Monday, April 30, 2007

Other Bloggers Work So We Don't Have To

Paul Frankenstein assembled an All-Name Team from this weekend's NFL Draft. A few of his selections:

FB: Orenthal O’Neal, Arkansas State, Raiders. Last time there was a RB in the league named Orenthal, he did OK for himself.

WR: Legedu Naanee, Boise State, Chargers.

OL: Mansfield Wrotto, Georgia Tech, Seahawks.

DE: C.J. Ah You, Oklahoma, Bills. I know nothing about this guy, but I love his name.

ILB: Desmond Bishop, California, Packers. Not to be confused with Bishop Desmond Tutu.

RS: Syndric Steptoe, Arizona, Browns.

The excellent Awful Announcing imagined this conversation between NFL football operations director Gene Washington and Buffalo Bills GM Marv Levy when the O.J.'s took C.J. Ah You in the seventh round:

Gene Washington: Mr. Levy, we need your pick.

Marv Levy: We'll take...Ah You.

Gene Washington: Mr. Levy, you can't select me, I'm 60 years old.

Marv Levy: No. We want Ah You, from Oklahoma.

Gene Washington: I'm from Alabama.

As others have noted: Lucius Pusey, sadly, was not drafted.

Terdsak, Boma Ye! Terdsak, Boma Ye!

At NOTY, we’ve long believed that two things make a boxer great: a tough chin and a powerful name. When practitioners of the sweet science don’t have the former, they hit the canvas. When they lack the latter, they invent a predatory nickname. Think of Hawk, Gorilla, Macho Man (our beloved first NOTY), Iron Mike, the Rose of Soweto.

OK, maybe not the Rose of Soweto.

Which brings us to Terdsak Jandaeng.

Terdsak—and we just won’t be able to type that enough—is a 25-year-old Thai featherweight with Mr. Universe deltoids and the (unnecessary) ornery nickname the Pit Bull. On his way to a 24-1 record, Terdsak dumped an NOTY-region worth of talent: Orlando Sitohang, Dondon Lapuz, Jaime Barcelona, Said Chiddy, Man Deuk Park, Pedro Malco. That earned Terdsak a date in Lake Tahoe last summer with former IBF and WBA champ Juan Manuel Marquez for the WBO interim title.

No contest, right? Terdsak is, well, Terdsak. Marquez? Pedestrian every way you slice it.

Let's cut to seventh-round action:

Marquez hammered Jandaeng with two more crippling right hands to the rib cage. Jandaeng froze for an instant and seemingly was stood up on his toes after Marquez connected with yet another galvanizing right uppercut to the face and a remorseless five-shot combination that thudded off of the Jandaeng's skull. Marquez jumped on his wounded opponent and nailed him with yet another ruthless five-punch combination to the head and body. Referee Nady had finally seen more than enough and he stepped between the two featherweights and waved off the butchery.

We figure Terdsak just couldn’t get it up for an opponent with such a weak name. So Terdsak's manager smartly booked his next bout against one Joebar Damosmog. Result: Terdsak on points.

We intended to end the post there. But then we checked out Joebar's opponents. Oh my goodness:

Baby Lorona Jr.
Vinvin Rufino
Fahsan 3K Battery
Rud 4K Kevkatche
Marlon Limpiado
Bobong Escalicas
Young Solamillo


Jack Asis

(Thanks to NOTY reader Bill.)

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Actual Headline: `Fugitive Trim May Be Surrounded'

There’s absolutely nothing funny about a guy fatally shooting one state trooper and wounding two others and then dying in a blaze in a farmhouse during a gun battle with cops.

Unless the dead perp's name is Travis Trim.

And you’re familiar with the meaning of trim.

Take it away, Capital News 9 in Albany, N.Y.:

Travis Trim. It's a name that became new to us Tuesday when he allegedly shot a trooper during a traffic stop in Margaretville. But, his name is not new to some people in the North Country.

Capital News 9 sent a team of reporters to find them.

The 23-year-old has a P.O. Box in the hamlet of North Lawrence in St. Lawrence County, so we attempted to contact his family members by calling people in the area with the name Trim.

Like Eddie Murphy in 48 Hours, they wanted to get some Trim.

