From A to S and Back Again
I caught some of the first part of Ken Burns's Andy Warhol documentary on PBS last week. Very interesting. (It was additionally delightful to see a former teacher of mine, Stephen Koch, as one of the talking heads.) I knew that Warhol's surname was originally Warhola, but I didn't know (or forgot) that it went from three syllables to two after someone had mistakenly dropped the "a" from his first illustration credit (for a magazine).
He just let it slide—it became his name!
People, even nice people, often tack on a superfluous sibilant to my last name. Pourquoi?! I always want to say, like in those mattress commercials: Leave the last -s off . . . for savings!