My mother has always told me there’s no story behind my name. She just liked it. That’s what she says. Sometimes I try to come up with bizarre stories to explain why she won’t tell me the real source–a hated minor political figure of the mid-’60s, a frat boy who hit on her at a party, a jerk professor from her college days.
Whatever the inspiration, I was named Reid and grew up in a reading family: a mother with a BA in English literature, a father with an MFA in creative writing, shelves lined with books, local library trusteeships accepted, college courses taught.
And it didn’t take long before grade-school classmates cottoned on to the fact that my name was a pun. Yes, “Reid is reading!” Hahahahahahaha. And it was true. In the small town where I grew up, I once or twice walked the (very straight) sidewalk from elementary school partway home while reading a book. (I think it was a biography of Louisa May Alcott, but it might have been the one about Amelia Earhart.)
My little brother (whose juvenile taunts can be somewhat discounted by the fact that he recently earned a Ph.D. in English literature) used to accuse me of reading too much. And putting too much stock in what I read–instead of what I experienced directly.
True enough. I’m a serious reader. A professional reader. A person perhaps overly influenced by what she reads. A little analysis, and alternative perspectives offered in comments, may help me put my reading in proper context. There’s always someone–many someones–who have read more than I have, or more critically, or more carefully. I hope to hear from those people.
This blog will describe my reading (novels, nonfiction, blogs, newspapers, tweets, magazines, advertisements) and how it’s become part of my life.
Naturally enough, my first name has shaped aspects of my life, and I am incorporating it into the name of the blog. How do you think your own name has affected the course of your personal history? What, or whom, do you associate your name with?