Thursday, October 20, 2011

What's in a nickname?

Do you have a nickname?

I have a few.  Some of them are obvious, like "Square Toothed Girl," others I would never repeat for fear that they may be inadvertently yelled out in the grocery store the next time you see me. I am also a shameless nickname giver.  My habit of bestowing nicknames came from the fact that one of the first things I was ever called was a nickname.  My great-grandfather called me Ethel Fitzwater and Little Miss Never Shuttum-uppum.
(Wow. Did. He. Know. Me.)

With nicknames like that it's no wonder that I'm a chronic nickname bestow-er.  I've given just about everyone that I know a nickname--friends, family, strangers...doesn't matter, it's almost an unconscious act;  like breathing, but more fun.  Indeed, many of my dear ones know the names by which they are referred to in my head.

There's Rocky Babe Boa, for her ability to fight off a purse snatcher single handedly with nothing but a hockey stick and a pair of stilettos.  There's Pete, who is petite and feminine despite her nickname.  There's Sassy Britches, who has the best fashion sense I know and always works the actual sassy britches she is undoubtedly wearing--Then there's Clover, who sports indelible ink of the same shape which she got one night in a seedy tattoo shop in a suburb of Salt Lake City.  There's also Lover, (who isn't my lover) but a lover of life and the opposite of hate, thus the name.

Other nicknames I've given or proudly claim as my own, even though I've stolen them:  Fidget, Purse Nazi, Hippy Chick, TBeck, Snoozefest, His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Dullness, Lover-ly, Graphook, Greasy Bits, Oregeritapn'caps, BRam, Clang-Clang-Clangity-Clang-Shoo-Bop, Ladyface, Brillo, I-Can't-Believe-it's-not-Beelzebub, Freakshow, Hollow Legs, His Eminence, Mamacita, The Flying Nun, Handlebars, Biker Chick, Communist, Hot Lips, Porcupine, Butthook, Chops (Lamb and Beef,) Pretty Pretty, Baby Girl, Short Shorts, Dirty Girl, Weirdo-Menerido, Nylon Runner, Git, Stoops, Heebs, Smooth Daddy, Clanker, Headshrinker, Baglady, High Priestess of the Land O' Drama Queen, Pinochio-ee-oh, Wicked Witch o' the Baby Mamas, Psycho Dog Bone Cheese Meat, Hott Stott, Whizpopper, Southern Belle, Mouthy, DooBeeDoo, Bug, Bumblebee, Choooopy, G Pop, Granddaddy Crazy Pants, and the list goes on and on...

Are you a nickname giver?  Do you have a nickname? 


  1. Jim used to call Traci 'Spacy Traci'. Not in the way you just thought, but she was reading Omni magazine when she was in the third grade and loved the night skies. She would draw her art, turn it over, draw a little Earth and sign under it Spacy Traci.

    I started calling her this weird combination of her first and middle names and then it started morphing thus, TraLynski, TraLouski. Louski, to Lucy. I still call her Lucy and she still responds. We haven't come up with a nickname for Reagan yet.

    My cousin's sons name is Chain, my uncle calls him Link. As in chain link fence. Her other son's name is Forest, he calls him Tree.

    I Love to give nicknames. But few know what they are. Jim has at least a dozen.

  2. I was Kit or Kitty in high school, not because my name is K/Catherine in any shape, form or fashion, but because I was such an avid cat lover and sleek and petite my own self that I would climb up to the 4 foot space above the instrument cubbies in the band room and take - what else- cat naps in between school ending and rehearsal starting. Some people were introduced to me that way, and some of them still call me either one or both. And I still answer. :)

    As for bestowing the nicknames, I actually used to do the opposite and call my friends I loved the best by their full first names as a sign of devotion. Rosie to everyone else was Rosalie to me. Bradley, not Brad; James, not Jim, etc. I'd twist them a little sometimes too. Christamina, rather than Christina.

    I used to be the 'Christine' to a 'Meg' - a friend and I had a running reference to the main characters of Phantom of the Opera.

    And of course, my "Cute Gremlins" have all got nicknames. Ranging from eldest to youngest, they are 'Boy', 'Icky', 'Squirt' and 'Bug'. The last two of which were bestowed by my best friend and sister in law, who answers when her husband, my husband or I call her 'Dude' or 'Kid'. Mostly 'Kid'. LOL :)

    I love nicknames! I should make it a point to start giving out more of them... :) Awesome post!

  3. Ha! You're fun. I'd like a cool nickname, please... :)

  4. I really loved a few of those nicknames in your list...

  5. My dad has called me Rainbow, Bow for short, since I was 12. There are other nicknames but they are too close to my real name to share.

    Love your creativity in giving nicknames to others...wonder what mine would be.;-)

  6. I never had a nickname, unless you count the one my brothers made up: Susie, Susie, 2 X 4... They knew I was sensitive about getting fat (I wasn't, I just developed early). Nope, no loving nicknames.

  7. Hmmm, I've had a few that were plays on my name, but the one I recently adopted is "the grammer gestapo!" However, I really wish there was one that sounded less militant. :) I love your creativity... too cute!