Didn’t find much, though. So Capital News 9 headed over to SUNY Canton, where Trim—we’re not making this up—``majored in motor sports.’’ The station talked to—we’re not making this up either—``Powersports Curriculum Director Mark Hill.’’

SUNY Canton students we spoke with said Trim is the talk of campus.

From our experience, trim is the talk of pretty much every campus.

Like `Chuck Woolery' Isn't `Odd'?

(Thanks to NOTY readers Nathaniel and Frank.)

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

This Kong Will Be Scaling the 2008 NOTY Seedings

In the beginning, there was King Kong. Then came Son of Kong. And King Kong Escapes. And some other Kongs, too.

Now, NOTY Productions proudly presents: Ding Kong.

Kong is a junior at Cornell, and a pretty accomplished one. He was named a Morris K. Udall scholar for his environmental work. He’s president of a campus environmental group called the Sustainability Hub (where he works with another excellently named student, Ethan Rainwater). And he’s about to receive the inaugural Maribel Garcia Community Spirit Fund award for his work with low-income kids in Ithaca, N.Y.

Before he graduates, Kong should be in the running for another prestigious award: the 2008 NOTY. But he'll have to share the stage with a fellow Ding Kong, an abbot at a temple near Hangzhou, China. An online diarist named Taitaku Pat Phelan described meeting this Kong in 2001.

We were seated at tables and chairs and were served tea by an elderly lay woman. ... Reminiscent of Hongzhi, Abbot Ding Kong said:

The standard of our words and actions are the precepts,
Our meditation is lively and dynamic,
While in our words and actions we attain stillness and are not disorderly,
In this way we can bring forth wisdom.

And a No. 1 seed in the 2008 NOTY Tournament.

(Note: We were privileged to know Maribel Garcia, a neighbor, poet and friend who died in a car accident in Arizona. Rock goddess and NOTY friend Sam Shaber is playing a benefit for the Garcia fund.)

Monday, April 23, 2007

Name of the Week: Knowshon Moreno v. Ynot Bubba

Wacey Rabbit trounced Danger Guerrero to win last week’s Name of the Week. In Week 3, creative construction takes on a legal name change.

Knowshon Moreno: Using the proper salutation, NOTY reader Jeff from Chicago writes:

Esteemed Members of the Name of the Year Committee:

I wish to submit
Knowshon Moreno for Name of the Year consideration. Mr. Moreno is a tailback for the Georgia Bulldogs....

In closing, I wish to state that I knew Shon Moreno. Shon Moreno was a friend of mine. NOTY Committee members: Knowshon Moreno is no Shon Moreno.

He doesn’t need to be. The 2005 New Jersey player of the year—dude ran for 6,268 yards, second most in state history—``achieved one-name status in the Shore Conference, a local version of Lance, Tiger or Michael.’’ The Asbury Park Press tracked down Knowshon’s grandmother, Mildred McQueen, for a name explanation:

``When I was pregnant with his mother I picked up the name Varashon from a character in a short story I was reading at the time,'' McQueen said. ``When Varashon had Knowshon, she just took part of her name and added the `Know' for knowledge.''

Knowledge equals power, baby. Earlier this month, Knowshon, who redshirted last year, ran for 68 yards on 11 carries in Georgia's first spring game (right). Coach Mark Richt said afterward:

``If he keeps progressing, it is going to be tough to keep him from getting some totes next year.''

And some NOTY votes!

By the way, the Bulldogs are shaping up as an SEC name force. Knownshon is joined by Trinton Sturdivant (relation to 2007 NOTY 24th-place finisher Quantavius Sturdivant unclear) and NaDerris Ward.

Ynot Bubba: Sure to offend opponents of the Dragonwagon Doctrine, which stipulates that a legal name change is a legal NOTY name no matter how idiotic, Ynot Bubba emerged this month in New Mexico after a judge approved his name change.

Ynot is 43 years old. He is a truck driver. His named used to be Justin Brady. He wanted to change it because, basically, he hates his life.

``I didn’t really have actual parents that I would consider parents,’’ he told KOAT Action 7 News in a video worth watching as much as anything else on the internets.

And the new name? The AP reported that:

His chosen first name, Ynot, comes from communities around the country named Wynot and Whynot. His last name is courtesy of the people he now considers family; they nicknamed him Bubba for no particular reason.

