English filled with nicknames in everyday lifeby
seems to always have had a passion for nicknames. Most of our heros have nicknames
and obituaries nearly always list the deceased persons nickname so friends will
recognize them. Sometimes we do not know the real names of closest friends. |
habit also extends to objects. For example, for years I did not recognize the
word camera. We called it a Kodak. As shaving progressed from a straight razor
they called it, "shaving with a Gillette or Schick" not a safety razor. We did
not vacuum the carpet we "Hoovered the rug."
Women benefitted greatly
with the invention of the Singer sewing machine. Consequently, all "sewed with
a Singer." Isaac Singer once received a protest from a labor union against his
invention wanting him to stop production. He answered saying, "You want me to
stop producing the only thing that will keep a woman quiet for an hour?"
Probably the most prolific use of nicknames involves vehicles. I do not drive
a car or a pickup. I drive a Ford. Those of different DNA drive Chevies, Dodges
or Pontiacs. These names are changing so fast I'm not sure what I drive anymore.
A most-used name that's not a nickname is that of the invention of Thomas Crapper.
No need to explain further.
The names of Levis and Stetsons are further
examples of nick-naming. No one says hat or trousers, its always just Levis or
Stetson. Henry Steinway constructed a musical instrument in his kitchen inventing
a radical process of stringing wires for sound. Today we don't say piano we say,
"the concert was played on a Steinway."
Does dirty clothes go through
the water or does water go through the dirty clothes? This question intrigued
Fredric Louis Maytag as he revolutionized cleaning dirty laundry. As a result
no one bought a clothes washer they bought a Maytag. Until the arrival of the
computer age no one typed on a typewriter. They typed on a Remington or a Corona.
Today we write with a ballpoint instead of with a pen. At one time I was equipped
with an Eversharp which allowed me to write with a pencil without time wasted
in continual sharpening the point.
All of this is leading up to a final
paragraph telling of my current daily life today. "I arise each morning to don
my Levis, Stetson and Justins. I sip my Folgers, eat my Wheaties and rest on the
Crapper. I drive my Ford to the Quick-Stop, sip my latte, eat a Twinkie, read
the Globe News and pick up the U.S. junk mail. I might stop and fill my Ford with
regular or gab with a neighbor.
Today's work includes dozing with my Catepillar,
eating a Spamwich at lunch and taking a snooze in my Lazy Boy. I finish off the
day watching a video and sleeping on an inner-spring. It's no wonder new imigrants
have a problem with the English language. Our nicknamed English might well be
another foreign language. Well, I'll end this now and, "see you in the funny paper."
"It's All Trew" September
Delbert Trew is a freelance writer and retired rancher. He can
be reached at 806-779-3164, by mail at Box A, Alanreed, TX 79002, or by e-mail
at firstname.lastname@example.org. For books see DelbertTrew.com. His column appears