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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

DON’T TOUCH THAT NAME!


DON’T TOUCH THAT NAME!
 

How is it that names of landmarks, streets, and ballparks can be changed so cavalierly?  A President gets assassinated, and an airport goes from Idlewild to Kennedy.   OK, Kennedy was a beloved figure, but what about Mr. Idlewild?  I don’t know who Mr. Idlewild was and what he did, but I’ll bet there are a whole bunch of Idlewild’s who were very proud of having an airport named after Mr. Idlewild.

Couldn’t we have just waited for a new airport to honor JFK?  Why does Idlewild get demoted?  Besides, “There’s a scout troop short a child, Khrushchev’s due at JFK” just doesn’t work.*

Ballparks used to be named after the team owner.  They were named after someone that worked to make professional baseball popular; someone who took risks and someone that probably ponied up a great deal of money to build the stadium.  Along comes some corporation with a few million dollars looking for advertising space and poof the ballpark has a new name.  (BTW, if you shorted the stock of corporations that paid to put their name on a sports arena you would be a multi-millionaire… Enron, WorldCom, Continental, UAL, Conseco, etc.)

It is great to honor someone by naming a building, street, town, or even a mountain after them, but what good is that honor, if years later you just change the name and dishonor the person like so much left over meatloaf?

Hagys Ford Road is a road in Philadelphia along the Schuylkill River.  It is named after an ancient ancestor of the Cranky Old Man; a relative that operated a paper mill in that area before the Revolution.  I have never traveled on Hagys Ford Road, but if they suddenly changed the name to Obama Pike I would still be pissed…unless they changed the Schuylkill to Hagy River…that has a nice ring to it don’t you think?

I’m sure Mr. Schuylkill wouldn’t mind. 

 

*From the “Car 54 Where Are You?” Theme song…GIYP!

 

13 comments:

  1. " changed the Schuylkill to Hagy River"

    I think that would be a splendid idea, mainly because I have no idea how to pronounce "Schuylkill".

    S

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  2. Some people don't know how to pronounce Hagy. And actually I believe there are two roads named after the Hagy's: Hagy Ford and Hagy Forge.

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  3. Oooh, I Googled it and didn't find Hagy's Forge Rd. but there is a Hagys Mill Road near Valley Forge Road and the Schuylkill River.

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  4. They are doing it here too - so annoying

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  5. You might be interested in this old post. I'd definitely change some of these names if I could!!

    http://fishducky.blogspot.com/2013/03/places-id-rather-not-live-in.html

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  6. corp sponsorships flip so quickly these days, who can name their local stadiums...

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  7. But, I can pronounce Schoo-kill. Can't I?

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  8. Actually Joanne, Schuylkill is pronounced
    Ha-gee that's a hard "G".

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  9. The stadium here where the Broncos play has had a couple of name changes but everyone still calls it "Mile High" no matter how much some corporation pays for the naming rights.
    My dad named a street for me in a subdivision he developed a jillion years ago, but the name has probably been changed by now....probably to Hagy.

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  10. The street next door to the one I grew up on was called Oswald Street. After the Kennedy assassination a move was made to change the street name. But Mr. Oswald had been such a great community leader and citizen that people finally changed their minds and it's still Oswald Street to this very day.

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  11. Well, they changed the name of my childhood home town, which had been immortalized in a song by Ferlin Husky. And it's not even named after a person, but a bland geographic feature.

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  12. They keep changing the names of the pubs around here - drives me mad - no wonder I keep ending up in the wrong place when I arrange to meet people!

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  13. I know what you mean. They used to name local schools for people like principals and other administrators who were long-term employees and contributed greatly. Now that's not allowed for fear of stepping on anyone's toes. One of the parks around here was named for a former mayor, Pando Park. When it fills with water after major rains, it is called Pando Pond. Heh, heh...

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