I eased up to the drive thru window in anticipation of my Route 44 Ocean Water. Nothing like an ocean of blue coconut syrupy Coppertone to quench your thirst. Have you ever tried the watermelon Ocean Water? Brace yourself for that delight.
The window flew open, and the friendly cashier (or beverage associate or whatever important sounding title Sonic uses for its employees) said, “Hello, my name is Tamequa…” I don’t remember what else she said as I was focused on her name tag.
I couldn’t reconcile Tamequa with what my eyes read. Written in the popular Sharpie font, the letters on the tag were J-U-D-Y. I sounded it out and it didn’t sound like Tamequa.
I had to inquire as I have never encountered this. She pointed out that Judy was kind of scribbled out and her name was scrawled across the bottom. I can’t recall, but I think it may have been a Pizza Hut name tag.
I’m going to pilfer a name tag that says Hieronymus. I’ll tell everyone I encounter that my name is Ted. Or, maybe I’ll throw a curveball and say my name is Ron.
Names can be like baggage. For better or worse, you drag your name along for a lifetime. However, one occasionally can escape their given name only to get a worse one.
My last name is peculiar, but I like it as it is uncommon. I like to identify with it. It is especially vowel-y that intimidates strangers. It flows like cool water which is fitting as my grandpa told me it meant creek. Luoma. Loo-oh-muh. Just like it’s spelled.
My name was borrowed from my grandpa. It even soan old guy’s name. He went by Ted. That’s normal enough, but my parents insisted on calling me by my initials. TJ is the epitome of uncool. I have actually spent most of my adult life running from it.
I was a disc jockey for many years. It’s a beautiful profession. You can choose any name you want and that name is the key to becoming someone else. When I started work at an active rock station I needed a flashy name. I settled on Naked Jake.
I was around 23. I thought I needed a name that would be remembered. I chose a name that cannot be forgotten. I’m 38 with a wife and three daughters now, and it no longer feels cool. It feels like a name you would give to the creeper that hangs out at the bus stop. It can’t get much worse unless you ARE the creeper at the bus stop.
It now seems that I am saddled with a mélange of monikers. My family calls me TJ. Old radio pals know me as Naked Jake. Then there are the few who call me Theodore or Theo. I’ll answer to anything, but my favorite name is Daddy.
This post is response to the Weekly Writing Challenge on names.