Bitch on the Blog

March 16, 2017


Filed under: Accuracy,Bureaucracy,Errors,Family,Future,Psychology — bitchontheblog @ 20:39
Tags: , , , ,

Let me bore you, and ask you as, no doubt, have done so before: What’s in a name?

I don’t mean surnames. From a woman’s point of view and/or if you were born out of wedlock, your father later marrying your mother, you may have had as many surnames as me, namely a few. I will not beat Liz Taylor’s record as I am not the marrying kind.

So, first names. How did you come by your first name? If any of you have already told me, that’s fine. I am more than happy to be told the same story many a time. Repetition is what anchors an anecdote in one’s mind.

Myself? I am rather in love with the story how I became an Ursula. All down to my beloved grandmother who registered my birth. My mother’s preferred choice would have caused me no end of pain. She registered her second daughter under the name she wanted to give me. Which is why I am a little bear and my sister is a rock. Not as in reliable, but as in immovable. Stone. Hard as nails. She was followed by our brother, named after “The Great”, and Cornelia, our youngest, who feels short changed to this day. What Cornelia doesn’t understand that someone does have to be the youngest – even if you were part of quadruplets. Perish the thought.

So, please do indulge me and tell me, if you know or at least have an inkling, how you came by your first name. Why you love it, hate it, are indifferent to it. What you’d name yourself if you could be arsed to apply for a name change. What was your name shortened to if at all? No guess what our very own Nick’s of “here and now” fame complete name is. And, last but, not least: Were you given a nickname? By whom? And why?






  1. My mother heard of a novelist by the name of Kylie Tennant and decided to use Kylie as my name.
    The name Heidi had been under consideration but mum and dad were given a puppy sometime before I was born and the pup got “Heidi”
    She was a wonderful dog and lived until we were both 16

    Comment by Kylie — March 16, 2017 @ 21:31 | Reply

    • I dare say you had a lucky escape, Kylie. Whilst “Heidi” (author Johanna Spyri) was one of my most cherished early childhood characters one hardly wishes to be forever associated with a wholesome red cheeked little girl dressed in a dirndl, and the Swiss Alps. However, the name Heidi is less likely to conjure up the aforementioned image if its a dog, particularly if “she was a wonderful dog”.

      Touching story.


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 17, 2017 @ 10:05 | Reply

  2. Ah…names and the weight they can carry. My parents struck a deal. Dad would name all the girls, my mother would choose names for the boys. However, she made it clear to him that Camille was her name of choice for the first born girl. Dad named her Susan. Daughter #2 became Jane and Daughter #3 was named Nancy. I was daughter #4, a difficult pregnancy, difficult birth and therefore, designated the last. Before Dad could get his hands on the documents my Mom wrote in Camille. There you go. Hated my name. I was always the only Camille in this small town. Always misspelled, frequently mispronounced, always a thorn in my side. Eventually I grew up and learned to appreciate it. And business wise, I can use only my first name in this small town as I’m still the only one. It’s a good thing. Thanks Mom.

    Comment by Camille Jacobs — March 17, 2017 @ 00:37 | Reply

    • Camille, hi – and please be assured that I know how to pronounce your name.

      What an intricate web you weave with your family’s way of naming their brood. On reflection I think your mum got a bum deal, and then had the last laugh. If I interpret your narrative correctly you do not have any brothers; so it’s only fair that your mother got to name one of her children. And I bet Susan, Jane and Nancy would give a lot to be a Camille. Forgive me, considering we have only just “met”, if I am getting familiar too early in our relationship – your father’s tastes appear simple. Your mother – unless I am mistaken – is a romantic. I bet she read Dumas and listened to “La Traviata”, and who wouldn’t be enchanted with the image of La Dame aux Camelias … So, basically, and to summon up, you won the jackpot in the naming stakes.


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 17, 2017 @ 10:29 | Reply

  3. Michael Patrick — I believe my mom knew someone who had those two names and liked the sound, so that’s what I ended up with. I remember her teasing me with Michael Patrick McGillacutty. Some of my ancestry is Irish. Mom’s dad was a Dougherty. I go by Michael or, more often, Mike. My sister went to live my mom and step-dad in Texas a year before I did, when she was 12. She deliberately became as Texan as she could be. She went from JoLynn to Jodi and developed quite an accent. When I moved down, she hung the nickname “Bubba” on me. It didn’t stick and she’s the only one who ever used it. Funny thing. Two of Karen’s eight brothers are twins, born on January 1st, with the first names of Michael and Patrick — normally called Mike and Pat, of course.

    Comment by Mike — March 17, 2017 @ 02:11 | Reply

    • Intrigued by your mother teasing you with McGillacutty I googled the name. And what do I find in the “Urban Dictionary”?

      “This is a good filler word when you can’t think of the name of a particular object or person you want to reference: ‘Go into my office and grab the McGillicutty off my desk’.”

