George Matthews has been a practicing neurosurgeon in the United States. Still many who read journal articles by George Matthews are surprised when they meet him in person. They immediately see how the name “George Matthews” could be viewed as one that belongs among the unique baby names.
George Matthews has the dark complexion one frequently sees on a man or woman from India. Yet anyone who has ever worked closely with someone from India no doubt knows that “George Matthews” is not a common Indian name. In fact, George Matthews, the neurosurgeon, did not become introduced to the world in a common or a typical way.
That fact helps to explain why the neurosurgeon was given a unique baby name. Still, an Indian couple would be expected to choose from the list of unique baby names favored by citizens of India. Why would an Indian couple choose the name George Matthews?
The fact is that one Indian couple did not take time to glance over the list of unique baby names that might be given to their infant son. Instead they put that infant son on the steps of a nearby convent. The nuns in the convent wanted to give that infant a name taken from the names in the New Testament. The nuns named that infant “George Matthews.”
Only a small circle of people have had a chance to meet George Matthews, and to discover the story behind his rather unusual name. Only a small circle of people might ever meet the Kurdish infant with the unique baby name, but millions have heard about why his parents chose that name. That name, like the name of the Indian neurosurgeon belongs among the group of unique baby names.
Those Kurdish parents gave their infant son a name that many news correspondents mention on a regular basis. They gave their son the name “Dick Cheney.” They gave their son that name, because they credited the Secretary of Defense under President George H.W. Bush with freeing the Kurds from the menacing acts of the leader of Iraq.
Due to the uniqueness of that name, television included information about the infants’ name in at least one sound bite. It is interesting to note that television producers did not include that story in a program about unique baby names. They obviously realized that a baby name that sounds unique to one family could well sound “old hat” to another family.
Moreover, there are advantages to a run-of-the-mill name. For example, in May of 1986 a baby named Kevin was in the emergency room of a Santa Monica Hospital. An orthopedic surgeon needed to examine the infant’s knee. The surgeon, a man with the first name of Kevin, became instantly prepared to do his utmost to help the ailing child.
The boy’s mother then learned that both her sons had rather unique names. She had given typical Irish names to two boys whose father was from Iran.