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Lately I've realized that I can tell a lot about a person by what name they call me, whether they use my full name or the shortened version that I usually go by. I find it amusing when people try to act like they know me but call me by my full name. Anyone who uses my full name, unless they are using it for some specific reason, obviously doesn't know me at all. Whenever an old "friend" calls me by my full name I just smile and act friendly, though in my head I am laughing at them.
I confuse names. Not the way most people do, Dave, Doug, or Derrick? Not like that. If you're a Tom, John, Jeff, James, Jason, etc, all of the very very common names, you're just going to have to give me six months to remember it.
I have those associations too. For me, Josh is an egotistical buttplug. Brittanys are usually airheads. Coreys are younger, helpless boys that absolutely ensnare me if I'm not careful. Travis is a universally dick name. Of course, these aren't always true. Just enough.
I was recently asked my name by a complete and total stranger who somehow out of the millions upon millions of cell phone numbers punched in my exact number looking for someone else completely. I refused to give it to this mystery person and he proceeded to get angry at me so of course I hung up, but it left me with this feeling of disgust for names in general. I realize the purpose of the name, to identify you as an individual. To make you stand out in a crowd of faces making you unique to a group of people I suppose. But a faceless name carries so much more. Here you have two strangers talking over satellite waves who have no idea who the person on the other end may be. They don't know your age they can guess your sex by the tones of your voice but they don't know you, everything that makes you who you are and so they ask for your name so then they can build a mental picture of what you should be. What they 'think' you should be. Therefore you are branded. You will forever be that name with that mental picture and nothing more. I say strip away the names take away the easy routes to human connection and force yourself to forge new ones. Force yourself to see beyond the mental pictures and become who you want to be. I reject your brand and I denounce my name and I transcend to something more. Something other than what people want to see.
i used to think this was a bad thing, but now i'm starting to realize that whether it's a self fulfilling prophecy or not, these assumptions are generally right. it makes me wonder, does the name shape the person, or does everyone i meet just happen to act something like everyone else i've known of the same name? what do people associate with my name? i've never thought to ask.