No Chief


I wrote a short story not that long ago about my brother’s and my childhood. In that story I exposed my brother’s childhood nickname of Buttercup. My kids found that name to be hilarious, I suspect because it’s even more emotionally damaging than theirs of Peanut, and Gooby. They then of course wanted to know mine from back then. When I told them my mother called me Brown Bear, it was quite a letdown. They expected something more embarrassing, I guess.

My daughter with the tenaciousness typical of a thirteen year old girl with the nickname of Peanut set off to dig up any embarrassing nicknames I might have had. She exhausted all family members with no luck beyond Brown Bear, so she started digging through my old High School yearbooks. She discovered a nickname I had forgotten about within the inscriptions of my sophomore yearbook.

During my sophomore year of High School I had a really unique (and fun) creative writing teacher. She was an old hippy by the name of Ms. Starkey. She had us keep a writing journal that we were required to write in everyday for most of the semester. This journal had to be written in a Big Chief brand writing tablet. I really enjoyed this assignment and wrote in it not only when in that class but in most of my free time while at school as well. This was before I had really came out of my shell and I had a lot of free time.

My Big Chief became something that would be sought out to be read by my small circle of friends. I would let them borrow it when they had a particularly boring class and desperately needed entertainment. Then one day the inevitable happened, a friend had my Big Chief confiscated by one of the more boring teachers. It took me awhile to get it returned, and during that time I spoke of little besides the loss of my Big Chief. Because of this I was bestowed with the nickname of No Chief.

I had forgotten about this nickname until my daughter found it about a week ago. Since then I’ve really grown to like it. It fits my anarchist beliefs perfectly and I’d actually enjoy it being applied to me. However, I know how nicknames work and this one isn’t nearly traumatizing enough to have much of a chance. But still, even though I have just an infinitesimal amount of Native American ancestry I think I’ll look into translations for No Chief.

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Published in: on February 17, 2010 at 8:47 pm  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. You are, and will always be, little p.

  2. Oh great, thanks for your support Jacques.


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