Thursday, August 27, 2009

Pick a Name and Stick With It!

If I was the King of the United States, one of my first decrees would make it illegal for any bank to change its name . . . ever again. . . .henceforth.

For the past thirty years, banks across this country have been on a name-changing rampage and it should stop.

One of my first jobs out of college was with American National Bank in Austin Texas.

Fine name. It gave you confidence. It had had that name for a century.

Then, two weeks after I became an American National Bank employee, it merged with Mercantile Bank of Dallas (along with a lot of other banks). The bank execs began the name-changing by giving them all the generic name of MBank.

Oh my goodness, they feigned such corporate enthusiasm over the new name! According to them, MBank going to be the greatest name in all of banking history.

MBank was bought out by Bank One two years later.

Which was bought out by Chase (which used to be Chase Manhattan Bank for, like, five hundred years.)

But now it’s just called Chase. And I’m sure the bank execs are all enthused over this name. (Which happens to be, well, . . . stupid. It’s just a verb. What are they chasing?)

I also used to work for Victoria Bank & Trust Co. Nice name. Our competitor across the street was First Victoria National Bank. (Another nice name) We would often call First Victoria just to hear their switchboard operator answer the phone. She would say the name blindingly fast except for the word “bank” which she would stretch out all sing-songy.

“Hey. Check out the woman answering the phone at First Victoria!”

. . . ring . . . . .ring. . . .

Firstvictoranational BAAAaaaa-aaank!”

I have no idea what their name is now. I’m sure she had a hell of a time when the name changed.

In the lobby of my workplace is Associated Bank.
(Associated . . . . with what?)

Down the street from my apartment is Fifth Third bank and their logo is 5/3 like the fraction. I’ve often wondered how it got such a strange name. (The fifth of the third . . . of what?)

Here’s the scoop. Their mothership bank in Columbus (or maybe Cincinnati) is on the corner of 5th Street and 3rd Avenue. Fifth and Third.

I don’t know. I would just feel weird putting my hard-earned money in a bank whose very name is an improper fraction.
Ya know?

So, if I were king, I would not allow any bank to ever change its name ever again. If they had enthusiastically picked a stupid name like Chase or 5/3 or Associated-with-nothing, they would just have to just stick with it.



At 3:17 PM , Blogger f8hasit said...

I agree with you on every point.
You have my vote for King!


P.S. As King, could you just Blow-Up Chase bank? As a Washington Mutual (WaMu..huh?) customer and credit card holder, Chase bank bought them and then proceded to close my account. So I would like them to just go out of business...or get blown-up. Thanks!

At 11:57 PM , Blogger yellowdoggranny said...

i live in a small town..i love my bank..they know me, my kids, my grandkids and they ask about them..and laugh at my tacky jokes...i'd trust them with no only my money but yours.

At 8:55 PM , Blogger Miss Healthypants said...

LOL! I love the improper fraction comment. You make me laugh! :)


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