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Man Puts New Middle Name Up for Bid

Man Puts New Middle Name Up for Bid



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UINTAH HIGHLANDS, Utah (AP) -- Matthew Jean Rouse doesn't like his middle name and he is auctioning the right to pick his new middle name.

The 31-year-old father of two is selling the naming right on eBay. The "Buy It Now" price is $8,000. As of early Monday, there had been a total of 30 bids, with the high bid $2,175.

The winning bidder gets to choose a new middle name for Rouse, a software engineer.

Rouse also agrees to use his middle name "whenever plausible and not hide it."

"If he wants to walk around with 'Fool' as his middle name, that's his problem," said Rouse's wife, Corinna Rouse. "If someone changes his name to 'Poophead,' he may decide it's a little more important than he thought."

Rouse's middle name was taken from his late grandfather, Jean Stelter, with whom he didn't get along.

His older brother, Bill Rouse, 46, of Mesa, Ariz., bid $1,500 for the name, but was outbid.

"Basically, he's trying to dump our grandfather's name, and I'm trying to buy it and make it stay as it is," Bill Rouse said.

He described his brother as "an interesting kid.

"He liked to draw outside the lines, so this is not atypical of his personality." He does not plan to place a higher bid

EBay spokesman Hani Durzy said, "The general rule on eBay is if it's illegal to do off of eBay, you can't do it on eBay. Selling a name, in and of itself, is not against our policies."

Rouse's auction started Wednesday and ends this Wednesday, unless someone bids $8,000 before then.

The legal change would have to go through 2nd District Court in Ogden.

"I honestly just did this to get a new middle name because I couldn't think of one on my own," Rouse said.

"I really never expected it to go this high," he said. "If I had known it would have gone this high, I would have done it a long time ago."

Rouse's auction item number on www.ebay.com is 5569789188.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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