I'm not going to reveal my maiden name or my married name. But I'll tell you that my maiden name is a German name, although my roots are Polish. I know several people with the same last name, although their roots are Hungarian. And then there are those with the same last name, whose roots are actually German.
My married name is a Hebrew name and my husband likes to joke and say that the name was shortened from ____ovitch -- he was born Ashkenazi, but they shortened the last name and he became Sefardic. I will say that through marriage I share the same family name as some big Hollywood producer. Are we related through marriage? Don't know, but if he has a job for me as a writer or even as a studio gofer, then yeah, okay, we're related...
Are you like me? If you travel, or even if you don't travel but just check out phone numbers online, do you look for your own name in a foreign phone book? Don't know what attracts someone to do that, but I do know it is a common curious habit of people. Perhaps it's just natural curiosity, perhaps it's somewhat of a power trip to know that there are more of you in the world.
In the same respect, a few years ago someone told me that she GOOGLEd my name; at the time, I wasn't as Internet literate as I am today, especially because I was an ASK JEEVES junkie. I had no clue what GOOGLE was or what she'd meant when she said she'd GOOGLEd me. When she explained that she inputted my name and saw items that came up, I had to see for myself. Wow, I was famous. I was actually listed and some genealogical correspondence I'd had with someone was linked to the listing, as were reader tips I'd sent in to a magazine, as was a contest suggestion.
Over time, my egotistical self learned to GOOGLE combinations of my name; name and maiden name; name and married name; name and maiden name + married name; name of my blog. Suddenly I'm "computer famous," I realize. I'm listed under all those name combinations.
So I figure that I soon I won't be checking my name out in phone books any longer. GOOGLE meets my needs just fine...for now. One day, perhaps, I can work my way into a Who's Who In... book. But how will I list my name for that entry: given and maiden name; given and maiden and married name; or given and married name?
Guess it's all relative...