Thinking Out Loud

May 10, 2014

Everybody’s Famous in a Small Town

Mr and Mrs Mugs

It probably started in California.
Most cultural things do.
People getting married and the woman keeps her maiden name.

It probably started with the film industry.
People who had careers.
Movie stars with name recognition wanting to keep their identity.

But then it spread to the broader society.
“I’m keeping my name;” she would say.
And we all got accustomed to that.

And then it came to church.
We have some friends who went on a one-year overseas mission.
The computer used to generate their support letters had to be reprogrammed.

The trend then moved away from urban centers to rural areas.
Because in the local village everybody has an identity.
Everybody’s famous in a small town.

The Bible talks about leaving and cleaving.
Nothing about changing your driver’s license after the wedding.
They had a different system of surnames back then.

So this shouldn’t be a deal-breaker.
It shouldn’t be a thing that creates walls and divides.
But people like an excuse to judge, don’t they?


Image: Mr. and Mrs. Mugs from Dayspring

…and no, today’s post wasn’t triggered by anything in particular.



  1. Funny post… I’m still trying to decide whether to become the mrs. or keep my name after my wedding. But you see, the country I come from in Europe doesn’t have such thing as being mister’s somebody. Women have always kept their own names and when Brits or other europeans ask me with surprise how came we have two surnames I joke that “we respect and honor our mothers” ;)
    That is why my daughter carries both names as well and that is probably why I won’t change my name…
    Don’t even get me started with paperwork to do, double if you end up getting a divorce!!
    In any case, all I meant to say is it didn’t start in California – little or big town, it’s not about being famous when it comes to your name. But it certainly IS an excuse for others to judge or talk about…

    Comment by eutopiafamily — May 10, 2014 @ 10:04 am

  2. My wife took my name – but was shocked when some of _her_ relations started addressing letters to ‘Mr &Mrs Paul Waters’. And I have to say – I really could’nt imagine swapping my name for hers (although some married men do that here). But if she wanted her name back that would be fine by me. In the end it’s a question of identity: when we married, did my wife become a part of me, or did we both enter an equal partnership?

    Comment by Paul Martin Waters — May 11, 2014 @ 7:57 am

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