Aloha Friday Motivation | Pseudonym Edition | POST:042123


Happy Aloha Friday,

Many would shake their head if I told them that Mark Twain and Nina Simone had a lot in common. Yes, they were both writers, passionate about their art form, passionate about many things. But Twain’s writing, owing to the times, was marked with racial undertones, while Nina Simone’s work fueled her civil rights activism. Through all of it though, the two shared a few ties that bind. Here are two pretty interesting ties!

  1.  Neither Mark Twain, nor Nina Simone were there actual names. Samuel Clemens pen name was born from his time piloting river boats in Mississippi and Mark Twain is a term that refers to the save depth for a riverboat to operate, 12 fathoms. Eunice Waymon took on the stage name Nina Simone (Nina for little one, and Simone after the Spanish actress, Simone Signoret) when she got a gig in a bar in Atlantic city, hoping to it would keep her conservative mother from finding out about her performances.
  1. A line written in Nina Simone’s first protest song, Mississippi Goddam, "Yes, you lied to me all these years; you told me to wash and clean my ears and talk real fine just like a lady, and you’d stop calling me Sister Sadie." was a direct reference to Twain’s “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” “Sadie, the wife of a runaway slave, was a cook and a healer -- a stereotypical strong Black woman who kept her pain, anger and frustration to herself and didn’t talk back.”

Like all artists, Twain and Simone shared a passion for their craft, were outspoken and it didn’t always land them on the right side of things. But what they both left to the world in the form of their cannon is still treasured to this day. You can celebrate Simone’s life by enjoying, Nina Simone's Greatest Hits and check out these Twain Fun Facts as well.

Lastly, on this Big Word Day, here is the current biggest word in the English language: pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis. Actually very simply to spell as it is super phonetic, it refers to a particular form of lung disease from inhaling very fine silicate or quartz dust.