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The Slice: How else are we expected to come up with an alias?

SATURDAY, MAY 17, 2014

How do strangers get your name wrong?

“The most common one is Marsha,” wrote Monica Peters. “But I have also been called Mona, Veronica, Mariah and even Helga, to name but a few.”

Penny Simonson wrote, “When pronouncing our last name, people get as far as the SIM, and then seem to panic/give up and decide it is Simpson. Or they get that far and then eek out some version of Simmmmsonin or the like.”

Gaye Dionne gets called Gail or Kaye. And people often think her last name is her first name.

Mike Storms said strangers routinely drop the final letter of his last name.

Florence Young sometimes has to respond to “Phyllis” or “Frances” and she has been known to get messages left for “Lawrence.”

Carrie Webbenhurst has discovered that there are 27 different ways to spell her first name. “I tell people it’s spelled ‘like the movie’ — if they spell it correctly, I can gauge how old they are.”

Mae Lapham once looked at her patient wristband in a hospital and saw that her name had been spelled “LaPham.”

Mark Godbey said more than a few people think his name is “Goodbey.”

People have been calling Priscilla Bennin “Patricia” or “Phyllis” all her life.

Vincent Elbert is forever dealing with poor listeners writing “Albert.”

Then there was this from Genny McKinley. “My name is Genevieve, but I’m also called Genny and Gen. Here are some of the ways my name has been misspelled and mispronounced: Gwendolyn, Gueniviere, Virginia, Jennifer, Gwen, Guinn, Ginny, Jenny, Jean, Jeannie, Jennavee, Jennabee, and Jan. Some people have even pronounced Genny with a hard G instead of a soft G.”

You don’t have to be a human to hear your name botched, though.

Barbara Arenal said a fair number of people are initially confused about her dog’s moniker. That pet’s name is Cheetos. But the pooch has been called Chito, Chico, Cherrios and Cheetah. “I even had a lady once ask me how my dog ‘Doritos’ was doing.”

Today’s Slice question: Is Spokane resident Chris Lang the only one who believes that if he finds a product he really likes it soon will disappear from store shelves and never be available again?

Write The Slice at P. O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email Does anyone still say he or she is high on life?

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