Wednesday, September 30, 2009

What Is In a Name?

What gives someone the right to a name? My kids were watching "Elf" a few weeks ago and the naive Buddy sees a sign that says "World's Best Cup of Coffee". He congratulated them on their achievement. Later you realize that its just a crummy cup of Jo'.

Now I'm not going to debate with you the likelihood of any two people agreeing on the World's Best of anything, however I do want to discuss the use of the word National. This weekend there is the National Apple Harvest Festival in Pennsylvania. Why is that particular festival the National? Does that mean that apples in Washington, Oregon, California, and Utah are of less worth because they are out West without the stamp of "National" on them?

Are we jipped because we live in the West and can't claim the title "National"? Are we less, somehow, because we live so far from the nation's capital? I don't think so. We have AMAZING National Parks (Oh, there is that word!!). We have amazing wildness that can only be dreamt of back East.

However, sometimes, it is great to have a "National" something. Something that the whole Nation can gather 'round to honor. For example, the National Fallen Firefighter Memorial. There is an eternal fire there and it is amazing to acknowledge the lives lost in protecting those at home. Also on the grounds is an amazing sculpture replicating the firefighters who raised the flag at Ground Zero. The artist is Utahn and his work is amazing and beautiful.

Most things bearing the name National, bear that name with pride and have earned that name. I guess time will tell if the National Apple Festival will live up to the name National! What are some of your favorite "National" places and events?


  1. Every year at the Superbowl I get annoyed. Why, you may ask? Because without fail, some announcer congratulates whatever team by calling them the "World Champions". This simply isn't true. You can only be a world champion when competing against the world. This is a case when the word "National" should be used.

  2. I like the National Ice Skating Championships, and gymnastics too. Oooo and the National Spelling Bee in Washington. Debbie has a great point though.

  3. I agree with Debbie. It should be a national championship title as opposed to a world championship title. But then I also think college football needs a playoff system because the system they are working with is broken, broken, broken! But nobody ever said that logic would win out with these things.

  4. I would second Donna on the National Spelling Bee. Who knew spelling could be so suspenseful?

    I'm also a fan of our "national pastime" - baseball.