It was William Shakespeare who wondered What’s in a name ? I don’t think i ever gave much importance to which name people called me with. Be it my real name or a catchy nick; if you called upon me, i would respond and be quick. But it was an early September, as far as i remember, that i left my home country some five years back. I came here to learn, in a small community college my path began. I was young and with no skill, but i still had to pay the bill. I worked at McDonald’s, BK, gas stations, and as a tech consultant too.
There I saw Arabs with many a background, whom to their names were no longer bound: Mohammed became Moe, Hosam became Sam, and he was called Al instead of A’laa’. My name was too Arab i was told. My tags were always printed with a shortened americanized version of my name. “We don’t want to scare people off, or else our goods will never be sold”
Then it started to annoy me, when will i be called by my name. My real name. Two years later, i learned, grew older, and to a big diverse university i set my path. People were more than happy to pronounce my name. Two semesters later, i had my first internship at a big reputable company. Across my desk, there stood a tag, it had my full name with the Abu’s and the Al-s. That was the end, and i never looked back. My name was my name, and i had it back.
So what’s in a name ? I’ll let you answer that.