As the half dozen or so of you who have read these parental ramblings may know, I have always referred to my daughters on the blog by their nicknames – Bug and Lemon. I like their nicknames. Not too saccharine, but they’re not going to be mistaken for prison gang members, either (despite the harsh reprisals doled out on each other when one of them breaks the Kid Code. Snitches end up in ditches, you know). And I actually call them both by those names, so it feels natural when I’m writing about them.
Well, I have been informed that some changes are in order.
Lemon announced recently that she doesn’t want to be called Lemon anymore. Fair enough, I guess. As nicknames go, she certainly could have ended up with a better one, but I’ve definitely heard worse. Case in point, I am still known to more than a couple of people I went to college with as Doo Doo. Yep, I’m the nearly 40 year old man who answers to ‘Doo Doo’. ‘Lemon’ doesn’t strike me as too much of a burden.
Nevertheless, my little girl doesn’t want to be my little Lemon anymore. As much as I will miss it, though, the logistics won’t be too much of a challenge. I call Lemon all kinds of different names, so subbing the others in more regularly will be easy. Were it Bug that decided to opt out, that would be tougher as that is about all I call her. And ‘bug’ has that whole monosyllabic thing going for it, whereas ‘lemon’ is a bit gawkier, a name I’m less likely to land on in a pinch.
“Could you please untie your sister, Bug?”
“Why is the dog wearing my pants, Lemon?”
See what I mean? ‘Lemon’ just doesn’t have the same flow.
So, with a semi-heavy heart, I will be retiring ‘Lemon’, which means that I’m going to change what I call her on the blog, too. It just seems like the right thing to do. After all, I imagine she will read these one afternoon 20 years from now when she’s bored out of her skull because none of her friends are returning her calls and the tv, computer and personalized holographic music festival imaginificator aren’t working. And I don’t want her to call me at my clothing-optional, assisted living beach in Costa Rica wondering why I didn’t honor her wishes those many years ago. I mean, that could really ruin the overall mood of the intergalactic pancake social my wife and I will be attending that day.
(The future is going to be awesome)
Rather than just picking a random new name for her to use on the blog (and despite my unwavering opposition to picking one’s own nickname – ALWAYS a bad idea), I decided to ask her what she thought it should be. I suggested a simple transition to another fruit like apple or pomelo, but that was quickly shot down. “It has to be an animal”, she said in her best I-want-to-do-everything-exactly-like-my-sister accent. Cool, I thought. There are some great animal nicknames. Grizzly Bear, I said? No. Spider? No. Zebu? Monkey? Hippo (my personal favorite)? No. No. No.
“So, what do you want me to call you when I write about you then, Lemon?”
“DON’T CALL ME LEMON!!”
“Right. Sorry. So, what do you want me to call you when I write about you?”
“OK, but don’t you think it would be sweet to be called….”
Lady and gentleman, the Daughter Formerly Known as Lemon will hereby be called Rainbow Pony. Make a note of it.
Then again, she’s four, so this will all probably change tomorrow. I’ll keep you posted.