Weekend Question Thread

If you could or had to change your name, what would you change it to?

(I used to hate my name because there were no other Allisons anywhere, but now I like it because there aren’t a lot of Allisons anywhere.)

A.

32 thoughts on “Weekend Question Thread

  1. Dan says:

    Ramses II.

  2. liprap says:

    Hah! What a kick! I used to hate my first name because I couldn’t find it on any of the personalized crap offered at gift shops (there were loads of Jennifers at school when I was growing up who had NO problem getting a cool insulated lunchbag with their name on it, so why couldn’t I get Leigh?). I insisted with no luck that my family call me by my middle name for a while so that I could get some of that stuff.
    I like my name now and wouldn’t change it for the world…but I guess if witness protection had to be in place or something like that, I’d go for Natasha, the bad girl from Rocky and Bullwinkle.

  3. BuggyQ says:

    Hey, Dan! I really love Abu Simbel, man. Nice work.
    I love my name, except when it is shortened to the standard diminutive (Laurie/Lori/Lorrie is *not* my fucking name, thankyouverymuch), which happens way more than it should. Note to anyone reading: don’t presume to shorten somebody’s name unless they tell you to, m’kay?
    I would like to add an E to my middle name (Anne of Green Gables is a favorite of mine).
    But if I *had* to change the whole kit and kaboodle, I like Katharine, and I’d go by Kate.

  4. geor3ge says:

    geor5ge.

  5. Anna Granfors says:

    I actually kinda liked the Second Life name I got assigned–Kirsty Heliosense. Mostly cuz I love the late, great Kirsty MacColl–if you never heard her, you should, and you might have without knowing it–her early “They Don’t Know” was covered by Tracey Ullman, but she made twenty years of great music after that before her untimely death in 2000. (Still my most unfavorite one-two punch–Bush’s November coup and her death in December. I *knew* the world was going to shit right about then.) Her last album, “Tropical Brainstorm” (2000) was her love song to her final days exploring and loving Cuba and Brazil, and features the other song you might/should know, “In These Shoes?” (Sex and The City used it, and it was the themesong to the first season of The Catherine Tate Show.)
    Anyway. Obviously, I loved her, and would steal that name in a NY minute.

  6. Paddy says:

    I totally lucked out. Born Patricia Ann, but my loopy Irish mom and grandmom both called me Paddy from birth. Love, love, love my name, mostly because it’s unique and just fits me. I’ve only heard of two other female Paddys, and believe it or not, one of them lives in my area.

  7. Max Powers.
    Actually, Alexander or some variation of that.

  8. I was named for the song “Windy” by The Association – but thankfully, the drugs they used to provide birthing mothers with in the late 60’s had her spell it like Wendy in “Peter Pan”. For the longest time, I HATED that song. Now I love it – it’s pretty applicable. (especially when I’m walking down the streets of New Orleans, I really am smiling at everybody I see – except Nagin/Riley if they were to deign to be in public)
    If I were to change my first name…I don’t know what I would go with. Maybe, “Elspeth”? πŸ˜‰
    Els

  9. Randy Owens says:

    I actually got so fed up with being confused by how many Johns there are, and not knowing whether I was being addressed when I heard my name, that I decided when I moved somewhere I didn’t know anybody anyway, about two years ago, to start going by my middle name. So here I am.

  10. virgotex says:

    I actually did change my last name 25 years or so ago for a combination of reasons. I was coming out, I was at the time on the outs with my father and I wanted to make a statement, and my original name was constantly mispronounced, so I took the last name of my maternal great grandmother, who I’d already been “named for.” Yeah, it’s weird to look at her gravestone and see my full name.
    As for the first, I never thought about it. The name I’ve always been called is my middle name, actually a diminutive of it, and my real first name is Susan, so I have to use that pretty frequently with official docs, etc. So, I’ve always felt like I already had “another” name.