Ynot Bubba was the final choice among three names. He had considered Lacon Marlboro, inspired by the town of Lacon, Ala., and his preferred choice of cigarette. He also considered More Chek, from his desire for more money.

We love the way this guy thinks.

Who is the Name of the Week?
Knowshon Moreno
Ynot Bubba free polls

Friday, April 20, 2007

Funny Mostly Because a Newspaper Wrote a Story About It. And Because Mum and Dad Posed for a Picture. With the Kid.

God we love England.

Full story here.

(Thanks to NOTY London correspondent Rog.)

`Danger Rabbit' Would Be Simply Awesome

Make your voice heard.

If you haven't already, hit it here now and vote for the Name of the Week.

This week's match-up: Danger Guerrero v.
Wacey Rabbit.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Thankgod for Futbol, Thankgod for Readers

NOTY reader Adam from Minneapolis steered us, without comment, to a post on The Offside about unusual futbol names. Our eyes immediately were drawn to a link to the Guardian column about the subject, which we covered pretty extensively last week. So we fired off a rocket telling Adam to read NOTY more closely.

Readers, of course, are smarter than bloggers. And as we read The Offside post our eyes brightened.

My all-time favorite is Thankgod Amaefule [left], a Nigerian who played for the Greek side PAOK. I can only imagine his mother’s first words after she gave birth to her son. Thank God.

The Offside also nominated Englishman Dean Windass, who made news last fall when he went after the other side of an opponent.

Not content with having one of the most hilarious names in professional football, Windass grabbed Cheltenham’s John Finnigan by the sack during Bradford’s 2-1 win on Saturday.

The act ... resulted in Finnigan being sent off for retaliation when he raised his arm to Windass so he would release his grip.

Windass replied to understandable criticism by Finnigan thusly:

``I suppose talking about Dean Windass gets his name in the paper and gives him 15 minutes of fame.''

True, because Dean Windass knows that Dean Windass can get in the paper just for being Dean Windass.

Anyway, The Offside's commenters chipped in Danny Invincibile, Danny Shittu, Segar Bastard, Muzzy Izzet and Joseph Desire Job.

The site also linked to the fabulous Brazil Name, which will turn you into a one-name Brazilian footballer. The NOTY Committee's Brazil Name names:


And a couple of our Brazilian NOTY nicknames:

Fat Hinho

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Well, the Country Does Sort of Look Like One

A woman who moved to Sweden decided that her first name was too difficult for the locals to pronounce. So she changed it. To Willy.

Then some lover of however-you-say-schadenfreude-in-Swedish told her what Willy can mean in English. So she wanted to change her name again.

But the Swedish government, which legally regulates what people call themselves—names apparently are very important in the land of Dag and Bjorn—allows just one free change per resident.

So she appealed in court, with a succinct legal argument that would make both Oliver Wendell Holmes and John Holmes proud. (And this next sentence is pretty much why we’re telling this story.)

``My name means penis,’’ she wrote.

The court was unaroused. It said Willy would have to pay more than $100 worth of kronor to change her name again. (The new choice: Wendy, indicating that this time a little research was done into English slang.)

On the bright side, at least she doesn’t live here.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Name of the Week: Danger Guerrero v. Wacey Rabbit

Welcome to a playoff edition of Name of the Week! The participants: a Cuban baseballer and a minor-league stickhandler! Vote now!

Week 2: Danger Guerrero v. Wacey Rabbit

Danger Guerrero: Close readers of NOTY might say the starting catcher for La Habana couldn’t hold a Tiparillo to Zimbabwean soccer player Danger Fourpence. But Danger Fourpence is a touch fey. There’s something Philip K. Dick about Danger Guerrero, or just bad porn: a Keith Hernandez mustache, a trenchcoat, a ``stakeout.'' Apparently, there are lots of ``weird'' names in Cuban baseball. You can have Yulieski and Jokel. We'll take Danger.

Danger didn’t play for the national team that finished second but did Cuba proud in the inaugural World Baseball Classic last year. But he and La Habana did reach the semifinals of the 46th National Baseball Series, where they were swept four games to none last week by powerhouse Industriales de Habana. Our man did, however, help the cause in Game 3:

El Habana ganaba el partido 1-0 desde el sexto capítulo, cuando Roberto Zulueta empujó a Danger Guerrero con cañonazo al bosque central.

