I have a common name. There are at least three guys named Scott Adams in my local community. Most big corporations have a Scott Adams on the payroll. We're all over the place.

When your name is that common, it's only a matter of time before one of us gets arrested for serial murder, running a Ponzi scheme, or having a dungeon below the house. So far we have been lucky. Most people named Scott Adams end up pursuing hyper-nerdish lines of business. The most famous Scott Adams who isn't me is a pioneer computer game developer. Not too shabby. And recently a junior member of our club won a science award for genetically modifying wheat. Nice.


I wonder if other people throughout history have worried about this sort of thing. For example, one of the most colorful bad guys of all time was called Vlad the Impaler. You could Google him, but his name pretty much says it all. I wonder if after he got famous for being all fierce he worried that some other Vlad the Impaler would come along and ruin his reputation. He wouldn't want to be walking the dog and overhear neighbors talking...

Neighbor one: Who gutted that peasant over by the other dead peasant?

Neighbor two: I heard it was Vlad the Impaler.

Neighbor one: Do you mean the chicken fornicator or the other one?

Right now there's a 16-year old Scott Adams in Canada saying, "Why did that idiot have to write a blog about Vlad the Impaler and ruin my good name???"


Rank Up Rank Down Votes:  +10
  • Print
  • Share


Sort By:
May 13, 2009
If you google my name, Ronald Paquin, you get a priest from Boston who is currently incarcerated for the extraordinarily bad habit of molesting boys. Happily. anyone who knows me is well aware that there is no chance whatsoever that I could be mistaken for a priest. (I think that calls for a double rimshot! One for the obvious, and one for the "rimshot".)

/For the record, I cannot be mistaken for someone who molests boys, girls, women, men, farm animals (or farm implements), soft fruits, hard vegetables or baked goods. Cause that's nasty. Just wanted to be clear.
May 13, 2009
My name is David (Dave) Cameron. So far all I've had to contend with (of which I'm aware) is the leader of the UK's conservative party, which is not too bad. Plus my father, who's a retired Episcopal priest. The only trouble I ever had was that I sounded similar to him at a fairly early age, so I ended up answering business calls & he got invited to movies.

Just kidding. No one ever called to invite me to movies. I was pretty dorky. Still am, but now proud of it.
May 13, 2009
Hi... My name is Mohit Gidwani, and I am from India... I did my majors in Metallurgy and Materials Science, and I am a huge astronomy fan and an Astronomy Olympiad Finalist.

Turns out, one Mohit Gidwani is studying Materials Science in the US, and one more is a huge astronomy fan, studying in south India.

What's in a name, I ask :P
May 12, 2009

My namesake is surprisingly similar to me. Very strange.
May 12, 2009
This looks a lot like a question Dave Gorman asked himself once, which turned out to be great television: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Are_You_Dave_Gorman?
May 12, 2009
"Do you think there are any other Scott Adams out there taking credit for your work? Posting clipped cartoons in their cubicles, telling coworkers that he used them in strips and e-mailing the offending panels? Telling management that he really doesn't need the job because of the great cartoonist pay, but he'll stick around to help them out and get more ideas for his comic? flag this comment "

YES I do it all the time!!!!

Say Yoho - Everything spins around and suddenly I'm elsewhere...
M. Scott Adams (Not Dilbert, Adventure!)
May 12, 2009
Just wait a minute try having Jim Brown as a name. No need for an unlisted number. There are so many of me that it is great. People can't find you among the clutter of others. But of course if you work for a large corporation it becomes a problem. I never seem to get their email but people are always sending the email for me to them. So needless to say I don't always know what people want me to do and they seem to think I should know about it since they sent an email to the other Jim Brown not me. They will argue with me too. But I sent the email. Then I say show me. They do and I say that is the other Jim Brown you sent it too! The typical response is there are two Jim Brown's in this company? My response yes it is a common name.
May 12, 2009
My surname is Swineflu. Luckily it's pronounced "Swinn-EFF-loo"
May 12, 2009
!$%* 'n filter
Andrew P e a c o c k
May 12, 2009
Could be worse, friends of yours names their son Andrew. Unfortunatly his surname is !$%*!$%* Hopefully he never shortens his name of else he'll be Drew !$%*!$% (Dropy C o c k)
May 11, 2009
I loved playing the Scott Adams adventure games on my TRS-80 in the late 70s.

At one point I wondered if you were the same person, and somehow found something on the internet saying you weren't.

Thanks to both for the things you've done.

May 11, 2009
My name (not actually Willie Horton) is very common.
It's so damned common that I almost didn't get a driver's license when I moved to this state: their computer check brought up a guy with the same first & last names and middle initial, born ten years to the day before me, whose license was revoked in New York. If I hadn't looked over the counter at her printout and noticed that he was born in 1951, I would still be riding the darned bus.
Maybe he's the reason I'm on Do-Not-Fly list... and maybe he's the reason that my gun purchases get 'held' about half the time. When my gun dealer calls my transactions in to the ATF, he gets transferred to a supervisor; if there are none available, I get 'held' until one shows up (and observes, I imagine, that I was in fact born in SIXTY-one). This is really inconvenient when I NEED to have a gun RIGHT NOW... oh, wait, that never happens.

If we ever have a child, I want to name it "Ignatz" to spare him (or her) the trouble...
May 11, 2009
Speaking of your-name-related news, I listen to the Adam Carolla show, and was semi-convinced that you were gonna be on it, when I saw the guest listed as Adams Scott. Apparently he's some sort of actor character. I was like, this sounds like the name of the Dilbert dude....hopefully they just screwed up the name.
Anyway, my point is that you should do a podcast with Adam Carolla. I think you two would have a suspicious amount of things to talk about.
May 11, 2009
The people with my name seem to either write inspirational books or engage in fraud and murder people.
And apparently there's an idiot with my dad's name who's on the run from the law and owes people a lot of money. Not a good deal.
May 11, 2009
Well, my real name name is a Major League Baseball player, and a leading character on a CBS daytime drama.
I still make the first page of the Google search tho'.
May 11, 2009
Thanks for mentioning Canada. Always appreciated.

May 11, 2009
Names are powerful, and a lot of fun to think about. I remember when there was a rash of people picking new names, most of which turned out to be Frodo or Sunshine.

Although my name is not all that common in America, it is fairly normal in Slavic countries, many variants. Now on the internets, there are three that get a lot of hits, a journalist in Russia, my daughter, and me. My daughter is the famous one.

At least your name is not Mohammad. Then you might have an identity crisis.
May 11, 2009
Howard Stern (the King of All Media) has this exact problem with Howard K. Stern (the Anna Nicole Smith leech and possible contributer to her death).
May 11, 2009
You can play the Scott Adams Classic Adventure games here:

They also have Infocom if you love 'Hitchiker'.
May 11, 2009
Always reminds me of this conversation from, "Office Space":

Samir: No one in this country can ever pronounce my name right. It's not that hard: Samir Na-gheen-an-a-jar. Nagheenanajar.

Michael Bolton: Yeah, well at least your name isn't Michael Bolton.

Samir: You know there's nothing wrong with that name.

Michael Bolton: There was nothing wrong with it... until I was about 12 years old and that no-talent ass clown became famous and started winning Grammys.

Samir: Hmm... well why don't you just go by Mike instead of Michael?

Michael Bolton: No way. Why should I change? He's the one who sucks.
Get the new Dilbert app!
Old Dilbert Blog