Monday 2 January 2012

I Will Remain Ken

I have talked about the nicknames that I have had over the years, and to some extent just how they came about. Names are a tricky thing, sometimes they are just names, and sometimes they can have quite an impact on your life.

I was named Kenneth, and have answered to all of the variations at one time or another. Sometimes, like at the airport security booth I don’t even realize just who they are talking about when they say “Kenneth”, as I have been called “Ken” for so long. I worked with a fellow that called me “Dave” for three months before someone asked who he was talking about. He couldn’t believe that I never corrected him, but the way that I saw it, was both he and I knew who he was talking about, so it really didn’t matter what he called me.

I worked with a guy that took a week off due to getting spider bites on his ankle. We were pretty sure that he was “milking” his injury to get some summer time off of work. There is no doubt that being bitten by a spider is unpleasant, but there aren’t any really poisonous varieties in this part of Canada. When he finally returned to work, someone called him “Spiderman” and asked if his spidey senses were tingling. He became pretty angry and demanded an apology from this workplace wit. Well, what could we do, except to call him “Spiderman” the “Webslinger” and “Spidey”? The more we called him these names the more pisssed off he became. It was pretty entertaining. This happened more than twenty years ago and to this day he is still known as “Spidey”. I am sure some of the younger people don’t know why they call him “Spidey”. I saw him a couple of months ago and when I asked “Spidey” how things were, I can’t be sure, but there was a hint of a resigned sigh when he told me that he wasn’t doing too bad.

I went to school with a girl named Shirley. She was a wonderful person, both intelligent and funny. She was the best friend of a girl that I was dating, so we saw quite a lot of each other over that period of time. Well, after we left school we drifted apart and I lost track of her for a long time. I tried to get in touch with old friends a few years ago and although I never did talk to Shirley I got some gossip about her. It seems that she changed her name to “Marnie” because she had always hated “Shirley”. I like the name Shirley and I can’t really understand why she wouldn’t. I suppose that it could have been the name of a particularly hated relative, or maybe something as simple as the “Name Game” Song. I can see where that could get old pretty quick. I did eventually track her down when my mom passed away; she was living in the same city. I called her and had a nice but short chat, leaving her my number and the wish to do coffee at her earliest convenience. I am still waiting. I like to think that it wasn’t me that she was avoiding, but her past. A couple of years ago there was a Marnie on facebook who was living in France and I am pretty sure it was her. I sent a message requesting a friendship and so far, nothing. It appears that it was me. Hmmmm….

Well, I suppose that names can shape the person you are or the person that you wish to become. I imagine that I could be named anything and I would still be me, but just to be on the safe side, I think I will remain Ken.

1 comment:

  1. I see you've started off the new year by getting the tough decisions out of the way! The next one will tea or coffee I betting, ahhh the life of a retired person. B