This Is For Everyone Who Has The Same Name As Me

People love to make fun of my name. I never liked it when i was growing up, and I’m still not sure I like it, but I like it on other people. Anne. It’s a classic, normal English sounding name, usually used as a middle name. An afterthought.

But it’s awfully plain. And Annie is way cuter. But it gets misspelled quite often by the kids at Starbucks, who like to spell it A-N-Y (not kidding); it sometimes helps to say “Annie …like Little Orphan Annie”. And people love to attach famous monikers: Annie Oakley. Annie Get Your Gun.

So, if you share my name, or any variation of it, this list of Anne’s is for you:

10. Ann-Margret. Probably the hottest one I can think of. Born in Stockholm, Sweden, the rumored paramour of Elvis received Oscar nominations for 1971’s Carnal Knowledge and for The Who’s 1975 rock-opera Tommy. In the ’60’s she earned the nickname “sex kitten” for films like Viva Las Vegas and The Cincinnatti Kid. But my favorite Ann-Margret appearance is in the 1978 movie Magic, as the long lost love of the unstable ventriloquist Anthony Hopkins. She’s raspy, sexy, and partially naked. Too bad she’s stuck in the middle of nowhere with a murderous dummy.

9. Anne Hathaway. Young, beautiful, and underrated. Watch her Osacr-nominated role in 2008’s Rachel Getting Married, a very heavy, very believable movie in which she’s a self-involved bridesmaid in recovery from drug addiction. Before that, there was The Devil Wears Prada (2006) a movie I thought I would hate, after being in the fashion business myself, but ended up loving. I worked with her once on a Japanese hair care commercial; she was the sweetest person ever. In Get Smart (2008) she plays Agent 99; I can’t think of better casting. She says, of her love scenes with Steve Carrell: “Making out with him is like the yummiest lollipop. Dipped in sunshine. And wrapped around in a masculine wrapper.” I just love her.

Wikipedia: Anne, alternatively spelled Ane or Ann is a form of the Latin female given name Anna. Anne is a common name in France. The direct Spanish translation for Ann is Pilar.

8. Anne Frank. Given name: Anneliese Marie Frank. I must have read The Diary of Anne Frank 20 times when I was young. Originally written in Dutch, it covers her life before and during hiding in that little room in Amsterdam from June ’42 to August ’44, starting on her 13th birthday. She wanted to be a writer or a journalist; looks like she got her wish, even though some Holocaust deniers think it’s a fake. Um, whatever. “I want to be useful or bring enjoyment to all people, even those I’ve never met. I want to go on living even after my death!” Wow.

And on a lighter note…

7. Annie, Are You OK? Smooth Criminal. (This counts. It’s my blog.) Michael Jackson’s Smooth Criminal asks “Annie are you OK? Are you OK Annie?”… Pretty much over and over. And what the hell is the song about? Who knows. A little girl who gets kidnapped? Suave looking bandits? Annie’s in danger, that’s all I know. When The Gloved One died that’s all I heard. And yes, I’m OK.

It is sometimes used as a male name in the Netherlands (for example Anne de Vries). It has also been used for males in France (Anne de Montmorency) and Scotland (Lord Anne Hamilton).

6. Annie Lennox. By far the coolest person on this list. She’s Scottish, slightly androgynous, and fearless. And while The Eurythmics were a great band, I’ll never forget the first time I heard her 1992 solo release, the song “Why”. It’s haunting. Her voice overflows with pain and wisdom: listen to her version of “Bridge Over Troubled Water”. She’s an Aids activist, a gay icon, and a self-descibed agnostic. And one hot babe.

