Announcing The International Federation for the Betterment of John Young

So when your name is “John Young”, there’s a lot of you out there. Why, as a kid, there were no less than FOURTEEN “John Youngs” in the suburban church we attended. Four of them even shared my middle initial. A Google search for “John Young” returns 161 million results. LinkedIn has more John Youngs than you could shake a stick at. I am John Young, and I am legion.

Famous John Youngs are John Young the Astronaut and John Young the classified-intelligence activist. Also, there’s John Young the musician from Liverpool.

Oh dear sweet Jesus, and let’s not overlook new Internet arrival John Young, Environmental Consultant, in Australia, who has the BEST BIO PICTURE IN THE HISTORY OF THE INTERNET OR ANY OTHER COMMUNICATION MEDIUM:


Okay, so that covers the famous John Youngs. But that’s not the end of it.

Since my personal email address is john dot young at gmail dot com, I get all sorts of email intended for other John Youngs. Especially since any combination of “john DOT” or “john UNDERSCORE” sent to Gmail will still reach me. Every week, I get emails like (I am not making these up):

  • Adventure John Young: Congratulating me on my recent completion of a sailing trip all the way around Australia, and (separately) congratulating me on summitting the toughest multi-patch ascent of a mountain in North America,
  • International Casino Architect John Young: Telling me the time and place of the Macau Congress Centre Construction Site Walk, to check on progress,
  • Model John Young: Letting me know the location of my Apple Computer and Abercrombie & Fitch go-sees for Monday morning, and
  • Considerate Husband John Young: Reminding me to pick up milk and snow tires on my way back home to my flat in the UK.

All of these fine, adventurous, considerate gentlemen are John Young. None of them are me.

So I hereby announce the formation of the International Federation for the Betterment of John Young. Membership is open to John Young. The IFBJY (pronounced “if-BIDjy”) will exist to promulgate the welfare, happiness, and advancement of John Young, and to increase the quality of life of John Young generally. Also, to reroute John Young’s misdirected email when it has mistakenly been sent to John Young. Because I don’t want John Young to keep missing his go-sees.

Charter membership is now open to John Young! John, shoot me an email at john dot young at gmail dot com, and I will add your name to the membership roster, and assign you a serial number based on the order in which you joined. (Sorry, I am John Young Number 001, since I have to do SOMETHING to compete with the International Hero and the two-fisted australian camera operator pictured above.) There is also a John Young number 002 (Nicole’s friend; hi John!)

Those of you that know a John Young, those of you that love a John Young, please copy and paste the following email to them so they can be John Young number 003. Thank you!

Dear John Young:

I wanted you to know about the creation of the International Federation for the Betterment of John Young, which is forming now, and will soon be live at The IFBJY (pronounced IF-BIDGE-ee) is open to John Young, and exists to promulgate John Youngs’ welfare, happiness, and quality of life. And also to forward John Young’s misdirected email that has been mistakenly sent to John Young. And to try to get out from the shadow of the GODDAMN ASTRONAUT. Come on, right? You’ve driven on John Young Parkway in Florida and had to explain about the W. Are we right, John? Sure we are.

Membership is free to John Young. In order to join, please fill out the following form:

All fields except name are optional. Fortunately, name is already filled out for you.
YOUR NAME: John Young
[ ] Not published
[ ] Published, but obfuscated through Javascript
Please use the third person, and lard your bio liberally with references to “John Young”: “John Young enjoys helicopter skiing, NASCAR, and the soft feel of marabou”, etc.:


Please send the completed application to John Young, at john DOT young AT gmail DOT com.

Once your membership application has been received, you will be assigned a serial number based PURELY on the order in which it arrives. It’ll then be published at the website of the International Federation for the Betterment of John Young.

Thanks, John! If you have questions, they may be directed to John Young at the email address above.

Cordial regards,
[your name]
on behalf of John Young

UPDATE: It turns out that John Young, pictured above as the living, breathing embodiment of a Fisher Price Adventure Person, traveled to virtually impenetrable Australian wilderness and brought back photographic evidence of a hitherto-thought-extinct species of Blue-Fronted Fig Parrot. But the haters don’t believe John Young. The IFBJY’s first mission will be a letter campaign reminding the members of the press that John Young is a busy man, and that when John Young completes his research, all questions will be laid to rest. John Young has total confidence in John Young.

6 responses to “Announcing The International Federation for the Betterment of John Young”

  1. I can completely relate! As for other Nicole Valentines there are legion. A realtor in Texas, a coordinator for Red Cross, a bead designer and an ‘equine massage therapist’. I’ve gotten all their mail on occasion.
    I’m thrilled to have brought you JY #2 btw. It’s an honor.


  2. During a meeting last year where my colleagues were talking about the power of Google, I decided to google myself, since I hadn’t for a while, and came across an article in the Guardian that began, “No one knows how long it took Kieran Downes to die. . .” Turns out he was a 42 year old plumber with a black belt in judo who was killed by the Russian mob in Kiev in 2005. There’s also a fellow who is the president and CEO of some company that does gold trading in Asia or something. While I’ve never received any email for another person with my name, I *have* received spam from my own address before.


  3. What were your mother and I thinking? It was 1971; we could have named you Ringo or Dweezle or Moon Unit. Instead we chose family names. If it’s any consolation, your great-grandfather, Charlie Young, used to get phone calls inquiring if he’d finished the laundry order.


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