Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Origin of a Name

My family has been known to be a little quirky at times. Like when I tell people that as a child I couldn't wait until Friday nights so we could all gather in the living room to dance to Lawrence Welk. Didn't everyone have this kind of togetherness as a family? Didn't everyone's mother arrange the birth order of her children to match the boy/girl, boy/girl, boy/girl ratio and create built-in dance partners? Maybe that's a story for another time...

One of our other quirks is that we didn't grow up using our real names. Oh, in public we managed to be presentable, but at home it was another story. My oldest brother is Goose, followed by my sister Jo-Babe, my brother Humpy (so unfortunate), my sister Spook and my brother Hoody. And then there's me, Gitz. Or Gitzen Girl. Or Gitzy-mama. Or Fritz. You get the idea.

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Apparently when I was a wee-babe my dad could get me to laugh by tickling my neck while saying the stand-by "Gitzy Gitzy Goo." And I thereafter became his Gitzen Girl. I think at some point Gitz turned to Fritz when they realized I walked everywhere on my tippy-toes dancing and performing for anyone who was willing to pretend like they were interested, and "fritzing about" became my favorite pastime. And while he may have dropped the "Gitzy Gitzy Goo" phrase, my dad's favorite game is still trying to corral little children while "getting their neckers" and tickling their neck until they beg for mercy or beg for more.


I do have a more endearing nickname from my dad ... which I was teased endlessly for my freshman year in college as I hit the button on my answering machine and it started saying, "Hey, just checking to see how my Babydoll is doing..." You never outgrow a name like that, do you?

And for the record, my brother's nickname didn't start out as Humpy. He fell a lot as a kid and they called him Humpty for Humpty Dumpty. And apparently no one around felt the need to mention that taking the "t" out left it with a whole other meaning. Like I said, we were perfectly respectable in public...

10 comments:

  1. Okay...so I needed to know if it were okay for me to call you Gitz or if I needed to continue Sara, both of which I truly love by the way. Also, when I put the comment on twitter last night with your name in it, it goes from twitter to my facebook status and some folks wanted me to explain Gitz...sooo, I'm telling them to check out your blog! who knows!
    Lots of words because I'm hopped up on caffine :)
    Later Gitz! ps..you can tell me to just call you Sara, or Ms. Sara :)
    I do what I'm told:)

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  2. What a cute story! I was wondering about where "Gitzen Girl" came from. I love it!

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  3. Thank you for sharing this adorable story! I have a habit of calling my little ones a little bit of this and a little bit of that. No one else can do it though! And I've wondered since I came to your blog HOW to say your blog's name and what it meant. Fun.

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  4. can I tell you that Fritz makes me smile way bigger than Gitz. It's the more personal incarnation of the nickname... you're so fun.

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  5. yessss! i was hoping for that very thing.

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  6. :-D Thank you for giving me a good chuckle Sara. It's bringing back memories of my 2nd child; I think I called her 'baby' until she was over 6 months old. I finally started calling her by her name because everyone was asking me what her name was.

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  7. Since I started reading your blog, I have wondered about your nickname. I just found a link to this post on your sidebar and was happy to read more about your family life.

    I am the 4th of 8 children, but no built-in dance partners in this family. We are 7 girls and then my little brother who is not so little anymore! We all had nicknames too and mine was Boozer. But thankfully, like your family, in public we were called by our very respectable Christian names! Other nicknames in our family were Pigeon, Lolli-bean, Sarah-bear, Pria, Emily up-chuck (you can imagine why!), and so forth.

    Your family sounds so much like my own.

    Hope you get to feeling better soon.

    MGM


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  8. Mary Grace McNamaraJune 23, 2009 at 9:19 PM

    Since I started reading your blog, I have wondered about your nickname. I just found a link to this post on your sidebar and was happy to read more about your family life.

    I am the 4th of 8 children, but no built-in dance partners in this family. We are 7 girls and then my little brother who is not so little anymore! We all had nicknames too and mine was Boozer. But thankfully, like your family, in public we were called by our very respectable Christian names! Other nicknames in our family were Pigeon, Lolli-bean, Sarah-bear, Pria, Emily up-chuck (you can imagine why!), and so forth.

    Your family sounds so much like my own.

    Hope you get to feeling better soon.

    MGM

    Recent undefined:=-

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