There probably isn’t anyone out there who suspects that sharing a name with a celebrity is a good thing. If you were unlucky enough to be born with a name like “Mark Wahlberg” you can expect a healthy dose of smirks and stares whenever someone asks your name. But at the end of the day, it’s just a minor nuisance, right?
Wrong. Here are five people who suffered greatly for sharing a name with a celebrity…
Kate Middleton (All of Them) Kicked Off Facebook
The most recent Royal Wedding was a big deal (for Brits and women) and Kate Middleton was directly in the eye of the storm. We’re speaking, of course, about 33-year-old Kate Middleton of Melbourne, Australia.
She, along with several other people named Kate Middleton, had her Facebook account shut down after the social networking giant accused her of using a fake name. It’s a common practice on Facebook, but it’s not usually implemented on such a wide scale with such a common name. It’s one thing to shut down everyone posting as “Elvis Presley.” It’s a completely different thing to shut down everyone posting as “James Brown” or “Kevin Smith.”
Facebook eventually realized their mistake and reinstated the deactivated accounts, but not before the story went public, making the people in charge of keeping Facebook free from impostors look like a bunch of idiots.
It’s Hard When Your Name is Harry Potter
Harry Potter is the lead character in a massively popular franchise of books and movies aimed at tweens and young children. It’s also the name of a chap in England who probably wishes J.K. Rowling would have died at birth and never gone on to write those stupid books. Here’s what he has to put up with, in his own words:
“No one ever believes that I’m telling the truth about my name. I had to show my girlfriend my passport, my bank card, and my driving license to convince her that I wasn’t lying. Even getting my season ticket for Portsmouth FC was a bit of a pain – I’m a massive football fan, but I had problems at the ticket office. First they didn’t believe that my name was genuine, and when I convinced them, they thought it was hilarious. It’s never-ending. I play a lot of football as well in a local league, and the match reports are always full of puns – ‘Harry Potter cast a spell on the opposition and that kind of thing.”
Sounds hilarious to us. And just think of all the 14-year-old chicks you could strike up conversations with!
When Your Name is Popular With Police
The problem with a name like Perfecto Avila is that it’s wide open for irony. And a 73-year-old El Paso man knows that all too well. His perfect first name has led to a relationship with local authorities that’s anything but.
See, Perfecto Avila is wanted for Aggravated Assault on a Child. Or more accurately, some guy named Perfecto Avila is wanted. He’s 34 years old, which means mistaking him for an elderly gentleman even once should not be something that happens. Unfortunately, it has happened. Five times.
According to the 73-year-old version, police have showed up at his home at least five times, handcuffing him once in the middle of the night, looking for the man they suspect is a child abuser. Sure, the older Avila has nothing to do with the younger, but, like, they have the same name so … they must be related!
They aren’t, but don’t tell that to the police, because they aren’t listening. The older Avila has allowed authorities to search his home several times and has even shown them family photos to prove that the wanted man is not a member of his family. Detectives even went so far as to warn Avila’s neighbors that he was a pedophile and they should be wary of having him around.
That’s a pretty devastating claim for a guy who makes his living driving an ice cream truck.
When It Really Is Your Parents’ Fault
When a local ShopRite refused to inscribe his son’s name on a birthday cake, Heath Campbell expressed his outrage online. It’s at this point that most people would have joined in to express their support, if not for one thing … Heath Campell’s son was named “Adolf Hitler Campbell”.
Of course, because awful parents never have just one child, Adolf has two sibling, adorably named Honszlynn Hinler Jeannie Campbell, after Heinrich Himmler, and JoyceLynn Aryan Nation Campbell.
So, thanks to the heinous beliefs of their parents, these children are going to grow up named after some of the most despised people in all of history. That begs an obvious question. Does just giving your children awful names constitute child abuse?
Baltimore Ravens Sportscaster Gerry Sandusky
On the list of people you don’t want to share a name with, infamous Penn State football coach and convicted child abuser Jerry Sandusky is likely somewhere in the top five right now. So when Baltimore Ravens sportscaster Gerry Sandusky saw that the man he did a novelty interview with at the 1987 Fiesta Bowl to discuss their shared name was now being accused of multiple counts of child abuse, he knew it was trouble.
And he was right. In the days after the story broke, the non-evil Sandusky changed his Twitter bio to read “I am Gerry with a G. Baltimore sportscaster. No relation to the former Penn State coach.” It didn’t help though; Sandusky has been getting peppered with angry messages and threats on a near daily basis. One person even hoped that Sandusky would be “knifed in prison.”
For his part, Gerry with a G tries to look at things from the best perspective possible, saying “You just have to keep a sense of humor about this.” Call us crazy, but we kind of disagree. You’re probably good to be totally angry about it.