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A Rose, by any other name . . . . would smell as sweet!Gairik BanerjeeReich Von Habsburg-Rothschild
     
     Русский      
Gairik's Nicknames

I was born to a natively 'Bengalee'-speaking, Upper-Middle Class Hindu Brahmin family, with roots in Northern India, and in Calcutta (now Kolkata), the main city and commercial and industrial capital of the Eastern part of the Indian Subcontinent.  In this culture, it was, and is, normal for children to be given a formal first name, but also one, and sometimes more, informal nickname(s). 

So, while I was named "Gairik" formally, I was also referred to as "Jishnu", in the diminutive, by my parents and elders and much of my extended family.  But in School, and on all official documents, I was "Gairik Banerjee". 

I grew up in a family whose employment roles had / has a fairly large number of servants and domestic staff.  To them, I was 'Baba' as a small boy, 'Bor'da' (translates as 'big brother') as an older boy, and 'Sahib' or 'Sa'ab' (translates as 'sir') when I grew up. 

From a young age, happenstance, I became friends with a number of children (generally about my own age) who hailed from Muslim families.  For reasons that would be hard to explain here and now, my muslim buddies liked to call me, Zarak, Aurangzeb or just Pathan.  These names stuck, and they still call me by them when we connect. 

When I moved to the US, I went through some special life-/growth-experiences, and it led me to Jesus Christ and the Church, and I underwent my Conversion Experience and Baptism, formally becoming a Christian.  Later, I was married, to a beautiful and intelligent (and highly educated) blonde and blue-eyed Southern Belle, a porcelain princess from a very good, typically Southern, conservative, hunting-and-fishing, Republican, business-owning family, old school landed gentry.  I was the only son-in-law, and only foreigner to marry into that family.  Then, I had multiple circles of people I had to closely and daily interact with -- University, Work and Family.  For some reason, 'Gairik' was hard for my new American family, friends and colleagues to pronounce.  'Gary' was easier for them, by common consensus and popular demand.  And I was eager to ingratiate and integrate culturally into my new cultural eco-system.  So Gary I became. 

Much later, when I started to travel to the Slavic lands, Ukraine in particular, doing some work for the United States Government, I found people in Ukraine had difficulty pronouncing the hard 'G' in 'Gairik'.  It came out as 'Harrik', sort of.  And I am happy to be called that. 

So, as you can see -- I have been called a great many names, at different times and places.  And I really haven't cared much one way or the other about all this name-calling! "Whatever you call me, I have been called worse!", I used to say.  What's in a name, after all!  I mean, a rose by any other name, would surely smell as sweet! 

Well, the Bible doesn't see it that way.  Names were very important to the ancient Abrahamic races, integral to a man's identity.  In fact, names were considered to have divine implications.  A part of Jewish prayer consisted of learning and reciting the many names of God, I believe. 

So, what do I like to be called?  -- Why, Gairk of course! 

 
 
 
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