      That is hilarious. From now on I shall use it, frequently, and – as a bonus – will have you (and your mother) popping into my mind at the same time. Personalizing it as it were.

      Michael Patrick is a most respectable name, emanating an air of reassuring gravitas.

      Jody? If a little on the short side, I am sure it sounds great with the drawl Texans are known for. JoLynn, or rather the less prettyfied Jolene, I dimly remember as the subject of a Country Western song.

      As to your brothers-in-law. What a way to start a new year. Not one baby but two. Strange coincidence don’t you think, a Michael and a Patrick. Just shows you, Karen’s way was paved, well before she knew it.


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 17, 2017 @ 10:53 | Reply

  4. Quite right, my full name is Nicholas. Why I was called that, I have no idea. As a child, I was always known as Nicky. My grandmother, who I adored, sometimes called me Little Knickers. Which may be another reason why I identify more with women than men, but that’s another story.

    Comment by nick — March 17, 2017 @ 08:39 | Reply

    • Nick,
      by that reasoning, every little girl who ever wore blue should have become a boy and every boy who ever held a doll should be gay

      Comment by Kylie — March 17, 2017 @ 09:00 | Reply

      • Kylie, what you are suggesting doesn’t really follow in terms of logic. All Nick mentioned (and what I understand as a humorous side remark) that he identifies “more” with women. I know plenty of men who identify “more” with women (whatever that actually means). And the other way round, I’d say I know several women who will claim, thereby misguidedly justifying their rather brash behaviour, by saying they “identify” more with men. Interesting subject you touched on. Will take it up later today in a separate post. In the meantime I can barely contain myself to not call Nick “Little Knickers” from now on. I won’t. It wouldn’t be fair. Trust deserves respect. And anyway, I am not his grandmother.

        Hope all is well with you,

        Comment by bitchontheblog — March 17, 2017 @ 09:54 | Reply

      • No, I’m not suggesting anything as simplistic as that. I’m only saying it might have been one small factor along with many others.

        Comment by nick — March 17, 2017 @ 11:39 | Reply

        • That was a reply to Kylie but somehow it got in the wrong place.

          Comment by nick — March 17, 2017 @ 11:41 | Reply

    • “Little Knickers”, is it? That is so funny, Nick, I burst out laughing. Honestly, the things a loving grandmother gets away with…

      May I also congratulate you sharing this piece of information so freely. It can be rather endearing when people aren’t self conscious. I could reel a whole list of friends and family off who’d rather die than admit in public to some of their more bizarre nicknames. Poor sausages.


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 17, 2017 @ 09:54 | Reply

  5. Hmm…. no idea why they called me David William, my grandfather was William (and three other names) and there was a William Mills at The Alamo. Apparently the name translates to Beloved Conqueror. However, I do know that my father always wanted a daughter called Elizabeth Ann in honour of his historical heroine. Elizabeth of England. He once told me that my mother thought that she was being very clever in persuading him to have my sister named Ann Elizabeth…..

    As for nicknames….. I was called “Actually” for a while at grammar school because I had a habit (apparently) of correcting people when they had got some fact wrong by saying, “Actually,……..” . As a teacher I was once told by a pupil that my nick name was “The Voice” because mine could be hear all over the place if I raised it but the nickname I find amusing arose because of the inabillity of Walthamstow children to pronounce my surname correctly…. “Meals on Wheels”…… I was Mr Meals (with a slight ‘w’ sound after the ‘ea’ sound…

    Comment by magpie11 — March 17, 2017 @ 12:56 | Reply

    • I forgot “John Willy”…. pet name with some of the feamle relations.The cause of my getting into trouble on my firstday in class at grammar school.
      Mr Chamberlain was asking everyone their name and when he came to me asked”And what’s your name John Willy?” and I replied., “That’s roght.”…. trouble followed me around after that.

      Comment by magpie11 — March 17, 2017 @ 12:59 | Reply

      • You were called “Actually”? Any time soon I’ll be called “Bizarre”. Not because I myself am, I am not, but because I use it all the time finding the current WORLD and its machinations, well, bizarre. The Angel informs me that one of the more unfortunate side effects of a word (like bizarre) coming into circulation everyone else (including him) starts sprinkling it liberally into conversation.

        “John Willy”? Now that is bizarre. It’s a peculiarly British thing to give an appendage an unfortunate name. A bit like an American Richard being called “Dick”. And then making it into an insult. Spotted Dick to put anyone off their pudding. Don’t read too much into what bothers me. It’s the spots I don’t like.


        Comment by bitchontheblog — March 19, 2017 @ 13:05 | Reply

        • Actually… i probably misspelled “Willie”…. and this from Wikip is Bizarre:John Alexander Scott Coutts (9 December 1902 – 5 August 1962), (was)better known by the pseudonym John Willie, was the artist, fetish photographer, editor, and publisher of the soft-porn cult magazine Bizarre

          Comment by magpie11 — March 20, 2017 @ 12:45 | Reply

  6. I am named after Ramana Maharshi. I acquired my nickname Rummy when I was a young salesman and could afford to drink only rum. That is shortened my given name is just a coincidence.

