Saturday, November 08, 2008

What's in a name?

Le-a...

A dear friend who teaches in public school one day wrote this name on a piece of paper. She looked at me with a gleam in her eye and dared me, "How do you say this name?"

Before I answered I asked her if this was a real story, and she said, "Yes, a mom and her daughter came to enroll at my school today."

Okay, how about "Leah", pronounced LEE-ah. Nope, she said.

Then how about LAY-ah. Nope, she said as the gleam in her eye grew brighter.

Fine, then the accent must be on the second syllable, said I. Odd, but oh, people and their children's names can be an adventure.

How about lay-AH? She burst out laughing and said, "Ready?"

At this point, I realized it was going to be something quite odd. A friend attended her son's graduation ceremony last spring and brought the program to coffee the next day and dared me to pronounce some of the names. It was an eye-opening experience in realizing how clueless some parents were in naming their children. Weird is an understatement. Bizarre is more like it.

So, are you ready?

Le-a is Leh-DASH-ah.

Huh? Excuse me? What was this parent thinking?

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