Ten Year Milestone
Yesterday, a milestone was reached. It has been more than 10 years since I legally changed my name to James Patrick Holding. And yesterday, a fundy atheist on TheologyWeb called me by my old name, Robert Turkel. After more than ten years.
I have a thread started on TheologyWeb about this. An original version of the thread was lost when TWeb crashed; but the idea was to keep track of fundy atheists and others who refused to acknowledge the change.
After the change in July 2007, I started a thread with a poll with this question and options:
How long will fundy atheists continue calling me by my old name?
Farrell Till will still be calling me “Turkel” in hell
At the time, I figured the last two were a joke. Now it looks like the last option is as much reality TV as Live PD.
Why fundy atheists persist in this foolishness is anyone’s guess. One suggestion made on TWeb is this one:
I'm pretty sure the main reason they do it is because "Turkel" makes 10-year-olds giggle.
That’s probably true. I also expect that some of these people who can’t go of “Turkel” are mentally ill and can’t handle change; or, they keep using it because they think it bothers me. It’s all the more ironic because James Patrick Holding was actually my name at birth. It’s “Robert Turkel” who is the intruder, so to speak.
So then! In observation of this milestone, here’s an edited re-release of something I wrote back in July 2007 to celebrate the name change. It’s funny how much of it still applies today.
Warning: Heavily Sarcastic Content Ahead.
The loud thumps you hear at selected spots across the country are the sound of people like John Till, Brooks Trubee, and other cartoon-character Skeptics falling to the ground after having coronaries.
Why? Because they just lost their best (and in some cases, only) "argument" against myself and this ministry.
About a decade ago when I logged myself online as a writer with the Christian Apologetics Bookshelf, I decided that it would be a good idea, for the sake of personal safety (not from Skeptics...but from released prison inmates I formerly worked with), to make use of a writing psuedonym. It didn't take long to decide what to use, because it was the name I was born with.
Yes, the name I was born with. Not that it's anyone's business...but that WAS the name I was given at birth, and I have the legal paperwork to prove it: The original Social Security card; a copy of the original birth certificate; the original, onionskin court order (dated 1969) changing my name from JPH to the other name as part of an inside-the-family adoption process. So for those who thought I was making it all up, choose your brand of mustard when you decide what foot you want to eat.
There are probably few who know or remember that it was John Till who first made an issue of this. He pretends that it was some great detective discovery he made; the fact is that I told him about the pseudonym issue myself…
But to the point of this item. Some time ago I proposed to make a legal change to my name, and that is now done. As of this morning (7/3/07) the paperwork is approved by a judge and filed away in my county clerk's office. ..The critics will either have to change all their articles, or else look bigger fools than they do now refusing to acknowledge it...Then they'll have to do some real arguing for a change, and which of those will be harder for that crowd is hard to say.
My reasons for the change are partly professional, partly personal. There is the matter of that I am so well known as JPH that it makes good sense to make the legal change. On a more personal level, I have lately rediscovered some family heritage that has motivated the change as a way of honoring lost relations I never knew, but now wish I had discovered and known earlier. Suffice to say that I was not the first Holding to be interested in apologetics. (I also wasn't the first with an artistic bent, but that's another matter.).
But anyway, now that you guys have to abandon the name fetish, it's time to move on.
You heard me. Don't just sit there with your jaw hanging slack to the floor. Go.
Oh, there is one more thing....
I'm thinking of using the other name from now on as a writing pseudonym.