Tuesday, April 05, 2016

What’s In a Name – The Next Installment (#5)

Picture by: Michelle Reynoso
Our name, we either love it or hate it; often questioning why we're named as we are, what was the thought process, what does it symbolize, why this name over all the others? We want to know, because it provides us connection and understanding. It means something. A name can be that very first defining label in your life, connecting you to family, culture, lineage, and history. That one string of letters summarizes how our parents see us when we first arrive. Last names withstanding, first names are a conscious choice by our parents to say who they want us to be. Yes, we can change names nowadays, but do we? Most times, we don't. We stick with what we've been given. 

We get attached to our names; we like the familiarity of it, the sound of it in someone's mouth, the immediacy of knowing that someone is talking to us. And we get offended if someone messes up our name. If you're introduced as Sarah when you're Sally, it can be annoying, because this person didn't think it important enough to remember you. You are Sarah, not Sally, not Tina, Jada, or Megan. Right? I was at the coffee bar the other day, and the barista wrote my name as Michael instead of Michelle on the side of my cup. Ok? Did he think I was a man? I joked about it online, but it made me wonder how someone could get such a common name so wrong. And yet, I'm horrible with names. Go figure! I'm guilty of the same thing.

As a parent, we agonize over finding the perfect name for our new bundle-of-joy. Do we want an inspiring name, a creative one, a union of both mom and dad's name, an homage to our ancestors; what are we trying to say, what point are we trying to get across as we name our children. In writing, it's the same struggle because these characters are like our children, and the right name can either complete them or ruin them, link them to turmoil, or liberate them to greatness. 

So, here are the newest inductees to the “What’s In a Name” list of quirky and unique names: 

  • Scott Wank
  • Richard Gross
  • Timothy Child
  • Tom Mascara
  • Greg Indelicato (last name is of Italian descent; meaning tactless, indelicate, indiscreet)
  • Nada Cavigliano (nada means nothingness or nothing in Spanish)

Here are links to my previous posts in the “What's In a Name” series:

(post #2)

(post #3)

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Good Bye 2015, Hello 2016

 As the New Year fast approaches and the final hours of 2015 tick by, I find myself reflecting - marking another year, another birthday, new milestones, and new life adventures.

2015. The world changed this year; it has become a scarier place, and yet my world feels stronger, safer, happier, and full of love. I feel blessed, lucky, and happy.

2015 marked another anniversary with the most amazing man in my life, the man who has been my partner for the last 21 years, married for the last 18. This past year was a good year for us. We grew stronger together and even more in love. The upcoming year is paved with new goals, new directions, and new hopes and I look forward to another wonderful year together and many, many more to come. I am blessed to have found such an amazing person to share this life with, someone who makes my life better every day.

And to my son, who became a pre-teen this year, and makes me prouder and prouder to be his mother every day. He started testing the limits this year, started gaining some independence, which is both strangely gratifying and frustrating at the same time. I am so blessed to have that young man in my life every day.

2015 was also a year of rekindling dreams, making time for my writing and photography, strengthening skills and developing new avenues. 2016 will be a year of dream realizations.

2015 was a year of cultivation and 2016 will be a year of harvest.

I lost some special people this year; may they be in heaven now, in god’s embrace. Those losses remind me how important each day is, how important it is to prioritize correctly, tell loved ones “I love you” at every opportunity, to cherish each day, to take health seriously, to take time for me, and to value each day that is given to me.

So friends & family– I love you. I thank you for being in my life, for sharing your life with me, for making my life better and for adding immeasurable value to this crazy world we live in. Thank you.  

May 2016 endow you with health, happiness, and fulfillment. Happy New Year!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The Walking Dead - Fan Experience & What Happened on Sunday?!

Yes, I'm a Walking Dead Fan, and I have to admit my mouth dropped open on Sunday while watching the "Thank You" episode. (Spoiler Alert if you haven't watched the episode yet, details are discussed below). When a beloved character is killed-off, a main character, someone who has had a huge role in moving the story forward, it's devastating as a fan. And as a writer, those are the kinds of characters I hope to develop in my writing, so I appreciate a character like Glenn even more because of that. And now he's gone. Well, let's see, because there are so many theories circulating online about how Glenn could have survived. So maybe there's hope.

When season 6 premiered at Madison Square Garden in New York City a couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be part of the 15,000 fans that packed MSG for the event. AMC spared little expense in putting this event together, with the full cast of current actors and old favorites from the series answering questions and featuring some behind-the-scenes clips, real-life zombies walking around the entrance, and an opportunity to watch the premiere two days earlier than the actual release. All for free - they didn't charge for tickets, but gave each and every ticket away. AMC even flew in the entire crew that works on the series and gave them exclusive VIP seats - with a shout-out to them for their hard work. Nice! They deserve it!

I was snapping pictures from my phone - when we were allowed to take pictures - and here are a few from the night.

*All photographs copyright Michelle Reynoso 2015 - cannot be reproduced without written permission