The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Self-searching reveals plenty


December 6, 2008

Have you ever Googled your own name?

Admit it. We’re all curious to see what’s out there on the Internet with our name on it.

My name returns a jackpot of results when it’s plugged into a search engine. The other night it returned 8.25 million results while my wife’s name only got back a measly 11,000.

I was blessed with what amounts to two first names, Karl and Terry. People frequently call me by my last name thinking it must be my first name. They also frequently spell my first name with a “C” instead of a “K.” I’ve overcome that by reciting the words “Karl with a ‘K’” as I’m introducing myself to people.

You would think the uncommon spelling of my first name would lead to a lackluster Internet search but that’s not true at all. Evidently I share a name with a Stanford professor of political science. This person shows up in lots of college reference spots as well as having donated $1,500 to the Obama campaign.

There is a Karl Terry in the news near Houston who has had a missing persons report filed on them. Another Karl Terry is a roofing contractor in Wittersham, near Tenterden, Kent, England. His company specializes in conservation of historical properties, specifically pitched peg roofs. He re-roofed Heather Mills' (Paul McCartney's ex-wife) home in Sussex and Mohamed El Fayed’s (Princess Dianna's boyfriend's father) mansion in Surrey.

There is another Karl Terry who is a banker in London and an actor named Carl Terry evidently appeared in the 1991 movie “The Firing Line” with Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed, who is married to the lead singer of the band Kiss.

The most interesting guy out there that I share a name with however is a bony-kneed old rock 'n’ roller from England who got his start at The Cavern Club in Liverpool alongside the Beatles.

Dubbed the “Sheik of Shake,” he mostly appears with the group Karl Terry and the Cruisers and is popular in England and Germany, though he’s played concerts in the U.S. A recent video on YouTube of the band shows a fellow in a red suit and jacket, looking a lot like Captain Kangaroo, out front crooning “Mack the Knife” and a plethora of old rock favorites while carefully performing the splits onstage.

A few more clicks revealed footage of a guy with much fuller hair and better moves. His Web site says he first appeared at the Cavern Club with the Beatles and the Zombies on Sept. 20, 1961. comes up with 65 listings for my name, with the closest being in Weslaco, Texas.

Another Web site lists stupid facts for the name, including:

• Twenty-two percent of the letters are vowels. Of one million first and last names the site looked up, 97 percent had more vowels.

• Backwards it is Lrak Yrret.

• In Pig Latin it is Arlkay Errytay.

• Based on U.S. Census data, they estimate 73 Americans go by the name Karl Terry.

• The origin of the first name is from the Greek root of Charles. Its meaning: manly.

Manly, huh? That seems like a good place to end this silly little column.

Karl Terry writes for Freedom New Mexico. Contact him at


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