A study done by researchers at Newcastle University shows that if a cow is given a name by her owner, she generates more milk than a cow that is treated as an anonymous member of the herd. By calling their cows by name, farmers can increase annual milk yield by almost 500 pints. The study also shows that naming everything in our world, even inanimate objects like houseplants, cars, appliances, etc…helps us be more up-close and personal with creation as a whole.
We have a funny tradition in my family of naming our cars. My last vehicle, a gray Toyota Camry, was named Glenda. She was sensible, modest, trustworthy….adjectives you would automatically attach to the name Glenda. My current vehicle is a gray Ford Escape. He’s pretty plain, kind of small, but a little bit sporty at the same time, so I named him Chip! He’s not a big and strong truck (like my husband’s double cab Toyota Tacoma named Roy), but he can do anything I need for him to do, which is mostly hauling materials for my DIY projects at home. My daughter Lindsay’s white Kia Optima, Clarissa, is sleek and classy with a little bit of attitude. And for many years, my son Jeremiah drove a big old hand-me-down Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight named Harold, who recently went to car heaven on the side of the interstate between Nashville and Chattanooga (RIP Harold). So, Jeremiah purchased a brand new dolphin gray Mazda 6 which he chose to name…..what else but Dolph Lungren!
It’s funny how such a silly thing as naming your car can make you feel more connected with your vehicle. I feel as if that connectedness is very important considering most of us spend quite a bit of time in our cars driving back and forth to numerous places on a regular basis. Plus we spend a lot of money on the vehicle itself and then even more for maintenance and upkeep just so we can appreciate the privilege of driving. It’s nice to have a more personal connection rather than just strapping yourself in to a couple of tons of anonymous steel, placing it in drive and then barreling down the road from one location to the next. When I open Chip’s door and jump in, I feel as if I have a friend along for the journey.
Being connected with all of creation makes us feel more balanced, more content, and more like we have ownership in this thing called life. You’ve seen the commercial that says “Happy cows make better cheese.” I can definitely see how a milk cow might be happier and more productive when she feels valued, connected, relaxed and loved. After all, can’t we say the same for ourselves?