* Casey Abbott Payne is not my creation, it was given to me.
* C.A.P. doesn’t accurately reflect who I am.
* C.A.P.’s history etymology is entirely European.
* It’s the name my father gave me by being an example. He changed his name.
* It’s marketing wizardry.
* If I was forced to choose one name, it would be miltownkid ZEE.
Today is Father’s Day. I’d like to think it’s just another day but I’m a human and live among humans. If, like many things, the majority thinks something is, it affects “reality.” It is because of Father’s Day that I’m making this decision. I was reflecting on my father, the name he chose for himself and why.
It’s also the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. The summer solstice has significance to many cultures and religions around the world. While looking into this I ran into International Yoga Day and this quote:
“[Yoga] embodies unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfilment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and the nature.”
—Narendra Modi, UN General Assembly
Changing my name is a part of achieving “oneness with [myself], the world and nature.”
miltownkid was originally a name I chose for a Hotmail email address. I’m pretty sure the name I wanted to use was “Mr. Nice Guy” (mrniceguy@…) but it was already taken. I threw in a bunch of other names, but they were all taken. Renegade Banana was the name I stopped at. I was shocked that THAT was taken already. I realized I would have to get more creative. I’d have to create a new word.
I spent quite a bit of time coming up with miltownkid. I was trying to come up with something that reflected who I was and followed a principle from one of the marketing books I was reading at the time. Don’t use anything longer that three syllables for a brand. I was, and am, in love with the city of my birth (Milwaukee aka Mil-Town) and I wanted to be a kid for the rest of my life (for philosophical reasons, not to shirk responsibility). Eureka! Mil-Town Kid is born!
That was almost 20 years ago. I was already deeply involved in all things digital then and was just beginning my quest to be a master marketer. Having such a unique name proved to be extremely useful growing up online. miltownkid was always available for anything I wanted to register. Forum names, email addresses, user accounts, domains, etc.
Think about what I just wrote. I’ve been self identifying as miltownkid just as long as I’ve been “self identifying” (if you want to call it that) as Casey. Casey is something I am to other people. I AM miltownkid. My understanding of the “spiritverse” tells me I’ve been miltownkid since before either one of my parents were born. It just took me 18 years to become conscious to who I really was. I’ve spent the last 18 transforming into “the kid.” I’ll probably spend the next 18 years shedding the miltownkid skin, but that’s another story for another day.
Casey (link), Abbott (link) and Payne (link) never bothered me when I was younger. They don’t really bother me now either. They are mighty fine names. What bothers me isn’t the sound of the names. What bothers me is their histories. Not the personal family histories. I like that I’m named after Kenneth Calvin (K.C.) who I’m sure was a really cool guy.
I’m talking about the etymological history. I’m SUPER into the etymology of words and symbols. Words are symbols. Symbols have power.
The language of the [spirt] is not literal, but symbolic – a creative language that speaks in the form of colors, objects, shapes, art, poetry, riddles, images and metaphor. The soul chooses to convey messages in ambiguous terms; it is not direct in its approach. – Natasha Dern
I won’t go into depth on the power of symbols, but they are extremely powerful. They are powerful in a direct sense (easily understood by the masses) and a subtle sense. Delving into the subtle sense can be scary. I’ll leave the scary stuff alone and keep it simple.
Like Kehinde Lamumba (my dad), Muhammad Ali and el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz / الحاجّ مالك الشباز (also known as Malcolm X), I ain’t gonna have no name made up to praise a bunch of old white folks. Why are the same people who think I’m crazy for wanting to change my name the same people up in arms over South Carolina flying the confederate flag? (link) It’s just a symbol right? What’s the big deal? Ha…
Finally, I’ve been thinking about getting an iPhone for a while for a lot of different reasons. My brother told me that they play well with Google products now. That’s important to me because I’m a Google super fanboy. I stopped into an Apple store yesterday to ask some questions and found out that it’s harder to use multiple Google accounts on an iPhone. It only took me a second to realize that’s a good thing. I have 5 active accounts on this phone. I think there’s a good reason to have 5, but I know I’m wrong (for my reasons). After spending yesterday thinking about which one account I’d used if I had to only use one, guess which one I’d choose?