That’s Not My Name


Tingting & Ayay

Tingting & Ayay

My husband is very lucky to have snatched a Filipino wife.  (He says so himself!) Though I am Brooklyn born and Wisconsin fed, my parents both hail from the land of over 7000 islands. I wonder if F realized that by marrying into a Pinoy family, he and his children would be immersed in cultural traditions that are both important and, at times, amusing.

One such tradition involves the naming of the ships…I mean, kids. Though F and I named C and P without the input of our families, I knew that to honor my family’s Filipino heritage, the kiddos would also be given Filipino nicknames.

Cultural Sidenote: In the Philippines, it is customary to give your children “normal” Filipino names, such as Francisco, Rosalia, Cecilia or Lorenzo, but then also give them short, often repetitive nicknames. The nickname is the name that will be used by family and friends throughout a Pinoy’s entire life. Nicknames for boys include Jojo, Ronron, Bobo, Pokpok, Toti, Tikboy, Kokoy, Kiko. Nicknames for girls include Wawa, Micmic, Lingling, Kringkring, Puti, Nene, Teetit, Kaykay.  According to my expert Filipino sources, the funnier the name, the better.

I guess I forgot to explain this tradition to F, because he was a bit surprised when my mother texted me with something like, “hv nknam 4 C. wil col hr Ayay.” (Ayay is pronounced eye-eye.) Three years later, F was prepared when I received the text, “P wil b Tingting.”

Based on my own experience, I know there will come a time in their lives when Ayay and Tingting will try to reject their Pinoy nicknames. In my head, I can hear them singing, “That’s not my name. That’s not my name. That’s not my name. That’s not my name.” However, I also know that that time will pass and that the girls will be proud of their Flip side. Their names will forever remind them of their Nana J and Lolo’s Filipino roots. 

So there you have it: Ayay and Tingting. The coolest hybrids on the block.


5 responses to “That’s Not My Name

  1. That’s really cool! I hadn’t realized that before. A co-worker of mine in Oregon is Filipino, so I’m going to forward this link to her…she’ll love it!

  2. This is so great! I can’t wait to read more!

  3. FYI – “That’s Not My Name” is a song by the band The Ting Tings!

  4. just wondering . . . if i am somehow linked by marriage to said filipino family, do i get to inherit a repetetive nickname? or am i stuck with whatever was dished out in middle school? (i think “malaria” was top pick at the time)

    p.s. i love your blog! blogblogblogblog . . .

  5. haha.. soooooo true!
    and ayay is an AWESOME name 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s