Last year we had a post honoring the world’s Franks. The time has now come to celebrate another workmanlike, perfectly adequate name that for some reason has fallen on hard times: Freds of the world rejoice!
In doing a bit of research for this post, we stumbled upon a delightful/simpatico resource that honors the Freds of the world in a worthy manner: The Fred Society. There may be some overlap here of the Freds we highlight, but I hope our combined efforts can build more Fred-respect and perhaps create a resurgence of kids named Fred.
Here’s to you, people named Fred!
Fred McGriff – There have been a slew of notable baseball Freds (Fred Lynn, Freddy Garcia, Freddie Freeman, Freddie Sanchez, and of course my friend JD’s favorite manager, the much beloved Fredi Gonzalez), but the Crime Dog is the best of the bunch. The Tampa native managed to smash 493 career dingers despite his awful swing that looked like an old left-handed man swinging a cane at a mosquito.
Fred Astaire – Outside of MC Hammer, maybe the best dancer of the 20th century.
Fred, Right Said – The 60s gave us Civil Rights and Dylan, the 90s gave us Pokemon and Right Said Fred; the creators of the timeless tribute to unmerited braggadocio I’m Too Sexy.
Fred Savage – Fred hasn’t done much for us lately, but he knocked it out of the park in the Wonder Years and to a lesser extent as the little boy in the well-loved Andre the Giant vehicle The Princess Bride. ***Bonus side note: I once maybe saw Paul Pfieffer at the Atlanta airport. I tailed him all the way to the Checkers outside Concourse B, then peeled off when he spotted me and started looking agitated.
Fred Flintstone – Patriarch of the noble Flintstone clan of Bedrock.
Fredrick the Fair – You wouldn’t believe how many kings have been named Frederick, but we are highlighting FtF (also known as “Frederick the Handsome”) because of his remarkable story.
Born in Vienna in the late 1200s to a noble family, he and his cousin/rival Louis IV were both elected to be king (by different electors), so they battled for many years over who was the rightful heir to the German throne. Fred eventually was defeated and imprisoned in a castle. His brother’s forces were still giving Louis’ regime a hard time, so Louis decided to free Fred on the condition that he swear an oath of allegiance and to persuade his brother’s troops to stop fighting Louis’ rule. Frederick was unsuccessful in persuading his brother to stop causing trouble. So what did he do? He voluntarily went back to his imprisonment.
Eventually Louis and Frederick managed to reconcile, and became co-rulers.
Freddie Mercury – Iconic Queen front man.
Fred Taylor – One of the greatest players to ever come out of “The Muck” (Pahokee) here in Florida.
Fred Funk – Pro golfer who holds a degree in law enforcement. Sounds like an excellent CBS drama to me: Pro golfer by day, crime fighter by night: Fred Funk takes the bad guys into the rough!
Frederick Douglass – Simply one of the greatest Freds of all time.
Fred Rogers – Another all-time great Fred, Mr. Rogers is still inspiring all of us to be better neighbors. Last year after reading a story about Mr. Rogers I removed a spiteful cactus wall I’d planted just to anger my neighbor.
Frederick Banting – For all you Canadian parents out there seeking Canadian heroes for your kids to look up to other than J. Bieber, this guy discovered insulin.
Fred – This Brazilian soccer star is known for scoring the fastest goal in history (3 seconds into the match!), but also deserves credit for deciding that his name is just going to be FRED.
Freddy Krueger – The Germanic (Krueger’s German right?) finger slasher is still haunting our dreams after all these years.