The Other Arlene Lassin Contacts Me!

Bizarro World: The “Other” Arlene Lassin Contacts Me!

Posted by Arlene Lassin at 7/28/2009 8:30 AM CDT As a writer, I use three names for my byline. The name Arlene Nisson (my maiden name) Lassin is a real tongue tripper and weirdly rhymy and not exactly something I would choose for a byline if it was up to me. When I married my husband, I took his last name and so I became known as just plain Arlene Lassin – hold the Nisson. Then I had a decision to make. I had never written under just my maiden name, only my previous married name, so I was planning to continue writing, but using the new Arlene Lassin. I had been writing features for a variety of publications for a long while previous to that, but most were done before the age of the internet anyway, so the name change for writing didn’t bother me one bit.

Just to be sure before I used my new name years ago, I Googled my new name and found another Arlene Lassin. She was married to a Marc Lassin as their names showed up together on a variety of sites.

It was comical to me that there was another Arlene Lassin – I don’t think it is exactly your garden variety name, but there it was, so at that point I decided to use both my maiden and married name for writing so there wouldn’t be any confusion. (And it turned out well, because long lost friends can track me down via my maiden name and my writing and the internet)

With one exception: If you regularly read this Hot Flashes blog, then you know I just use the simple Arlene Lassin as the writer’s name. These blogs and blog titles only have so much space so for the sake of separating my “fun” writing with my serious writing, and for space efficiency, it’s Hot Flashes by Arlene Lassin. But it’s really me and not the other, faraway Arlene Lassin, I promise.

I hadn’t thought about the “other” Arlene Lassin in many years, but a funny thing happened the other day. I joined Facebook a while ago as I wrote aboutin this blog, and I have been enjoying the re-connections and networking. And no, I am not spying on my children.

If you know anything about Facebook, people that remember you or know you can request you to be a “Friend.”

The other day I received a “Friend” request from Arlene Lassin.

Yes, the OTHER Arlene Lassin.

She was as amused as I was that someone shared her name and looked me up, knowing as I did, a long time before this connection. We both married distant Lassin cousins so it was great to find long lost family. Seems the Lassins were a large extended family and were fruitful and multiplied. Many branches of the Lassins lost touch. Actually the same thing happened to the Nissons. I find a random cousin, a third or so, every once in a while and we discover we had the same great grandparents.

Ironically the other Arlene Lassin is an editor, so we are both in the writing field, and I wonder if she has dibs on the Arlene Lassin moniker because it was her name first.

When we started talking about family connections and cousins, she mentioned that her father-in-law was Leonard Lassin. My husband’s father – a different man- was Leonard Lassin as well. There were three cousins that were named Leonard Lassin, and they went by Big Leonard, Middle Leonard and Little Leonard to differentiate*** More on this below. As the other Arlene Lassin amusingly stated, “At least we married (into the same names.) But three Leonard Lassins… come on. There were no other L names people? How about Larry, Lee, Lonnie, Logan, Lester etc.”

I might add that this Lassin family is very quirky with their names. Her husband is Marc Lassin – my husband has a nephew, Marc Lassin. (Another person completely than Arlene Lassin’s husband. Not me, the other Arlene!!) Getting confused? Who wouldn’t?

There are two of my husband as well. His name is Gary Lassin, and he has a cousin named Gary Lassin that happens to be president of the Three Stooges Fan Club and so mistaken identity is often a problem. The other Gary Lassin is interviewed a lot due to the comedy trio. There are two cousins named Chad too.

In fact, I cracked up when I first found out that my husband called both sides of grandparents “grandmom and grandpop” as I told about in an earlier blog. To differentiate between the two sets, one was Big Grandmom and big Grandpop, and one set was Little Grandmom and Little Grandpop. I wondered then, with a world of names and titles for grandparents, is that the best they could do?

With an encyclopedia filled with names, why so many repeats?

Obviously, multiples of the same name do not bother the Lassin family. And I guess it doesn’t bother me either because it is the reason I found a new friend with a lovely, if unusual, name.



  • Bonnie Lassin Grant

    Too funny, Arlene!! I am the mother of the younger Marc Lassin. I remember meeting the mother of the older Marc Lassin more than 20 years ago. She told me her son was a Marc with a C, also. Recently, when I refinanced my house, an elderly gentleman came to do the house appraisal and asked me if I was related to Lenny Lassin. I said yes, that was my father-in-law, who is the father of your husband, Gary. It turns out the gentleman was referring to one of the other Leonard Lassins that was cousins with my father-in-law. It’s still a small world. By the way, I’m a member of the Three Stooges Fan Club, run by the other Gary Lassin.

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