What’s in a name?

Do you like your name? Do you know why your parents gave you that name? If you only had a chance to choose a name for yourself, what would that be?

It’s funny how some parents get their children’s names. Most parents think of what to name their kids ahead of time. This becomes a couples’ argument in some cases as the wife wants to name it from her favorite Hollywood star and the husband wants it to be after his, his Junior. Some parents like the pressure of cramming and thinking of their kids’ name the day she’s/he’s born. Some parents like it long, some want it short. Some copy the names of famous personalities; movie stars, scientist, presidents, singers, etc.

Here in the Philippines, we are used to hearing repeating names like; Tin-tin, John-john, Mac-mac, Len-len, Dee-dee, etc. I don’t have any idea what’s the history behind it. Some Filipino parents combine their names: Ex. The husband’s name is Ronald and the wife’s name is VIna, they’ll name their daughter Rovi (from the first two letters of their names). Do you realize how weird that is?! When they actually have the luxury and freedom to think of a unique name for their children? Don’t they realize that they have to be fussy about it because their kids might not like it?

Anyway, I asked some of my friends about their names. What’s the story behind the name and if they like their name?

MARIA REIKO – she likes Reiko but not Maria. She said her mom got Maria from mother Mary and the name Reiko was from an anime movie.

I think: her name suits her as she has a mix of Filipino-Japanese ethnicity.

CHRISTOFEROU likes his name. He said his father named him after, Christoferou the character from a Broadway musical “Fiddler on the Roof”.

I think: Chrostoferou sounds like a Greek name. When I’ll imagine a guy named Christoferou, I see him as a boy who grew up in Santorini. He’s a guy about 5’9 – 6’ ft. tall, with dark brown-curly hair which falls on his forehead. He has hazel eyes and he loves lamb meat.

Well, my friend Chris (his nickname) looks like a monk. He is bald, lean and he enjoys the outdoors. You’ll see him from the deepest parts of the sea to the highest mountain peaks. He’s a vegetarian and uses deep, nosebleeding Tagalog words in his short funny love stories.

VENICE KRISEN likes her name. Her mom got Venice from Venecia. Venecia is a doctor whom her mom idolized most. (I don’t know why? I haven’t asked.) She doesn’t have any idea where Krisen came from.

I think: Venice Krisen is a unique combination. I haven’t actually asked Krissy (her nickname) what country/city she wants to travel to. I’m pretty sure she’s not going to say “Venice”. There’s a possibility she’ll say Japan/Tokyo, as she took International Studies when she was in college, her course specifically about Japan. So why not Japan Krisen? Oh no! Uhm, Greece Krisen? Ewww! Sounds like a very greasy thing. China Krisen? Nope! Sounds like a chinita girl. Why am I going too far in the first place? Why not Philippines Krisen?? Uh-oh! Bad idea! It sounds like a national animal, or a national bird or a national whatever.

RYAN JAMES said he likes his name when separated. He’s not happy with the combination. His mom got Ryan from Ryan Cayabyab (Philippine’s well-known musician. He’s still alive by the way.) and James from the famous Bond, James Bond.

I think: What a combination??! A musician and an action star? Beat it! Hahaha. It’s just funny. Ryan James doesn’t even know how to play any musical instruments and doesn’t even know how to punch (I think). Wit and mind osmosis could be his preferred way of a battle but definitely not James Bond’s way. Since her mom started the name with a Pinoy touch: Ryan, followed by a name of an action star, why not Ryan Eddie? (from Eddie Garcia), or Ryan Lito? (from Lito Lapid), or Ryan Robin? (from Robin Padilla) so he can be nicknamed R.R. Hmmmm…he’s liking it. Hahahaha.

It’s nice to discover these facts from my friends.

I have decided on blogging about this because, personally, I am a victim. I don’t like the name given to me. My real name is Kristine May Gail. I hate Kristine as it’s a very common name. That became common on early and mid 1980s when it’s like all the parents had a convention and made it a law to name their kids either Christian or Christine. May is not even the month of my birth date. I like Gail amongst the three, that’s why I use it now. Why do I have three names? I am an only child and maybe my parents planned on having three kids, since they found out I’ll be their unica hija they gave all the names they want for their kids to me. Oooh good thing they didn’t think of having a baby boy that time. In that case, I should have been named Kristine Brando Gail or Kristine Jonathan Gail. Gross! Hahaha! On the other hand, I am blessed with my middle and last name. My middle name is Panaligan (Tagalog) and my last name is Salvacion (Spanish). If I were to translate these names to English these means Faith and Salvation. I believe that’s a message for me “faith in salvation”.

But, seriously, the story behind our names does not matter at all.

We shouldn’t care where these names came from or what the story behind it because it’s not really the story of your name which matters but HOW you carry your name.

It’s not something that you can replace easily. It’s not something you can wash, hang out to dry and once pressed can be worn again without any slight evidence of what stains damaged it.

Wear your name with pride. Take care of it like your most precious and cherished possession. Your name should be worn like a badge, a badge with integrity, pride and benevolence.


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