Thursday, January 6, 2011

Name-Change Petitions from 'The Smoking Gun'

Ah, The Smoking Gun. While Wikileaks has earned instant notoriety for declassifying government documents, The Smoking Gun has been plugging away at it for 13 years. Why haven't the governments of the world conspired to bring down TSG's founder - whoever that even is?

Well, Wikileaks might be interested in cables from foreign embassies and Iraq War documents, but TSG has devoted itself selflessly to celebrity mug shots and silly crime reports. Noble in its own way - and a lot less dangerous.

If you ignore the who-cares NFL connection, there's a great article here revealing people whose surnames or given names at birth have been so unfortunate (usually foreign names that just don't sound that great in the English language) that they've been forced to change them. I think it's great to be proud of your own name, whatever it is, but I can hardly blame these people for wanting a fresh start. Not that in each case I agree with the decisions they made, but who am I to judge?
  • In Chicago in 2005, a Mr. Fuk King Kwok decided to change his name to the slightly-less obscene 'Andy King Kwok'.
  • I get why New Yorker John Pearce Dick was upset about his not-uncommon name. His ultimate choice, however, 'John Dick Pearce' is no better at all. In fact, it's significantly worse.
  • Another New Yorker in 1996, the not-too-bad William Gerard Doody decided to become 'William Gerard Ryan', a blander name made up of first names.
  • Henry N. Schmuck and the whole family of Schmucks, in Manhattan all the way back in 1942, went for the more genereic 'Shelton' surname.
  • Again in New York but this time 1977, David William Queer decided to become 'David William Quist'.
  • Still in New York and now in 1995, Robert E. Suckey Jr. decided not to repeat his father's fate, taking instead the name 'Robert Salviotti'. One wonders if he had any Italian heritage or just liked the sound of it.
  • Poor Monica Katherine Pinas of Chicago didn't have that bad a name... until you try to pronounce it out loud, that is. In 2004, she decided enough was enough and went for the not-that-much-more-respectable 'Monica Katherine Star' instead.
  • Mary Jo Porn of Chicago had a great name. It's not merely that her surname is so prurient; it's how it clashes with her corn-fed first name. I don't think, say, 'Elizabeth Porn' or 'Alessandra Porn' would have been as bad. Anyway, she'd had enough and went for 'Mary Jo Tavormina' instead.
  • In New York in 1967, Vladimir Fuka and his wife Eva Fukova (which I actually think is a very nice name) got bored of the snickering. So because they were sick of having a name that was just a letter-change or two away from a sexually naughty word, they decided to become... 'Vladimir and Eva Hervert'. Sigh. Well, they were Czech. Perhaps they were yet to master English.

1 comment:

  1. TIL everybody with a weird name who wants to change it lives in New York or Chicago.