Dear RSBS Linguistics Dept.,
How the hell do you pronounce Mike Stanton’s new name? Is it “Gee-an-carlo” or “Jon-carlo”? I’m going to keep pronouncing it “Mike”.
Fort Worth, TX
Being a nation of immigrants means that US phone books are full of many sometimes unusual names. Some of my favorites include Christian Okoye, the KC Chiefs’ Nigerian Nightmare; Juan Pierre, who can’t seem to decide if he’s French or Spanish; and, of course, Barack Obama. Unless you’re a modern-day Nativist, like the un-ironically Catholic Newt Gingrich, you realize that this inflow of names, traditions and cultures makes our country a more interesting place.
That makes me wonder how a guy like Stanton got tagged with the name “Mike” in the first place. He was drafted by the Marlins, a team based in south Florida where there is no shortage of hispanic first or last names, out of southern California where the same holds true. So how, in either of those environments, does a guy like Stanton get forced into assuming a name he has never used?
I find it even more interesting that I’m answering this question the day after St. Patrick’s Day as the Irish were undoubtedly one of the primary targets of mid-19th Century Nativism in the US. Part of it was poverty, part of it was religion. But all of it was xenophobic. 150 years later, not only are people with Irish last names found everywhere in the United States, we also dedicate a day to them each year on March 17th.
True, sometimes this influx of last names from all corners of the earth leads to problems. For instance, I’m not really sure how Keith Jackson would handle a name like Ndamukong Suh. But athletes, just like any other American, have the right to use and be called by their real name. Sure, it might get mispronounced from time to time but I think that if the tables were turned and it was any Tom, Dick or Harry arriving in another country, they’d still rather be called by their own name. Hell, sometimes it even works out in your favor. My last name often gets mispronounced as “Cruise,” which leads to getting asked if I’m related to Tom. I just smile, give a non-committal answer and let them keep pronouncing it however they want.
P.S. I’m pretty sure he’ll respond to either pronunciation. I’d just avoid using Mike.
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Okay, I’m not Irish. I’m Scottish. We make the whisky. But when it comes to beer, it just doesn’t get any better than Ireland’s very own Guinness!!! I’m assuming you already have a pint in your hand. If not, GET ONE!
And while doing so, please take a moment to join RSBS and Guinness in setting the world record for the largest St. Patrick’s Day party on the planet! It’s easy. Just go to Guinness.com, verify you’re 21 years or older, then click “Join The Party.” Just type in your first name, country and zip code and then in the “optional code” box, enter the code “REDS” and Guinness will send $1 to RSBS, a dollar which we’ll be donating to Baseball Tomorrow Fund participant, Noble Network Charter Schools.
To show our appreciation, think on the following:
And the only active baseballers I can think of named Patrick right now are… none! Since Pat the Bat retired, I can’t think of a single one player named Patrick.
So that would be right around the same time the Cubs celebrate 8,853 years without a World Series title.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
At first blush, baseball doesn’t seem to have all that many ties to Ireland. Sure, St. Patrick may have used a blunt, bat-like object to whack away at the snakes invading the Emerald Isle but the Irish are more of cricket/soccer/rugby sort of nation.
However, there’s one thing that baseball fans and the Irish can agree on and that’s the fact that their preferred sport, whatever it may be, goes down even better with a nice tall beer. I think that’s probably the main reason that RSBS‘ ongoing collaboration with Guinness to create the World’s Biggest St. Patrick’s Day Party makes so much sense.
St. Patty’s is only a few short days away and, as the muppets remind us each year, it’s a day fraught with emotion:[youtube http://youtu.be/riXcinqDeCI]
This year, before you begin boiling your cabbage and corned beef, help RSBS make that emotion joy for some kids in Chicago.
For most people, it’s the same as a regular hangover (dehydration, vomiting, possibly waking up next to a bearded lady), only the sun is still up ‘cuz you started partying at ten in the morning.
In my case, it mostly concerns dealing with a slew of sore face muscles caused by laughing too much. The following video will do that to ya:
I know this vid is old, but hell, it ain’t stoppin’ Mr. Krause and I from grabbin’ our firearms to join the hunt. Besides, the mystery of this southern leprechaun is as funny as Kyle Farnsworth is terrifying.
And believe me, that’s a lot.
In honor of St. Patrick’s Day I wrote this post last night while I was drunk. It just seemed correct in the spirit of the event. Not all that surprisingly, it actually came out more coherent than most of my posts.
There’s something to be said for tradition. For instance, the tradition of celebrating St. Patrick driving the snakes out of Ireland by getting tanked on Guinness and Irish whiskey. Over here at RSBS we have a slightly different tradition when it comes to St. Patrick’s Day. It doesn’t involve drinking because drinking still hasn’t been perfected over the internets. However, it does involve that other famous Irish pastime, singing. So, pick up your glass and join Mr. McLung and Mr. O’Krause in a tribute to their shared Irish (or Scottish, but who’s counting?) heritage.
Happy St. Patty’s Day!
Today we drunkenly celebrate Irish heritage by doing what the Irish do better than most: getting drunk. And we here at RSBS want to do our part to aid in the celebration. Since we can’t serve up Irish Car Bombs via the internet, we figured we would instead present a rousing tribute to Irish baseball players. Until we made a not entirely unexpected discovery. There really aren’t any.
Sure, guys like Fancy O’Neil and Cyclone Ryan may have played at one time. And if you include players with Irish last names, the list is a little longer. There are even some impressive names on there, like Nolan Ryan, for instance.
But, it appears baseball just isn’t what gets the Irish going. It’s probably hard to follow all the rules when you’re on your tenth Guinness anyway.
Instead, we’ll salute Ireland the same way we did last year. Take it away, Swedish Chef!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!