Alex Blaze

Question of the Monday

Filed By Alex Blaze | July 09, 2007 10:01 AM | comments

Filed in: Living

With introductions going on all around, tell me, what do you like to be called? What don't you like to be called?

I'm Alex, but my mother calls me "Alejo" (short for Alejandro, she's Argentine), and my grandmother calls me "Alexander". A boy I had a crush on in high school called me "Alexie", and I put up with it because I wanted to get in his pants.

What about you?

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Tony Kariotis | July 9, 2007 11:41 AM

Though my dad has always called me "Nino" from the time I was born, my mom was insistant on everyone else calling me Anthony rather than Tony. (She was afraid that people would call me Tony-Bologna, but little did she know that bologna would have been nothing compared to the anti-gay slurs that I had to hear from 4th-grade-on.)
I ended up picking up "Tony" in undergrad. All of my new professors in my freshman year had the courtesy of asking what I preferred to be called, and though I would tell them "Anthony," they'd call me "Tony" anyway.
As my classmates (and eventually new friends) knew me as Tony, I realized that "Tony" could be my out-of-the-closet alter-ego that lived at Penn State, for if gossip was to make its way back to Pittsburgh, no one would have ever heard of this "gay Tony" of which people were speaking.
Though I came out before my sophomore year, the "Tony" has stuck, and though it's not a name I hide behind anymore, I still feel closest with people who call me Anthony.

I like to be called Buck or Michael....not Mike.

I hate being called William - or even worse Dale, my middle name. Bil is fine with me. Most of my oldest friends actually call me Bil-Bil - a trend my friend Eri started.

Lynn David | July 10, 2007 2:12 AM

I've just always been plain ole Lynn.

Believe it or not I was named for an oil company that my dad bought diesel fuel from in SW Indiana. I guess he thought it might get him a discount (best I know it did!). My dad (he was a Bill) changed my name with the hospital after contemplating that somehow the name he had just given me, Alvin, would be shortened to Al and then people/kids would tease me and call me, "Owl." And I would never see the end of embarrassing harrasment over such a funny name for a guy. So he thought Lynn was better.

Did my name cause confusion for me you ask? Sexual/gender confusion? Well, I was never confused, but the US military was. Both the WACs (Women's Army Corps) and the WAVES (Women's Navy, I guess, but I don't get the abbreviation) tried to recruit me out of high school in 1972. The WAVES recruiter called to talk to me and thought she was talking to Lynn's dad; she thought I was joking when I told her that the guy with the sexy baritone she was talking to was Lynn. The good news is that the US Mens military didn't want me for service in VietNam.

So, despite that others wanted to call me by my middle name, David, I've always been a Lynn, feel like a Lynn, whatever a Lynn need be at the time.