I was miffed after reading Indy’s “A Gift Accepted With Grace.” The Laguna Beach Woman’s Club selected Barbara Crane, its president for the last three years as Woman of the Year. I’ll bet I came in second. If the selection process went alphabetical, Crantz follows Crane and I just missed out.
That will teach me to follow through. My career was spent in marketing. Almost from the get go, I realized Crantz was a difficult name to get right. Just the other day, I went to a new doctor. I was waiting for the doctor in one of the ubiquitous exam rooms staring at the giraffe-measuring chart mindlessly wondering from why was I shorter than a giraffe to I’ll bet a giraffe with a sore throat must be it’s worst malady. When there came a knock, knock on the door. The new doctor breezed in staring at the new medical chart. “Good morning Mr. Craps.” I didn’t correct her. The name fit the way I felt.
I kept answering the doctor’s questions addressed to Mr. Craps. I was surprised that the doctor wasn’t surprised that my name was Craps. I got more discouraged as the exam went on. It was when the questions veered to billing information that I realized I couldn’t keep the charade up any longer if I wanted Medicare to pay for this visit. I told the doctor my name is Crantz. She stared saying nothing at me for what felt like enough time had passed that we were doing next year’s annual visit. Finally she tsked, tsked. “Why did you answer to Craps? Is the medical information I just transcribed for Craps or Crantz? Or did you make up a third personality with medical problems that don’t relate to either Craps or Crantz? My time is valuable. You’ve wasted it with your juvenile antics. This behavior is abhorrent. I’m billing all three of you.”
I just realized if my name is Craps, then alphabetically I still came in second to Crane. It’s hard not to be an ungracious loser. According to the Indy article, Crane gushes Southern hospitality and charm. One club member effused, “Barbara’s big phrase was, ‘You know we have a standard, so the flowers, cutlery, dishes had to be perfect. Future presidents are going to have big shoes to fill.” Geez, I have little feet so any hope to fill her big shoes is squashed for next year. For a brief moment or two I dreamed that my Green Acres campaign of paper plates and plastic forks would garner next year’s Woman of the Year award for me.
I bobbed around in self-pity for days. Crantz is an awful marketing name. Crantz does not project Southern hospitality and charm. My father was more accepting of people’s difficulty with the name and it’s spelling. Dad would say, “Most people want to spell our name Krantz. Don’t feel bad about the misspelling. I get junk mail at home addressed to Okkupant all the time.”
That memory cheered me up. I forgot about being a loser. Congratulations Barbara Crane. Best Wishes from Mark Crain.
Crantz tells the Indy that his new name Crain will alphabetically assure him of a win next year should Crane decide to enter again.