We just wanted to throw in some Spanish play-by-play. And linking to Granma for the near-translation feels very Graham Greene.

(Castro image from excellent T-shirt by No Mas.)

Wacey Rabbit: He’s a familiar face to Canadians from Lethbridge all the way to Saskatoon and a familiar name to close followers of the Boston Bruins' farm system, which might explain why he’s slipped under the NOTY radar.

Rabbit started playing for the Saskatoon Blades of the Western Hockey League at age 15, was drafted by the Bruins in 2005, and in January was sent by the big club from Providence to the WHL's Vancouver Giants, where he presumably is playing against 15-year-olds again.

He’s also been the subject of some fine journalism.

When someone says the name Wacey Rabbit, the first thing that many people do is chuckle and say, ``Shhh... Be vewy, vewy quiet. I’m hunting Wabbit'' or ``Silly rabbit, Trix are for kids.''

But it isn’t until you speak to Wacey and ask the question, ``Where did you get that name?'' that you find out the origin has nothing to do with Looney Tunes or Trix cereal.

It doesn't? Get the fuck out!

Rabbit was born on the Blood Reserve in southern Alberta. His full name is Wacey Coleman Rabbit. His family was into bullriding and Wacey Cathey was a legend. ``Wacey’’ is pronounced WAY-cee. And Coleman, Wacey?

``Coleman comes from Gary Coleman, one of the best saddle bronc riders. My parents just liked the names.''

Here’s some info on Wacey Cathey. And here’s some info on Gary Coleman.

Actually, the saddle bronc rider is Mel Coleman. It’s not clear whether Wacey or the Boston Globe reporter who transcribed that quotation is the big Diff’rent Strokes fan. We’re betting the reporter.

(Thanks to NOTY reader Doug.)

Who is the Name of the Week?
Danger Guerrero
Wacey Rabbit free polls

Last week's Name of the Week: Ringo Wong.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Given the Alternative, `Stubby' Was Probably a Good Call

He's been discussed for years in many, many, many places, but after reading Deadspin today we felt compelled to file our own report on Stubby Clapp.

The minor-league baseball legend—and Canadian!—is being feted in Memphis this summer with his own ``day.'' But don't look for him on the 2008 NOTY ballot. Stubby is a childhood nickname.

``I have relatives who don't even know what my first name is,'' the 5-foot-8, 175-pound infielder said.

It's Richard. Which means that he just as easily could have been called ... oh, never mind.

After an 11-year career that included a cup of coffee in the bigs, Stubby's finally hung up his spikes. Thankfully, he's staying in baseball. Though if you're an Astros fan, and the coaches look a little uncomfortable, the headline on Stubby's job announcement might explain why.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Zimbabwe Is Full of Gifts, Danger, Brains, Methods and Jenitala. Have-A-Look.

Last week, a reader of a column in The Guardian called The Knowledge, which answers questions about sports, asked:

``Zambian Laughter Chilembe has played in Zimbabwe for Caps United FC, while I also know about Suprise Moriri from Mamelodi Sundowns in South Africa. But my favourite is one called Have-A-Look Dube playing for Njube Sundowns here in Zimbabwe! Any more strange/funny/good/ridiculous football names anyone can dredge up?''

Fantastic question!

The Knowledge replied yesterday:

``A quick look reveals some other odd-named players plying their trade in Zimbabwean football for Caps United,'' begins Mark Baker. ``Givemore Manuella, Gift Makolonio and Method Mwanyazi are great names, but they pale into comparison beside Limited Chicafa and the outstandingly-named Danger Fourpence.'' Staying in Africa, there's also Stephen Sunny Sunday, who plays for Polideportivo Ejido, and South Africa's Naughty Mokoena and Tonic Chabalala. ...

A very popular suggestion was Brazilian forward Creedence Clearwater Couto, whose parents were—fortunately—big fans of the American songsters, while there were also calls for former England internationals Harry Daft and Segar Bastard...

