To have "nothing" as a name made me more and more curious about names.
As a child, I became very nosy of how the other kids in my neighborhood got their names. But soon I also wondered how the other things in my surroundings got theirs, like the animals, insects and even plants and stuff we use at home. And I would bug my Tata and Nana without end about this.
Why is a "salagubang" (beetle) called as such, I asked? What does it mean?
Who said "palayok" (earthenware pot) should be called as "palayok"? Where did its name come from? Can we call it by another name? Would anyone be angry if we do so?
And my questions were endless.
I wondered if someone or something was given another name different from what they were given in the first place would they have had a different life from the one they now have? Would a "palayok" stop being an earthenware pot? Would it be used for another purpose? Would the "salagubang" cease being a bettle as we know it?
And I always came back to my name. What's in my name? Nothing. Would I have a life different from the one I have now if I was called by another name? Would I want to have a different life? But I would miss Tata and Nana. No, I resolved that I liked my name because that means that I would have no other Tata and Nana than the one I have now.
That's a big relief.
And so I kept on tugging on Tata's "pantalon" (pants) and Nana's "saya" (skirt) when a question pops into my head.