Say My Name

When it is time to name a new human, parents put a lot of effort and deliberation  into picking out just the right name.  This week at my day job, I scheduled appointments for two Dick Johnsons.  Not one, but two, it seems to be a very popular name.   In my life I have met numerous Dick Johnsons and every time, I think to myself, "Really, that's the name someone deliberately gave you?"  I got thinking about this after I met someone with the last name, Sackrider.  Now, Mr. Sackrider cannot help that he has an unfortunate last name, but at least his parent's named him Jason and not Dick.

I don't mean to be crass or juvenile, but it's an easy leap to make, come on.  For one, I can't believe that "Dick" is still a name that is used in this day and age.  Maybe I'm just a little sensitive because of my last name, McPeck.  Now, I love my family, I am proud of my heritage and I stand tall and proud as McPeck, but during high school I was called Pecker.  Let me tell you, being called Pecker is not as amazing as one may think.  Be prepared for me to debunk the myth.

The first time it happened was in junior high.  I was on the bus and a very popular upperclassmen called me Pecker.  All the kids laughed, my face turned red and I tried to brush tears away all the way home. Oh good times.  Eventually, I learned to take the joke.  I had to or I would be eaten alive by merciless teasing.  The more I would get mad the more it would happen.  First it started with McPecker, then it went to Pecker and by my senior year it was the diminutive, Peck.  It was nothing to be on the volleyball court and to hear numerous shouts of, "Go Pecker!"  My mom was so proud.

Oddly enough, I have to thank the phallic moniker for developing my twisted sense of humor.  It taught me to not take everything in life so seriously.  I learned that levity was a good thing and that the best comedy is organic; it is born out of truth and honesty.  There is a lesson somewhere in all of this about acceptance.  Learning to accept a situation is different than being comfortable with a situation.  But if you can first accept, then you can process honestly and most often more effectively.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

So to all of my fellow peeps out there who may have a name that is fodder for humor, I say, stand proud.  Take the joke, smile, laugh it could be worse, it could always be worse, you could have a normal name.

Pecker Power, 1994 Clayton, Wisconsin, State Champs!