Back in 2013, a man in Singapore, Batman bin Suparman (“Batman son of Suparman”), has been jailed for criminal charges.
Quite ironic for a superhero name, isn’t it?
What does Moe Lester, Mike Litoris, Dat Ho, BJ Cummings, Harry Baals, Ben Dover and Beezow Doo-Doo Zopitty Bop-Bop have in common?
Guess that’s a bit obvious, don’t you think?
So, what’s in a name?
They say it could make or break you. Ask Donald Trump why he won the Presidential elections. Was it probably because his family name meant ‘winner’ in the dictionary?
I guess that would make sense since a name is the first question that’s always asked when you meet somebody for the first time.
I remembered once in a Vince Vaughn movie wherein they were about to sign a billion dollar deal with a major oil company and one of their portfolio presenters introduced himself as Mike Pancake. I mean, who would take that name seriously? Everyone would automatically associate you with breakfast. You guessed right, they failed to acquire the merger.
Same goes in the name patterns of Filipinos. One example is that we love having doppelganger names such as Jhun-Jhun, Bong-Bong, Clang-Clang and etcetera. These nicknames are probably acceptable in the Philippines but when you try to interact with someone from other countries, it would seem like a doorbell sound or just plain redundant at the very least. And seriously, what’s with the silent ‘h’, Jhun-Jhun?
I also remember a story of a father who named his sons after Stalin, Mussolini or even worse Hitler. Imagine the roll call scenario if these three brothers were in one class together. Well I guess it wouldn’t make a fuss since some of the millennials suck in history believing that Marcos was a hero. And speaking of roll call scenarios, my mother had students whose family names were Africa, Canada and Filipinas. When she’s checking attendance, it would sound as if she’s hosting Miss Universe.
Back in elementary, our canteen manager was Mrs. Adovo. The head of the campus ministry was Brother Santos. And the one in charge of the awarding ceremonies during Intramurals was always Mrs. Medalla. I don’t know if these were just coincidences or our principal just had an epic sense of humor. This example was definitely one for the books and I never forgot about it ever since.
When you listen to radio dramas, the characters in the story always have unique names such as Turagsoy, Badiday or Tiburcio. Now, some parents are naming their babies after popular movies and television shows such as Frozen and Game of Thrones.
Classic jokes passed on during family gatherings include favorites such as Desidido Mujabal III, Gomercindo Poloyapoy and Yatake Tumbe, even the former PBA player Dorian Peña was not exempted.
Personally, my own name was not immune to teasing when I was a kid since Kaye, my second name, was feminine. Now, I usually don’t use it when introducing myself to avoid having to explain its backstory.
Maybe I could just think of a way to use it to my advantage or at least make people laugh as a good first impression as what a relative of mine did. He would introduce himself like this, “Nice to meet you. I’m Longhino, call me long for short.”
I also have an uncle named Dodong and he told me of the first time he introduced himself as Dong to his workmates in the States. Guess what, his co-workers couldn’t stop themselves from laughing which confused him until a friend explained that ‘dong’ was another word for ‘penis’ in the American slang. Imagine shaking hands with someone and the first thing that comes out of his mouth was the word penis.
One last question, who came up with “Bangkok”?