I Suck With Names

(so apologies if you leave a comment and my first response is ‘wow, that guy commented!)

Both in my real life, and the fictional words I inhabit, I suck at remembering names; I met an old friend at a football game a few months ago, and remembered playing video games with him, but knew him as ‘The Guy That Played Star Wars Battlefront’, as opposed to knowing hum as David. Similarly, I’ve been calling Melisandra from Game of Thrones ‘That Red Priestess Woman Whose Idea Of Childbirth Is Worryingly Similar To The Concept Of Demonic Possession’ for three seasons, Grunt from Mass Effect is simply ‘The Krogan With A Shotgun’, and I have to repeat the names of the big four teams in Portuguese football on a daily basis, so I know who to dread drawing in the Portuguese Cup on Football Manager.

But it’s not like I don’t know these groups or individuals, I just know them by different terms; if names exist to easily differentiate things from each other, surely my method of defining name by purpose is as effective, if only on an individual scale. Names are useful because they are representative of an identity, that many different people know (I’m ‘James Patrick Casey’ to everyone from the Queen to Joey Barton), and so my vague descriptions of people won’t work when I’m talking to others; I always feel a bit silly when I talk to my Dad about Game of Thrones, and while he’s comparing the events to Middle Age politics, I’m tripping over the difference between Robb Stark and Robert Barathian.

It’s surprising, therefore, that I have named my blog after myself; I wanted to name this thing something that would cover all of the topics I wanted to write about, and the lack of direction and planning in creating this blog means that, by default, I’ll write about whatever the Hell I feel like, so I used my name largely because I couldn’t think of any other term to do the trick.

But the letters that comprise my name don’t really define me as a person, or a blogger; I’d use things like adjectives and similes to do that, and so I suppose I traded off succinctness for accuracy – it would be more accurate to call this ‘The Blog Of A Person Who Has An Exaggeratedly Low Valuation Of His Worth, Yet Paradoxically Expects Others To Have A High Enough Valuation Of Him To Spend Their Precious Time Reading His Blog, All With Enough Self-Criticism To Make Littlekuriboh File A Copyright Claim For Plagiarism Of His Style Of Comedy’, but that would be a pain in the arse to find on Google.

I suppose that’s the very purpose of names, then: to codify and define that which is difficult to define, in a format that will never, in a million years, convey all the necessary information. But we all buy into this convention of ‘naming’, we all have codes of several letters to differentiate ourselves from our neighbours, and while names (especially surnames) are supposed to indicate profession or characteristics, we all pretty much accept that a ‘Bob Smith’ won’t necessarily be a better metalworker than a ‘Steve Carter’, despite the connotations of their surnames.

Indeed, people have tried to make ‘names’ mean things, especially surnames; the idea of a familial identity, that everyone with the Lannister name will be a selfish, power-driven, ruthless arsehole, is an example of this, and ‘doing your family proud’ is almost a form of reverse-engineered identity, that instead of individuals defining a family through their actions, those individuals must have their own choices limited to fit a much older family identity.

But fortunately, as society has gotten more sophisticated in the MEDW, we don’t need to be so simplistic in our definitions of people; and this is why I don’t give out the names of people that I reference in my blog unless necessary to make a point, or for the sake of anecdotal clarity: I want you to judge my ideas and actions based on the events that occur, and the people that are involved, not what I choose to call them.

And if you don’t like that, who cares? The worst you can do is to leave me an angry comment behind a meaningless username anyway.


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