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October 29, 2005

So Long Scooter...

We have to say it's sad to see a nickname fall into disgrace.  So few kids getting classic nicknames these days, such as Squeaky, OJ, Sosa, Turd Blossom, and Junior due to various embarrassments associated with them. And now we add Scooter.

Nicknames are slippery things. One rarely gives oneself a nickname.  Nicknames are awarded, or branded, as deeds require. It simply does not work for someone to arrive at school or the workplace one morning and announce "I'd like everyone to call me Ace from now on."  More likely the request will backfire and the nickname awarded more like Acehole.

Still, nicknames are a wonderful part of world culture, and it's always sad that the lasting effect of scandal is to limit the expressive nature of parents and friends in this labeling of the individual. The nickname is not the only victim of course, history has done away with such fun childhood names as well, we have many fewer Adolphs, Idis, Jims, and Pol Pots.  But the nickname is fluid, expressive, and just darn fun.  It's sad to see any one of them die, especially a classic like Scooter. 

Of course, we're probably making too much of this - its just our way.  Time will tell if future attention deficit redhead lads may regain the Scooter moniker.  Shakespeare said, in the trite and overly quoted phrase, "a rose by any other name would smell as sweet" indicating that it is actual form, action, presence instead of label that matters in our evaluation of things. We tend to agree, but the reality is that our culture is one of labels first, evaluation later.  Ironically, the labelers find themselves oft hoist on their own petard. 

Et tu Turd Blossom?


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