What's in a Name?

November 09, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

words and images by Warren Wilson

It probably happens to me about once every 3-4 years. But, recently, it’s become a bit more frequent. Why, just this past month, it happened to me twice. That is, twice in one day.

What’s going on!? Years ago, a co-worker asked me if I was aware of a certain college in Ashville, NC. The name of the college is Warren Wilson College. Hey! That’s my name! I hadn’t heard of it, but I didn’t miss a tick. I blurted out that my great-grandfather had been the one to get the college started. {smile!}

Since that day, people do ask me “that” question. And, I give them the same answer with a {smile!}.

Have you ever googled yourself? I have. But, each time I do so, all I get are listings for the college. Yeah, I know. Put in the search criteria “not”. I’ve done that and it still doesn’t work for me. Even when I search “Warren Wilson Photography”, the first couple of pages list only the college. So, it’s almost impossible for anyone to find the real me.

A few years ago, I figured the shirt would be a good conversation starter. So I decided to purchase a T-shirt from the college. I called the 1-800 number for the college’s bookstore and ordered the shirt. It should have been my first clue when the person at the store asked me for my name in order to pay by credit card. I proclaimed my name with the dignity of a member of the alumni. She didn’t seem that impressed.

The shirt hasn’t helped my social skills, but at least everyone knows who I am (only when I wear the shirt), or at least they know the name of the college. It’s so difficult to stand out nowadays and I thought that this was the beginning of my 15 minutes. I was wrong. I suppose I need to find another way to be rich and famous.


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