It is quite a hard thing to accept, but there are quite amm...I can't find the right word - let us settle with duplicate, replica or a fancy facsimile. Yes, there quite a few *** in the world than you imagine. And let this misconception not riddle you for a second that you are the best or cream of the lot.

'Hate' would be too strong a word. I would say I have a strong dislike for people who share my name. Birthday buddies were hard enough to bear in school ( yes Vishal, I did not enjoy it :) Thankfully the rare "Iyer" tag in the northern half of the country ensured a certain identity, at least with the surname.

I terribly pity the Abhinavs, Nehas, Sameers, Varuns and Siddharths of my generation. What were your parents thinking ?
"Hi. I am Varun Sharma."
"Me too"
"Me too"
"hehe....I am Varun SINGH."

I recall this 100% true incident that happened in Mhow (yes, with the car and all - more on that later...). Our neighbourhood had its share of duplicates, both at Aunty-Uncle and Bachha-Party level. My father picked up the phone one day and heard the caller say, "Good Morning Uncle, I am Preeti Gupta speaking." He replied with the friendly uncle enquiry - "So Preeti, how are your painting classes ?"...a small pause. Preeti said, "Uncle, I don't have any painting classes". A quick reply - "Oh ! Well then you should have...ho ho ho !"

*ho ho ho - Army Officer laughter.

Makes you wonder what the trend was in those days. Did the panditji pick a chit from a dwindling pot of options ? Did the movie stars provide some inspiration (albeit none of these banal characters have materialized on screen). Of course, the situation is far better than that of Henry the XVths, whose birth concurred with that of an identity crisis. And who can ignore the big chunk of southee's, whose 16-syllable names are invariably truncated, abbreviated and of course lampooned.

Well, what do I plan to do with the unique identity ? Sadly, quite a few doors have already been closed. A quick google search startled me and life has changed forever. A quick synopsis of my anguish:

Arvind Iyer 1: The first abuse is dedicated to the moron who took up the title page on blogspot. Where's the philanthropy in this world when you need it? He's not only selfish enough to still keep the blog to himself, he has also plonked himself in the world of advertising. He also manages a rock band !! Advertising AND rock-jazz-western-music - two of my top alternate career wishes. Now what am I supposed to do ?

Arvind Iyer 2: Turns out HTML too can be a turn on in the world of celebs. I hate this character as well. The profession itself has a metrosexual (read GAY) feel to it. Our man makes websites for top celebrities. He boasts "Each of these sites will reflect the soul of the individual or organisation." Now that doesn't make sense to me. One whole year I struggled and tried to enjoy HTML. I even made my own website, resplendent with pictures and a prolix About Me page. I know how to change the colour too, though I always don't get the shade I want. But that is fine, since quite a few of the surfers are colour blind. But has it got me anywhere ? No. Am I a better person post-geek-efforts ? No. Has any celebrity (or ANYONE) requested me to put up a website ? No. And now this dude has closed that option for me as well. We can't have two Iyers in Bollywood (unlike the Khans).

Arvind iyer 3: I thought a long-enduring association with TDS (technology dance society) would lead to something fruitful. Although my back does occasionally surprise me with its flexibility, I know the poor thing has its limitations. Still, a career in the creative and artistic world of dancing did appeal to me at times. Hey! If Shamik Dawar can dress people half-naked and earn money for their prance, why can't I ? But it turns out, another Iyer fellow beat me to it. Just when I was ready to get jiggy with it !

As of now, the other domains are unconquered. With over a thousand companies waiting to hire me (hehe...IIT), the chances that I meet my bizzaro-counterpart are bleak. But just imagine - with the rate at which kids are being churned out, at this very moment, 3 sets of parents would be staring into a lovely set of beady eyes and announcing, "baby ! your name is ..."

*Arvind Iyer 3 is fictitious. I spoke before I thought and typed before I clicked. Turns out, it is the same guy (AI 2) who has designed something for some famous dancer. Still, the anguish remains..what if...


  1. no duplicates here.. acty my parents thought a lil.. n gamme ds weird double name.. fomme to get commented all da time..

    but itz good to be unique in some way..

  2. at least a google search on my name.. puts my links on da top

  3. Waaa,I want to feel unique and special.Yes,a rare name would be enough to make me feel so.I get lost in the crowd,I am not noticed,I am not taken seriously.Hehe..but I play the guitar.Isnt it my identity?Atleast I have something that separates me from the rest!
    I am happy to be Iyer.

  4. The anonymous virus is back ! HELP !!

  5. You called me a virus..(sob ,sob).I am leaving you Iyer,dear heart,NEVER to comment again :-(.Adios ;)

  6. Hemanth Venkata Rama Krishna Peyyeti...i dare u find my name sake...buhahaha...wonderful article...

  7. Well, I would say your name brings you some readers... I know and read the 'Arvind Iyer' who happens to have taken the spot that you wnated- the lean dude with an attitude! ;o)

    So- hello there- my own lil serendipity.

  8. You know the option of being a Bollywood star is still there. Though I'd think you'd have to change your name from Arvind Iyer to something else with more panache...i mean...picture this...DDLJ starring Arvind Iyer...you know, Iyer doesn't have that ring to it like Khan or Cruise ;) think about it...it's really not too late to change your name...

  9. Feisty lil feller, aren't you.

    Nice blog, keep it coming.

    - an Iyer in Texas.

  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

  11. Oh no! There was a word called Namesake all along. And I searched so hard for the title!

    Keep writing.


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