Here are some responses to my last column...
Brent B. writes: There is only one cool football name. Walter Payton. The man personified class, work ethic and common sense for the 13 years he played football. Like the man said, when you are in the end zone, act like you have been there before. And he did do a rap record with William "Refrigerator."
Darren in Minn.: You forgot the GREATEST football name of all time: Bronislau "Bronko" Nagurski. Not only that, he is arguably the greatest football player of all time. I remember the first time I saw a picture of him. I said, "So, what? He looks like any other football player... What? He's NOT wearing pads? Wow."
Alex in Hudson, Ohio: My Grrr is people on cell phones while riding bicycles. I spend a lot of time riding my bike on multi-use (hiking, biking and sometimes equine) trails, and it never ceases to amaze me that there are so many jerks riding on the narrow paths, one hand on the handlebars, talking on the phone, barely in control, swerving all over the usually crowded trail. I see AT LEAST 2 or 3 of these people for every 20 miles I ride … seriously -- what kind of people go to a National Park to hear obliviots on their phones, and have these idiots almost crash into you? I just have to shake my head….
Nick in Minn.: To David M. in Columbus, Ohio -- Are you serious? First you are charging $6 on your VISA, now you’re all worried about them not looking at your ID? Are you going to stop shopping at Target, the grocery store, the gas station? Do you think even when they check the signature they are really looking at it? I’m glad it made your day to threaten to sue McDonalds. You really need a hobby if you have nothing better to do!
Kim M in Houston, Texas: Thank you so much for pointing out all the cool football names! I have noticed more and more great names in the last few years. You missed a couple of my favorites:
Mack Strong – RB for Seattle. If I was going to have a son and groom him to be a big, hulking NFL running back, I could not go wrong with Mack Strong.
Rob Petitti – 327 lb. OT for Dallas. If I my son had to be named Petitti, hopefully he would end up an OT!
Major Applewhite – QB for Texas. Well, I have no idea what happened to him, but what a great football name!
Ryan Longwell – K for Minnesota. Absolutely perfect name for a kicker.
Roy Williams – S for Dallas. OK, maybe Roy Williams could easily indicate a doctor or accountant or anything else, but here in Texas, the name has become synonymous for hard hitter, i.e., “he can hit like Roy Williams!” And you know how we like our football in Texas … I love your column.
Laura W. writes: I spent the majority of my pregnancy telling my mother I was going to name my baby Plaxico (after Plaxico Burress). Good thing I had a girl.
Michael F. writes: Some cool names you may or may not have overlooked: Alge Crumpler -- Tight End, San Diego (crumpler - n. (KRUMP-ler) - one who crumples defenders) Julius Jones -- Runningback, Dallas (sounds like a juice drink) Visanthe Shiancoe -- or "Shank" as his teammates know him -- Tight End, Special Teams, New York Giants (anyone with a nickname synonymous with a jailhouse shower murder deserves a mention, I think).
Mike M.: You forgot Brett Farve-ra, Favre or however you say it. You better tone it down or Jane Skinner, whose hubby is the new NFL chief, will send two linebackers and a tight end to tackle ya. Oh, yeah and I'm Mike Mckenzie -- NO Saints.
Julie from Tennessee: My GRRR with these names that are out of the ordinary aren't the names themselves but the pronunciation. There were several names in your column that I have no idea how to pronounce and often people with these names get very offended if you don't know the proper pronunciation. I'm sorry, but Laveranues and Na'il don't roll smoothly off the tongue. Several years ago I worked with children and many of them had these odd names. One time the name on the chart was spelled deliverytruck (delivery truck) but it was pronounced completely different. The mother was very offended at my pronunciation and got angry. But lady, if you don't want people to call your kid delivery truck, then don't spell his name that way.
Gary in Voorhees, N.J.: Here's my Grrr. Esquire magazine included Britney Spears' 11-month-old baby on its "Worst Dressed" list! Come on, like an infant is making sartorial decisions! Britney-bashing has gone too far when her poor child is dragged into it for mom's fashion sense. Anyway, been to a mall lately? It's not just Britney with poor taste in baby clothes. She and her son are just easy targets. I'm not a big Spears fan (my daughter likes her a lot), but the media should lay off, and Esquire should be ashamed of itself. Was there no better candidate for the space?
And to the lame-brain who wrote about demanding a refund in the fast food place because they never checked his identity, time to join the 21st century, pal. Most establishments don't look at the signature on the back of the credit card, let alone ask for a driver's license. Your reaction was way out of line, and this young manager must have thought you were nuts. You're every retail worker's nightmare customer. While some semblance of security at the register would be nice, it's just not going to happen most of the time. Save your fight for rude service, or cold food, or a finger in your fries or something else meriting the effort and rise in your blood pressure.
Evan B. writes: I am sick and tired of hearing about Michael Jackson. Ever time I turn around there's something else in the news about him. We all know what he is. Why can't the press just let him die and go away? Nobody cares anymore about him or his family problems.
Chris in Miss.: Saturday, my wife and I went to the mall to do some pretty serious shopping. In the three and a half hours we were there, we were asked at least 10 times if we would like to save 10 percent on our purchases that day by applying for a ____ credit card. They don't mention that the interest rates on these cards are 20 percent or greater. In the past, I would only be asked at the checkout. Now they have people roaming the store with applications in their hand. One lady begged me to fill one out for her so they wouldn't make her sweep the floor. You've got to be kidding me. I understand that the clerks are given quotas and/or bonuses if they sell these, but this is getting ridiculous. I wasn't able to enjoy shopping (which is hard to begin with) because I was constantly being hounded. One store would even come on the intercom every time an employee sold a card and say the employee was a hero for saving the customer 10 percent. Hero ... for putting someone further in debt ... I don't think so. Please Mike, make it stop!
Al DeJ. writes: Keep your East Coast New York cr-p to yourself.