  11. BlakNo1 says:

    Hated it at first because of the lack of Kyles, now like it for the same reason.
    Just don’t tell me to smile, walk a mile, or that I look like a crocodile.

  12. pansypoo says:

    i just want to change the first initial from Y to E. make the unusual name more so.
    or maybe a name that starts with Q. i love my Qs. but maybe i could change the c in my middle name to Q.

  13. missy says:

    I am still debating changing my name to Missy … even at the decrepit age of 43.
    My parents were at a very contentious stage in their marriage when I was born, and couldn’t agree on whether I should be “Susan Michelle” (after my Mom’s sister Susie and the BeatlesMichelle), or “Jeanne Michelle” (after my Dad’s dad, whose name was “Jean Milford”).
    Much loud and antagonistic debating ensued, I am told, and so I went home from the hospital with the first name “Baby” and the middle name “Girl.”
    M&D finally agreed on “Jeanne Michelle” – with the caveat that I would, at least in babyhood, be called “Missy”: the nickname of my mom’s roommate in college (whose real name is Allison – go figure).
    “Missy” stuck, and I carry around a notarized affidavit in my wallet confirming that “Missy” and “Jeanne” are the same person, so that I can cash checks made out to “Missy” written by folks who know me only by that name. It’s a mild to moderate pain in the ass, depending on my mood.
    But most days I’m just glad they went with “Missy,” as the world is full of Susans, and when I look in the mirror I just don’t see a “Jeanne” there.
    (My namesake Missy now goes byAllison; if you’re a denizen of New Orleans you may know herwork.)

  14. gyma says:

    If I adopted the Native American tradition, I would most likely become MeWhoHatesStupidPeople or maybe BitchyWoman. If not, maybe I’d chose something adrogynous like Drew or Dana just to keep ’em guessing.
    But I agree 100% with BuggyQ. I always vowed to never stick a child with a name that could be shortened against his/her will. As a child I have a clear memory of being asked by my uncle’s mother, “Debbie is a cute name for a child, but what will they call you when you grow up?!”
    Answer: Deborah

  15. Missy! OMG, my middle name is the same as yours for the same song!!! πŸ™‚ (I never had a time of disliking it) Could be ’cause I’m about to be 42. Same era!
    Cheers,
    Elspeth

  16. Gyma, in the N.A. trad, I’d be “Shops with a Fist” or “Middle Finger Woman”! πŸ™‚
    Elspeth

  17. VictoriaB says:

    Naming me “Victoria Alexandra” is just about the only right thing my mother ever did, so no, I wouldn’t want to change it.
    BuggyQ and Gyma, thank you for your comments about people who diminish one’s name without permission. When asked, “Do I call you Vicki?” I reply, “Not if you value your front teeth.” And that’s when I’m being nice. The older I get, the less nice I am.
    Peace, V.

  18. Athenae says:

    Heh. Mr. A called me Alli once. ONCE.
    A.

  19. dancinfool says:

    My birth name is Andrea. My nickname since the age of 6 weeks is Ditty. If I could change my first name, I’d choose Eleni, to match my Greek last name.

  20. CybScryb says:

    I was born Kody toward the end of the Eisenhower administration and have gone through life enduring misspellings, having the name made fun of and over the past couple of decades seeing lots of kids being named Kody come into this world.
    But the most fun is getting a phone call from someone expecting to find a woman named Kody on the end of the line and getting that long pause when my baritone heading towards bass answers. Wouldn’t change a thing about my name.

  21. Interrobang says:

    My name sounds like somebody got it at Paul Stuart or someplace (thanks, mom and dad!), which is great if I want to give people the impression that I’m a willowy blonde suburbanite WASP in a flowered dress, but unfortunately I’m stocky, dark-haired, too butchy to wear dresses, and as far as anyone knows, too Eastern European and not Christian enough to be a WASP. My first name is disturbingly common, ubiquitous across the Abrahamic religions, and my particular spelling of it (slightly unusual) is the one preferred by Muslimas. I have two middle names, one of which is a badly ironic joke in my case (I’m “Grace,” not “Claudia.”)
    If I could figure out what name I actually wanted, I’d scrap the whole thing and start over. (Korim li Nachman, ve’ani megam-gam-gemet.)

