2 weeks have passed since I brought you all into the process of selecting a name for my restaurant. I hope you're still having fun! To be honest, I didn't expect it to go on this long. I was positive one of those original 6 new names would be a winner. But that's not what happened, is it? I look back at those names through fresh eyes and wonder what I was thinking. Castropoda?
I'm discovering that this whole Name Game is not just about choosing a name for my restaurant. It's revealing a lot to me about the current state of my mind and heart. Your comments, emails, and votes in the polls have helped me see that I'm stranded on a sandbar at low tide. I'm having trouble connecting with my joyful heart.
The events of the past 6 months have momentarily clouded over that feeling of sunshine. My heart just isn't in the mood to listen to Julie Andrews sing Olallie to the tune of Do Re Mi. It would rather punk out to John McRea of Cake barking "foc i fum" to the tune of Nugget.
I know that those dark clouds are only a part of me. The storm will pass. It already is passing. While the storm's here, though, I figure I might as well sing and dance in the rain. Embrace the storm's fierce power rather than try to pretend like it isn't here. If every day were sunny, how boring would that be? I moved from southern California for a reason.
I spent quite a bit of time this past weekend soaking up some sunshine at the Green Festival. I basked in the positive, upbeat messages of some of my heroes, including visionary activist/trickster Caroline Casey and the soulful Gary Zukav. Zukav reminded the audience that we are the creators of our own experience. We create with our intentions by choosing which part of our personalities we feed: fear or love. To change the collective consciousness of the world, we each need to change ourselves. We need to challenge the fearful, angry parts and cultivate the loving, caring parts.
Maybe it's a tall order, but I would love it if the name of my restaurant could convey that kind of positive message in some subtle indirect way. I want it to connect with those loving, caring, nurturing parts that, in me at least, are currently obscured by clouds.
After 2 weeks of the Name Game, I don't necessarily feel much closer to discovering a name for my restaurant. But I do see that the tide is rising. I'm starting to get some clarity.
Here's a sketch of my current thoughts.
- I prefer for the name to be in English, a language which I know and love intimately, over languages that I merely have a crush on (Spanish or Catalan).
- I prefer a non-food word or phrase, words that can serve as a metaphor.
- I would prefer that the metaphor pointed to Spain/Catalonia in a subtle way.
- My highest priority is a name that conveys the positive role and message of my restaurant: its connection to the earth, its roots in the community, its role in the farm-to-table food chain. (The name that conveys this eco-message aspect the best so far is Viridian. Or, dare I say it, Olallie).
- Ideally, I would also like the name to capture the joy of sharing the table with friends. Cooking and dining is more than a delicious revolution. It's a celebration of life. It is an expression of our love.
- Wouldn't it be great if the name could accomplish all that and not take itself too seriously?
- And be feminine and melodious.
- And inspire culinary adventure. I say, if you're going to bother to try at all, you might as well shoot for the stars.
So, that's the task. Simple enough, no?
Remember, though, that this is just a game! We're not trying to cure cancer here. We're only trying to come up with a name for a little neighborhood restaurant. And, in the end, the name of the restaurant is only of minor importance compared to the food, service, and ambience. Only continue to play along if you are in the mood.
Hopefully my fickleness isn't alienating any of you. I'm simply trying to share my creative process in as open and honest a way as possible. It's much more self-revealing than I thought it would be. Less linear, more messy and chaotic. I'm feeling a touch exposed, naked, and raw. This may sound crazy, but in my recent experience, that feeling of rawness is good news! The primal, creative energy is at hand. It's only a matter of time before the magic will strike.
Let's take a few days off and then regroup. Unfortunately I have some rather nasty business to attend to later this week relating to that less delicious topic I hinted at a few paragraphs ago. It's demanding all my attention and, like it or not, keeping my own personal tides of creativity at bay.
In the mean time, if the Muse whispers in your ear, don't hesitate to leave any new suggestions in the comments of this post!