Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream.
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal.

When I go from hence
let this be my parting word,
that what I have seen is unsurpassable.

Thursday, 3 July 2008

A rose by any other name? Never...!!!

I hated my name when I was a teenager. "Rajorshi" seemed long (especially when combined with my double barrel surname), out of fashion and nobody seemed to be able to pronounce it. Worst of all, most people pronounced it "Rajoshri" which is a feminine name. For a fourteen year old boy, that was the ultimate humiliation. Filling up forms used to be a headache. My name always exceeded the space available. All this made my name the biggest source of unhappiness in my otherwise peaceful teenage life. My parents, on the other hand, were delighted with it. They just could not understand what the problem was. Which was why they were shocked when I announced that I would be changing my name. I had decided on "Rishi". A shorter, more pronounceable and, in my opinion, trendier name. My parents, of course, did not agree to it. And, since I was a minor I could not change my name legally without my father's permission. I was furious. I raved and ranted and then begged but he was not moved. He advised me to wait till I was eighteen and then do what I liked with my name. But he was not going to be a part of it. I never did change my name. By the time I turned eighteen I had completely changed my views on it. I had even begun liking it. In hindsight, my father's decision was the best.

Say what you will, but I love my name now. It gives me a sense of identity like nothing else does. It is deliciously ethnic and quintessentially Bengali. And now that everything ethnic is in fashion, it seems trendy too. Surprisingly, somehow people generally have no trouble pronouncing the name anymore. So everything should be alright now. But no, I have a new problem now. Some people have started shortening my name and calling me "Raj". It annoys me to no end. This name reminds me of that atrocious Shahrukh Khan movie called DDLJ. I absolutely hate that movie and, by association, this name. "Raj" is so bland and so devoid of character that it makes me feel invisible. I think NJ was the first person to call me "Raj". Since then, a few people in office have started calling me that. Apparently, "Rajorshi" is too long for them to remember. I think it is unfair. Why should my name be mutilated just because they are too lazy to remember it? Well, I probably can't do anything about the people who already call be "Raj", but I will damn well make sure nobody else does so.


  1. your small sentences with appropriate use of words very well reflected your sentiment both agony and joy at various age levels. your english is really good .your true realisation and very frank revealation will definitely command respect of highest esteem from your readers.i wish you could be a great writer one day.

  2. Thanks baba. That means a lot to me.

  3. ..and I hope you didn't mind that :)

  4. hahahhahaha.. never knew you hate it when i call you by that name "RAJ" .LOL...........