5. Anakin Skywalker. This counts, because as a young boy Darth Vader was called “Annie”. (Ok, maybe only once or twice. Again, it’s my blog.) Darthipedia confirms this (and calls the teenage Anakin a “very tall whiny hippie Jedi”). If you never saw Episode 1 of the Star Wars movies, 1. you’re not missing much, and 2. we meet the Man In Black as a 9 year old boy. So cute, right? Not really, because by Episode 3 he gets Natalie Portman pregnant with little twins Luke and Leia, she dies in childbirth, and he puts on his best Saturday night outfit and antagonizes pretty much everyone in the universe. But young Annie was special, a future Jedi knight, and ultimately, a twisted, half machine of a man. So awesome.

4. Annie Wilkes, Misery. Kathy Bates won an Oscar for her role as an obsessed, pig-loving psychopath in this 1990 Stephen King adaptation. The character, clearly bipolar, is loosely based on a nurse named Genene Jones who had 50 children die under her care in a two year period. “Drab, chunky, and porcine-looking” says it all about novelist Paul Sheldon’s number one fan. But let’s talk about the “hobbling” scene: It’s bone chilling. And all she has to say afterward is “God, I love you.” I love a great female villain.

Born Alisa Zinovievna Rosenbaum, Ayn Rand turned twenty-one during her voyage to America from Russia. In part to protect her family back in Soviet Russia, she changed her name. “Ayn” (rhymes with “mine”) was the first name of a Finnish author.

3. Anne Bancroft. God bless you, please. The original cougar is seen, mostly in lingerie and with a cigarette in her hand, in 1967’s The Graduate. So hot. She received an Oscar nomination for seducing a much younger Benjamin (Dustin Hoffman), recently graduated from college; in real life, she was 35, he was 30. The legendary actress, born Anna Maria Italiano, was from the Bronx, won an Oscar for 1962’s The Miracle Worker, and was married to funny man Mel Brooks for 40 years. She claimed Mrs Robinson “overshadowed” the rest of her work, which I guess may be true, but when I hear Simon and Garfunkel’s The Sound of Silence I’m tempted to go out and buy some leopard underwear. And that’s a good thing.

2. Annie Hall. I think this is the most obvious one, if not the most famous one, besides Little Orphan Annie. If you’re over the age of 35, that is. Created from the same mold as classic New York social girls like Holly Golightly and Carrie Bradshaw, Woody Allen’s title character was independent, slightly nutty, and totally endearing. She famously sported men’s clothes (her own), sparking a fashion fad known to this day as “the Annie Hall look”. Most people love this movie even if they can’t stand Woody Allen; just Google the lobster scene. it’s considered one of the greatest romantic comedies ever made. And by the way, Diane Keaton’s real name is Diane Hall, and her nickname is Annie.

” I would never call my daughter Anne. It’s a very old name with no spark or imagination to it. Possibly the most boring name ever.” – Random quote on a baby names web site

1. Ann Darrow. My favorite. She’s a classic beauty (as are most damsels in distress), an aspiring actress, and the object of one huge monkey’s affections. King Kong’s muse pretty much screams her way through three movies, being chased the whole time in the jungle and all; she’s the original scantily clad blonde babe in danger. The first version actually has Kong remove her robe and tickle her legs, a scene that was censored until the re-release in 1971. The 2005 version? Brilliant. I love it, and Naomi Watts could not be more beautiful. The story: the aspiring actress first meets her soul mate on Skull Island, where she’s ruthlessly captured and protected by the gigantic Kong. Eventually he’s taken to New York and shown off as “The Eighth Wonder Of The World” to a theatre full of naive and curious rich people. But this love story doesn’t end well, and after an epic climb up The Empire State Building, the big ape falls to his death. Fay Wray, the original femme fatale, once said, “Every time I’m in New York I say a little prayer when passing the Empire State Building. A good friend of mine died up there.” ‘Twas beauty killed the beat.

So, for all the Anne’s, here’s hoping you like your name a little better ♥ ♥ ♥

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Anne Clendening ♥

Anne Clendening is an L.A. chick, born and raised. She is a writer of creative nonfiction and other sordid tales of life, love and other L.A. adventures.

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