The Beehive state and its LDS culture are famous for many things. As everyone knows by now, we have the best beehives anywhere and the Greatest Snow on Earth, not to be confused with the elephant circus that makes a similar boast. Utah pioneers were some of the best irrigators in the world, an absolute fact that we would never lie about. And don’t forget Philo T. Farnsworth, who invented television. Well, OK, officially, he’s from Idaho, but that’s pretty close by—and unofficially, the same culture, if somewhat watered-down.
• Here’s something else we’re famous for: names. It’s no secret that Utahns have been very creative when naming their children. LaDoyle, LaVon, Janelle, LeGene and Rondolla, just to recite a few originals. But now the phenomenon is official—BYU Professor Don Norton has done extensive research into the unusual names created by members of the LDS church, according to a recent story in the Deseret News.
(We mention BYU and the Deseret News here because if they do it, it’s not Mormon-bashing. If City Weekly does it … well, never mind.)
Everyone knows that Orrin Hatch was named after Orrin Porter Rockwell, Brigham Young’s henchman, er, uh, bodyguard. But now, SmartBomb has come across a list that indicates other famous Utahns have colorful names as well. According to our information found under a dumpster behind Port O’ Call, the governor’s full name is Michael Orrin Leavitt. How’s that for coincidence—not to mention irony?
Did you know that Jan Graham’s real name is Janelle LaVondolla Graham? Yikes, according to this list, it is. And get this: Rocky LaMar Anderson. Well, enough said.
This just in: Following a GRAMA request from SmartBomb, Elder Robert Kirby has officially denied that his real name is Elder LaDoyle Robert Kirby. Sure.
• Speaking of names, Elvis was, and still is, an unusual name. And yes, the King’s been dead for 25 years. But here’s a new one from our “Elvis”-file: the rock & roller is big in Israel, too. According to the Associated Press, Elvis’ maternal great-great-grandmother, Nancy Tackett, was Jewish. Judaism is passed down from the mother, so Elvis could be considered Jewish, according to Elaine Dundy, author of Elvis and Gladys.
No word yet whether anyone in the Arab world has genealogical ties to Elvis. But it’s only a matter of time.
• Of course, President George W. Bush is a big Elvis fan. Before pausing to remember the King recently, Bush stumped for Republicans across the Midwest, asking that Americans have faith in the economy.
The campaigning followed his so-called Economic Forum at Baylor University, where Bush loyalists bit their lips and smiled through their pain. Bush contributor and investment broker Charles Schwab noted the collapse of retirement accounts. The previous day he had laid off 375 workers.
Out of a job? Lost your retirement? Have faith in Elvis.
• And speaking of faith, good deeds and the American Civil Liberties Union, the New York ACLU is complaining that corporate executives accused of wrongdoing should be spared the spectacle of the so-called “perp walk” after being arrested. “Being paraded before cameras in shackles is embarrassing,” according to one defense attorney.
Embarrassing? Here at SmartBomb, we’d like to feel their pain. But we just can’t.