that’s not my name



Here’s a question from Oliver from Manchester. Not Olly, or Ollie, or Ol, or Ollingtons. OLIVER. Oliver says:

My name is Oliver, and when introducing myself to, lets say, a mutual friend, of a friend, of a friend, I will say ‘hello, I’m Oliver.’ Moments later this practical stranger will refer to me as ‘Olly’ even though I never said that was my name.

So answer me this, who is the toss-face in this scenario – the stranger for giving me a nickname even though the piss-weasel doesn’t know me; or me for going on about it?

You’re a bit of a toss-face for calling a stranger a piss-weasel (as am I, now, for just having done the same); however they are the bigger toss-face for being presumptuous.

We do receive this question a lot, and have encountered it in life as well – eg former AMTflatmate Matthew Crosby is always Matthew, NEVER Matt. Nonetheless, many people are unable to bypass their InstaMatt function.

It’s not a problem I have, because Helen is a name difficult enough to abbreviate that to do so feels too personal for most piss-weasels and toss-faces.

But, readers, if you are a Margaret-never-Maggie, a Ben-never-Benjamin, a Josh-not-Joshua or a Catherine-nary-Cathy, go to the comments and suggest a polite way for Oliver to correct the abbreviators. A cold, unresponsive stare until they give him the right name might work, but also runs the risk of compelling them to keep calling him ‘Oli’ just to piss him off.


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One Response to “that’s not my name”

  1. Leeta Says:

    You are exhibiting true British-ness Oliver! As a rude American I would probably just say, “Actually, I prefer Oliver,” or “I know it’s silly, but I actually prefer Oliver.” This has to be said after the first time they shorten your name, otherwise they may feel awkward after having used a nickname for some time.

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