Naming anything is a rather difficult proposition, and naming anything you want someone to pay attention to – such as a blog – is made even more complicated by the fact that there are a number of elements to be considered.
First off, you want something memorable – something people will think about for at least five minutes before they dismiss it in the frenzied hurry of their already overburdened lives. One would like to think that people have the leisure to cogitate, if only momentarily, on any new information that comes their way, but the the truth is, they don’t. Between immediate challenges (like changing lanes on freeways peopled by incompetents, texting idiots and monolithic trucks) and the slightly more complicated issue of juggling the competing calenders of our business and personal lives, one doesn’t often have time to seriously consider anything, let alone remember the forgettable name of a new blog.
A flurried existence thus being the norm for most people, it behooves the fresh faced blogger to name her articulations wisely. The name must be memorable, as I said, but truthful too. No one likes to be misled, let alone lied to, and readers are, in that respect at least, a generally severe and unforgiving lot. One cannot name a blog about, oh, swamp rats, let’s say, anything like “Pretty Damoiselles,” because while some may consider a pet rodent attractive, a swamp rat can rarely be described as pretty, let alone as a French maiden. Misname your communications and you risk being labeled as inaccurate, or worse, an outright liar, and no one wants that.
Besides memorable and truthful, a good title should be intriguing. It is, after all, meant to attract readers much as shiny metal and bright feathers draw fish. Good content will hook readers into returning, but a good title will entice them to bite in the first place. Then of course, you’ll want to be fairly unique. A simple Google search for “white house” will reveal the peril involved in having a name that is less than sui generis.
All these issues being considered, Rai and I thought long and hard about our blog title. I wanted Celtic Mustang. The Celts are a strong people, known for their creativity and valor, while the American Mustang is intelligent and freedom loving. Rai felt the name might lead people to think more of horses and good whiskey than literature and I had to admit she might have a point. Then we thought of “The Scurrilous Rag,” a name which has an intriguingly naughty sound to it while rolling pleasantly off the tongue. It was certainly memorable and unique. We thought we had a winner until I looked up “scurrilous.” It sounds great, but like salacious, contumelious, and aurora borealis, it doesn’t have the right definition.
One of the definitions for contumelious (other that scurrilous, that is) was “brash.” “Brash” is very close to “brass.” and we both have plenty of that.
Not only did I rather like the idea of being “cheeky, forward and impertinent,” as an added bonus brass is also the metal most commonly used to make calligraphy nibs. It was apt, accurate and, paired with “rag,” (to deride, jeer, jest, joke, josh, kid, make fun of, mock, razz, rib, satirize or taunt) it had a very interesting sound to it. Now, while we have no intention of deriding or taunting, we have been known to jest, joke and kid, with the occasional bit of satire tossed in for fun. Then too, sometimes mockery is just mandatory.
So, there you have it – The Brass Rag; an irreverent commentary on literary topics with a dash of useful information added for spice. We hope you enjoy reading us as much as we enjoy writing for you.