As the latest age of austerity bites I increasingly feel tied into a monthly cycle of pay packet and bills, with little left to show for my efforts.
This is especially true at this time of year when the ebb and flow of cash always appears to ebb more than flow and there are always more receipts in my wallet than banknotes.
As a wage slave I have often pondered the irony of the name Freeman. I’m told the family moniker is derived from early history and designated a man free-born not delivered into servitude.
I have friends whose ancestors’ professions defined them – the Taylors, the Wheelers, the Coopers. I have worked with both Butchers and Bakers. Curiously I have never yet met a Candlestickmaker.
I am always fascinated by people with particularly apt names, such as Gardeners’ Question Time panellists Bob Flowerdew and Pippa Greenwood; the climate change specialist and arctic expert Dan Snowman (who ought to get together with East Midlands Today weather girl Sarah Blizzard); Lord Justice Judge, previously plain Judge Judge; and the wife of the former Macdonald’s chief executive Patty Turner.
I have always put this down to good old-fashioned coincidence and chuckle when I hear these so-called ‘aptronyms’ such as Dr Whitehead the dermatologist and prisons campaigner Frances Crook.
But this week I learned that New Scientist magazine has been looking at people who seem to be drawn to professions which suit their names.
One of their journalists was alerted to the possibility by a scientific paper on incontinence. The authors? Splat and Weedon.
Listeners to the Radio 4 report of the magazine’s findings heard from The Rev Michael Vickers whose father, fantastically, was The Rev Randy Vickers. You couldn’t make it up.
Listeners then volunteered Dr Nurse and his wife Nurse Nurse, and the boss of French dairy firm Danone named Monsieur Fromage.
Perhaps that explains why the former Royal Bank of Scotland boss who got a multi-million pound pay-off was none other than Fred Goodwin.
I am beginning to believe that maybe, just maybe, your name may determine your behaviour.
I went to school with a boy named Mark Christmas. I never met his dad…