Recently, something got me thinking about names…or more specifically, names of famous people. Now, I’m sure that most of us don’t give their names a second thought. I, however, would like to challenge you to think outside the box:
Let’s start with the guy who got me going:
His name? To his friends, I’m sure he’s Mike Fox. To us, he’s Michael J. Fox. If I’d seen him on the street I’d tell my friends, “I just saw Michael J. Fox walking a sheepdog on 42nd and Fifth with a chocolate ice cream cone in one hand and what looked to be a bright orange dinner plate in the other.” (It turned out to be a Frizbee…go figure.) I wonder if my good bud Mike would have reconsidered his name on that original head shot had he realized that people would forever call him by his first name, middle initial and last name. On a bright note, he can always tell if it’s a stranger/stalker fan calling out to him, right?
Then you have this guy:
…who, although he doesn’t look very approachable in this shot, goes by the friendly name of Tommy Lee Jones. Don’t you already feel like you know him intimately…just because you already know his middle name? I can only assume that his next-door neighbor growing up heard his mom often yell, “TOMMY LEE JONES! STOP TRYIN’ TO STUFF YOUR BROTHER INTO THAT SEWER PIPE AND GET IN HERE!” Maybe he assumed if the whole town already knew him by his full name, he’d better stick with it.
Here we have one of my favorites:
…the uber-talented Sue Sylvester. I wonder what made her decide to go with “Sue”, versus:
…the more formal “Susan” Sarandon? Kind of ironic too….since Sue usually plays such a caustic character…even going back to her fabulous stint on Two and a Half Men.
Then you have the one-name wonders:
Could you imagine calling out, “Look this way Madonna Louise Ciccone!” Um, I don’t think so.
Cher…Oprah…Angelina…Brad…Britney...Beyonce…Sting…Bono. I figure your name has to either be pretty unique, or you just have to be the first with that name to hit it really big.
Sometimes, though…it can get confusing. If I say “Ben”, my dad will say Ben Casey? Connor (13) will say, “Ben 10?” when all the while, I was thinking of Ben Affleck. Or maybe Ben Stiller…or maybe Benny and the Jets...
As you can see, it gets tricky. So, for those of us not-quite-a-household-name-just-yet, what are ya gonna do? If you name is Tom (Hanks), Dick (Tracy) or Harry (Connick, Jr….not to be confused with Harry Connick Sr.), I’d suggest you consider changing it. If your name is Marshooba Marsicone Mulhooney III, you may want to consider the one-name route.
Just make sure your public name suits you:
Jennifer Anastassakis=Jennifer Aniston
Maria del Rosario Pilar Martinez Molina Baeza=Charo
Demetria Gene Guynes=Demi Moore
Annie Mae Bullock=Tina Turner
Smart choices, people…we can only hope we’ll all be so lucky...