Friday, January 22, 2010

No More Williams

I think my grandmother has called my house maybe twice since we've lived here. And called my residence maybe five times total since I moved out of my parents house when I was seventeen. She doesn't call is my point so imagine my surprise when her name showed up on my caller id early Thursday morning.

I was sure one of them was dead. This isn't as morbid as you might think--they are in their eighties--and why else would some one call at 8 on a Thursday (that IS TOO EARLY WHEN IT IS MY ONLY SLEEP IN DAY)? So I answered and got this "Childhood-nickname-I-don't-use-but-she-is-my-Grammy-so-she-can? I have a genealogy EMERGENCY!"

Some one has been watching CNN (round the clock!) and noticed the commercials. They were taunting her genealogy-obsessed self, she who gathered her information the old fashioned way--in libraries by bringing muffins to researchers and pouring over old records and stalking strangers over the phone. "Honey! Can you use the internet?!"

For the record my grandfather uses the internet, well AOL which when you are 85 counts.

So y'all I am on trying to find out information about relatives from Quebec. I am going to blow her mind because I have digital copies of draft cards and photos from other people who are researching the same ancestors.

This internet thing. It just might catch on.

The single best thing about the project, besides making an old lady happy (which I never do really since I refuse to move home to Iowa and dress my baby as a cupcake), is the names. I have a semi-obsession with names and since I have one child and am not dispositionally equipped to have a liter my obsessive is silly. I could totally name a liter though! I will talk about your choices endlessly if you are pregnant! EMAIL ME.

Anyway the names are fabulous. Triphena. Alphronsia. Many many more Virgils than you would expect. Some very heavy German ones, naturally, though those got lightened up a bit in Ellis Island I think.

I did tell J should we ever have another child he shall not be called William. There are 84000 of those already in the family and it is annoying to try to sort out who is who.

Also, FILL OUT YOUR CENSUS CAREFULLY. I know that most of the ones I am looking at were written by census workers since a lot of these people were probably illiterate (and not so much with the faboo English) but Fraggle on a cracker! Names are spelled willy nilly. Ages are unlikely and yet these are clearly the right people. Take your time and print carefully. Your future great great great great great granddaughter thanks you since your great great great granddaughter still thinks that the internet is powered by hamsters.

Also, please do not name your kids names that are so similar. No need for Emma, Emily, Harry, Harvey, Henry. And no more Williams. Even though I love it.

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