    Comment by rummuser — March 17, 2017 @ 13:00 | Reply

    • “Maharshi”? Your parents clearly had aspirations for you. Not that you haven’t lived up to them

      “Rummy”? Now, that is funny. Rum does have its place – not least in Rum Punch – think Caribbean (pure evil – tastes like fruit juice, fells the unaware). I am not surprised you have sworn off % Vol.


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 19, 2017 @ 18:45 | Reply

  7. Greetings dear Ursula. I stopped fretting over my name–Renee is a middle name but the one I was called by from the instant I traded amniotic fluid for air–when I discovered I would have been called Ricky Pete had I been a boy. That is now the reason I believe God blessed my parents with a second daughter. Can you imagine the torture I would have endured as a male child? Yikes.

    Comment by reneejohnsonwrites — March 19, 2017 @ 00:46 | Reply

    • Greetings to you too, my dear Renee. What a capable of neglect fine friend I have turned out to be.

      If you’d been a Ricky Pete, and trust me on this one, you’d now be on stage (musician – though, for reasons of taste – I do hesitate to guess at genre).


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 19, 2017 @ 18:39 | Reply

  8. My mother had an obsession with Jea-Paul Belmondo. Need I say more!

    Comment by itsmyhusbandandme — March 19, 2017 @ 12:09 | Reply

    • Both our mothers clearly born ca. 1933 (as was Belmondo). I suppose it could be worse – think Alain Delon. Not having seen him for ages I just googled him. Age becomes some men. Not Delon.

      Anyway, as I was recently assured, anything French sounds grand – unless it’s opera. Please do not call me Ursule. For some reason exchanging the ‘a’ for an ‘e’ makes my name sound an insult.

      Jean-Paul greetings,

      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 19, 2017 @ 18:32 | Reply

  9. My Dad was of Native American decent, my Mom European but very Boheme’, I was born at the break of day… and because our Family strongly believes that Name imparts a portion of Destiny, I thus was Dawn… I’ve always liked my Name even tho’ during the era I was born it was a very uncommon one, it became more popular when Hippie’s began Naming their Children {Smiles}… Dawn… The Bohemian

    Comment by Bohemian Valhalla — March 23, 2017 @ 18:28 | Reply

    • Dawn, that is so evocative, romantic, spontaneous. Born at dawn, et voila a “Dawn”.

      If my parents had taken my arrival as literal as yours god knows what they’d called me. “Promise”? – My mother went into labour Sunday afternoon. “Empty (promise)”? – Monday lunchtime. “Tease” – Monday afternoon. “Ever”? – later in the day. Good job they didn’t name me “Dusk” once I’d decided that, now or never, was the best time to not postpone the evil moment.


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 23, 2017 @ 20:01 | Reply

  10. Catherine is of course, my correct name. I was born on an census night when all humans need to be counted and turned into stats – so as a premature baby not quite expected, it was a rush to find a girls name. My mother had only thought of Luke, after some film star at the time. So they decided I should be named after one of my Mother’s sister who died due to the Great Flu’ epidemic that swept the world after WW1 – I also got her second name but now that 2nd name is part of my now surname – another story all together why after leaving my marriage and not wanting that particular surname, I changed everything around – except for the Catherine!

    Comment by cedar51 — March 24, 2017 @ 07:23 | Reply

    • “Census Night”? Jesus Christ, Catherine – that is special. You weren’t born in Bethlehem by any chance?

      Being named after relatives can be touching. Thus my grandmother named me after my mother (yes, really) and my middle names are those of her (my grandmother) and that of my godmother. Having three first names is a cross not only to bear but to bare – not least when filling out forms as terribly official as, say, an application for a passport. It’s one of the few occasions when omission doesn’t pay. They’ll check against your birth certificate.

      The saga of your surname sounds most intriguing. It’d be lovely if you shared it some time – though I do appreciate that it is possibly too much information in a public place.

      And then, of course, there is Catherine the Great …


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 24, 2017 @ 11:07 | Reply

  11. Charles is a name that made many appearances in my mothers family including my uncle – nicknames? sure – Butch – no idea where it came from and Bubba – because my younger siblings could not wrap their tongues around the word brother

    Comment by Chuck McConvey — March 25, 2017 @ 14:57 | Reply

    • “Bubba” is sweet. Maybe not what a “Butch” was hoping for and finds hard to live down when meeting up with his other “butch” friends. Still, that’s the charm of young children

      Charles (or a down to earth “Karl” to me and you) is, by necessity and having lived in the UK for a long time, a name associated with royalty. You only have to listen to anyone speaking the Queen’s English to immediately find yourself (depending on your gender) as either the Butler or the Maid.


      Comment by bitchontheblog — March 27, 2017 @ 13:54 | Reply

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