Carmine’s seeing red over his name!

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I’m madder than the first guy who was ever sold a pig in a poke after he realized he’d been duped over the fact that sometimes things don’t actually mean what you expect them to mean — and sometimes you learn that your own name actually means something that is so disgusting, even I wouldn’t eat it.

Look, you all know the ol’Screecher is synonymous with things like getting the job done, being the squeakiest door in order to get the grease, and ordering what I like, then eating what I order, but I bet even the smartest of you out there didn’t know that the name my saint of a mother gave me doesn’t mean what we all know it should.

I found this out the hard way this week when I was doing what I do every Sunday morning: using the google to find out if typing in my name results in a top hit featuring my handsome mug. Well, folks, the good news is when you type in the whole thing, “Carmine Santa Maria,” that’s just what you get. And I even have a monopoly on all things “screech,” topping out that funny-looking kid from “Saved by the Bell.” So you would think that the second you type in the word “Carmine,” all you would see is me staring back at you.

Well, you don’t!

In fact, this week, thanks to some nitwits over at the Huffington Post (I think Huffington is somewhere on Long Island, possibly in Suffolk, but I am yet to see this post in print), I learned that instead of “strong” or “to win” or “dances with wolves” or “uses bread often to soak up the sauce,” my name actually means “a red dye made from crushed beetles.”

You could imagine my horror when I learned that said coloring was used in some of my favorite dietary supplements! Who knew that whenever I dug into my midnight, or mid-morning, or mid-afternoon yogurt, there was a chance I was eating beetle guts — and, worse, beetle guts that were named after me.

My blessed mother — God rest her soul — must have turned over in her grave when she heard the news, because she was particularly fearful of bugs, as are most normal human beings.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Guts of Crushed Beetles Used as Food Dye, why does it matter that your name has nothing to do with all the great things you thought it stood for, and considering you’ve done so many great things in your life on your own, do you really think people will judge you based solely on the fact that your name actually means something so utterly disgusting that it makes us gag just writing about it?”

To put it simply, yes!

Look at it this way — when I was just a Little Screecher, I got by on three things: gumption, spirited initiative and resourcefulness, the use of the Oxford comma, and the fact that I had the coolest name on the block.

Face it, no one, and I mean no one, kicks sand in the face of someone named “Carmine.” People see a guy named “Carmine” on the street, and they do two things — run for the hills, or sign up for ballroom dance lessons. That’s the power of the name “Carmine.”

And now, that power has been sucked away by one story.

I’d sue for lost revenue, but my dance lessons are free!

The worst part about all this is I’ve now lost my appetite for exotic foods that come out of a plastic container — and it might possibly kill me. I mean, how else am I going to get fruit into my body if it is not surrounded by the necessary creamy cultures and sugar that give it a taste worthy of my buds?

Clearly, you can see just how upset I am about all this. And my lovely wife Sharon says there may be only one way out: come up with a new name and change the old one poste haste, to make sure I avoid the unavoidable consequences of having such a disgusting name.

So I’m headed to the courthouse to officially change my name to Diego Vega, because I think the copyright may have lapsed on that one.

Screech at you next week!

Read Carmine's screech every Saturday on E-mail him at
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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