Dear Members and Constituents,
Last week, as I sat in a hospital room reading the paper I had a realization: proper names can sometimes take-on unintended meanings in the feeble minds of the easily-amused (such as myself). Not quite sure what I’m talking about? I will illustrate my point with a sampling of actual names that grabbed my attention this past week.
Top ten funny names taken from recent media stories (or, as I like to say, what were their parents thinking?)
- Taco Stein. As I mused on the Aruban solicitor general and his dry cleaning tab (do taco stains come off?), I wondered how many people throughout history have shared his first name. Could it be that a popular fast food chain (which will go unnamed) was founded by a phone company heir -A.G. Bell’s illegitimate son, Taco?
- Julia Gillard. Is there a famous music school named after the Australian prime minister’s abbreviated name? (hint: it’s Jiulliard)
- Anna Hazare. Not that funny a name, you say. Maybe not, until you find-out this anti-corruption activist whose arrest has spurred protests all across India is not a woman, but a full-fledged man in his seventies.
- Jigme Thinley. I think the Bhutanese prime minister has it right. How else would one want to be jigged anyway? Thickley? I think not!
- Chip Saltsman. This high sodium deep-fried GOP strategist had me running for the vending machine to seek his namesake.
- John Key. There is an old joke that explains the theory of relativity as follows: the duration of a minute depends on which side of the John door you are. Now imagine, if like New Zealand’s prime minister you held the key. Now that’s true power, my friends.
- Heinz Fischer. I wonder what sort of fish can be found swimming in ketchup --and where do you find enough of it to go fishing? Unlike the Austrian president, I prefer to catch my fish in more traditional, crystalline media (i.e. water).
- Donna Shalala, If like this University of Miami president my school was under NCAA scrutiny for having a booster spend “millions on improper gifts, entertainment and travel for Hurricanes athletes”, I suppose I would want to cover my ears, close my eyes and… well, repeat her name a few times
- John Hickenlooper. The governor of our state of Colorado proves you don’t need a regal sounding name to win in the game of politics. John…
- Qaboos bin Said. Being named after the last wagon on the train is a sure sign the sultan of Oman must come from a numerous family (or perhaps they’re just railway aficionados). Enough Said (get it?).
While I don’t expect all of these to tickle your funny bone, my hope is you shared my amusement with at least one of them. If not, I have one final weapon in my bag of tricks: donuts. Four dozen, to be precise, courtesy of Thomas Eng who makes his debut as donut boy today. Come put a smile on your face, after the week you’ve had, I’m sure you deserve it!