Now, my name has been a source of amusement for me since my earliest memories. My great Aunt Easter always called me “Timmy.” My grand mother frequently confused my name with my father’s or grandfather’s names. When I went off to college, everyone called me by my legal name. Since I’ve never gone by my legal name, even as an infant, I had no idea they were talking to me. My father frequently called me “Bub.” Dear god, please tell me that wasn’t an abbreviation for “bubba.” I did, after all, grow up in the deep south. Many of my closest friends only call me by my last name, “Tyson.” People joke with me, even in other parts of the world, when I give them my name: “Oh. I see you’re related to Mike.” The list could go on…
But you know you’re living in a very different world from the one in which you were born when:
When I give people my first and last name, I always spell my last name. People never get it right otherwise: Tim Tyson — T – y – s – o – n. Maybe my vocal timbre makes it hard to understand when I say it.
But today, young people always think my name is Tyson Tim, with Tyson being my first name. If they’re really young, I get, “Thank you, Mr. Tim.” If they’re in their twenties, I get something like, “Sure, Tyson.”
Suddenly I feel like I’ve been inverted or something.