March 4th, 2002

alone on a swing

by any other name

You know what? I think people at school wouldn't recognize me if I wore my hair loose, wore a dress or skirt, and didn't wear my glasses. I could be a whole new me. Or maybe my evil twin. In high school, I was asked more than once if I had a twin sister, because I went by two different names. It was funny. Actually, I kind of do have a different personality depending on which of my primary names I use in a given situation. I have five given names, not including my surname, two of which I use regularly. I often have identity issues. I pause when I introduce myself. What name should I use? What name? Am I still the same? Names are fickle. They also have power. When people look at me, do I *look* like I match my name? But which name? And if I changed my look, should I use a different name, too? I have boring, generic, overused names. But I also have odd, inexplicably magical names. I have the name I am for school, and the one I am with family and friends -- the two primary ones. But what of the other names? I don't really answer to them, but I do pause when I hear them. If one day I decide that I like my second or fourth name best, could I really teach myself to respond to it? This isn't even going into assumed names, such as my internet handles, or fantastical names, such as characters I play in my head. I don't think I'm a different person when I use different names. But... maybe I am. Maybe I think differently then. I know my stuffy, oldfashioned first name is the "intellectual" one. And my short, sweet third name is the "friendly" one. And my exotic fifth name is the one that fits my more "mystical" aspect. How does this work? Eh, whatever, I'm just rambling. Don't really believe any of this.