Sunday, August 14, 2011

Name Stories

Everyone has a story about their name.  Some folks love their name, Some don't.  I am in the latter category, which is why I never use it.

But I am not the only one in my family with a wierd name story (Which I choose not to share at this time), both my brothers have odd thongs with their names.  And my Grandmother (we callled her Nona) named all of her kids with initials that spelled something.
Papa was Raymond Alfred Tetzlaff - RAT
Uncle Charlie was Charles Abert Tetzlaff - CAT
Poor auth Fern was Fern Arbutis Tetzlaff - FAT
and Uncle Marvin was Marvin allen Tetzlaff - MAT
And they named me with the initials ACT, could have been worse.

But the stories do not stop there.  My favorite story is about my Uncle Marvin.

Like so many young men in 1941, when Pearl Harbor was hit by the bombs, he ran down to the Milwaukee county courthouse to enlist. When He arrived, there was a long line, but He was told that he would need his birth cirtificate. So he decided to get that first. Whne he got the to records window, he was told they had no record of his borth. Stunned, he asked them to look again. They did and came back with the news that they still couldn't find it. "But," they said, "We did find the record of your twin brother's birth."
"What twin brother?" asked Uncle Marvin.
"Why, Gilbert Leslie, of course."
Marvin went home and confronted my grandmother who aid, "Oh, yes. That's right, I remember now. Your father named you that, but I didn't like it, so I called you Marvin."

Uncle Marvin fought the entire war under the name of Gilbert Leslie and didn't have a chance to change it to Marvin until the war was over.

So, care to share your name story?


  1. Well, I like my name, I chose it almost five years ago and changed it legally. I chose my first name twenty five years ago when I first transitioned and my middle name was given to me by a friend in 1989 when I second transitioned and I chose my new last name this last time when my parents told me they did not want me to keep their name this last time I transitioned for keeps. So now my name is Kathryn Rose White on my Birth Certificate.

  2. WOW!! I love your stories, Byrd!!! I always read your blog posts avidly. :)
    I don't like my name (I have 3 names, but don't like any of them...). In Italy we cannot change names legally unless they result offensive or very ugly. 20 years ago, while having a big crush for the Celtic culture, I chose my surname. I am Arian (= "silver" in Welsh). :))