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Friday, November 30, 2007

"Just Call Me Sven"

It's official: John is changing his name to Sven. At the risk of spelling it out to any heeber-jeebers out there who by some weird coincidence happen across this post because they googled military families with the name Sven so they could hunt us down in Ohio and stalk our children ... suffice it to say, our last name ain't exactly original.

There are at least four people at the base with John's name. Exact name. First and last, spelling and everything. When you're sending someone official email on base, you go by the person's name: a list will pop up, and you pick the one you want. There are other identifying factors: rank; organization; etc; so it's not like you don't have some other information to go by when you can't spell the name or the names are similar or there are four people with the exact same name. But some, uh, people don't do this very carefully.

There have been numerous occasions over the years when his name has gotten him mixed up with someone else. Probably the worst example was last year during his deployment in Afghanistan when his mail kept going to the other John -- and the other guy kept it. "Um, honey, I don't know why you haven't gotten anything from me. I must have sent that package a month ago..."

Oooh, yea. Someone wasn't happy.

The weirdest incident must've been the time I got a call from a guy asking for John. Turned out he was some "investigative reporter" who was searching for a fugitive and he decided it would be a good idea to call all the John ____'s in the phone book within a 400 mile radius. Well, ma'am, just how well do you think you know your husband? .... Oooh, creepygoawayrightnow! Like, if I was a fugitive would I have my name in the phone book?

John signed up for this SOS correspondence course before he went to Afghanistan -- before he knew he was going to Afghanistan, actually. Which was kind of a problem, because you're supposed to complete it within a certain time frame. He got an extension, of course, but it was like minutes after he got back from deployment until we found ourselves in full PCS mode, and he didn't get much done.

He had to make up for lost time once we arrived in Ohio, and I've been an SOS widow ever since. He had his last test scheduled for today. Woo-hoo! Yay! Yippee! HALLELUJAH!

"Oh, we don't test on Fridays afternoons anymore ... didn't you get my email?"


He then went to work and found an email from a CMSgt (aka Chief Master Sergeant) who was chewing him out for a lousy EPR that a MSgt John _____ had turned in. (My) John bothered with the courtesy of replying that he had the wrong John -- something none of the other Johns seem to do -- and that next time he might want to at least double check the rank of the recipient.

There is a reason neither of my sons are named after their father, despite John being a family name on both sides of the family as well. If we ever had another baby WHICH WE AREN'T we have joked about what a perfect name Sven would be for a boy. Besides Sven being an awesome name, surely there can't be many others out there, you think?

However many there are, John is thinking he needs to join their ranks. At least that way, if we did have an accidental fourth in the future (something my family seems to be way too good at, so I know enough to say Never Say Never) we could name him after his dad, after all.


the dragonfly said...

I know exactly what you mean. Before I was married I had a very common name. There were thirteen people with my name in the county I lived least that many; that's how many had library cards. I always talked about how it would be wonderful to get married and have an "exciting" last name.

I married someone with a name as common as my own.


Anonymous said...

I think Sven is a perfectly acceptable name. I also like Lars...there aren't enough Lars guys around these days.

Wonderful World of Weiners said...

Love your blog! WIll be back to check it out.

Btw, my 18 year enlisted in the Air Force this year and has been @ Lackland AFB since August.