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Guest Blogger David Calmonson Looks at What is in a Name



What’s in a name? I like weird names. I’ve not blogged for a while but the name of an American journalist, politician, and news talk anchor got me thinking. I was really sorry she wasn’t a weather forecaster as well. Her name? Krystal Ball!

I’ve been working now for over 40 years – mostly in sales, and a great many of these into the energy industry as many both of my regular readers will know. My first foray into the exciting world of being a sales-person (I can’t believe I have finally succumbed to political correctness and not written salesman / sales guy – I promise it won’t happen again) was selling digital storage oscilloscopes for a company named Nicolet. I’ve checked and they no longer trade so I shouldn’t get sued by them. I joined thinking I was selling smoking-cessation chewing gum. I was really looking forward to all the newsagents I was going to visit, banking on a few free Mars bars etc. Shortly after that I made an appointment for the optician.

Sales of these instruments were mainly into the defence industry and universities for research purposes. They were great at analysing explosions and I spent many a happy hour with ear muffs doing demos. I really can’t remember what they wanted to do that for. Anyway, one dark cold winter’s late afternoon, I had a meeting at Manchester University. It was late and there was no one about in the building…apart from the guy I was due to meet…Dr Death!! OK, a bit of poetic licence here as his name (it turned out) was really Dr De’Ath, but whoever had put his nameplate on his office door hadn’t managed to find an apostrophe in their John Bull kit.

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I have a cousin who is a (retired) midwife. Her area was not in the most affluent part of Manchester (which in itself is an Oxymoron). She was assisting Mrs. Royd (OK, it was probably Ms. but, as mentioned, no more political correctness!). Actually, I have to give some credit to this lady. When we had our third (child)  – the first two being boys, we had no idea what to call her when she was born.

At least Mrs. Royd had come up with a name…even if it was … Emma!

Like most of us, I receive unsolicited emails from time to time. Of course, I never send any out myself as it’s not polite…Many years ago I received a random one from an energy conference in Lebanon. I don’t want to get involved in this blog in Middle East politics – I can assure you I do from time to time – but suffice it to say that I would probably not be the most welcome attendee to an exhibition sited in this country. However I was tempted by the exhibition organiser…Mustafa Kamel! I think he got the hump when I didn’t respond.

A friend of my wife called Lorna clearly chose her marriage partner carefully. He was actually a man of the cloth – Reverend Mower!

I was recently discussing humorous names with someone in the gym and they told me that one of their best school friends, surname of Hood, had for some inexplicable reason been named Robin by his parents.

So what’s in a name? I always wanted to name my cat Rover or Fido. Had I had a dog, Kitty or Tiggy or would have been interesting.

The names of the UK political parties confuse me. Conservatives want change (UK exiting Europe); Liberal Democrats want to halt Brexit which was democratically voted for and Labour want a four-day week (i.e. less labour). I guess the Scottish Nationalist Party is accurately titled at least…and maybe the Greens are canvassing on incentivising eating your ‘five a day’? I’m sure Gary knows their manifesto in great detail!!

So I’ve got this far without mentioning C/ETRM systems, IT, football and music…which must be a record (or I guess a download in today’s parlance).

And that’s how it’s going to stay as I’m off to the local newsagent to get some Nicolet – the Chinese lady behind the counter is called Penny Choo!