Saturday, August 24, 2013

What's your moniker?

It's intriguing what names people call themselves or others call them.
How do nicknames come about?  My brother was and is called Buzz, which I thought for the longest time was because of his flying. Nope it was because he was busy as a bee as a little guy.

My dad has been called by the foreshortened version of his last name for as long as I can remember.  His first name is his grandmother's last name, which was a common way of naming in the family. I like his first name, but the only one I ever heard call him that was my granny.

Dad seems to be the giver of nicknames in our family.  He has called me Pistol, Dead Eye, and Sis, interchangeably since I was little.  Never my given name, which works just fine, as I never liked it.

He nicknamed Marymine early on as Indian, because of her long braids, and how brown she got in the summertime. She in turn calls him Chief.

My Sean didn't get one that I remember. When Sean was born there weren't a lot of kids with his name, and the few that were spelled it Shawn.  Most people mistakenly called him Seen!  I have a feeling my dad thought a nickname would have just made it harder for him.

I don't know what Himself's grandfather (on the left) was called besides his given name. Well, I do but it wasn't exactly a nickname.  His dad (on the right) was called Captain. No one seems to remember where that came from, as he was never in the military. His children called him that as well.

Himself was called by his given name, or a shortened version of it.  He hated to be called a cowboy.  He never mentioned his dislike for that name in public, but often in private said, "I'm not a damn cowboy, I'm a Cowman!  A cowboy is only interested in fork'n a horse, that's most likely brighter than he is.  A Cowman knows his cattle, knows his land, knows his market, and has the brains to make it all work."  
I called him a lot of things over the years, but never a cowboy.



  1. Before my dad passed, he started calling me a "gentleman rancher", I'm not a cowboy either, and hope I don't turn into one!

  2. SUERTE: Good on Dad. If you know the difference there's no need to worry about it.

  3. I love his explanation of the difference between a cowboy and a cowman. I've met both and he is so right.

  4. APATTI: Yep, We learned the difference as kids, it wasn't just Himself that thought that way.

  5. I usually nickname everyone who is close to me.

    My daughters inherited Mouse, Wishbear, Angel and "Elmo the Magic Baby" - shortened to Elmo or Magic.

    Given names are Amanda, Heather, Kelly and Emilie.

  6. My son started kindergarten with a lot of misunderstandings on how to pronounce his unusual first name. After several days of coming home frustrated, I explained nicknames to him and suggested he think of one for himself. Imagine my shock when he proudly announced he would like to be called Lisa. I did remain outwardly calm and cautiously directed him toward a more common boy's name. Needless to say a few who know the story (like his evil sister) will occasionally call this 42 year old man Lisa.

  7. Yep, names, given names, nicknames and callsigns all tend to be 'interesting' to put it mildly!!!

  8. LL: Would love the back story on your daughters nicknames!

    GRANNYANNIE: OMG, You handled it well... still laughing...thanks!

    OLDNFO: The back stories are usually really interesting.

  9. I seem to have evolved into my nickname - Grannymar - even Buffy the dog comes to me when told to "Go to Grannymar!"