I tried to step outside of my name, to look at it objectively. It was a plain name, handed down from my dad—and to him, from his father. It was like all the other things that get handed down, the good and the bad. Inheritance. I was one of the plain names with my friends, the Matts and the Marks, a product of our time. We grew into the name, we grew to love the name, to identify with it. We took on the persona of the name and forgot where it came from, it was so much a part of us. So much that to change our names felt unnatural, a break in the order of things. But even that has its own nature, its own necessity, the need to break. Nature knows no names for itself, only for others to identify us from the outside looking in. And how hard it is to step outside what’s been decided before we’re born. To delineate our nature from our names, which have so little to do with one another. I thought myself so much more than a Bill, but no other name would satisfy. And at the end of it all I would be buried or burned the same as any other, no matter the name. They would put it on a stone and I wouldn’t even be there to see it.