Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Charlie. Oscar. David. Echo.

My last name is often misspelled. It ends with the letter “M” but most people, after I spell it out for them, hear the last letter as an “N”. My social security card is spelled with an “N”. My drivers license with an “M”. My insurance card has an “N”.

Now whenever I have to give out my email or spell my name for someone I always end the spelling of my name by saying, “M as in Mary”. People still get it wrong. I guess they think I say "N" as in Nary. I don't know why I use "Mary" instead of "Michael". I just do.

Part of my job, when talking with customers, requires me to use a series of letters and numbers. In an effort to avoid confusion with letters that sound the same, like “B” and “P” I use a phonetic alphabet. I do not use the official military Phonetic Alphabet (Alfa, Bravo, Charlie, Delta etc.) but I basically make it up as I go along. Most people just substitute common names or animals instead of the letter. I also don’t say the “as in” part (unless the situation requires that I do). Each word I use is the letter itself. So if I were to spell my first name for someone it would sound like “Baker, Indian, Larry, Larry.”

Sometimes I chuckle at some of the words people come up with when they are using their own phonetic alphabet. Recently someone was giving me a tracking number of some sorts and used “Champagne” and “Vodka” for the letters “C” and “V”. It gave a slight insight to what they were thinking.

So I am asking you, blog commenters, how would you, using as a phonetic alphabet, spell your first name? Don’t think too much about it; just leave a comment with how you would normally spell it out.

65 comments:

April said...

Delurking here because I see I think I might be first! My name is simple I just say it's "April", like the month!

Meegs said...

Mango Elephant Eggplant Giant Sausage

Meegs said...

Oh wow, okay "giant sausage"?! Didn't mean for it to sound like that!!

wifey615 said...

fun post.

Wigs Icecream Fart Everyone Yellow

Teri aka "Peach Pit" said...

T=Tom
E=Edward
R
E=Edward
S=Sam
A

I always spell the last name, they NEVER get it right.

Oh, The Joys said...

Jerk eats salad salad in captured alien.

Anonymous said...

Always have to spell the last name...Same "N" problem
Neglect Edward In Lazer Light

Anonymous said...

Mary
Egg
Lady
Ice
Sam
Sam
Apple

Deneen said...

Does
Everyone
Need
Everything
Exactly
Now

Yeah-I am cranky. I apologize.

Mrs. Fierce Shoes said...

Dog
Elephant
Nancy
I(I got nothin')
Sam
Elephant

We ran into this all the time in the insurance biz when taking VIN numbers on the phone. You can always tell an old military man by their Deltas.

Sharkey said...

Sam
Hello (hello, it's H! do I really need a code for that one?)
Apple
Retro
Klepto
Elephant
Yellow

Anonymous said...

You are a Delta Orange Radio Kite

Michelle said...

Michelle Ice Cake Harry Elephant Lucky Lucky Elephant

Lisa Bakewell said...

Larry Inga Sam April- almost sounds like I don't know if I'm male or female, does it?

Jessie said...

Jelly
Electric
Stupid
Susie
Icabod
Enormous.


Wow that was random.

Julie said...

Justin ugly loser idiot evil (i really can't stand Justin Timberlake)

eclectic said...

Sally Harry Apple Random Idiot

Kelly said...

Kooky
Exactly
Lovely
Luscious
Yowza!

Oh my!

June said...

Hey April - I use "like the month" too and sometime people still don't get it right!

charlottalove said...

At an old job, customers had to leave a code when they called in. This one lady was so careful.
R and in Robert
V as in Victor
S as in Sam
I as in...............in a boat.

We saved that message for a long time.

Me:
Charlie
Harry
Alpha
Robert
Lucy
Octopus
Tom
Tom
elephant

Aly said...

Apple
Lucy
Yogurt

or

Aliens
Land
Yearly

sari said...

Mine is weird anyway so I have to do the same thing, and most of the time people don't get it right anyway.

And my last name is a fairly common name but spelled weirdly. I just can't win.

S as in Sam,
A
R
I

And it rhymes with Mary.

Grace said...

Grape, Robot, Apple, Cantelope, Eggs

(apparently, I'm hungry)

Scottsdale Girl said...

Lemon
Ice
Ice
Sam
Echo

Scottsdale Girl said...

And now I am singing

"Ice ice baby" lord help me

Ern said...

