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Someone recently apologised for calling me Karen and not Kate on an email. The auto-suggest inserted it without her noticing.
And it got me thinking. Like all the labels we take on, what's really in a name?
I didn't choose my name. My parents named me Kathryn after Loch Katrine in Scotland (photo above). And I never liked the "ryn" part so, when I was younger, my friends called me Ka (pronounced Kay) and then, at some point in my late teens, I grew into a Kate.
I like Kate. It's straight and to the point, like me. It's cool (how I'd like to be). It's strong (yes, I'm usually that - at least outwardly). The heroine of a movie is often a Kate.
And my parents rarely called me "Kathryn" directly, unless I'd been VERY bad. No, I'd be "Katie", "Gloops" or "Katie Gloops" or "K.G.". Gloops was from a comic strip in the Star newspaper from Sheffield (UK) of a cat with big dimples, like me!
Here's Gloops and me for comparison - you decide !
I miss being a Katie now my parents are gone. But Ron calls me Katie sometimes. Or Kato ... I often think I'll be a Katie if/when I publish that book ...
So I answer to many names these days and that's OK by me. Because they're not me. And I wasn't even born a Kathryn - I'm adopted and my birth mother called me Amanda. So that would have been a whole different ballgame - Mandy, Mandi, Mand, Manda ..?
When Ron and I married, we were told we could choose any name we liked. Completely change all our names if we wanted. I wish I'd had time to reflect and I might have picked something that fitted me better. Something just for me. By me. But in the moment I went for Kate, dropped my middle name and kept my surname. Simple, easy and no fuss.
So what's in a name? I guess it's different for us all.
What does your name say about you? Do you like your name? What would you change it to, if you could?
And, now my mind is wandering to why, when we talk ABOUT a person or an animal we care about, do we use their given name, but NEVER when we're talking TO them? Unless we're angry with them and then, oh yes, we do, always!
I'll explain what I mean by way of some examples:
My husband is "Ron" unless I'm talking to him and then it's "Ronner" (it's our joke about cricket commentators on BBC Radio 4 LW).
And when I'm talking about my cat Sid (see photo) I always call him "Sid", nothing else.
So much for keeping names short and simple! Is this just me? Do you do this too?
And maybe this doesn't just apply to living things.
Some people are very close to their cars .....
Main Photo: https://pixabay.com/fr/users/PicturesofScotland-8052601