Monday, November 15, 2004

What's in a name? Plenty...

Whew, been pretty serious here lately, and I think I need to lighten up. Though it would seem our ticket is marked destination: Armageddon, that doesn't mean you have to spend all your time worked up about it. Got to relax, got to think about the good things. I think if we all did that a little more often, not only would The End seem less imminent, it might actually be pushed off some.

But again, I am not here to talk about the imminentization of the eschaton! I am here to talk about a name. It's a lovely name, and in my opinion the single sexiest name in the English language:


Let me say up front that I have a certain bias- I've been rather fond of a few Jennifers in my lifetime; most importantly, my sole chosen life-mate and partner for the rest of my time converting oxygen into carbon dioxide (and might I hope for beyond?) is named Jennifer. Just consider, however, this name and its variants. "Jennifer" itself has three syllables that manage to roll off the tongue in so many ways. Called across a field, its three vowels will carry it through the strongest wind. In a whisper, minor fluctuations in the hardness of the "J" can render it an impassioned plea, or a tender verbal caress. And in the Little Death, it can be a pleasure/pain expression worthy of the Song of Solomon or Ravel's Bolero.

As "Jenny," it can evoke a personality to challenge Nabokov's Lolita in mixed signals, or can be the perfectly innocent name of the girl next door who is not at all "that type." Jenny, Jenny, who can I run to?

As "Jenna" it can bring thoughts of an icon of our current culture's sexuality, and give "just Jennifer" the mystique of someone far more dangerous to your good social sense.

As "Jen" there is the friend, the buddy, the person you laugh with. Jen is affable and straightforward and practical- but there's still that Jennifer (or maybe that Jenna) there, waiting for her turn.

Jennifer. Say it with me now folks; "Jennifer." Close your eyes, hold it in your head and let it come out the mouth: Jennifer. It gets no lovelier than that. If you're lucky enough to know a Jennifer, find a way to tell her you know you're lucky. Maybe Jen will give you a smile; maybe Jenny will giggle a bit; maybe she'll introduce you to Jenna...

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