However, it would be remiss of us to ignore
Anthony Philip David Terry Frank Donald Stanley Gerry Gordon Stephen James Oatway—Charlie to his friends (``I'm named after the QPR 1972-73 promotion-winning team for those of you that have been on the moon all the time I've been at [Brighton]'')

We'll pause The Knowledge in mid-sentence to translate for us moon-dwelling Americans. Oatway is named for all 11 starters on the 1972-73 English soccer team Queens Park Rangers, which finished second in the Second Division of the Football Association, earning a ``promotion'' to play the next season in the First Division. Oatway, 33, currently plays for Brighton & Hove Albion, which is nicknamed the Seagulls and doesn't play against Manchester United or Liverpool or any of the other English soccer teams now owned by Americans. OK, resume The Knowledge:

—or three of our favourites: Australian keeper Norman Conquest, Seychelles star Johnny Moustache, and Congolese striker Bongo Christ.

They get the London papers in Zimbabwe, so it might not have been a coincidence that The Sunday Mail in Harare ran a story about football nicknames this week, with a few real names thrown in. To the pantheon of great Zimbabwean footballers, the paper added Musareka Jenitala. And from the west of the world, it nominated, among others, Yapi Yapi Yapo and Yaya Toure (Ivory Coast), Jerko Leko (Croatia) and Razak Pimpong (Togo).

We couldn’t get over the depth of Caps United, so we checked out the team's roster. We were not disappointed. A full eleven—plus a sub!

1 Gift Muzadzi
2 Brain Badza
6 Herbert Dick
7 Quincy S. Antipas
(his teammates must hate it when he gets the ball)
10 Marvel Smanenga
12 Limited Chicafa
16 Danger Fourpence
18 Gift Lunga
19 Givemore Manuella
22 Method Mwanyazi
28 Laughter Chilembe
30 Gift Makolonio

Not for nothing is soccer, in Pele’s felicitous phrase, the beautiful game.

(Trans-Atlantic thanks to NOTY reader Josh.)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Actual Fox News Headline: `It’s Not Easy Being a Dick'

NOTY reader Chuck writes:

Dear Selection Committee,

When I was in college in the late 80’s, my friends and I were, in a mildly psychedelic state, cruising the rural back roads of southern New Hampshire when we stumbled across a 9-foot-wide campaign sign for [wannabe] Congressman Dick Swett in the middle of nowhere. We quickly sprung from our vehicle to examine the sign up close, and soon decided that for the best possible review, we would be best bringing it back to our lab/dorm and mounting it on our wall for all to ponder. Having Dick Swett on our wall is one of my fondest college memories.

Dick Swett, a Democrat, won that House race in 1990 and was re-elected in 1992. He lost in 1994 and lost a Senate bid two years later. According to Wikipedia,

On the night of the election, in what may have been the most famous moment of his political career, many American media networks falsely projected that Swett had won.

We think Dan Rather just wanted to say his name a lot.

Anyway, Swett has been hearing it forever. And he’s fed up. He was quoted in a Fox News story about a debate over public-library Internet filters blocking websites containing names like Dick and Dickens and Hancock and Sussex and Essex and Couples.

``This is something I've had to contend with my whole life,'' the New Hampshire resident said wearily. ``Why should I be penalized if the rest of the world's mind is in the gutter?''

Perhaps because ``dick'' has been slang for ``penis'' since at least 1891 and people still choose it as a nickname for Richard?

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Other Bloggers Work So We Don't Have To

A few 2008 NOTY nominees culled from the interwebs:

Misol Do, Georgia high-school musican: ``How fitting that a musician would have a name made up of solfege syllables. And a major triad, at that!’’ (Letters to the World via the Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Alimayu Moa-T Snipes, celebrity infant: ``Massive respect to Wesley for having a kid as he faces Fed charges, which I am confident he will beat.’’ (The Dalembert Report via Celebrity Baby Names via Contact Music)

Tressel Hayes Huffines, spawn of Ohio State football fans who admire one coach on whose watch players may have taken a dollar or two from boosters and another who punched an opposing player: ``Personally, we wish they could have sneaked a `Clarett’ in there (or, to be sadistic, an `Urban’).’’ (Deadspin via the Columbus Dispatch)

If You Had Chantel Gemini Going All the Way, You Lost

Here are the final standings for the 2007 Name of the Year Tournament. Thanks to the nearly 300 people who voted. We're accepting nominees for the 2008 NOTY. And don't forget to vote for the Name of the Week.

