Let’s hope these nicknames are none of yours
Monday, January 4, 2010 Leave a comment
Originally published May 12, 2009.
You could call this semester a number of things: too long, for one, but also frustrating, boring, hazy, or maybe fulfilling. Plenty of momentous things happened, too. 2009 so far has meant Obama’s first 100 days in office, the election of the first openly gay head-of-government (she’s Iceland’s prime minister; Her name contains too many non-standard characters to successfully write here), Alex Rodriguez and Manny Ramirez allegedly using or testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs, and Arlen Specter walking across the aisle (not to be confused with producer Phil Spector, who was finally found guilty of murdering Lana Clarkson).
With so many famous figures and so little space to talk about them, it would be difficult to name them all and link them to their much-discussed exploits. Likely you’ve heard their names being thrown around on campus at one point or another.
It seems to me some are so well-known that they deserve to become slang — nicknames or titles to fully express how impressive or appalling someone’s actions have been.
So, for your convenience, here’s a brief guide to all of the up-and-coming titles soon to grace your spring 2009 Facebook memes.
If you managed to take the helm during a group presentation due to other members forgetting two of the most crucial parts of your presentation and successfully land the presentation with a conclusion that wasn’t your original thesis but got everyone out of the presentation alive and unharmed (and maybe even an A), you may have earned the title of “Chesley ‘Sully’ Sullenberger.”
If you come from a long tradition of U of I alumni entering into a particular field, you may have been thinking that your familial connections would be enough to get you in good with the employer of your choice instead of going through the standard application and interview processes as most other graduating seniors.
Regardless of whether you have the conscience to back out of using such distasteful celebrity status at the last moment, you’ll likely have already established yourself as a “Caroline Kennedy.”
For those of you who decided to quit your fairly successful college career in order to grow a spectacular lumberjack beard and pursue your dream of becoming a rapper, the people who knew you probably think of you as “Joaquin Phoenix” now.
People might have attributed the nickname “Betty Brown” to you if you’ve recently ranted that Americans should change their last names so that “Americans” (white Texans, of course) can pronounce them more easily.
And while we’re thinking about Texas, if you’ve made the claim that you can secede from the United States at any time, your friends are probably calling you “Rick Perry” behind your back.
If you’ve made a big fuss that your views on gay marriage kept you from getting that coveted exec board position in your RSO, other members may have started calling you “Carrie Prejean.”
All the people who got so drunk at Kam’s that they couldn’t remember where they left their phones, keys, or i-cards, couldn’t recall the name of the bar or even that they vomited all over another patron? These are the “Lady Gagas” of Champaign-Urbana.
And, if you’ve constantly boasted about your magnificent spring break cruise that may have included a guest appearance by T-Pain, you may be going by “Andy Samberg” these days, especially if you happened to be flipping burgers while your friends were at Kinko’s straight flipping copies.
Aside from all of these, here’s hoping that nothing you’ve done this semester has garnered you any of the following references: “Rush Limbaugh,” “Norm Coleman,” “Levi Johnston,” “Timothy Geithner,” “Rick Wagoner” and “Roland Burris.” And if you’ve done anything to achieve status among your peers as “Blago” or “Octomom,” we’ll certainly be reflecting on your “claims to fame” come the end of next semester.
Chelsea is a senior in English and creative writing.