Hard Name, Hard Time

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

It's kind of weird how you come out of the womb with a label attached to you already. You're brought into this world and people just start mumbling and cooing this word at you (which is actually your name) and your a baby so you just take it, like you don't have an option. We get our names for a lot of reasons, maybe your parents have a story with it, maybe it was after a relative, maybe they just liked it and thats the extent of your name history.
My name is Jordan which means the river of judgement or to flow down. Whatever, thats another story for another time. (I say this a lot but do I ever really get to those stories?)

I consider myself a lucky one since my name is two syllables with no silent letters or accents to have to worry about. However, my name is a boy name. Maybe not so much anymore, but when I was born 1993, it was a hardcore common boys name.  I only have a few problems when it comes to my name:
1. I'm associated with Michael Jordan more than I bargained for.
2. "Jordan?" "Jordan." "Jordan?" "Jordan." Like they don't believe me thats my name.
3. "I have a son named Jordan." Yes please tell me about your little BOY with the same name as me. I'll tell you about the country I have with my name as well.

Don't get me wrong, I've grown to appreciate my name. I'm kind of happy I don't have the same name as everyone out there like Jessica, Sarah, or Brittany. (three most popular names of 1993 btw).

ANYWAYS, my name is not difficult to pronounce, but 47% of the populations is. Okay, I made that statistic up, but I want you all to take me seriously. I've had enough schooling experience and awkward situations of watching teachers struggle with names at the tip of their tongue to be an almost expert on the topic of difficult names. Let's explore some pros and cons of having a name no one can pronounce, shall we?


  • It's unique. If they're having a hard time pronouncing the name, that means they've never seen it before. So, either your foreign or unique, but for the most part we can tell what answer that is. 

  • You can make up your own name to tell the barista at Starbucks. Technically you're doing them a favor by not making them sound out and/or butcher the spelling of your name on your coffee cup. Your name might be Soairse Ronan but you just tell her your name is Michelle (and the barista will still probably spell it wrong).  

  • "Congratulations you've won, (insert awful pronunciation of name here)" Thats great for her theres no one here by that name. *Click* Its true, if they get your name completely wrong, there really is no one there by that name. You can screen your own calls now. 

  • It's amazing how many different ways people can say your name. You can thank the English language for that one though with our short and long vowels, plus silent letters.  


  • You could possibly lose out on some opportunities or promotions because of your name. That could just be a rumor I read in Cosmo Magazine but it makes sense. "Hi, I'd like to talk to Miss Zyphnerey regarding her resume." No, thats not going it happen. They're going to take one look at your last name and say yeah I'm not wasting my time with that name. 

  • The attendance caller just skips over the name or says" I'm not even going to try to pronounce this," "Excuse me if I butcher your name," etc. Negating one of the pros.

  • Negating another Pro, you are the only one with that name, Ts easier to look you up on social media background checks, etc. Be on your best behavior.

  • Your name is foreign so the teacher thinks they're clever and says "Hmm, "Garcia," is that Spanish?" You give them the "duh" look and then they expect you to know the language of your name. 

  • You get some funny ways of people re-asking you how to pronounce your name. I think I'm sneaky and I say, "hey how do you spell your name" and then I can kinda of piece it together or take it back to when roll was called and if they confirmed/denied the pronunciation of their name.

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