1. Vanilla Dong 3,535 points
2. Kyle Sackrider 1,560
3. Intelligent Infinite Botts 1,520
4. Phyre Quickly Burns 1,225
5. Conceptualization Gibbs 1,140
6. Gertrude Nipple 1,130
7. Ayo Yayo 945
8. Mario Hilario 860
9. Michelangelo X Ball Van Zee 830
10. Destinee Hooker 715
11. Leftonred Atanycorner 695
12. Thankful Vanderstar 585
13. Yourhighness Morgan 550
14. Gelo Orange 540
15. Outerbridge Horsey 535
16. LeQuantum McDonald 505
17. Anita Fiel 475
18. Adrienne Cumbus 440
19. Co-Eric Riley 425
20. John Bulcock 345
21. Wisdom Bleboo 270
22. Sasha Junk 260
23. Pinckney Pinchback 240
24. Quantavius Sturdivant 235
25. D. Zeke Ezekowitz 215
26. U Nu 205
27. Lady Comfort 195
28. Babu Chalamala 185
29. Solomon HorseChief 180
30. Chief Kickingstallionsims 175
30. Zaire Kitchen 175
32. Oxide Pang 170
33. De’Cody Fagg 155
34. Cynammon Burns 150
35. Nature Johnson 130
35. Maserati Jemison 130
37. Mister Taylor 125
38. Bung Mac 120
39. Demetria Crumbly 105
39. Joe Favorito 105
39. Alibaba Odd 105
42. Basil Hero 80
43. Windham Rotunda 70
43. Tyson Mao 70
43. Doris Morris 70
46. Jazzmen Guy 65
47. Brett Bucktooth 60
48. Margharita Pigeon 55
48. Eugene Heavy Runner 55
50. Zhaneta Bozo 50
51. Simpson Rushing 45
52. Ramarcus Dickerson 40
53. Taiwan Easterling 35
53. Cetera DeGraffenreid 35
55. Princess Perdue 30
56. Remus Stefan 20
56. Ottilia Eycleshimer 20
58. Sa’Coby Carter 15
59. Unique Grant 10
59. Lovie Lilly 10
61. Tekerrion Cuba 0
61. Chantel Gemini 0
61. Jamarion Cavness 0
61. Taz Knockum 0

Champion on each ballot received 25 points. Runner-up: 15 points. Final Four: 10 points. Elite Eight: 5 points.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Name of the Week: Alesana Alesana v. Ringo Wong

Before there was Name of the Year, there was Name of the Week. Early winners included luminaries such as Alma Bone, Birdie Africa, Delano Turnipseed, and the great and controversial Godfrey Sithole.

It was a tradition like no other. So we’re bringing it back.

Every week, we’ll pair off a couple names that have crossed the NOTY transom. You, The People, will vote. Instead of posting winners on the wall near the Puff basketball hoop, we’ll do so right here on the interwebs.

Week 1: Alesana Alesana v. Ringo Wong

Alesana Alesana: 6-foot-6, 300-or-so-pound offensive lineman and Kansas State juco transfer. Alesana grew up in Western Samoa, where he played rugby and didn’t have people nominating his name for Name of the Year. ``It’s normal where I come from,’’ he says. ``But it’s not normal around here. I am proud of my name. I love my name.’’

In case you were wondering, Alesana says he doesn’t have a middle name.

Bonus trivia: There's a ``post hard-core’’ ``screamo’’ band named Alesana whose latest album includes ``consistent references to dying and hackneyed imagery about suicide run rampant, coupled with obtrusive, velociraptor dinosaur-like screams.’’

We’re very glad we’re not 15 and filled with anomie.

(Thanks to Jeff Adams at AOL’s NCAA Fanhouse)

Ringo Wong: Personal assistant to richest woman in Asia. Until she died last week.

Pretty self explanatory name. The ugly Beatle plus the male appendage.

Bonus trivia: Wong’s employer, $4.2 billionaire Nina Wang (right), might have a been a couple of slices short of a pizza:

Known for her signature pigtails and nicknamed "little sweetie" by the local media, Wang, 69, won a court case in 2005 for her late husband's business empire in a case filled with tales of adultery, kidnapping and murder.

Central to the marathon probate case was a handwritten will that Wang said was penned and signed by [hubby] Teddy in March 1990, a month before he was kidnapped and never seen again. Some reports at the time said Teddy was gagged and bound and thrown out to sea from a Chinese "sampan" boat.

