Preordainment

I realized last night that both my last and first names aren’t particulalry intuitive to everyone or nearly anyone from a pronunciation perspective. and sometimes when one name is, the other isn’t. It’s pronounced Dee-nuh Sigh-den. You can still call me whatever you want within and without reason. My first name means “to judge” and “to be judged” in Hebrew, [what a lot in life, that is, to be oscillating from one to the other… if at the same time, do they cancel each other out? based on casual observation and judgement of myself, i’d say NOPE]. Dina is also a weirdly lazy version of a name of a woman in the bible who gets brutally raped, and is implicitly blamed for both that rape [she went out alone] and [thus] the war it incites, so i’m not particularly attached to it, and I’m dismayed by my parents’ choice there.

My last name means silk in German (I think cause jews were named for their jobs and that side were tailors, in fact my great-grandfather made a dress for Rose Kennedy…which she returned, complaining it had too many darts, they fought when she refused to pay him and she told him to “go fuck a clown under the George Washington Bridge!” [which had just been built] before kissing her crucifix pendant…but I digress. but Seiden also means “any of several parasitic vines, of the genus Cuscuta, having small white flowers but no leaves” and this for some reason makes me think of the flower equivalent of a clingy-to-the-point-of-leechy thalidomide baby, and that makes me sorrowful, so I’m not precious about my last name either.

At the risk of serving to confuse, this is not how you pronounce my name, but Armstrong’s version of “Dinah” was my mother’s inspiration, or so she tells me:

Louis Armstrong “Dinah” 1933


cropped sweating erinI am purposely sweating and fitlhy, it wasn’t inadvertant. Photograph by Erin Albrecht.