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The naming of names - The Dragon's Mortal Morsel — LiveJournal
I don't bite... much
The naming of names
shadesong had a post recently which reminded me of something I wrote for a MUSH which I used to frequent.

On that mush I chose the name 'Cypher' and then wrote up the following piece as the 'bio' information for that character. Given that her post reminded me of this, I figured it might be interesting to share here.

Names are powerful things, and how we name ourselves, both in the world and in fantastical environments says something about ourselves. Nearly every name chosen has a meaning, even if it's only to the person who chose it, and that meaning influences their personality, their behaviour, and in fact their 'soul'

I chose the name Cypher on here for a couple of reasons.
Firstly, any online persona is, perforce, a mask, a code, something which obscures our true identity to some extent regardless of how much of ourselves we put into our online personas. This is due to the fact that noone can tell *for certain* that you are who and what you say you are, save via a face-to-face meeting, and even then, there is no assurance that you haven't hired someone to play your part. Thus, I take the name Cypher to remind myself of this facet of online existance, and to serve as a reminder to it of others.

Secondly, there is the essence of a man of mystery, someone who does not reveal all that there is about himself. I reveal some of what I am through the limited mechanisms available, but those don't and in fact cannot tell the whole tale. There are always things which cannot be expressed in lists, or which are so dependant on context that they would be nigh unto meaningless to describe outside of that context. The name is chosen to serve as a reminder both to me, and to others, to get to know the person behind the mask (modulo what I said before) as well as possible.

There are possibly other reasons as well, lurking somewhere in my subconcious, but the above are the ones that I can (or perhaps choose to) articulate.

Current Mood: thoughtful thoughtful
Current Music: Clannad - Na Laethe Bhi

3 comments or Leave a comment
shadesong From: shadesong Date: September 13th, 2002 11:57 am (UTC) (Link)
Well said!

Being a big comic book geek, however, I always think of Doug Ramsey from New Mutants when I hear the name Cypher... but that's just me... I'm weird. :)
wolfieboy From: wolfieboy Date: September 14th, 2002 01:41 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: NM

You're not the only one.
But then they killed him. It was a "Oh, gee. He can't duke it out with the bad guys. Let's kill him off." Pfeh.
shadesong From: shadesong Date: September 14th, 2002 06:55 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: NM

At least he died saving Rahne, though. But then they (kinda) brought him back as Douglock. Which was really unintentionally silly.

3 comments or Leave a comment