The West's Awake by Cormac MacConnell
What's in a name?- Calling all Cormacs!
Posted on Thursday, June 23, 2011 at 09:28 AM
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- A lovely tale of island life in the paradise of West Clare
- The Boarding Out orphan was a wonderful pick
- How do the Irish regard their American visitors? With pride
There was a debate here recently about all the implications of being a Paddy or a Mick on either side of the Atlantic. It was interesting.
For what it is, worth I made certain that none of my three sons would bear that burden. Accordingly they are called Cuan and Cormac Og and Dara.
Ironically enough I also attached the nickname Scobie to Cormac Og when he was a baby. This was because he was the kind of adhesive baby that attached himself to your hip like a limpet when you picked him up.
At the time there was a top jockey called Scobie Beasley, an Australian, who had the very same riding style.
The nickname has adhered to Cormac Og like another limpet ever since, and he is now in his mid-thirties.
Nobody but nobody calls him Cormac Og, not even his lovely Basque wife! He is also commonly known as The Scobe, which suggests mobster connections of the hitman variety.
I have a lot to answer for on that front. Mea maxima culpa.
So what's in a name?
I've always been very comfortable with mine. At the time Sandy and Mary applied it to me it was extremely rare in Ulster.
The registrar of births even misspelled it as Cormack on my birth certificate. It was so rare I was nearly 20 before I met another Cormac in Enniskillen one Saturday.
A very pretty girl called out the name on the street with some affection, and I was delighted until the other Cormac (a fine big lad) appeared from behind me and enfolded her in his arms.
When the embrace was over I introduced myself, and both of us were delighted to meet another of the breed. He was from Armagh, I remember, and had never met another Cormac either.
The name is a little bit more common in the New Ireland --and I see there is another Cormac among the Irish Central bloggers -- but we are still thin on the ground.
I was surprised recently when I realized there were a lot more of us scattered out there because my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Dammit, I said, there are at least another 65 of us out there. I did not feel so lonesome any more.
So on a whim I sent messages to Cormac 67 and Cormac 10 and Cormac 22 and Cormac 33 asking them to get in touch. The only response I've received thus far is from Cormac 33.
He is Cormac McFadden, lives in Galway City, is in his early forties and went to the same school as my sons did slightly afterwards.
We talked on the phone several times since and we decided, Cormac 33 and I, that we would launch an Internet campaign to contact as many other Cormacs as we could, wherever they dwell, and form some kind of international group or clan.
Its aims have yet to be defined, naturally, but we will definitely be non-political and non-sectarian, and we will be thinking more about having a bit of craic together than anything else.
So this is the start of the campaign. If you are a Cormac, no matter where, and if you use the net, then get in touch and Cormac33 and I will take it from there.
No knowing what might develop in the future. We might even grow into some kind of super group to be feared and respected all over the globe.
Either way none of us will ever feel so alone again. Your starting point is contact with either
email@example.com or Cormac66@hotmail.com.
Under all the circumstances we have to say also that membership of this exclusive Internet clan is wide open to all those who, through no fault of their own, lost their real noble name to nicknames like Scobie or The Scobe!