All those years ago, Juliet asked the question, “what’s in a name?” Well, there’s plenty sister! And sometimes a name is worth fighting for. Particularly if your name is Josh Swain. 

Sometime during the pandemic, a bored man named Josh Swain sought out other Josh Swains and issued a challenge: there can only be ONE Josh Swain. He challenged them all to a fight and the one “survivor” would win the right to be THE Josh Swain. All others would have to agree to change their name. 

He gave them one year to prepare and on April 24, 2021, they met in battle in Lincoln, Nebraska. Armed with pool noodles, they competed in hand-to-hand combat and rock-paper-scissors. One adult Josh Swain was declared the winner, while a 4-year-old named “Little Josh” was a winner too.

Allowing a “Little Josh,” although a crowd-pleaser, was short-sided on Big Josh’s part. He’s just setting himself up for being vanquished someday when “Little Josh” can wield a man-sized pool noodle. 

The rest of Juliet’s line is “That which we call a rose, by any other name would smell as sweet.” I wonder how sweet it was when the last Josh was declared THE Josh?

Speaking of names, I have a tragic name myself. My mother cursed me with a first name/middle name combo that is in conflict with itself. My first name is Jeffery, which means peace or peacemaker. My middle name is Mark, which means warrior and/or a derivative of Mars, the God of War. 

Over the weekend, I was reading about Mars out loud to my wife and dog on the back porch. I was pretty sure they were ignoring me. Wikipedia says of Mars, “most of his festivals were held  in March.” I too hold festivals in March (though not as ostentatious and well attended). So, we have that in common. 

Also, Mars was treated with contempt in Greek literature. I find that Greeks tend to ignore my literature. Mars had a consort (wife) and a mistress (Venus). It was at this point, my wife said I had to stop reading Wikipedia. My dog was indifferent.

At any rate, I’m Peacemaker Warrior. So, I have a lot of inner conflicts. Is that because of my name, or was I well named because of the conflict? I’ll let you decide. I need to think of a name for a character in my next book. Josh has a nice ring to it.