14 March 2009

I Love Jack...

Yesterday morning, on my drive into work, I saw a license plate holder:
"I HEART Jack Russell Terriers"

As regular readers know, I do not "heart" any pets, and here are a few other popular Jacks I don't much care about:

Jack Nicholson (except for his turn as Eugene O'Neill in Reds)
Jack Bauer (I didn't like him in A Few Good Men either!)
Jack Sparrow (THREE movies?! I couldn't stay awake through one!)
Jackie Mason (I'm sorry, what did you just mutter?)
Jack Kerouac (yeah, yeah, yeah, the "Beats," I get it)

Here are the Jacks I do "heart":

Jack McCoy
Jack Daniels (but only in theory)
"Jack and Diane" (hey, it's "just a little ditty")
Jackie Gleason (and "AWAY WE GO!")
Cracker Jacks (and NOT just for the prizes)
Jackdaws, the history packets we used in Mr. Backer's history classes at The Covington Latin School in the mid-'70s. I lost everything in our recreation of the '29 stock market crash (and doing little better in our real life recreation now), but, I'm sad to admit, I was quite successful as a ship captain in the slave trade unit.

and my all time favorite "Jack":

Jack and Bobby (the all-too-soon-canceled television show, starring Christine Lahti as a college professor who has two sons, one of whom grows up to be president)


  1. About half a millenium ago, when familiar human names were being added to bird names (e.g., Mag + Pie, Robin + Redbreast), Jack was probably the most common such nickname prefix. Two of those names, Jackdaw and Jacksnipe took hold, and many others are recorded as local folk names for various birds.

  2. Thanks, Auspex. Would Blue Jay fall into that category too, i.e., is Jay just a shortened "Jack"?

  3. How about "You don't know Jack". He's a lot of fun at a party.

  4. "Jay" probably entered English from French and is probably originally echoïc; all before the English sailed over here and encountered Blue Jays (i.e., the word applied to an Old World species).