What’s in a Name?

November 8, 2009

Looking back, it amuses me to think about how much time Christian and I put into choosing our sons’ names while they were in the womb, given that we rarely use those names when addressing our children. I’m not sure why or how, but we seem to have taken the concept of nicknames to the extreme. Here’s just a brief sampling of the pseudonyms each of our boys has assumed:

Wyatt Oscar:

• wyatt_earsWy-Wy
• Wosky
• Wosker
• Bosker Brown
• Downtown Bosker Brown
• Brown
• Wosky Doodle
• Oscar the Grouch

Graham Henry:

• graham_earsThe Great Grahambino
• Grahamster
• Grammy
• Hammy
• Hammerstein
• Teddy Graham
• Golden Graham
• Grammy Bear

Sometimes I fear that our children may grow up without actually knowing their names. I can just picture Wyatt’s confusion on his wedding day when the pastor says “Do you Wyatt take [fill in the name] to be your wife?” “I’m sorry, were you speaking to me?” he would reply. Or Graham, as he’s being sworn in as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, asking the President if he could possibly take his oath as “Teddy Graham.”

These fears may seem irrational, but consider this: Not long ago, the Nord family was shopping at our friendly neighborhood home improvement mega mart, and when a nice sales lady leaned down to ask Wyatt what his name was, he responded in a very loud and growly voice, “Wyatt Oscar the Grouch!” She beat a hasty retreat.

Given that our boys are three and 10 months, we have some time before our use of nicknames will become a source of total embarrassment for them, so I guess we should enjoy this time while it lasts. But here and there, we probably ought to refer to our children by their given names so as to avoid an identity crisis before their tenth birthdays.

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Published in: on November 8, 2009 at 8:15 pm  Comments (1)  
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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Lucky for you that both of you like nicknames. Craig doesn’t like nicknames and can hardly stand my lengthy list of nicknames for the kids (Carina the Hina, Pickle Pants, Cal-O, Callenator the Perpatrator, etc…). I think it’s good for them to be made into silly characters an early age – it makes them tougher. 😉


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