Excuse Me While I Whine  

Posted by Benjie in ,

If I did a bit of verbal and mental calisthenics I could probably fit this into the "Word Police" category, but this one is personal. So, if you're tired of the griping and belly-aching that runs rampant throughout the blogosphere, this is a great post to skip.

Today's gripe? Namely, names.

I received another letter at the office today addressed to "Ben Potter." Granted I tried to adopt the more "manly" affectation of Ben several years ago. As a matter of fact I have several Ben friends. When we moved to a new school district at the beginning of my freshman year in high school, the computer did a massive overhaul on my name crunching my first name to three letters ("Ben") in order to include my middle name -- and so teachers had to be corrected for the first several weeks of school every year. Otherwise everyone would have been trying to get my attention with a hearty Ben Allen (don't try it, some of you out there, or you're liable to get a nasty word-lashing in your comment section).

Here's the thing -- to my friends, my name is Benjie (I've long since quit trying to correct people's spelling on the matter, although I am a whole 'e' better than the movie dog). To people who don't know me, and in legal matters, etc. I introduce myself as Benjamin. After all, that's my name. My problem with 'Ben'? Every time someone calls me that (with the possible exception of my father and sometimes my older brother) my mind flashes on an old movie, and a very young Michael Jackson's voice enters my head.

So my advice to you, if someone introduces themself to you -- use the name they told you. I've discovered that if Angela introduces herself as Angela, then 'Angie' is a bad move. Same with Jennifer and Jenny. I have a friend whose name is Robert, and he cringes when people take it upon themselves to call him Bob.

In other words, don't call me 'Ben' if you don't know me. If you do know me, then you know better. You should understand that the mail came from a source that got my name either off of a list (which should have read 'Benjamin') or from my church website in which I am referred to as either 'Benjamin' or 'Benjie' and never as 'Ben.'

Have a nice day.

This entry was posted on 01 December 2008 at 10:18 AM and is filed under , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

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