Monday, October 21, 2013

Guest Blogger Prairie Pa on Nick Names

Dick "Night Train" Lane
My sister's grandson called a kid "Fish Face."   As a result, her grandson had to go to counseling for bullying. If the same rules applied when I was a lad in Peshtigo, Wisconsin half the town would have been sentenced to counseling.
Seems like everyone had a nickname and hanging nicknames on people was an art form. In the pre-politically correct era, when self-esteem was unknown, most kids were called names, worse than Fish Face. The really good and bad nicknames stuck, some for life.
Nicknames included:
  • Bugs (last name was Bundy)
  • Squeak (had a very high voice)
  • Mouse (a small guy)
  • Nazi (a little, edgy guy)
  • Sweet Roll (dad owned the bakery)
  • Mush (I have no idea)
  • Chicken (not a gutsy football player)
  • Stink (spent a lot of time at the local stockyard)
  • Bull Neck (football coach who repeatedly told us to keep a bull neck when blocking)
My mother, whose real name was Dorothy, was called Sara.  My father, Henry, was called Red and my brother, Dan, was Ringo (after Packer Center Jim Ringo).
Most of the time my name was Bulldog, which was not bad because the Peshtigo sports teams were the Bulldogs. Truth be known, I preferred “The Rocket” after Maurice "The Rocket" Richards of the Montreal Canadiens. Unfortunately no one would mistake me for Maurice with my short legs and boxy body. Or I would have liked “Night Train,” after Dick “Night Train” Lane, a NFL defensive back. When Dick tackled you, it was like being hit by a train traveling at night—silent and painful.
I guess everyone survived without bully counseling. Stink became a doctor, Mouse a high-ranking officer in the air force, and Squeak director of the local park and recreation department. Never did find out what happened to Chicken.

Prairie “The Rocket” Pa
(The nickname Prairie Pa had for me was "Sweetie Eydie."  Awww.  Prairie Eydie)

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