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Naming Rights and Naming Wrongs
Lot of buzz lately about naming rights.
First, there was a woman who made the news by announcing she was auctioning the naming rights to her unborn child on eBay. I’m sorry to report the auction was yanked before I was able to get in a bid. More about that in a minute.
Then there was the news that the mayor of Indianapolis was toying with the idea of selling naming rights to streets and such as a way of generating money for repair of the infrastructure. I guess they’re already doing this in Louisville, with manhole covers brought to you by KFC.
Well, I see this stuff and can only conclude that everything - EVERYTHING - is officially for sale. We’ve gone way beyond naming rights for stadiums and bowl games. In fact, if you want to date yourself, just refer to the Rose Bowl or the Cotton Bowl or the Orange Bowl. Nowadays it’s the FedEx/Tropicana/FritoLay/Budweiser/Cadillac/Tommy Bahama/Calloway Golf/Dairy Queen/Pennzoil/Empire Carpet/Catterson Used Cars/Campbell’s Soup Bowl, being played in the friendly confines of the Dixie Chopper/Coca-Cola/US Air/Sony/Ore-Ida Stadium. And by the time the announcers get it all said, the first quarter is halfway over.
Well, if they can sell streets, I suppose it’s just a matter of time before I live on Tylenol Boulevard. That being the case, I see no reason why I can’t also sell the naming rights to my house.
First, I’d sell the overall rights - welcome to the Mike Redmond Residence, brought to you by Red Wing boots, Sears lawnmowers and Tim Horton’s. Then we could go room by room - the Time-Warner living room; the Ethan Allen Dining Room; the Whole Foods/Williams Sonoma kitchen; and the Sleep Number Bedrooms. Oh, and mustn’t forget the bathroom, brought to you by Northern Tissue, Cannon Towels, Irish Spring Soap, Bemis fixtures and Pine-Sol. Then we can go out to the Ford/Kawasaki garage, also home of the PowerTech Leverage Gym gym and the Salvation Army Thrift Store attic.
What a bonanza. I figure the naming rights to a place like mine could just about cover the phone bill.
OK, it’s a silly idea. I’ve had sillier. And no, I’m not going to tell you what they were. At the moment, I am embarrassed enough.
But at least it’s not idiotic, which is the only word I can think of for someone auctioning the naming rights to a baby, and not for a joke, either. The woman said she needed money because she and her other six kids were living off her sister’s largesse, and there weren’t any jobs that would pay enough to take care of the family.
As I said, the auction was yanked, which was kind of a bummer. I was ready with a whole bunch of name suggestions, including:
* My Moron Of A Mother Auctioned Off My Name (Nickname: Dud.)
* Beat Me Up On The Playground (Nickname: Percy.)
* Destined For A Lifetime Of Therapy (Nickname: Newhart.)
* Mike (Nickname: Steve).
And I was prepared to bid it all the way up to $23. I hope the kid is grateful.
Besides, there’ll be another chance. Idiocy like this has a way of repeating itself. Just ask the people behind the Dell/AT&T/Indian Motorcycle/Lionel Train/Ty-D-Bowl Bowl. Or, as we used to call it, the game.
© 2009 Mike Redmond. All Rights Reserved.
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