Monday, April 07, 2008

Who Should I Be?

I need a name for my column over at Smile Politely. I’ve been struggling to come up with something, because it strikes at the very heart of my self-identity issues right now. Who am I? Who do I want to be? What should I be writing about? All wrapped up into a column name.

It would be easy to keep "Minor Mennonite" but I’m growing increasingly uncomfortable with that as a label. I feel more and more like a heretic these days, and that continuing with a primarily Mennonite identity lacks . . . something. Integrity? Honesty? Veracity? I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it feels less right these days.

What I mostly do in my blog/column writing is complain about politics, or the decadence of American culture or the frequent inanity of contemporary Christianity. It's hard to summarize in a 3 word title.

So, here are some ideas:

  • The Loyal Opposition (my current favorite)
  • The Irascible Gadfly (nominated by Eric)
  • The Stay At Home Critic (vetoed by Jill)
  • The Dissenting Patriot (nominated by Ellyn)
  • The Radical Conformist
  • The Conformist Radical
  • Christian But Not… (fill in the blank: Not in the Way You Might Think, Not According to the Council of Nicea, Not Angry About The Wrong Things, Not Stupid And Mean)
  • Mennonite But Not Christian (this would really piss off serious Mennonites)
  • unitarian and universalist, but not Unitarian-Universalist
  • Drunk, Fat and Stupid (homage to Animal House, although I’m not usually any of these. However, wouldn’t this make a great column name for some sophomore college student?)
  • Ideological Love Weenie (still my favorite search string that was used by someone to reach this blog.)
  • The Raving Moderate

I wish I were Jewish. Then I’d have two great choices:

  • The Unorthodox Jew
  • The Wandering Jew

    Or, maybe I should just give it up and sell off my column name to the highest bidder:

  • The Exxon-Mobil Justice Report
  • The Blackwater Peace Advocate

  • The Angry Serta Mattress Correspondent

    So, please chime in with any ideas and suggestions. Or, more pathetically, please tell me who I am.

    Tim said...

    The Raving Moderate ??? You're about as moderate as Bill O'reilly.

    How about The Middle Child? When you're really pissed off you can alter it to The Middle Finger.

    brownie said...

    How about...

    The Camel's Toe


    brownie said...


    The Conscientious Objector...

    don't know about the spelling.

    Dan S said...

    As moderate as Bill O'Reilly? Gee, thanks.

    The Camel's Toe? That sounds gross.

    I like The Conscientious Objector though.

    Crockhead said...

    "The Loyal Opposition" is a worn out cliche. (Oh, how about "The Worn Out Cliche" and try to use at least one cliche in every column.) "The Conscientious Objector" has possibilities but it sounds like you're only going to be writing about military service. How about "Schreiber's Scribblings?" Or "Dan's Denunciations?"

    Fingtree said...

    I'm partial to the Middle Child, being one myself. How about: "Scribing Schreiber"

    Anonymous said...

    "Tryin' real hard to be a shepherd"

    (as long as film quotes are on the table)

    "Conscientious Objector" really is a nice fit, though...

    Dan S said...

    Crockhead, if I eliminate cliches, I've got nothin. I'll be relegated to standing around like a deaf mute.

    I don't know that I'd read a column called The Middle Child. It sounds like it would be about reconciliation and giving in for the greater good, and be really boring.

    I like the Pulp Fiction quote. That would make a nice ironic tag line to Conscientious Objector. Unfortunately, it is too long.

    I agree though that Conscientious Objector is a bit too specific. Maybe play with it, and be The Usually Conscious Objector. Or, just the Conscious Objector (and deal with people telling me I spelled Conscientious wrong).

    Or, maybe even just The Objector, and then trick someone at SourceGear into creating a comic book alterego for me. What superpowers would The Objector have?

    PG said...

    All suggestions to date suck. Maybe The Middle Child isn't so bad.

    Camel's Toe is a euphemism for a hooha, you know.

    How about:

    Poker Tips for the Apocalypse

    Your Name Here

    Christian Atheism Cult

    Dan da lion whines (kidding)

    Soul Ball

    Soul Prom

    Dancing with Mennonites

    OK, those all suck, too.

    Sorry, I don't have any identity tips for you.

    PG said...

    Unconscious Objections

    Fingtree said...

    The cognizant extrinsic

    As the world spurns

    Eyesore prophet

    Grueling Danjo


    Run DMC said...

    The Sardonic Objector?

    dw said...

    Tone Deaf Tenor
    I Object (and I'm not even a lawyer)
    Six of One
    Small Differences
    No, Really, I Quit My Job for This
    Jill's Husband
    You Do it Your Way, We'll Do it God's Way
    It Could Lead to Dancing
    The Other Hand
    What the Left Hand's Doing
    Hymns for Heretics
    Chloe Locked Me in the Basement


    jcs said...

    Tie it in to your current title?

    The Mennonite Objector -- Musings at the intersection of church and state

    Dan S said...

    Wow - lots of great and not-so-great suggestions :)

    I like Dantheism and I Quit My Job For This.

    Jill liked "Jill's Husband" but I don't think so.

    Some other crappy ideas:

    The Usual Suspect
    The Middle Man
    Stuck in the Middle
    The Left Hand
    Left Behind
    This Title Sucks

    I think The Loyal Opposition still fits best, despite it clichedness, because I'm usually loyal, and I'm usually opposed to things.

    Anonymous said...

    What superpowers would The Objector have?

    Per Eric: "Superpowers? The Objector is a minion with delusions of grandeur!"

    Fingtree said...

    Well there you have it: "Delusions of Dandeur"!! The trusty Minionite, able to read small print w/ a single noun etc..

    brownie said...

    No one got The Camel Toe.

    Shall I spell it out? Let me count the ways.

    1. The Camel's Toe is not about hooha (that is just 'Camel's Toe', a small but significant difference).
    2. In fact, a Camel has no toes (hooves).
    3. Camels live in a quite politcally disturbed region of the world (Middle East)
    4. They go on and on like the energizer bunny.
    5. They are loyal.
    6. You can sit "in the middle" of their humps.
    7. They spit nasty loogies.
    8. The more you own, the richer you are.
    9. They see above most everyone.
    10. Sand gits in all the wrong places, but you don't hear them complaining.

    Does that help?

    Dan S said...

    That's a lot of information about a Camel Toe.

    Camels may see above everyone, but their toes don't.

    Although I guess that would make sense for my perspective on the world.

    Fingtree said...

    "Although I guess that would make sense for my perspective on the world".?
    You don't even know who you should be Dan. How can we make sense of your perspective? (kidding) :)
    I'm glad Brownie cleared up the Camel's Toe. We can see where pg's mind, I got it except for #10. Humans are the only animal that complains, especially those Islamofascist sympathizer types.

    dw said...

    Being Right on the Left
    Shorts in a Bunch
    The Scriber
    Frown Politely