Sunday, March 20, 2011

Baby Name Hall of Fame

To show his gratitude for the social media website that played such an important role in the organization of the protests in Tahrir Square, a young Egyptian man decided to name his baby "Facebook".

One of Egypt's most popular newspapers, Al-Ahram, covered the story and wrote the following:
"A young man in his twenties wanted to express his gratitude about the victories the youth of 25th of January have achieved and chose to express it in the form of naming his firstborn girl 'Facebook' Jamal Ibrahim (his name).

The girl's family, friends, and neighbors in the Ibrahimya region gathered around the new born to express their continuing support for the revolution that started on Facebook."
Photo Credit: Dina at a protest downtown Toronto

There are more Facebook users in Egypt than any other country in Middle East/North Africa region. Facebook has also reported a big increase in the number of Egyptian users in the past 2 months with 32,000 groups and 14,000 pages created within 2 weeks after January 25th.

Yes, I can see how naming your child Facebook can be a bit much, but take into consideration the story behind it. I mean, her name sparked a revolution that will be talked about for generations to come... I was named after my mom's favourite character in a book. Clearly my story pales in comparison to baby Facebook's. Also, I have heard of baby names far worse -and much less meaningful- than Facebook.

Take Rusty Real from D'Iberville, Mississippi for example. He thought it would be a grand old idea to name his son "ESPN Montana Real" after the sports channel and the football player, respectively. This poor little guy is destined to be a meathead. The article does state that it is pronounced "Espen"... but there's not getting around the fact you named your child after a sports channel. What's worse is that he is not the only one!

"What's sad is that Rusty is not alone: at least three other parents- who, we must assume are all dads with the IQs equal to a head of lettuce- have christened their kids after the sports network." -Source

So remember kids, coming from someone who resented her name for the better part of her life, it could be worse!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

1 is the Loneliest Number

Forget Nemo, someone needs to find this whale a friend! It has been tracked since 1992 and been labeled the loneliest whale in the world. Nicknamed "the 52 Hertz whale", it sings at a frequency of 51.75 Hz whereas others of it's kind sing at 15 - 25 Hz. To make a long story short, no one else can hear it; the frequency is completely different.

To make matters worse, it does not travel along migration routes of any baleen whale species. There is no opportunity for other whales to run into it along migration paths. For almost 2 decades the NOAA has been using "classified array of hydrophones employed by the Navy to monitor enemy submarines" to listen to it's desperate cries for attention trying to find a mate, friends, or anyone/thing that will listen. This simply breaks my heart.

"The best guess of researchers is that this lonely whale is either a 'deformed' hybrid between 2 species of whale, or the last surviving member of an unknown species." - Impact Lab

According to The New York Times article, the whale calls out at the regularity of a metronome. Now that is persistence. However, over time the notes have become to get a bit deeper and some feel it may be linked to sadness and despair. I hope that one day this whale bumps into another because everyone needs a friend! Even whales that sing their own tune :)


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