Don’t hold it against Ringo.

(Thanks to NOTY Committee Member Nass)

Vote for the Name of the Week:
Alesana Alesana
Ringo Wong free polls

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Pete Rose Wasn't Eligible for Our Hall Either

We love you, The People. We counted your votes for the Name of the Year. But we’re not going all Nineteenth Amendment over here. When it comes to the Hall of Name, we're the Politburo.

The sacred task of selecting shrine-worthy names rests with the 12 members of the NOTY Committee, who bring more than two decades of experience to this sacred task. It’s just like in baseball. When it comes to judging greatness, everyone knows those grizzled reporters are way smarter than some kid blogging in Ma's basement.

The Hall of Name opened in 2001. There have been 14 inductees since. Two were banished in a scandal we’ll recount as soon as the NOTY Special Prosecutor concludes his inquiry.

But this is a time to celebrate, not investigate.

Eighteen names were eligible for induction into the HON Class of 2007. Inductees had to be selected on at least half the ballots.

Let's welcome three new members to the Hall:

Tanqueray Beavers, NOTY 2005; eight HON votes: A few years ago, the NOTY Committee held a moment of silence after the death of one of the founding fathers of NOTY, Baskerville Holmes. Now we mourn again. Beavers, who played college basketball briefly at the University Memphis but quit because he wasn’t getting enough run, was gunned down at a T.G.I. Friday’s in Huntsville, Ala., in December 2006. ``Tank''—we don't understand why it wasn't ``Tanq''—was 21.

What a name. Wine and women, all that’s missing is song. And if we set to music some of Tank's words—a poem displayed at his memorial service—we’d have that, too:

I do not want to get caught up in saying what all
I would change, but instead just correct the mistakes
I made in my life and try to make it better but I would
Like to say that my high school career was very nice overall.

His name was very nice overall, too.

Roszetia McConeyhead, runner-up, 2001 NOTY Tournament; seven HON votes: We don’t remember exactly who she is, but we definitely can picture the verification: her named circled about 40 times on some company staff list. First, there's the rare S-Z juxtaposition. We found just two such words in the official Scrabble dictionary—grosz, a Polish coin (also spelled grosze and groszy) and kuvasz, a large dog having a white coat (pl: kuvaszok). Then an amazing three-part surname—Mc plus Coney plus Head. Instant classic. McConeyhead was a top seed in 2001 and finished second behind Tokyo Sexwale, who was inducted into the HON in 2003.

Moses Regular, third place, 1997 NOTY Tournament; six HON votes: Moses is the Bruce Sutter of the Hall of Name, plugging away year after year until the Committee finally did its job. He’s also been pretty persistent in his career as a professional football player. Make that ``professional’’ ``football’’ player.

Moses came out of Missouri Valley College and played three games for the New York Giants in 1996. He’s now in his sixth season as a wide receiver for the RiverCity Rage in St. Charles, Mo., which used to be the excellently named Show-Me Believers and before that the River City Renegades. The team plays in something called United Indoor Football, though it used to play in something called the National Independent Football League and also something called the Indoor Professional Football League.

Anyway, on the night he was inducted into the HON, Moses celebrated by catching six passes for 87 yards and two touchdowns as the Rage beat the Lexington Horsemen, 46-39. Adding to his NOTY Q rating, it turns out that Moses is the Chad Johnson of the UIF/NIFL/IPFL. Last season, Moses

scored a TD pass and then cradled the ball in his arms as if he was rocking an infant; then walked to the dasher board pad and gently placed the ball on the pad and then removed his receiver's towel and covered the ball as though covering up a sleeping baby. He then held his forefinger in front of his mouth seeking that the crowd's silence to avoid waking the baby.

And when Moses's ``football’’ ``career’’ is over, it looks as if he could be a playa in competitive eating:

Regular [far right] picked up his second eating crown after defeating Rage Rookie Wide Receiver Milton Proctor and Rage Veteran Barry Brueggeman in a spaghetti eating contest live on CW 11’s ``The Fan Show.’’

Regular’s first crown came on July 9, 2006, when he won the ``KING OF DOGS.’’ That contest was also on ``The Fan Show.’’

