Saturday, March 12, 2005

that's a name?

One of my favourite things about teaching in China is some of the strange english names the Chinese give themselves or others. Some of the kids name themselves, either just by putting sounds together they like, or pretending that an english word can also double as a person's name. Sometimes the children are too young to name themselves so someone older will name them. Mistakes in spelling or pronunciation have left some great names as a result. Here is a list of some of my favourites:

  • Plitty (3 year old named by a chinese teacher; I think maybe they were going for "pretty" but couldn't say it properly)
  • Hork (another 3 year old with no say over his name... no justification for this one...poor kid)
  • Leetha (they must have meant Lisa, surely!)
  • Beer (his father changed it from Peter to Beer....whether or not on purpose, I don't know)
  • Maryar (again...I offer no explanation for this one)
  • Helly (I really thought he was trying to say Harry...but he spelled it out for me!)
  • Robin Hood, Harry Potter and James Bond (all named themselves and go by both first and last names, although James Bond signs all his homework 007)
  • Joinny (just liked the sound of it)
  • Rebort (a dyslexic Robert maybe?)
  • Robot, Hamburger, Pencil, GreenAroma and probably others I'm forgetting (English word = english name theory)

The funniest thing is how these names don't even phase me anymore. Sure, upon first hearing them, I think to myelf, your name is what?? Joinny isn't a name! You can't call yoursef Hamburger! Hork? HORK?? but soon it doesn't seem strange anymore. Besides, it's much better than repeating the names that are so popular like they often do. I hate having a class with Lily 1 and Lily 2, Jack 1 and Jack 2.... And the absolute best is when I get to name a student. I wish I could rename whole classfulls! I could have my Buffy characters class, my soap opera names class, my famous scientists, my famous ficticious characters, my musicians, my cartoons, my class named after my own friends! Oh, the possibilties....!


Theran said...

yes the names are funny. and i think that just because they have a cool or unique name that i like them more. Robin Hood is one of the nicest student i have ever had. I also have a little girl named snow. But as an update, Hamburger has changed his name to Buick. Why i do not know but all of his stories are about cars. The names were strange at first but not anymore. i\'m still waiting for a cletus, an urkel, and a mephistopholes but that day may be a bit off yet.

David said...

hey hey, i love those names. i want to have a cool name like them. i wanna have a unique name, stupid DAVID. maybe i would be Teddy, or Optomis, or Toothpick....nah, i suck at thinking up names.....maybe i\'ll go with something simple, like Shovel. oh well, it sounds like all to much fun.

Unknown said...

cute names.. wish i had one like that too *sigh*.. yep yep and i bet itd be awesome to have several theme named classes also.. like you saidhm.. tinky winky dipsy lala po!.. anyway, AWESOME SPACE

R said...

just dropped by your space, I clicked on the link you mentioned in your last entry. I read this blog and couldn\'t help but to leave one of my past students name. He named himself Bogus knowing what it meant.

Laoch said...

I think I shall change my name to beer as well!

hellachella said...

Hork and Joinny. I love it. I\'m thinking of renaming my actual children.

jon said...

... i\'d hate to be you when the one of the parents find out you named their innocent angel from heaven, britney spears. lol.Cool space!! Wish i could customize mine, but... lazy... lol.Happy blogging.jon

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