Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Call a Rose by Any Name, It Might As Well be Sweet...

I'm lucky to be born as a girl. Had I been a boy, my parents would have named me Michaelangelo. Yep, Michaelangelo the artist. When my mother was pregnant of me she was fascinated with this book and movie called The Agony and the Ecstasy. They're about Michaelangelo's tragic life. The artist was as talented and dedicated as Leonardo da Vinci, although not as materialistic. Hence he lived in poverty.

Or perhaps I am not lucky at all. For my parents decided to name me Primadonna Angela. A name that has caused many whistles and comments. Usually it goes on like this. I wait for my name to be called. It could be, on my first day at school or on campus. Or when I took job interviews. They say my name out loud. (usually they cannot pronounce the name "Angela" correctly) Then many heads turn to my direction. At least one person would say something.

Some question it...
A highschool classmate: Is that your real name?

A guy I just met: You must have given me a false name. I know that you're lying!

My ex: (chuckling) Your name doesn't sound Javanese or even Palembangnese.
Few like it...
A penpal from Philippines: You have the name and face that could launch thousands of ships. I think I will name my future daughter Primadonna Angela.
...for different reasons.
Higa Nina, my shin yu, a Japanese: You have international name like my name, Nina! Can I call you Tenshi, Angelachan?
My name has a deep meaning, or so my parents said. Angela comes from Michaelangelo. And the fact that they hoped their daughter to have angelic qualities. (My mother once thought of naming me Contessina after Michaelangelo's significant other but she decided against it. Good call. I think Primadonna Contessina is weirder.) Prima because I was firstborn. Donna means Lady. It was also the title of a song that my father's band played when he was still in university. So Primadonna Angela means, firstborn lady who has angelic qualities. My highschool senior once summed it up with his in-depth analysis...
Dino Turino Setiawan: Your name's bombastic.
The combination of that and my look also seem to confuse some people.
Mark Sammaritani, an Italian: Do you have any Italian blood? Your name is pure Italian. (after taking a look at my picture) You even look Italian.

Jayashankar, an Indian: Your name is so Western. But I know you've got Indian blood in you.

Ben Francis, an Australian: You look like my good friend from China. You have Chinese blood, I presume?
So what's the meaning of your name? Does it also arise questions?

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