Moses Regular: indoor-football star, eating dynasty, Hall of Name inductee.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

She's Not Only the Piano Player

The following photograph accompanied an article published in the arts section of today's New York Times:

She's a button that little girl, isn't she?

Anyway, here's the photo caption:

Poony Poon, 10, is one of a growing number of Asian-born students at the Juilliard School. She came from Hong Kong on a scholarship.

She won't need any help getting on the 2008 NOTY ballot.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Can 'Real World: NOTY' Be Far Behind?

If you had told us 20 years ago—or 20 days ago—that people would be talking about Name of the Year on television, we would have shot beer out of our noses. Well, beer 20 years ago. Prune juice 20 days ago. But here we are:

Your hosts are Jamie Mottram of Mr. Irrelevant and Dan Steinberg of the D.C. Sports Bog, who are taking the interwebs where they've never gone before on their, shall we say, evolving Blog Show segment on ``Washington Post Live,'' a new sports chatfest on Comcast SportsNet in the Washington/Baltimore region.

At about 5:20 of the clip, Jamie and Dan discuss NOTY and their Final Four picks for about a minute. Yes, there are two typos in the graphics. No, we're not complaining.

Monday, April 2, 2007

Presenting Your 2007 Name of the Year

As a football game, it was Super Bowl XXIV. As a golf tournament, it was the 2000 U.S. Open. As a presidential election, it was 1984. Think Sherman through Georgia, Germany through Poland, the whale v. Jonah, the shark v. Quint, Satan v. Adam. You get the idea.

In one of the most dominant performances in NOTY history, Vanilla Dong is the 2007 Name of the Year. S/he made a mockery of the 64-name bracket. The experienced hands on the NOTY High Committee loved it. You, The People, loved it. Everyone loved it.

Dong, a No. 1 seed, swept through a weak Chrotchtangle Region and took out Dragonwagon Region No. 4 seed Phyre Quickly Burns in the Final Four. In the other semifinal, Sithole Region No. 4 seed Kyle Sackrider squeaked by Bulltron Region and tournament top seed Intelligent Infinite Botts.

(Who are they? Dong works in the securities industry. We won’t say for whom, but we’ve seen paperwork. Burns is a high-school football player in Texas. His sister, Dragonwagon Region No. 16 seed Cynammon Burns, told the D.C. Sports Bog his middle name. Sackrider is a tight end at Michigan State. And Botts is a young man who made news in upstate New York.)

We received nearly 300 ballots, for which we thank you. The champion on each ballot was awarded 25 points, with 15 points to the runner-up, 10 points to the two other Final Four participants and five points to the four names that got as far as the Elite Eight.

The Top 10 vote-getters:

1. Vanilla Dong 3,535 points
2. Kyle Sackrider 1,560
3. Intelligent Infinite Botts 1,520
4. Phyre Quickly Burns 1,225
5. Conceptualization Gibbs 1,140
6. Gertrude Nipple 1,130
7. Ayo Yayo 945
8. Mario Hilario 860
9. Michelangelo X Ball Van Zee 830
10. Destinee Hooker 715

After two and a half decades of names, we’ve seen plenty related to the male anatomy. So many, in fact, that the last name of this year’s winner has become pedestrian, trite, sophomoric (not that there's anything wrong with sophomoric). An appendage name with staying power occasionally surfaces, like Johnny Dickshot back in 1998 or Dick Surprise in 1999, but even they haven't been elected to the Hall of Name. For a surname like Dong to have a shot, it better pack some heavy ammo up front.

Vanilla does. Vanilla can mean bland, but as a first name—regardless of its back-end partner—it certainly isn’t. In the thousand-plus names we’ve scrupulously collected and analyzed over the years, we can’t recall a single Vanilla. The white-rapper Vanilla Ice only adds a little comedy to the package. Separately, Vanilla and Dong don’t amount to much. Together, they are anthroponomastic magic: Every man has one, so a dong is indeed pretty vanilla. Every white male’s is by nature vanilla. But no man, regardless of race, wants to believe his is plain.

If there’s a Pistachio Dong out there, we might have to shut this thing down forever.

We’ll post complete final standings with first-place votes when we feel like typing in all 64 names, along with a final tournament ballot, comments and analysis from you, and an announcement of new inductees to the Hall of Name. And don't forget to send us your nominees for the 2008 NOTY.