I’m not exactly new here. Even though I joned HE like 6 months ago, I’ve been reading the articles/discussions for at least a year before that. I just never really participated. Well I decided to change that.
First of all, this site is absolutely amazing. I wish I had known about it even before I found it. There are so many new things to peruse through and learn about.
Ok, so I just wanted to add in this little thing that I read/realized today. Names are fucking awesome. When I see mine, I literally see me. Each letter is a part of who I am. And, seeing as I am only (I think) a healthy amount of “conceited,” I think it’s safe to say that other people think the same way. Names are really important in a way. Some book I was reading described them as the most important word in existence to whom it belongs to.
I really, really think that’s true. You can definitely see someone (usually a stranger) light up sometimes when you use their name. Take waiters/waitresses for example. They have to deal with a lot of shit from people usually. Whenever I make the effort to remember their name so that I can call them by it whenever I need them, you can see it makes a difference.
I’m kinda branching into something nerdy, but it is like the “true name” of something in Eragon. Our names utterly describe us (most of us), because we define ourselves with it. That’s why people get aggravated when you mispronounce their name (assuming it is simple enough that it should not be).
So yea, i don’t know why, but I felt like sharing that.
Hey, interesting idea :) Even though we are not the ones who choose our names (mostly), therefore how can we define ourselves by it? Cannot it be more like that we either identify with it or not – just think about all those people hating their names and struggling with them all their lives…
I’ve never been crazy fond of my full name since it’s the same name as a famous soap opera character in the UK, but I do feel as if it somehow represents me perfectly. The book you read it in was probably How to Win Friends and Influence People. Remembering peoples names is SO important. Case in point: I often meet people out when I’m working in bars, and occasionally bump into them again 6 months later, and when I remember their names, they clearly feel so touched. I always try and make an effort to remember names, and tell people off when they say ‘I’m great with faces, but crap with names’. That’s natural, and takes no effort. Names are a real courtesy.
hu, never really thought of the importance of remembering peoples names. But you just opened me to this idea, and I agree with you completely…. It feels really nice when someone remembers your name, and it must feel really nice making the effort to remembers someone else’s name.
Gonna start making the effort! ;)
interesting, yes i have always felt that my name really represents me.
it’s also funny how my name, David, being a let’s say “universal name” has a slightly different pronunciation in spanish (my native language) but still people here in mexico immediately always start calling me David with an english pronunciation.
@nickc2007, i also share the same full name with a lot of people, some of them famous as well, like a baseball player, a local politician, etc, maybe one day i’ll be as well known as them :)
now i’m ashamed to say that i’m one of those people who are better at remembering faces than names, at parties i instantly forget new people’s names a second after meeting them :( but am able to remember faces from people i met once years back.
i also tend not to call people by their names, which is probably why i can never create a full meaningful bond with most people, i usually just say “hey, bla bla bla”
and even though i am full aware of how much more stronger my bonds with people would be if i called them by their names, it’s still kinda hard for me just to start doing it
My point was everyone naturally remembers faces. You will pretty much never meet anyone who’s crap at remembering faces; they automatically stick in your mind. Remembering names is a courtesy, not a natural talent. You have to put effort in to do it; but it’s not that difficult. You ask their name again later in the conversation as a reminder, and learn a fact about the person so that you can assoiate it with them. And then repeat it to yourself, out loud if necessary. ‘Blonde Ben from Kansas’, or whatever.
People will love you for it, and are much more likely to remember you as a result. It’s something you have to train yourself in, but it’s one of those Good Guy Greg things that just improves everyone’s day.
True, i’ve actually tried that associating thing recently.
I know i could just ask people their names again, but then i’d feel guilty, like they’d feel bad like “aaw you forgot my name already? :S”
si have to ask other people who know them…. many times… i just don’t know what is it about names…
Would you be offended if someone said ‘Im really sorry, what was your name again? Im crap with names’ I do it often, and people actually tend to smile instead of being offended, because they know your intentions are good. Especially if you were introduced to lots of people at once
talk about synchronicities, i just saw the latest episode of Community, and one of the storylines was about that exactly….
i just love that show! they share some very interesting points of view on life, sometimes similar to the ones here, but they’re “hidden” in plain sight, behind comedy
no i suppose i wouldn’t get offended if someone asked me that, but i woould if they had already asked it more than once before… (community, watch it…)
I don’t get this. So many people have the same name, so most aren’t very unique, and they were given to you before you were “you.” In fact, I at some point had the opposite realization, that names are limiting, in that they reinforce a false sense of self.
Funny, my friends and I were just talking about this the other day. More related to the letters of your name, but same idea. This was the first website I found on google about it. It has to do with numerology.
