Friday 22 March 2013

Further Adventures in Children’s Television

This is Kipper. He is not a kipper. He is a dog.

This is Tiger. He is not a tiger. He is also a dog.

This is Pig. He is a pig.

And this is Pig’s cousin. His name is Arnold.

Question –
Exactly how few fucks could Pig’s parents have been giving when they chose his name? From recent experience I know choosing your child’s name can be a little fraught. I even, on one occasion, may have said words to the effect of, ‘Balls to it. If it’s a boy we’ll call it Boy, and if it’s a girl, Girl. If you don’t like those options then we’ll just have to call it The Child.’ I was, however, NOT BEING SERIOUS.

Maybe Pig’s parents got all passive aggressive about it and they argued themselves into a corner neither could back out of without losing face.

- “Well, if you’re not going to take it seriously, we may as well not bother.”
- “I am taking it seriously, but we’ve been having this discussion for fucking months now.”
- “Really? Well that’s just fine then. ‘Pig’ it is”
- “Wait, look, I wasn’t…”
- “No. You said you were serious. It’s Pig.”
- “Well, fine then. Pig”
- “OK then.”
- “OK.”
- “Pig it is.”
- “Yes. Pig.”
- “OK.”
- “OK.”

Or maybe I’m doing them a massive disservice. Maybe all pigs are called ‘Pig’, and it’s Pig’s aunt and uncle who are the weird ones, choosing to fly in the face of centuries of porcine naming tradition by choosing a dangerously non-conformist moniker for their child.

That’s it. Clearly ‘Arnold’ is the piggy equivalent of ‘Apple’, ‘Fifi Trixabelle’, or ‘Moon Unit’. Arnold’s parents were hippy rock-stars who held almost cult-like status amongst their fans but were openly mocked by wider swine society for the fantastical and idiotic names they chose for their offspring: ‘Arnold’, ‘Christopher’, and ‘Susan’. These children were constantly hounded by the pig paparazzi and pitied by the masses for their unnatural names and lifestyle; a pity which redoubled when their parents both died in the space of a week - the father in a plane crash caused by the pilot (a fellow band member) being smashed off his face on cocaine, and their mother after she took a foolhardy combination of booze and pills and choked on her own vomit in a nightclub toilet cubicle.

Arnold, then, is a tragic orphan; cast out into the cruel world and on to his cousin’s tender mercies like some wretched Dickensian gutter-urchin.

Still, at least he’s got a better name than ‘Pig’.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Pilot on Coke...
    Sounds like Guitarist Randy Rhodes death.

    I heard "Jeeeesus Chriiiiist Chris!!!!" a lot as a felt like a nick name of sorts.

    What's your name ?

    "Um..I think"

    1. Randy Rhodes. That's the one. Knew I was drawing the inspiration for that from somewhere that wasn't John Denver.

      Just introduce yourself as Christ. What harm could the extra T do? It'll be a handy filtering process, if nothing else ;)

  3. Wasn't Arnold the name of the pig on "Green Acres"?

    Love the argument between the parents. Sounds like the pattern of just about every domestic argument I've ever had

    1. I wasn't expecting that clip at all. Green Acres sounds like another kids programme, right? Still, could have been worse, I suppose.

      Domestics, yeah. If you've never passive-aggressively agreed to something dumb, the you've never really been in a proper relationship, I think.

  4. I prefer pig to some of these new-age bogan names around and their zany spellings:

    Rhease, Mikallea, Tyron, Kaelah, etc.

    1. Bogan, now there's a word I've not heard in a long, long time...

  5. Teaching Japanese kids in public or private schools, it's always fun to guess which ones have the hippy-dippy names and then ask a Japanese teacher what they think. Their facial expressions usually tell you if you guessed right...

    1. I had exactly this conversation with my wife yesterday.

      A boy in one of my classes is called Haruka. The kid after him in the class register is a girl, so every time I'm handing back test and assignments I reflexively give his paper to the girl behind him, and all his mates crack up laughing. Every single fucking time. I then spend the rest of the class massively overcompensating by using his name far too often. I blame the parents.

    2. "A Boy Named Sue"... a great song to teach the kids. Sung by J.C and written by S.S. Please tell me you've heard of them.

    3. Ah, now this (these) I do know. On a bit of a JC trip recently, aren't we? He's very much like buses in that respect.

      I'm also now not going to be able to look at that kid without that song playing in my head, so thanks for that...