... is my computer's first name. Her full name: Madelyn Eowen Sterre, plus my last name. I had a bike called Veronica. My camera, which I earned by getting up early a couple of dozen Saturdays to take pictures of kids in soccer outfits, proudly carries the name Max. I have a stuffed animal lion who was named Adrian by me and Romeo by his fairy godmother. For my scariest exam ever, I carried Adrian Romeo to school with me, and back through the Rue de la Conféderation, and I swear it brought good luck.
Anything without a name is bound to be lost by me sooner or later, mostly sooner. (In France, my friend Juliane once accidentally said à plus tot instead of à plus tard and we instantly adopted it as our standard greeting. I lose things au plus tot.) Wallets, passports, keys, jumpers, books, any item that can be carried around: these are completely unsafe against my abandonment unless I have taken it upon myself to forge some bond with them by assigning to them a personality, an identity, the culmination of which is their name.
Madelyn just returned from a rather heavy operation, her hard disk having been replaced after she had only been in my care for 10 months. I feel slightly guilty for any possible part I may have played in this early accident. My stomach still turns when I remember my first bike got stolen in Utrecht by some horrible junky with big scissors (Have you not heard of selling news papers? Could you please get rid your addiction instead of stealing the bike I grew up with?). Although I remind myself that these are things, material&replaceable items, after all, it is no good: once I have personified an object, there is no turning back. The item will fall under my responsibility and I will miss it when it's gone. So welcome back, Madelyn.