Tag Archives: naming

Since We’re Just Throwing The Word Around…

Wyatt Cenac breaks down racism in American geography, pointing out that Rick Perry’s dumb ass ranch is only the tip of our racially charged cartographic iceberg:

Stewart: Wyatt, what does this say about America?
Cenac: (yelling) It says there aren’t enough black people making maps!

That’s my new answer to everything.

Triple Awesome Score for the America the Beautiful remix. Lord, Wyatt’s going to make me start DVRing The Daily Show again…

Next week, we will discuss why it’s not just about the damn word, but I’m too burned from the week to do it now. Also, file under things to look up when we have time – why “fuck” is bleeped out on TV, but nigger is cool. I’ve been wondering that since the Chappelle’s Show, and then the Boondocks, so at some point, I need to get an answer.

What’s in an Asian American Name?

by Guest Contributor Theresa Celebran Jones, originally published at Hyphen


I’m a full-time remote worker. Most of the people I work with on a daily basis have never seen my face, and know me only by my emails and my phone voice. I often wonder about what these people picture, of the face they try to attach to my name. And I wonder if they’d be surprised to know I’m Asian.

I’d been a little conflicted about my name since getting married (as evidenced by this comment I posted on this blog long ago), but my maiden name did not sound particularly ethnic either, and since the baby came before the wedding, I had, in my mind, changed my name to match my family’s — not just my husband’s.

Before all that, my husband (then boyfriend) and I had tons of added baggage about naming our daughter. We didn’t want to give our child a name too similar to any family members, and we wanted to steer clear of any names on a Top 100 list. We wanted to ensure our kid wouldn’t be stuck in a class with five other people of the same name, and have to take on an awful nickname like “Mike Jones 2.”

Additionally, I wanted a meaningful Asian-sounding name that would flow well with Jones, the 5th most common surname in the United States. Truthfully, and probably because I went to a predominantly white school system in the 80’s and 90’s, I was picturing a teacher reading “Firstname Jones?” off of a roster on the first day of school, seeing an Asian kid raise his or her hand, then saying, “That’s not funny; where is Firstname Jones?” Continue reading