A man named Ken Barlow has wished his 'Coronation Street' namesake would "die in a convoluted murder plot" at times after being ridiculed for having the same moniker as the character.
Ken, who works in publishing, has admitted he was subjected to an "endless barrage of 'How’s Deidre?'" mockery during his younger years, but he has never seen an episode of the ITV soap.
He has also faced pranksters poking fun at him for having the same name as Bill Roache's iconic 'Corrie' character, but he has "grown fond" of his fictional namesake.
Ken said: "There have been times when I’ve wished that Ken Barlow - not, I stress, William Roache – would die in a convoluted murder plot, but he seems destined to evade all such plot lines.
"Secretly, though, I’ve grown fond of the fact that I have a famous, if fictional, namesake. At least it’s provided a talking point over the years.
"I wonder if, when the day comes, I’ll rue the fact I’m the last Ken Barlow standing.
"Or perhaps – and I wouldn’t put this past him – the other Ken Barlow will outlive me, pottering about in an old folks’ home with occasional forays to the Rovers Return even as I go to the grave cursing his existence."
Despite being mocked for his name, Ken - whose dad is Welsh and his mother is Japanese - went to university in Manchester, where 'Corrie' is filmed, and he admitted being down the road from Weatherfield meant nobody forgot his name in a hurry.
He said: "There was one guy, however, who kept asking my name, seemingly forgetting that I had already told him five minutes previously. Later, he confessed that when I replied ‘Ken Barlow’, he thought I was ‘trying to be funny’.
"Another friend, to my great embarrassment, attempted to utilise my name as a pulling technique, approaching women on the dancefloor and announcing, ‘Meet Ken Barlow!’ It was, unsurprisingly, not an inducement to romance."
After uni, Ken has gone on to work in publishing and once discovered he had a colleague called Mike Baldwin, the same name as the 'Corrie' character played by the late Johnny Briggs who was the arch-nemesis of Bill's alter-ego Ken.
Writing a piece for Metro.co.uk’s Hello, My Name Is… series, Ken added: "On a company-wide sponsored walk, a group of pranksters ensured we were introduced with great ceremony and mirth.
"We glanced awkwardly at each other, shook hands, and tried to ignore the chortling of onlookers."
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