What’s In a Name?

What’s In a Name?

This isn’t on topic, I warned you. πŸ™‚

Some people’s handles are a bit obvious like zlee, or Will Harmon (except his real name is Marvin B. Stobiersky, of course…). But I get asked, "why Bloomfield?" Well, here is the answer, but it’s a bit of a story, sorry.


How did I become Bloomfield?

It was because of Jenny Mayweather. She didn’t give me the name exactly, but it was still because of her:
She won the spelling bee.

I remember it was in seventh grade and we had a schoolwide spelling bee. I was the one of the two finalists
(even though I really didn’t spell very well at all, and don’t to this day). The other finalist was Jenny
Mayweather. Jenny grew up to be a beautiful woman and we couldn’t believe it when she married Isaac
Menachem Abrahamson, a Kletzmer musician specializing in Bar Mitzvahs. Isaac’s mother died of grief
when he married a shiksa, but Jenny gave Isaac eight children before I lost count, so on balance, I guess it’s
all right. But that is another story.

At the time of the spelling bee, of course, I hated Jenny and her damned freckles and stupid pigtails. I
couldn’t admit that she spelled better than I did. But she did win the spelling bee. The word was "scalpel". I
spelled it "skullpale". Everybody laughed. The whole school. I was so embarrassed and humiliated, worse
than the time I had worn my sister’s skirt to kindergarten, not knowing any better. I was so angry that I
vowed revenge on Jenny Mayweather. I was going to singe her stupid pigtails off with fire. And that’s how I
got my nickname, Bloomfield.

You see, they caught me sneaking back from the spelling-bee-bonfire toward Jenny with a large burning log.
It must have looked suspicious, because they scolded me and made me go home. The next day I had to go
to see the Reverend, who was going to give me a talking-to. I’ve always known that evil thoughts attract bad
things, and I was positively stewing in evil thoughts that morning as walked down the country lane toward
the Reverend’s house.

And so they got me. It felt funny, like being lifted up and falling asleep at the same time. The space aliens
abducted me to the distant world of Gor, a brutal planet with mean warriors and pliant women. (Don’t worry,
I didn’t believe it either, at first.) The brutal world of Gor was not much better than the spelling bee and I
failed miserably. I didn’t cut it as a sex-slave, and all I was fit for was food for the priest-kings. But they had
already eaten. I was packed off again on the next slave ship and returned to Earth, not really harmed but
pretty confused. And that’s how I met Bloomfield.

The Gorean slavers got the time not quite right and they dumped me a few centuries back (during the time
of Henry VIII, as I later found out). I was picked up by this very peculiar gent in black who wasn’t at all
surprised when I told him that I had been abducted by space aliens, rejected as a sex-slave, and that I
wanted to see my mother now. He couldn’t help me much, but he was friendly and wanted me to help him.
"What do you want me to help you with?" He held up one of his long fingers and stared into my eyes: "To
turn copper into gold!" Great, I thought, this keeps getting better and better.

Anyway, I wasn’t going to see my mother soon, and Bloomfield at least fed me well. Yes, that was
Bloomfield, Master William Bloomfield. He was constantly having dreams and talking to flowers and mixing
stuff. I got used to his ways and helped him in his shop. (I never got used to the awful smell…) Actually, he
was working on a book and he made me write it down for him. Here is a part that I still remember:

The Dreame of Mr Blomefeild

Audite somnium meum quod vidi.
The Mt yeere of Christ, D L & seuen,
In the month of march, asleep as I did lye,
Late in the night, of the clocke about eleuen,
In spiritu rapt I was, soodenly into heauen;
Where I saw sittinge in most glorious maiesty
Three beholding, I adored but one in deitye:

A Spirit incircumscript with burninge heate incombustible;
Light of brightnes permanent, as fountaine of all light;
Three knit in one, with glory incomprehensible,
Which to behold I had a greate Delighte.
This trulye [to attayne] surmounted my might;
But a voice from that glorious brightnes to me saide,
"I am one god of Immeasurable maiesty: be not afraide."

As you can tell, my spelling really was horrible.

What I didn’t realize at the time is that Gorean slavers have a strict code of conduct, and displacing returned
slaves in time is considered a no-no. So eventually they came back for me. They still had the same
navigator and they missed it a bit, which is why I spent several years with Bloomfield.

On the day they came for me we had just run the Great Experiment, and I think we actually did manage to
produce some gold. A little nugget. But the forces involved are truly terrible, and the tower caught on fire. So
as I get sucked up by the Goreans, and I’m losing consciousness fast, I see below me the burning tower
and Bloomfield standing there in his black habit laughing this cackling laugh and the flames lapping higher
and higher. Poor fellow.

When I came round during the Saturday-morning cartoons I was still screaming "Bloomfield, Bloomfield!" at
the top of my lungs, because I had grown to like him, and there he was burning with his gold. My brothers
laughed and my mother was worried. My father beat me for not going to see the Reverend. Jenny
Mayweather didn’t speak to me for months.

And they all called me Bloomfield after that.

Re: What’s In a Name?

Dare I brave a reply?

In the space of about three screens of text you had me laughing out loud, choking back tears, and looking up socio-regressive psychopathy in a medical dictionary….

Plus you "unmasked" me, right at the start! (Except it’s Stobierski, with an "i"). Now everyone will know who wrote that beloved Irish session standard, "The Humours of Ballymarvin."

Posted .