I’m astonished that you knew what book I had read it in.
Anyway, I see what you mean, Nick. I’ve always been bad with names. But I now that this is because I usually didn’t care enough sometimes. (Other times I just really am horrible at names. I just re-visited my old university and forgot the name of someone who i have known for 2 years. I know who he is and have all the memories of us hanging out, but for a few minutes I was completely lost for what his name was.) I should really try to put the extra effort into it.
@zeitro There have been three synchronicities in this small thread alone. It’s uncanny how the universe has a way of making so many coincidences. I’m no believer in the supernatural, but I love how puzzle pieces usually end up coming together in front of our eyes.
@crossingtheeventhorizon It’s not that our name is unique that I am talking about. One of the first things most people learn about their names is that it is NOT unique (most of the time at least). I mean that the name takes an important position in our minds. Regardless of whether you like it (I believe), your name is YOU represented in language. I decided to write the first post after looking at my name and realizing and that each letter and the whole together represented something about me. It wasn’t a tangible or coherent connection. I just know that when the letters of my name are arranged so that they spell my name, the word changes into something that is wholly familiar and Me. I really can’t describe it.
But yea, I really think I am going to pay more attention to people’s names. It’s a small task that goes a really long way. I just have to get rid of my habit of not paying attention to names. I have always thought that naming things takes away from them. I.e. how the chem physics and bio are all basically the same subject, but they hold different positions in peoples’ minds just because they have different names. But I guess it is really different with sentient beings. I wonder how long names have been around. Did it really start with the beginning of our species? Like some form of recognition? Idk, its really interesting to think about it. Have any of you ever noticed similar effects with names of exes, currents bfs&gfs, and family? When the letters are arranged into their exact name, they produce the emotional response that I usually pair with the actual person. Even if I were to scroll down a page really fast, I would be able to notice their name on some list or somewhere on the page, because of a momentary emotional response. Food for thought I guess.
@darksingularity, I really enjoyed Eragon. I loved the philosophies he layered under his plot. Especially the one in the end of the last book with the oldest dragon. Where the matters of ants become likened to the worries of kings. Gotta love it
Yea, its a great series. Back when I first saw Eragon, I remember loving the line about it being better to ask for forgiveness than permission lol. I can’t recall if it was in the book as well, though.
But my favorite quote, (lol I memorized it when I first read) is “The sands of time cannot be stopped. Years pass whether we want them to or not… but we can remember. What has been lost may yet live on in memories.” It’s simple, but it really shows a crucial part of life: that time is the most valuable thing. Well. I think so at least.
I get what you’re saying. Obviously we have associations with names just like with any words. But like with any words, the map is not the territory. The attachment to a name is a very shallow attachment. If I ask who you are, and you reply with your name, that doesn’t tell me very much. To go for a perspective beyond the ordinary, common perception of identity, I would ask, who is the YOU that knows your name is Puneet Uppal?
@crossingtheeventhorizon That’s true to some extent. I am not the words “Puneet Uppal.” However, based on the definition I have given them, they are the best representation of ME. Now, you might add that this definition is not inherent in the words “Puneet” and “Uppal,” as they technically mean pure and stone, respectively.
But, if I give you a random concept like “dark energy,” you might have no discernable clue of what it is. Sure, scientists will tell you that it is some substance that constitute most of the mass of the energy, but that doesn’t really tell us much. If I split it up into “dark” and “energy” the individual meanings are very misleading, as dark energy is neither dark (although you can fight this) nor completely like energy. What you need to do is build a definition of your own based on past events and ideas you have had. Every word that we both know is probably slightly different in definition in our minds as we have them linked with ideas that the other might not have.
So you’re right, the attachment is shallow in that names are not actually us. But they are as close as a definition is to its word. “Puneet Uppal” is as close as you can get (based on the definition created subconsciously by my mind through years of association) to Me.
Sorry, that was kinda long.
So my contribution to this topic lies in that, in my life I don’t usually use people’s names when I talk to them. I often use pet names for my girlfriend, or for a friend, I use ‘man’ or ‘dude’. Or I completely forego a reference to them and just say, ‘Hey, what’s up?’ I would like to change this and start using names more often when I converse with people. I think it might deepen the connection/ improve the relationship.
@darksingularity, I agree, your name is the definition of you, or as close to a definition as you can get. That is, without describing your entire personality every time you introduce yourself. It is used more for convenience than anything.
@jameslarson13, Yea, I agree. It is just easier to say a name than explain yourself lol. And as for pet names, I feel like that they may occupy a certain level of intimacy as well, but more likely for your than the other person. Unless, they get accustomed enough to it. Like calling someone named Jessica, jess instead. Melissa –> mel. It all depends on which one the person defines themselves as.