And in the end it is not the years in your life that counts, it is the life in your years



Throughout my life, and I am sure just like everyone else, I have had, been given, used, nicknames. It is funny how the name we are given at birth never quite seems to be the only one we need. I have had a few over the years, Nelson, SpecialK, Coca, and the name my family used which was Pauly. I hated Pauly, I really did not like it, but for some reason everyone in my family used it all the time. I have no memory whatsoever of every being called by my birth name of Paul.

After I left home, and came to England, football and the Arsenal were my life. And at the Arsenal I was Coca. The reason for it was simple, I drank a vast amount of Coca-Cola. I did then and I still do now. So for many years back at the start of the eighties I spent my life living under the name as Coca. It was okay, I did not really have an issue with it. I never thought it would stick with me for life, it was just something that fitted at the time and for a time.

In the few years before I left Ireland, 78-83, I had spent a lot of time being called SpecialK, it was a name given to me by a girlfriend, and by that I mean a friend who was a girl. I had helped her with a problem and from then she always referred to me as SpecialK, I did not mind it so much, but again I sort of always knew it would not stick or last. And of course to today it is a brand name of a cereal for weight loss, so maybe it should have stayed around, after all I am possible the perfect advertisement for such a brand with my perfect physical shape and all.

The other name, but I can’t really remember too much about where it started was Nelson. I do know where it came from, the motor racer Nelson Pique, and as I was a PK myself, that was how it started. But I can’t for the life of me remember who it was, or how it got started. I also remember that it did resurface a few years back, but did not stay long the second time either.

But again, when I spend time reflecting on my life, it is interesting to do so by linking to a subject like this. I bet someone out there has done a study on the meanings and importance of nicknames, and I do wonder to myself if mine had any sort of meaning, if they were seen as nice, powerful, drab, interesting or wet, basically what did people think when there either gave me the nickname or used the given name.


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© 2008 Paul Kavanagh. All rights reserved.