I'm sorry you lost a friend over ignorant prejudices. I hope your godchildren know just how lucky they are to have such an awesome and fierce godmother!
Cordial acquaintance rather than friend, thankfully. But thanks.
My goddaughters matter to me as much as my nephews, no question, it's how things are. I regret that you had to call down fire, though. That's never fun.
...if he says he doesn't want to say it until he's at the font (because Tommy Heikkanen trained him good) but he knows what he's going to name his son, do those of you who have read some of the stories know what it has to be?
If he's of a culture where people name children after living people (I'm not, which is why I qualify that), my first thought would be either a male variation on Janet's name. Or maybe Coach Laird's name. I assume Robin would be a bad idea, under the circumstances.
So no, no good idea.
Yes, he is definitely from a culture where the living are reasonable sources for names, at least for male names. Coach Laird is Rob, for the record, and Janet's brother is Bobby. I have no idea what a male version of Janet would be, though. Jan, I guess, but that's what Carter calls Janet half the time, so it's not going to register as dudely for Carter.
I find this utterly fascinating if for no other reason than, in my family, being a godparent was a formality at best. It was an honor bestowed, of course, but not something that was thereafter acted upon. Honestly? I can't say who my godfather is, but I think I know who my godmother is. Think, mind you. Which tells you where that role falls within my family's schema.
So to see it mean so much to someone else is both edifying and heartwarming. I think it's wonderful it means so much to you and Carter both, even if I can't quite relate.
2011-01-21 02:07 am (UTC)
I'm feeling the same; I know who my godfather was, but don't think I ever had a godmother.
I'm likewise glad to see such relationships mean so much to someone.
and Mike asked us to be the children's godparents, I had to clarify that they were not asking for this honorary stand-in, she was asking for the real thing. In medieval Icelandic law, for example, the fact that we are Rob and Lil's godparents would prevent any future child I might have--by birth or adoption, no distinction is made--from marrying either of them. That is the degree of relatedness that is conferred in my cultural conception of the relationship. And porphyrin
said yes, that was how they thought of godparents, too, that was just what they were asking. Which is good, because I didn't want to say no, but I'm not sure I could do it the other way. My other two godkids live half a continent away, but we still try to be involved and influential within the limits of that.
And it also means if they die, you and your family raise the kids? That's how it was with me and my godfather.
That's not a universal implication, but it's very common, yes.
When I was small, I would tell people that if something happened to my folks and my grands, I would go live with Dave. And my mom would correct me: "With Joe." (My other godfather--older, at the time more established in his career path. They are brothers and very close.) And I would say, "But Dave would come and help us out." And Mom would say, "Probably, yah." And then the next time it came up, the same conversation all over again.
That's the way it was in my family of origin, too. Catholic family, so they had to be Catholic; big family, just pick a man and a woman. No further obligation unless the parents died, and then only a religious one.
I know. I have a "my uncle" despite having other people I'd call Uncle [name]. He's the only one who actually *is* an uncle rather than an older cousin or a great-uncle, but that isn't why he gets the title. (In fact technically he's also my godfather, but Judaism doesn't really do that in a formal way, I don't think.)
It was difficult to know what tense to use in this post because he died a couple of years ago, but I have used present tense, because I'm pretty sure it doesn't change.
But no, despite having read all of the Carter stories I've seen linked, I don't know the name. His uncle/adoptive father?
His uncle/adoptive father is Uncle Larry, and that is indeed the middle name, Lawrence.
And yah. Even after my godfather is gone--we hope many, many long years from now--he will still be my godfather.
.........................you want to guess my uncle's name?
Carter has a kid? Or is this just a theoretical son?
It has to be Bobby. Or Wayne. Or Larry.
This particular story takes place when Jessica Lin-Laird is seven years old. And you're right on the middle name, Lawrence for Uncle Larry.
I think your idea of godparents is a helluva lot nicer than the way I've seen it played out in real life, as a token thing. In my case, my dad's Catholic relatives insisted on calling dibs (forcing it to be a Catholic baptism limited the pool), and thus my evil aunt and uncle had to get the titles. And then did nothing thereafter, as my mother grumbled.
This is not a custom to which my family holds, so I've never really 'gotten it'. You make it make emotional sense, and make me realize that it's not so different from the way our social circle does some things without formal names. So, thank you.
Sometimes the formal names are really useful when dealing with outsiders. This is how my cousins and I started referring to each other as cousins and our parents as aunt/uncle: Kari was off at college, and "my uncle is in town on business, and he's picking me up for dinner" required no explanation or extended comment, where "my parents' best friend--well, the guy half of my parents' best friends--he's been around my whole childhood--I'm actually closer to him than to a lot of my blood relatives--" would have been a conversation at least.
That's how I got my godparents. "My godfather" was a lot quicker than "My father's college roommate, who we're still really close to, who's been around forever but who isn't quite blood family."