Tag Archives: John the Baptist

A Voice Crying in The Wilderness

I did the original draft of this post close to two weeks ago, but decided to hold off posting it for reasons that will become clear as we go through the new version below. I want to dedicate this post to those former high school classmates who were on my Facebook “friends” list with whom I have had an interesting exchange of comments in the last week. I’m not going to name names. There is no need for that because the relevant parties will know who I am talking about, if they happen to read this.

 

The whole thing started over a week ago when one of my friends called me Bernard instead of Bernhard. You would think that someone that I went to school with for six years and whose brother I considered my best friend would know my name. At least he did not call me Bernie, which is the name that most people called me back in high school. That is the name I absolutely hate. Even my mother really disliked people calling me Bernie. She often asked me why I put up with it. I explained that I had tried to get people to call me Bernhard when we first moved to Willow Grove, PA, and I started attending North Willow Grove elementary school. That was an exercise in futility. Back in those days I did not enjoy banging my head against the brick wall, so I gave up and resigned myself to being Bernie. I also swore to myself that the first chance I got I would change my name to something people would have a hard time screwing up.

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A Voice Crying In The Wilderness

My legal first name is not John. What my real first name is not\r\nimportant unless you are with the government ot my bank. Those are the only two places I use my legal name. I’ve been John so long I don’t even answer to my legal first name anymore. What I want to talk about here is how I bcame John and why I’ve used that name for almost forty\r\nyears now.

When I was in third grade, my family moved from one suburb of Philadelphia to another suburb. That meant a change in schools. In my old school people used my full first name – a Germanic name – not a shortened version of it. No one teased me about my name or my accent or because I was an immigrant. Continue reading A Voice Crying In The Wilderness