Monday, May 23, 2005

It's All Relative

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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...

A Whole New World

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I can show you the world
shining shimmering splendid
Tell me princess now when did you last let your heart decide?
I can open your eyes
Take you wonder by wonder
Over sideways and under
On a magic carpet ride.

A whole new world
A new fantastic point of view
No one to tell us no
Or where to go
Or say we're only dreaming
A whole new world
A dazzing place
I never knew
But now from way up here
It's crystal clear
That now I'm in a
whole new world with you.
Unbelievable sights
Indescribable feeling
Soaring tumbling free wheeling
Through an endless diamond sky.

A whole new world
A hundred thousand things to see
I'm like a shooting star
I've come so far
I can't go back
to where I used to be.
A whole new world
With new horizons to pursue
I'll chase them anywhere
There's time to spare
Let me share this whole new world with you.
A whole new world
That's where we'll be
A thrilling chase
A wondrous place
For you and me.

When I married, "A Whole New World," the theme song from the movie Aladdin was to be "our" song. Because I had a mixed crowd at my wedding, we were only going to have mixed dancing after the meal and after bensching when a lot of people disappear.

When we spoke to the bandleader, we told him that he could not have a female singer, and so he told us that he wasn't certain our choice song would work. So he asked for any other songs we might want.

The wedding was beautiful and very "leibedik" with LOTS of shtick being performed for hubby and I. And the speeches were very nice -- of course, I felt the need to speak and used lots of publishing and book analogies to describe my husband and our "courtship."

The evening was nearing its end, the eating and bensching had been done...and it was time for our song....

Well, turns out our song was not to be and second choice won out: "It Had To Be You."

Well, eleven and a half years later, it still is "him" and every day of our marriage is "a whole new world."


Everyone has a fantasy world of their own. My fantasy world includes a lot of singing. In my world, my wedding would have seen me at a piano in the middle of the dance floor, spotlight on me and me playing and singing -- serenading, really -- to my husband Stevie Wonder's "Ribbon in the Sky." The lyrics are beautiful, the music is beautiful.
Oh, well, some fantasies are better left as fantasies...