A rose by any other name would wither away and die.”
– My Favorite Year
“é rayhahn, rayhahn” — what the heck does that mean? Well, that’s really a tricky question. The story, as my feeble memory remembers it, goes something like this:
You know how your high school class experienced “transient” classmates at times? You know, someone who comes out of nowhere in your sophmore year, for example, then disappears once the school year is over (or even before). Well, one of those “transient” classmates of ol’ Fertile-Beltrami Class of ’80 was a guy named Ray Hahn.
I suppose it was during one of those ‘tween class lulls where guys stand around outside the classroom and talk about nothing, when Donavin (I’m pretty sure), was mulling over the name Ray Hahn, saying it sounded kinda foreign when spoken a certain way, and then we realised that with a little help, it sounded like a Latin phrase. And of course, you had to have some sort of diacritical mark(s) for it to be officially foreign.
The next question was, okay, what does it mean? Obviously it has to have some strong, deep-seated meaning, and so I posited that it must roughly translate to, “If it moves, burn it.” Donald Sutherland pretty much echoed that phrase in his famous parole hearing scene in Backdraft (for which we got no writing credit).
And therein lies the meaning of “é rayhahn, rayhahn”. Uh, sorry to have taken up so much of your time.