Why many do ask me if ‘Savage’ is my real name? Once a British woman told me she hates her name ‘Mrs Ball’ and worst of all, my father’s name is ‘Mr. Underworld,’ she said. Yes, many of us have strange names. Some do change and others keep them.
I was born Joel Savage, at Cape Coast, in the central region of Ghana, on January 19, 1957, to Justin Savage, a professional journalist and Nancy-Elizabeth Hudson, an accomplished seamstress and a sewing teacher.
Last year, during my summer holidays in Barcelona, Spain, I gave one of my books to a student I met at the hotel I lodged. At the computer hall, I was flabbergasted when I saw his friends laughing at my name. I pretended I wasn’t listening to their conversation.
Then on January 1, 2016, history repeats itself. At the Kotoka International Airport in Accra, Ghana, when ready to board my flight, an officer at the last checkpoint controlled my passport and the only question he threw at me is: How do you pronounce this word? Pointing directly to the name, “Savage,” I answered.
“Well, I’m glad that you mentioned it yourself, because I thought that may provoke you if I had said the same thing.” He said and gave back my passport to me.
If names have impact on people, then I am exceptional. I am happily married since 1993 and still live with the same woman. If I’m savage, uncivilized, cruel or a beast, my wife wouldn’t have been with me today. My three sons can stand behind me and tell everyone how caring and compassionate their father is.
What I know about myself is, I have intrepid sort of character. I don’t give up and no one can break me down physically, psychologically, emotionally or spiritually. In my life, I take any misfortune as beneficial and every problem as a challenge, because you can’t survive in this world if you submit to problems.
This is the reason many people are depressed, alcoholics or drug addicts. Because they don’t have the will power to fight and overcome those destructive tendencies. Savage is just a name but it has no influence on me. I believe in God and the Bible is my shield and Armour.