and killed when my father fell asleep at the wheel. Her death occurred just two weeks prior to their wedding. Invitations had already been mailed.

Our teacher read through the baby name book—her reference material for this unit—calling out the listed meaning next to each of our names.



When Kelli was born, she was given the name of her father.

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