Friday 7 July 2023

A rose by any other name ...


"A rose by any other name would smell as sweet" 
I think Shakespeare was an idiot. The reference is used to state that the names of things do not affect what they really are. The rose would technically still smell just as a rose smells, but it would have lost its appeal. So it would not be as desired as if it was called a rose. Which is exactly the opposite of what the Bard (or Beard) was implying.
How would he like it if he was called the Beard of Avon? I bet he would not be employed selling cosmetics and toiletries door-to-door.
If a rose were called a potato; how would you like it if your husband or boy-friend bought you a dozen potatoes for your birthday?
Names are important. Often one's name, given at birth, can affect an individual throughout life. They say that psychologically some people try to live up to their names in life.
Names are one of the most important things to us. That is why we should if possible address people by their names in conversations. 
I remember a head-master who was bad at remembering names. He often called his teachers for meetings and they sat in a semi-circle. He tried his best when addressing them to call them by their names but often failed to remember the names. So he decided that, at these meetings, he will address them by something they happened to sit near by. So the carpentry teacher became Mr Doors because he sat next to the doors. Then there was Miss Spelling because she sat next to the pile of dictionaries. And also Mr Notice Board, Mr Filing Cabinet, Mrs Window and Mr Curtains and so on. 
In order for the system to work, the teachers always had to sit in the same place at every meeting. However, even this system did not work for the head-master as he also had to remember what each teacher taught. 
For example, Mr Doors taught carpentry. Door ... wood ... carpentry.
Miss Spelling taught grammar. Spelling ... dictionaries ... grammar. And so on with all the teachers.
He sat them in places that would remind him of their pseudonym names and also the subject they taught in school. He sat next to a poster of Coco the clown.
One day at a meeting he forgot who was Mrs Window and Mr Curtains. They both sat by the window. But he could not remember if he had named the woman Mrs Window or Mrs Curtains ... and the man Mr Window or Mr Curtains? 
In order to hide his mistake, he asked the man to change places with Mr Filing Cabinet.

But this caused even more problems because now when he addressed Mr Filing Cabinet, the man who originally had this name but now sat where Mr Curtains used to sit answered instead. And when he addressed Mr Curtains, the man sitting by the Filing Cabinet answered.

So he told both men to forget their previous names and remember the new one he had given them. But this caused further problems when referring to previous meetings and remembering who had said what and what subject they taught at the time. For example did Mr Curtains, when sitting by the window, teach sewing and dress-making, or is he now the School Administrator in charge of all the files and filing cabinets and such documents because he is sitting next to the filing cabinet?
And that's why the Beard of Avon was wrong. Names are important and should not be changed to mean something else.
Does your name have a meaning? Have you wished to change it? What to? Why?



  1. seem to have a Gerber daisy!

    1. Shakespeare would have you call it a rose, or a potato. It looks more like a carrot to me.

      God bless, Tom.

  2. Now there's a case for name badges!
    I was named for my mother (first and middle transposed) -- and used to wish my parents had been more original. Nowadays, I'm glad they didn't bestow a moniker that pretty much defines one's age. Remember all the Barbara's, Kathy's and Linda's of the '50's ... and after 'Love Story', so many Jennifers.

    1. I agree, Mevely. People do/did tend to name their children after certain TV/cinema characters, or names that are in fashion at a certain period in time.

      My real name is: Get off your Horse and Drink your Milk.

      God bless.

  3. I live down the street from the flower man and woman. They own the flower shop. I have no idea what their real names are.

    1. Do you remember the TV series with Hyacinth Bouquet?

      God bless, Bill.

    2. Keeping Up Appearances - so funny. We still watch it.

    3. thecontemplativecat here. That was an awesome show. Her poor husband tolerated her well.

    4. It was the BBC's most successful export.

      God bless, Happyone and Susan.

  4. I was named Martha after my mother's sister and Jane after my dad's sister, Mary Jane. I used to not like my name, but now that I'm older, I'm grateful to be named after such loving people in my family.
    Blessings, Victor!

    1. What a loving thing to do, to name you after two relatives.

      It was fashionable at one time to name children after relatives.

      God bless you Martha Jane.

  5. thecontemplatlivecat here. Looking at my dad's lineage, he obviously had a lot of ancestors with traditional names. Our names were from friends and relatives. Pretty darn boring.

  6. I don't know if roses would smell as nice if we called them skunk cabbage instead. Either way, it's always a joy to read your blog.

    1. What a kind and nice thing to say, Mimi. Thank you so much. And thank you for all your hard and dedicated work.

      God bless always.

  7. We were talking about family names earlier today and how they have come down through generations, often now used as a second name, and in some cases a third name!

    I like the picture of the Gerber daisy ...

    Keeping Up Appearances was a brilliant show.

    All the best Jan

    1. Indeed, many people used relatives' names as second or third names for their children. Rose is a beautiful name for a child; better than Gerber Daisy!

      God bless always, Jan.



God bless you.