We've all had the experience of thinking a person's name just doesn't fit them somehow. But how many times in your life have you felt a different name would fit you better than the one you have?
Patrick is a respectable name, albeit a bit predictable for someone raised Irish Catholic. It's easy to spell and pronounce and has the added benefit of being used enough not to be exotic, but it hasn't yet been over-used. The only two Patricks I've known personally have both been pretty cool and to my knowledge, no one with my moniker has joined the ranks of serial killers, brutal dictators, or talk radio DJs. So far, so good.
Still, at points in my life, other names have felt like a better fit:
* For years, I tried in vain to get others to call me by my confirmation name of Timothy, chosen as a tribute to my childhood best friend. Fortunately I gave up this moronic quest many years before Oklahoma City.
* When my wife and I were discussing names for our unborn child of unknown gender, naming a son seemed an ideal time to channel my re-naming fantasies. Eric or Keith topped my list when I was 39. If John, Paul, George or Richard had ever felt like they fit me better than Patrick, my son could have ended up being named after one of the Fab Four. Moot point - we had a girl.
Surely, at 64 I've fully reconciled myself to my given name, you ask? Ahem - I will not answer to Shirley but if you call me Kevin these days I might surprise you and turn around. Any name other than your own feel like a good fit for you right now?