Nomenclature: suicidal vegetarian guinea fowl.

11. Nomenclature- Suicidal Cabbagian Guinea Fowl

I have always wondered if  there is a difference between nicknames and guy names. Guy names are the names you get tagged with when you mess up, and nicknames are well.. nicknames. During my time in high school and Uni, I heard nicknames that well, the owners must have been on something when they chose them. It wasn’t the names themselves that baffled, it was more the circumstances leading to their creation.

Let’s take my dad’s friend for instance, the man’s nickname was “plain face”. I asked my dad why and he goes like: “can’t you see he has a plain face”. This explanation would have had nothing remarkable to it if not for the fact that my dad ran his hand over his face as he said “plain face”. This is nothing compared to this though.

In my first year of uni, my roommate had this girlfriend called “gunshot”. She earned that name in Secondary school. How? Asleep during a morning class, she farted. Someone screamed: “gunshot!” and the name stuck.

A friend from Prempeh college was also called Akon. Why? Not because he looked like the singer, but because he looked like a guinea fowl (akonf3m). To make the name easier to pronounce, they shortened it to Akon [such consideration for our non-twi speaking friends]. Another example was this guy called cabbage. The reason is exactly what you are thinking, because he looked like a cabbage. You wouldn’t notice the resemblance, but as soon as it was pointed out to you, you begin to wonder how you missed it.

These names, though given to ridicule, usually take on a life of their own and end up being used as expressions of affection. Some people become so enamored with their nicknames that it overshadows their names. Causing them untold embarrassments later on.

This Stephen guy in my neighborhood for instance, the guy started affecting an accent. To make fun of him, we all took to calling him Stefan. He assumed it was in appreciation of the “good english” he spoke. so what did he do? In registering for the NOV/DEC exams, the “DONUT” used Stefan. It so happened that he didn’t do so well in his WASSCE and needed the NOV/DEC results too, to enter university. Different names he was told, so not possible. He took to calling himself Stevo after that. Being such good friends, we followed suit.

Another friend was called suicide. How he got that name, no one knows. While visiting his kid sister who was in senior high school, her friends started hailing him. One of the teachers hearing the students shouting Suicide! Suicide! assumed something was wrong and rushed to go call the headmaster. The teacher, out of breath when he finally found the headmaster just said: “suicide!”. The headmaster also, on hearing ‘suicide’, assumed the worst and  called for a quick inspection of the various dorms [this raises the issue of how gullible SHS teachers are. To be discussed another day]. The search proved futile as there was no corpse to be found. While the inspection was going on, the entire student body had been assembled in the assembly hall.

The long and short of it was, my friend had to explain things to them. Standing in front of a multitude of teenagers and saying you are called suicide and why. You can’t do that and not sound stupid.

Author: OsugyaniAbrantie


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