Day 19 – Part Deux – Stink Blossoms or: A Rose by any Other Name

4 Oct

I like the names of the metro stations here in Berlin. Cottbusser Platz. Landsberger Allee. Kottbusser Tor. Mehrowerraoulwallenbergspringpfuhlbies Strasse. Qottbusser Dorf. The people who made the subway must have had a blast naming them. My favourite metro stations are of course in London. Wood Lane. Shepherd’s Bush. Cockfosters. St. John’s Wood. Some say the English are all dry wit. I say, take one look at a map of the London Underground to disprove that hypothesis.

I’ve always wanted to name something. A few years ago I really wanted to get some cats – mostly so I could choose what they would be called. Murtaugh and Riggs. Mayhem and Chaos. Castor and Pollux. I never could decide. The only living thing I can remember naming is a friend’s dog. I shouted out Franklin and she loved it.

I remember reading about a terrorist organization based in the Philippines and their name in English translates as the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. I can just see these guys when they were sitting around trying to decide what to call themselves. Maybe their leader already had a great name picked out or maybe they used some sort of multi-round balloting system where each round the least popular names were dropped except if one of the names had more than 75% of the votes then they would just skip the remaining rounds and declare that one the winner.

The one English-speaking guy there would have had his notebook out and he would have been writing down the names when he first saw it. Or maybe it happened later that night when he got home. He wanted to find out if the .org domain name was already registered (it was). Either way it doesn’t matter. What matters is that it’s hilarious and for that terrorist, getting up to go to work each day was that much easier because of how he could now answer the question, “What do you do for a living?”

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