Friday, January 22, 2010

What's in a nickname?

I used to tell people that I answer to everything, especially when they were embarrassed at getting my name wrong or forgetting it completely. They’d laugh and it would divert attention away from their faux pas. That’s just how I roll. But, what causes an individual or group to decide on a nickname? More specifically, why do my people, friends and acquaintances, decide what nickname best suits me personally?

My dad started it. He called me Boo, which he then lengthened to Booze, and I had to explain that I was not an alcoholic, at the age of three, when my dad called for his Linda Booze.

I know what you’re thinking: Linda Booze is not so bad, especially when you consider the next nickname to surface. Again, I blame my dad, since it’s his last name that caused it all. I do not wish to reveal his last name, since privacy is everything but it rhymes with this piece of male anatomy. Do you see where I’m going with this? Male anatomy? Rhymes with…

Yes. Foreskin. Foreskin. Foreskin. Foreskin. Foreskin. It’s kind of addicting – to put it out there. The name, not the appendage. That would be illegal. And kind of gross if foreskins were continually flapping in the breeze. I don’t know about you, but I would be desensitized after a while, all those penises all the time. Every.where.I.looked.

There’s not such a segue into the next nickname: Larry. There are more than a few people on this earth who do not know that my name is Linda. It started with my friend Selena, who, in a quest to keep me away from the scissors or the hairdresser when I was growing my once-short hair, decided if I did cut it off again that she would call me Larry. I never did succumb and go under the scissors but the nickname stuck, at least until Scribe was born.

I can't take credit for the Scribe label, though I think it's one of the coolest nicknames I've had or heard. Hell, I even call myself Scribe when I feel like talking in the third person. It happens occasionally and more likely on here. My friend Buddha, the best shiatsu therapist and friend around, is a Buddhist monk who is in the process of writing a book about saving the world. It's enlightening and entertaining, with many entries that make you stop and say hmmmmm.... I still laugh when picturing Ghandi popping a cap in someone's ass. You had to be there, and I was, transcribing Buddha's thoughts onto paper (or at least a computer screen and subsequent disk). He started calling me Scribe and thankfully this one stuck too.

So, Scribe it is. There is no more Foreskin and only the occasional Larry. Linda Booze still rears its head, only when my parents are in town and my dad's in a particularly reminiscent mood. Linda Booze I can handle. The others are another story. I don't have short hair and in no way resemble a boy (thankfully that stint ended in grade nine when I was out of my awkward phase), and even though I have balls at times, I have never had my genitals hanging outside of my body.Okay, it felt like that once after a particularly grueling Spin class, but that was a one-time occurrence.

If I hear a Hey You while walking down the street it's more than likely I'll turn around. It would be the same if I heard any variation of Linda and even Larry. And, if "Scribe" were to be yelled in any direction, I would run and throw my arms around the person since it's either one of you, my blogger friends, or Buddha, and all of you rock.

Scribe out, yo.


  1. I'm so sorry to read about Bella, you have my sympathy, what a loss.

    As for nicknames those are some strange ones given to you - Scribe's good - Go Scribe!

  2. Heh, Aunt Juicebox is a more recent acquisition on the name dept, but my dad always called my Fuzzy, because I was born with a ton of hair. Most people just call me Hezzie or Heathie. Real unique, huh? lol

  3. Thanks Lulu - much appreciated. It gets easier day by day. I still have great memories.

    As for the nicknames, I will definitely stick with Scribe. The others are so out.

    Aunt Juicebox, I love your nickname, no matter how new it is. I love the "Fuzzy" one too. Despite your normal nicknames, I think you're incredibly unique!