The Pursuit Part Five – Finally, Naming the Cabin?

Naming anything, except for humans, is likely not a contentious issue for the named entity. Most humans find naming not to be quarrelsome as well. Most people accept the parental blessing and move on. The name could be an embarrassment to some, based on an historical context of one kind or another. A person with Hitler as a family name may find anxiety with certain first names. I have seen the name Donald Duck as a name bestowed on a child – and one time where he became a doctor. Some might say that person would have been a legitimate “quack” in a way so as not to denounce or discredit his ability as a physician, as well as a Donald to boot. Then there are famous people with common names – many named Brown might encounter that. And those with the family name Smith might as well. No one named Smith, though, has ever raced in the Indianapolis 500 – a little trivia for you.

And, it’s true, only humans would question names attached to anything else other than themselves. Some would find fault with politicians or public servants of any kind having their name used on anything for various reasons. Some sports figures would face the same contempt. Imagine, for example, a park in Indianapolis named after Tom Brady. It’ll never happen regardless of Mr. Brady’s excellence in squeezing a football; however, I digress…

So, naming anything will find those who agree, those who disagree, those who wage campaigns for a change of name, and those who note the stable genius of the naming. There may be all sorts of results. One likely result will be that the dogs don’t care. Even if you named a place or thing after a dog or person they know by a name, most dogs will likely not react. Sure, they may react when they hear the name, but for different reasons than the name of the place or thing UNTIL they associate that name with the place or thing as much as whatever the place or thing was named after.

Before moving on, however, is it “an historic” or “a historic?” And that doesn’t mean we’re going to discuss also whether it is, “…a historic?” or “…a historic”? Maybe there is an British English versus American English on where you place the question mark, but Let’s chat about, simply “a” versus “an” before historic. Historically, both have been found acceptable, with “a” moving way out in front about 1982 or so (according to www.betterwritingskills.com). There was a time in the early 1970s where “a” also took the lead only to lose it to “an” in the mid-1970s. But, usage does not necessarily mean usage is proper. Most of my foundation for writing was established in the late 1960s, which was a time for “an,” and may make sense of my using “an historic” more naturally. While all of that is true, the shift is now dramatically in favor or “a historic” and, perhaps, I need to adjust with the waves of change. If you pronounce the “h” in “historic” (or other forms of the word “history”), really “a” is best. Old habits die hard, so please do not expect an instantaneous change during this moment of enlightenment.

Linguistic variations, which may be dialects or colloquialisms or smaller differences, are common even within a hundred miles of where you live. Slang is different. In my life I had never heard “jeez-o-pete” until I moved to Michigan from Indiana – and The Urban Dictionary says that is a Michigan exclamation. NPR did a report in 2015 on regional or, as they put it, state-specific meanings (see, “Do We Talk Funny? 51 American Colloquialisms”) and included “belling” as the Indiana entry, which means “loud celebration.” I’ve never heard that one growing up in Indianapolis or since. NPR says that “hunk” in Tennessee means “bumpkin,” so you all who are trying to look all spiffy and muscle-bound might not presume to be a “bumpkin” if called a “hunk” in Tennessee.

Now that’s all discussed, but far from settled, we need to move on to this naming the cabin thing. The explanation that may be required, however, would make this one way too long, so we need to wait… Bear with me – we’ll get there…

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