Wednesday, April 28

Wes, Jim, Oprah and Me

Tuesday on Oprah, there was a man named Wes Moore, who has written a book titled "The Other Wes Moore". He learned about a man who grew up in the same neighborhood, with the same name and got to know the guy years later - when he was in prison for murder. There were many parallels in their lives; deprived childhoods, no father, surrounded by drugs and crime, but the Wes Moore who wrote the book was saved by a determined mother and loving grandparents who sent him off to military school. He eventually became a Rhodes Scholar and has become very successful in his life. I am planning to read that book (which came out today) and maybe it would appeal to you too.

The second half of the program was about a man named Jim Killeen, who googled his name and found 24 other men named Jim Killeen - all over the globe. He corresponded with many of them, and eventually six of them decided to meet - in Killeen, Texas. They all felt an instant connection (with some more than others). One of them is an Irish Catholic priest, one is a father of eight, one is from Australia. There was quite an age range as well as ranges in weight and other stats. I thought several of them looked remarkably similar, although the only one who turned out to be distantly related to the original guy, does not. It was fascinating to me and I hope that the first Jim Killeen - the one who gathered them all together - will also write a book about his experiences .

You may remember reading my tale here about the time I first tried to join Facebook. It wouldn't let me join with the name (short version) I use daily, because there was already someone else with that name on Facebook. That intrigued me, so I sent her a message (she lives in another state) and found out through subsequent communications that she has a sister who lives a mere 20 miles from me. We haven't met yet, but I am hoping that we will this summer.

Having googled my names before, I know that there is a third one in Chicago and the fourth in Florida, and I suspect there may be more of them who simply haven't shown up on the webs yet. I would love to meet all of them and to get them all in one place like Jim Killeen did with his namesakes. Wouldn't that be interesting ?? Jim Killeen had a list of 30 + questions that he asked all of the men who cooperated with him. They didn't go into it enough for me on Oprah's show - because I would really like to know how they are alike and how they are different. I wonder if a chart could be developed to show how much and in what ways they are similar and where their differences lie and to what each difference could be attributed. I think I should have been a sociologist!!

Have you ever met or known of someone with your same name (who wasn't a relative?)

21 comments:

Travelin'Oma said...

I googled my name and it popped up several times. I think they were all guys! I still remember the girls in high school that were named Marty. There were three of us and I felt like we were a little club.

I hadn't thought about emailing anybody. Good suggestion!

Thumper said...

There's someone local who has my name, but it would be better if I never met her; she doesn't pay her bills, and I get phone calls about it. Not a fan of hers, nope...

From Tracie said...

One of the most life changing documentaries I have ever seen starts out this way...Angela Shelton goes around the country to interview all the other Angela Sheltons that she can find.....it is called Searching for Angela Shelton, and you can watch it for free on hulu...it is totally worth it!

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

I saw that show yesterday, too, Judy...It was so very inmteresting. I found the first story most compelling because of the incredible similarities in their backgrounds and the fact that Wes, the Rhodes Scholer came bery close to going waaay down the wrong road....That his family imsisted--his Mother and Grandparents that he go to that Military School was truly the "making" of him....
I found the other story very very interesting too...
I have never met anyone or even heard of anyone with my same name, but THAT would definitely be interesting....

Angie said...

That's cool. There is no one with my name. Even when you do those population generators it comes back 1% - me.

Star said...

That is fascinating. I will watch for that Oprah show to be shown again. Chances are slim that I will find another Star Foster on the planet, except of course for my daughter. I don't think using my maiden name would make it any more likely. There are more people than you might think named Star, and we seem to find each other.

Kay Dennison said...

Hmmmmmmmmmmm interesting!!!

Arkansas Patti said...

Interesting premise and I will check out that book.
Thanks for a blog idea for I did have a name double once who led a rather "randy" life that I often got blamed or credit for.

tiff said...

With my former married name there were dozens of 'me' all over the place, but that surname is so common you can't swing a cat without hitting one of 'em.

There is nobody on the planet but me with my name now. It's kind of awesome.

bobbie said...

Googling you own name is fascinating. I did it, and found a woman who had lived on my street, and who seems to have had a rather unsavory history. It bothers me a little, thinking an old friend might try to find me, and then think better of it after reading about her.

NellJean said...

When I google my firstname/lastname I always come up with the Aussie movie star by the same name who used to pose nude.

On to look-alikes rather than sound alikes, folks at the library where I used to live always said, 'Thank you Mrs. Crawford' as I was leaving. It turned out I had a look-alike who was also an avid reader like me. We never met.

Evil Twin's Wife said...

I've met a handful of people with my first name, but no one with my full name (either maiden or married names). There are a few with the same name in England.

Granny Annie said...

Do you search with your married name or your maiden name?

My previous name from first marriage was not really that common but it was the same as my mother-in-law and that got confusing. Plus once there was a television program devoted to a woman con-artist with that same name and I got a lot of phone calls the next day as did my mother-in-law.

Pat said...

The only time I have attended a reunion at my old school I had a name badge with my original name Pat Barnes on my chest to be told by a woman 'You're not Pat Barnes!'
Apparently by the time I left school there was another Pat Barnes who she had known.
For a smidgeon of a second I was quite put out - her attitude was accusing. I would never repeat the experiment.

robin andrea said...

I googled my name a few years ago, and found two or three other people with the same name. My twin brother found several people with his name, and once sent me an email with links to all of them with the subject line: the other me. I find it a little disconcerting to know there are other people walking around with my name. Maybe I should meet them.

Caring for Mom said...

Wow that was interesting! I never thought of doing that. Thanks for this post! It was fun.

srp said...

Nyssa finally had another "Nyssa" in a class at William and Mary... never before or since. Not the same last name though.

LL Cool Joe said...

No I never checked up on that kind of thing, it doesn't really interest me for some reason.

It's just a name to me.

Interesting post though Kenju. :)

rosemary said...

Yup....there is another woman out there with my name....with the exception of her having a middle name. I get calls every time she defaults on her mortgage, phone bill and credit cards.....even got a nastygram from Sally Mae over her student loan.

Jen said...

No, but I've Googled my name to see what pops up. There's an olympic bobsledder, an author, and an actress.

Shephard said...

I have the title for Jim's book...
"Killeen Me Softly"
(lol)
~S :)