Could Have Been Jorma




“genesis” Jorma Kaukonen

It’s harder to pick out a name for a child than it is to pick out a name for a dog.

You don’t want to make a mistake with naming a child.

You don’t worry so much with a dog.

If you named your dog something like Mr. Mephistopheles….and later regretted it…you would know that it probably wouldn’t scar the dog for his comparatively short life that you’d saddled him with a strange identifier.

And….if it did scar him….who would know?

Except for the possible anti-social behavior that being name Mr. Mephistopheles might generate, a dog can’t let you know if he approves or disapproves of a wacky name.

A dog just rolls with it.

This isn’t about dogs, though.

When our third child was getting ready to be born…and we were scrambling for a good name….I said “how about Amos?”


My wife, who I hadn’t really played much of his music for, but who must have internalized something….somehow….said, “Ahhhhh, I like that! How about ‘Amos Lee’?”

“Hah! Like the singer! How’d she know that? What a coincidence that she knew that! Amos Lee!! We’ve got it now!!” I thought to myself.

My daughter said, “The kids will turn it into ‘Anus’ ”


So….that shot that down.

The random chance of being called “Anus” by some creatively cruel miscreant (miscreant….that’s funny…to me) was enough to stop that ball from rolling.

“OK….How about ‘Jorma’?”

“Who’s that?”

I told her he was the great guitarist “Jorma Kaukonen”….one of the few I knew who had a fairly Scandinavian sounding name.

“Jorma” might have been in the running, too, but later Jenny’s mom said that it sounded like “Jurgen”….Jurgen Van Der Sloot…so that was shot down.

“So….how about Adolph?”

(I’m kidding….I never said that….that would be weird…)

So….the name we finally arrived at was different from all those other suggestions.

I can’t imagine our son being anything other than “Nate” now.

What’s a name anyway?

It’s just some handle that people can grab you with when it’s time to come in and eat.

It’s just something that makes it easier when someone says, “Here comes __________ (fill in the blank)”.

It would slow things down a lot if we didn’t have names.

Nate’s name could have been anything.

Heck…it could have been “Mr. Mephistopheles” if I didn’t have people around me to monitor my activities.

It’s a good thing that Jenny was there when he was born.

Mr. Mephistopheles would have been a bad name for a little boy.

“sweet pea” Amos Lee


About Peter Rorvig

I'm a non-practicing artist, a mailman, a husband, a father...not listed in order of importance. I believe that things can always get better....and that things are usually better than we think.


Could Have Been Jorma — 2 Comments