  22. liprap says:

    I hear variations on the naming arguments when it comes to folks who are expecting, and the one I still can’t get over is some cousins of my husband who maned a daughter of theirs Maisie. MAISIE??? Poor girl’s gonna be trying to claw her way up some corporate ladder someplace and that name’s gonna be her Achilles heel. All I can think of that’s gonna face Maisie in the future is “permanent milkmaid status”.
    Sad thing is, names are gonna have connotations no matter what, whether it’s some jerk you knew in school who had a name up for consideration for your offspring, or they seen too young, too old, too religious, too weird, too popular, too susceptible to nicknames, whatever.
    Our son shoulda been named Muhammad and that’d be the end of it.

  23. left rev. says:

    I would NEVER change my name. I mean, what wouldn’t you give to be called HeatherStopThatRightNow in a loud voice several hundred times a day?
    And with a middle name like IMeanItMissy, who could ask for anything more?

  24. pansypoo says:

    missy. i know what you mean, but so far explaining pansypoo is my cat and she can’t endorse checks was enough for back to clear ebay issues.
    i think i already changed my name. altered my given name for a greatart name as it is androgynous.

  25. shane says:

    I hated my given name all my life and legally changed it as a 50th birthday present to myself. And it was never a matter of trying to decide what to rename myself (it’s not the name I use here). I never considered any other name but the one I changed it to. One unfortunate incidental, though: my husband had had the first initial of my given name tattooed over his heart and had to go back to the (very skillful) tatoo artist who had done it and have him “morph” the letter into the first letter of my new name. Thanks, babe!

  26. …well, if Ihad to change my name (say, for example, to try to escape the guilt and confusion caused by a winger Party Member in the Southeast who has the same first and last name as mine, although some of the errant e-mails I’ve received over the years have been great fun because of the rich opportunity for creative replies), I’d probably change it to Jack, since all these years on the intertubes have made me grow accustomed to it…

  27. Henry Holland says:

    My name is James, I go by Jim, nothing bad, but I *LOVE* the name Graham (pronounced Gray-um). My dad would kill me if I changed it though, since he’s James Jr. and I’m James III.

  28. Bmore says:

    Dagnabit Johansen.
    Elegant and cranky.

  29. Sandman says:

    I’m perfectly happy with my name, but if I had no choice but to change it, I would use my old D&D name from high school: “Zarnok the Great.”
    Yeah, I was a nerd. Still am. So what?

  30. brettvk says:

    I changed my name as a 25th birthday present to myself. I’d never liked my birth name – among other things, I was in one of those families where everybody got the same first initial (although it didn’t go to Duggar levels).
    I was working as a long-distance telephone operator at the time and picked my new first and surnames from a rolodex of city names/area codes kept at each workstation on our cordboard [late ’70s technology]. I chose an androgynous first name but kept my middle name as an heirloom of my mother’s line.
    I found a hungry lawyer who did it on the cheap, lucky me. The most fun part of the court hearing was that, after I’d testified that I wasn’t changing my name for nefarious purposes, the judge called my lawyer to the bench just before he signed the paper. He leaned over to my lawyer and pronounced, in a portentous whisper: “There’s more here than meets the eye.”

  31. serge says:

    We love you as Allison and Athenae. As names go, in my case, my father was teaching at St. Louis University when I was expected to be born on March 7, the feast day of the subject of the course he was teaching then, St Thomas Aquinas.
    He made a bet with his grad students that he would name me Thomas Aquinas if I sprang forth on the eponymous feast day; to my eternal ignominy, I did, and thus was I named. “serge,” for obvious reasons, is a far better nom de plume…

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