I don’t like my name. I so so don’t. I think it’s the most tacky Bollywood word ever. And much as I would like to, I can’t even blame anyone for it.
When I was a few months old, my aunt and Ma read out a list of names and apparently I moved a finger or smiled or something when I heard Tamanna. And it was considered approval. Nobody for a minute thought I could have been protesting or that smile could have been sarcastic.
Chat rooms were a novelty in the year 2000, the one time that I entered chat rooms, most people thought the name was a put on. Who in the world can possibly be called “Tamanna Mishra”?… I am quoting a reaction verbatim. (Let’s forget for a moment what the other names in that chat room were, I would like to maintain that this is a family blog).
So here I am.. Nearing 30. Married. Sober (on weekdays). Dressed in not so tacky clothes (or so I would like to believe). I wear spectacles, even! I will soon have kids. And sooner or later I will be an aunty (Some neighbourhood kids already call me that, but I choose to ignore it). But for the rest of my life, I will be stuck with what realllly sounds like a bar dancer’s name to me! How else can you explain the nasal crooners’ favourites like Teri Tamannnaaaaaa. My name has been the butt of many jokes. The not so funny ones. Like being translated to Desire. My name can be shortened to doggie names like Tammie and Tommy. And to names of country side vehicles like tam tams. Or to manly names like Tom. Yes, I have been called all that and more.
Like I said. I hate my name. Why couldn’t I be named something more common place? Or something really exotic (and not in a Tamanna sort of way). My sister of course has a perfectly normal name. That’s why she has namesakes too. A whole lot of them. My mom has a very heart-melting explanation for my name, but I know that’s my consolation prize. There have been some good souls who have told me they like my name. I think they just get so stumped they don’t really know what to say. And most people’s first instinct is to be nice. I think I know what they really want to say.
Who in the world can possibly be called “Tamanna Mishra”?