Monday, April 25, 2011

It's All in the "Brown H"

Establishing, continuing, or changing one’s career path can be a challenging endeavour. In doing so, and especially in a world in which the ease of electronic communication gives backseat to face-to-face first impressions, our names are our introductory ambassadors, heralding our existence. What can make this career creation more difficult, is when one’s name proves a challenge in itself (particularly when it contains a non-existent, culturally specific letter).

Facing the challenge of unworldly articulation approaches for far too long, Arati (R-Thi) Sharma, project manager at Toronto digital experience creation firm Jet Cooper, decided to make an appropriately pre-emptive video detailing the proper pronunciation of her name. Having made the mistake once myself (sorry, A-Rat-tee), and then awkwardly tip-toeing around it saying it for at least a couple weeks (for A-Tari’s sake, not mine) the intent behind this video is both appreciated and justified. The video can be found on the Jet Cooper blog.

However, beyond the retellings of tragic first days in September, and even beyond the hilarious proclamation of the existence of a “Brown H,” (the alphabetic Big-foot of Indian names – has anyone really ever seen it?) the video highlights an oft championed, but rarely executed-so-well capability of our digital age; the individual ability to share our own stories and advance our own identity.

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