The Story Behind my Name

No, my parents didn't want a boy. They had a different name picked out if they had a son, a name that was used on my brother, born four years later. No, his name is not Sue.

My mother received her Master's degree in Music Theory in 1949, from a prestigious Midwestern university, graduating near the top of her class. Men who had graduated with lower grades than she (some of whom she, in fact, tutored) were hired at college music departments immediately after graduation, while she was unable even to get an interview. The reason, at least in those days: "Women do not DO theory. You should have majored in performance."

So my mother named me Kevin, so that when I was looking for work, I would be standing in front of my potential employer, looking across the desk into his eyes when he said: "Uh, we were looking for somebody, uh, taller. . . ."

Some people have noted that this has tended to give me a particular attitude . . .

And I'm sure it has nothing to do with my deciding to pursue my former careers as a motorcycle mechanic or an over-the-road-trucker . . .


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