Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Last Name: Human

Underneath a dock lived a family of ducks. The Duck family; Mama, Papa and the little ones. They even had a wooden plaque attached to the head of the dock above them that read "The Ducks." Some of their famous distant relatives included Donald Duck, Daffy Duck and Darkwing Duck. Now, of course this is all nonsense. Ducks don't have personalities or work in show business. They don't rationalize or love or commit evil actions. They just quack and swim around ponds. They don't even have names. It's only the anthropomorphized ducks that receive names from their human creators.

But it is a strange thing, why all of the ducks through history were given last names that matched their species group.

I'm sure some of you dear readers quickly noticed my cheat though. Darkwing Duck wasn't his real name, just his superhero alias. His real name was Drake Mallard. Somehow, it sounds clever. But it isn't any better than "Duck". I've never met anyone named Mallard. It sounds like it could be a name, but it's just a type of duck. And why?

I've never met anyone named Duck either. Why do the cartoon animals always get the last name of what they are? There have been a few exceptions: Pepe LePew (not Pepe Skunk), Winnie the Pooh, Scooby Doo, and that's all I can recall at the moment. Were the cartoon writers so lazy and uninspired that they couldn't think of anything better than "Tweety Bird," "Woody Woodpecker" and "Porky Pig"? I know cartoons are for kids and everything, but sometimes these characters don't have a first or last name at all, just the animal they are (Roadrunner...). And their first names are usually just adjectives that describe their species. Yeah, all birds are tweety. All pigs are porky. Why make this common trait their unique name? What about Pat Swinburne. That sounds "piggy" still, and could be the name of a real person too. I guess "Bird" might be okay. But had there never been a Larry Bird, I might not be so agreeable.

It makes me wonder how long it took them to get Pepe LePew. They probably went out for drinks after that one. "Pepe is actually a real name guys! How neat is that!" ("neat" was a slang word used in the 40s'. Similar to "tight" or "dope" in contemporary parlance.)

Have you ever heard of a human being named after itself? Donald Human. Mickey Man. No, that would be ridiculous. I suppose it's possible that there might be someone named Hugh Mann. But I've never met him. If an animal ever creates a cartoon of us (Planet of the Apes style), the main character should definitely be Hugh Mann. Or maybe something like Uprighty Sapien, Harry Notsomuch or Primo Bipeder.

** I wanted to be sure I wasn't the first person in the world to think up "Hugh Mann," so I googled it. Some dude has it, and he makes music and is kinda creepy. Not bad though: http://www.iamhughmann.com 


tutatarabuela said...

i went to school with a kid who had the last name 'duckworth'. also, my eighth grade science teacher was mr. mallard.

dylanclub said...

haha, duckworth is one of the best names. but i'm not sure i believe that your science teacher was mr. mallard...

Demian said...

ask susie about her brother's name. you might have to revise this.