What am I still doing in Cancun?

The adventures of an American single mommy working and playing in paradise.

What’s in a nickname?

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     I have had loads of nicknames. My most recent one is “Nikita”. That’s what they dubbed me when I gave Salsa classes at El Shrimp Bucket. The program was on TV here and I look a bit like the woman who plays the lead. I even had one of those buttons the Grupo Anderson employees wear that said “Nikita, Salsa Instructor”. Some people in Cancun still call me that and don’t know my real name. That’s fine with me. Nikita sounds cooler than Kristin! It’s my “stage name”. ha

     In high school I had a couple of nicknames…Boosie, Buzzi. They were plays on my last name. I liked those nicknames just fine and I remember I put at least one of them on the back of my powder-puff football jersey.

     When I got to high school I started going by Kris. I do not remember why. I must have thought it sounded “cooler”. I wonder if friends from high school feel weird calling me Kristin? I switched to Kristin in college. I do not remember why. I must have though it sounded “more mature”. (If anyone remembers any of this stuff, feel free to fill me in.) Growing-up I mostly didn’t care for my name, but now I like it. My middle name is my mom’s first name (it’s kind of a German tradition, my dad is from Germany) and I like the idea of that, so we gave my son his dad’s name as his middle name.

     Nobody here pronounces my name right. I’m over it now, but at first it bugged me.

     “Como te llamas?”

     “Kristin.”

     “Ahhhh, Christina!”

     I don’t understand. When I meet someone named Juan I don’t say, “Ahhhh, John!” Anyway, now I just say my name is “Christine” and that seems to be the easiest. To be fair that would be the Spanish pronunciation of my name.

     The nickname that has stayed with me the longest is “Boodie”. Another play on my last name, in high school a drunken friend (ok fine, underage drinking) blurted it out one night and my best friend loved him so she loved the name. I actually think she started introducing me that way. (If you are reading this my friend, feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.) There was a time when many many people in Grand Rapids and Lansing, Michigan had absolutely no idea what my real name was. They probably still don’t.

     Some people said “Why would you let people call you a$$?” HAHA (I certainly didn’t earn the nickname for my unimpressive culito.) But I didn’t think of it that way. I feel most people called me “Boodie” (not to be confused with “Booty”) with love.

     Of course there are the inevitable nicknames that came from the original nickname, like “Boot”,  “Boo-Tay” and “Boodie Ho”, and then there are my two girls that always shout “Boo, boo, boo-boo boo-day!” (it’s from a song) every time I see them. I love it.

     I call my son so many different things, “Papito”, “My Love”, “Buster Brown”, “Booboo”…I could go on but I’ll spare you. I wonder what nicknames his friends will give him?

     I have had some mean nicknames too. I don’t wanna talk about those today.

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