Monday, April 24, 2006

Frankly, My Dear....

Tara…that’s my name…Proudly named after Scarlett O’Hara’s beautiful southern plantation home from the book/movie, Gone With The Wind. It is my mother’s favorite movie and has become mine as well. The name Tara is of Gaelic origin and means “Tower”. The Hill of Tara in Ireland is known as the seat of "the high kings” and is an important site to the Irish, dating back to the late Stone Age. In the early centuries after Christ, Tara was at its height as a political and religious center in Ireland.

I’ve always loved my name. But nothing bothers me more than people who mispronounce it. I have been wrongly called “Tarra” as in “Tar” –uh. And then there’s the dreaded Midwestern, “Teera” which absolutely drives me crazy!! So much so that I stopped dating someone because it was so painful to hear my name mispronounced.

Correct pronunciation: Ta-ra (“ta” as in tassle and “ra” as in the vowel sound of the word “rob”) Ta-ra….get it?

I do not understand how a four letter word can be so difficult to pronounce for some people. One of my professor’s goes back and forth with the way she says my name, both wrong ways, of course. It drives me crazy! I never ran into this name problem in Jersey, but ever since I came to Indiana people have such a difficult time with this very simple, four letter name. If I only had a quarter for every time I have had discussions and taught lessons to people I met about the correct pronunciation of my name, I’d be a very wealthy girl. In spite of it all, I have found those experiences quite amusing.

There are very few famous Tara’s today…Tara Reid, Tara Lipinski, and…that’s about it. We don’t want to wear the name out.

Growing up in New Jersey, I went to school with only one other Tara, who was three years older than me so we were never confused. It has been an easy name to carry for 21 years.

My mother walked down the aisle on her wedding day to “Tara’s Theme”, which is the Theme from Gone with the Wind. If I decide to get married someday, I want to do the same. How appropriate.


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