Thursday, August 24, 2006

Kids' names

I've had to look it up again. I always have to. Yes, there WAS a guy in the USA squad at Germany 2006 called DaMarcus Beasley. Hang on. Better check. Yeah, that's his name.
How? Why? Won't someone tell me? What was wrong with Marcus? Hmmm... well, honey, what it needs is two letters attached to it whose relevance is at best spurious and if anyone questions it we'll invent some bullshit about culture and ancestry and Africa/the Celtic fringe.
Such motivations presumably attach to Aston Villa's Jlloyd Samuel who seems to be called that simply because someone put a J there - the same way that if someone but Scro in front of Tom Robinson's name he'd be ScroTom Robinson. Cute, huh?
As the cult of the child grows ever more powerful, many parents see them as little more than accoutrements to be displayed to a presumably wondering and respectful world. They are the human analogues of those tiresomely pretentious and ostentatious personalised number plates. Just as KEV 1N and 1RON scream 'I am interesting. Look at me', so does a -let's be frank - silly kid's name. Of course it actually screams pitiful ignorance and insecurity (BTW, would anyone like to put any money that the owner of the BMW registered with the latter is aware of the slang attribution of Iron? Thought not).
Naturally, when referring to shabby display, one turns to the Beckhams, the ne plus ultras; their firstborn, Brooklyn, was named for the place of his conception. Aside of the incredible vanity and vulgarity of advertising the fact - if they'd said 'we just like the sound of it', everyone would be much more forgiving - scene-leaders that they are, they set a disturbing precedent for dolts everywhere.
Imagine, if you dare, your mates or neighbours calling their first born Ebbw Vale; but maybe that would be made up as a preferable alternative to Layby-Near-Llanfihangel Ystern-Llewern. Try yelling for him (or her) to come in for their tea.
And let's hope such a habit doesn't extend to Big Bone Lick (Kentucky), Anus (Burgundy) or Twatt (Orkneys).
Thirty years ago, the middle classes were rightly mocked for the pretentiousness of the likes of Casper and Tabitha; where is the righteous mockery of the new bourgeois now we need it most?

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