Rhyming never hurt a name's chances. Clinton Hinton was before his time: an NOTY nominee in 1985 who would have rocked the vote seven years later. Shula Hula had it going both ways, and finished third in 1996. First place that year? Honka Monka, verified with a phone call.
With that in mind, we give you 2007 nominee Mario Hilario, a Channel 10 News anchorman in Providence, R.I.
According to his bio, when Mario isn't hosting NBC 10 Weekend Sunrise, ``he enjoys working out and puttering in his garden. He also enjoys dancing, cooking and eating!''
NOTY Nominee Communications Committee Chairman Neg--who made the call to Honka Monka's house and chatted electronically with Crescent Dragonwagon--recently dropped Mario a line:
Dear Mr. Hilario,
You have been nominated for entry into the Name of the Year (NOTY) Tournament 2007. As Chairman of the Nominee Communications Committee I have been asked to contact you regarding your nomination. I would appreciate it if you would respond to the following questions.
1. Is Mario Hilario your legal name?
2. Was Mario Hilario your name at birth?
3. How often do you putter in your garden?
As the great Laszlo Toth said, you write letters, you get letters back.
3. Not as often as I should!
Mario Hilario: a solid six seed.