Re: What’s In a Name?

Weren’t there a set a books about Gor…Tarnsman of Gor…and all that…I only know this because I bought one in a yard sale once, back in the old country………..Blommfield…shame on you for the plagiarisation.

Nice story though.

Now, McBear365…is a whole other tale.


Re: What’s In a Name?

Yes, there were Gor novel, by a guy called John Norman I think. I didn’t plagerize, I alluded: If you know the novels, you get the joke. But it’s not worth running out after them. They’re pretty crude and not very, um… PC. (loved them as a teenager, of course).

Hey thanks, Will. I mean, Marvin. Laughing is just as important a part of the craic as is a good tune, a good bear, and a chat, right?

Re: What’s In a Name?

In fairness, you did allude… I was just poking fun….

Re: What’s In a Name?

wow, bloomfield, dat is whack. We’re, like kindred spirits. Except that my spelling bee humiliation was "Quesnel" which is a town no-ones ever heard of in the backwoods of British Columbia (and is pronounced "kehnELL" for christ’s sake). My opponent got "Edmonton" which was my hometown’s archrival in NHL hockey at the time and is pronounced exactly as you’d excpect. So my bitterness was not directed at my opponent - as all who witnessed the tragedy agreed I clearly had the superior intellect but got a raw deal - but at Ed Whalen, the show’s host and the legendary Stampede Wrestling commentator who invented such catchy phrases as "Looks like we have a malfunction at the junction!" and "In the mean time and in between time…"

Anyway, I believe that stark realization that life is not fair and that being the smartest kid on the spelling bee is not always enough when Ed Whalen has the microphone began a long downslide into alcoholism. Anyway, my fondness for a nice, dry martini and my fondness for several songs from a certain musical about impoverished Russian country folk got a little tipsy and irresponsible one night in the back seat of a 1982 Mustang, and nine months later, BAM! my clever pseudonym.

Oh and also I was never abducted my aliens. Other than that, you are my doppelganger.

oh, right, I should mention that Mr. Whalen has since passed on, god rest his soul, and Ed, wherever you are, if you’re reading this now, no hard feelings OK?

Re: What’s In a Name?

Awww…I love you guys…*SNIFF*! Not only are you all veritable founts of information and encouragement, but you make me laugh so hard I…well, nevermind.

Re: What’s In a Name?

Hey, Kerri, we *are* kindred spirits, I can feel it. Only I don’t know why your nick had a nine-months gestation period. πŸ™‚ Now, if only I could play as well as you… *sigh*

BTW I am taking my first trip to the Great White North for a day-long whistle workshop in Bedford, QC (south of Montreal). I am very excited, although I won’t be travelling far onto Canadian territory…

I should mention btw, that William Bloomfield is (was) real. He was a 16th-century alchemist and mystic, I guess, writing much about dreams and the flowers. That bit of poem is authentic, then. (It’s much longer in the original.) But forget about all that, the question on everybody’s mind is:

Why "MacBear365"? (and it had better be good… πŸ˜‰

Re: What’s In a Name?

maybe andy’s nickname is "mac" and he lives in a year round nudist colony.

Re: What’s In a Name?

Fiddler North of Duluth: Quesnel is a nice town but a bit too busy, I prefer Bella Coola,
which has a music festival oddly.

Re: What’s In a Name?

How do you have a music festival oddly? Do they sneak from stage to stage with shifty eyes and furtive movements? Or is it more of a dog-faced boy band kind of oddness? Or does everyone walk on their hands? Or wear prosthetic klingon foreheads?

Re: What’s In a Name?

Mansfred, are you sure you’re not really the writer of the Muffy, Barbarian Swordsperson, stories? hehehe Magnificent. Truly magnificent.

I suppose having a music festival oddly is better than being a music festival oddity.


Re: What’s In a Name?

Yes, it’s the dog faced routine. In white sport coats with pink carnations, oddly.

Re: What’s In a Name? Good name for a fiddle tune.

Now, it occurs to me that melodies written for flutes and whistles and so-forth tend to stop with D-above -middle-C for the bottom note. Fiddle tunes often get a lot bassier cause if you’ve got that bass string and the extra range than you might as well use it.

So, if a fiddler wanted a tune that used that bass string an awful lot - taunting all us girls and guys in the wood-winds - they could call it, um,

Twang That G-String?

Posted by .

Re: What’s In a Name?

How about "Toss the G String"? *grin*

Re: What’s In a Name?

Bllomfield, i almost laughed my skull-pale off! πŸ™‚

Re: What’s In a Name?

Apologies for not rejoining this thread sooner, but weekends are for family…not computers.

McBear365 has a long and checkered past, mostly to do with my obsessive use of the term 24-7..I wanted Bear 24-7 as a title, but some other thieving rogue had taken it…..the bear part came form my wife complaining (observing, actually…the woman is a saint) about my snoring and grumpy comments while asleep (apparently I thrash and give out all sorts of verbage while in the land of nod)…..so it got changed to McBear and 365 instead of 24-7…..all very innocent and not as entertaining as the bloomfield story….but I’m busy in work today, so I can’t think too fast πŸ™‚

By the way….if ever there was proof that naked is not a good look for most people…a nudist colony is it

Re: What’s In a Name?

So you would know, I take it, McBare362? :D

362, 365, whatever… πŸ™‚

Re: What’s In a Name?

I know all the McBears…it’s a very exclusive club