Elephant Restaurant Internet Nut

Also, this makes me think of the friends where Phoebe spells her name, "P as in Phoebe, H as in heebee, O as in Ohbee, E as in Eeebee, B as in Beebee, E as in 'ello there, mate!"

kalki said...

Kite Elephant Laugh Laugh Yellow

3jaysmom said...

Kilo Indigo Tango Tango Yankee
(sorry, I worked in electronic communications in the military for 8 years.... its all I know. I am no good at making stuff up!)

Chaos Control said...

slightly hairy and really interesting

Vanessa said...

Vain
Apple
Nice
Eloquent
Silly
Sick(I have a cold)
Artsy

Jen aka Evilynmo said...

Junior Echo Nanny

Hmm, I guess you might discern that I am a young mom with a loud daughter ;)

soozieq said...

Sam
Uncle
Zebra
Iguana
Elephant

I guess I am a proud patriot who likes animals, huh?

Susie said...

Sonofabitch
(wait, I'm having a bad day; I'll try again when I can start with Sunshine.)

Andrea said...

Anteater Needle Dinosaur Ridiculous Excellent Anteater.

yikes...that makes me feel very bipolar...

Patience said...

Potato
Avocado
Tomato
Icecream
Eggs
Noodles
Chocolate
Eclair

(Dang. I'm hungry.)

Wendy said...

Whiskey, Echo, November, Delta, Yankee - sorry. I'm a vet.

The only letter I could never reconcile in the Official Military Phonetic Alphabet was "Uniform", and for some reason, I always wanted to say "Uncle."

I met a fellow online whose blogname was "Tango Echo" - his initials in militarese. I tried mine out. I'd be "Whiskey Bravo." I thought it sounded a little like a cowboy :).

ToadyJoe said...

A like Amy.

yeah. Like that. Heh.

OK, seriously...

Amy with a Y.

No e, No i, just a Y.

Amy - Martha - Yahoo.

I've worked with multiple Amys before, only luckily we've been able to differentiate based on spelling or hair color. Thanks, this was fun.

ToadyJoe said...

Oh, and I have the EXACT SAME "n/m" issue. I hate that. I know your pain.

Stepping Over the Junk said...

My real name is so odd that if you google it, you get my professional art website. So I just have to say my name and then I say (for instance) "My name is Stepping, as in "stepping over"...if that makes sense. Spelling it still confuses people even though it is simple. (I know, vague, but not putting my real name up here)

Anonymous said...

My husband and I argue about the correct name to use when emphasing the V in our last name. Many people hear B instead of V, so I say V as in Vincent - He tells me thats totally wrong. His family has always used V as in Victor. Doesn't matter, people still hear B.

My name - Kite,Rat,Ice,Cat,Kite,Egg,Toe,Toe. yes - its my real name (which is something I always have to say after giving it out)

Circus Kelli said...

King
Edward
Lincoln
Lincoln
Igloo

or

Kinky
Elephant
Likes
Leather
Ick

I always have to spell my first and middle names because there is more than one way to spell them and my parents chose the "non-traditional" way. (Thank you parents)

People mishear/mispronounce my last name all the time. It's crazy.

Nancy said...

I usually smirk out:

N as in Nancy

If you understand that, you can figure out the rest

Effie said...

Elephant
Feather
Feather
Icecream
Elephant

Stacie said...

I blogged about this just a couple of weeks ago, when my husband asked me to tell him over the phone the confirmation code for his flight...when I got to W, all that came to mind for whatever reason, was Whore. I don't know where it came from...Oh boy! You'd think with 2.5 years student pilot training I'd have the phonetic alphabet memorized, but I don't.

Silly, Tenacious, Albert, Cat, Insane, Echo

BOSSY said...

B as in Bossy.
O as in Ossy.
S as in the eSsence of funny.
S as in eScape from reality.
Y as in Why me, lord?

stepblog said...

Magnificent eyes leading a notriously intellectual empire

Lynn said...

You think you got problems? I have to say (for my funky last name) V as in Valentine, X as in X-ray. Even so, my name sounds just like it looks. It seems to me that anyone who can actually read should never mispronounce it, but it happens all the time. If I had an M in my name, I would probably get so frustrated that I would eventually say something mean like, "No. It's not 'N'. That's 'M' as in Moron."

I think I'm going to change my name to a symbol, like Prince did. Let's see people mangle THAT. Ha!

Grace said...

G as in Gret
R as in Rubber
A as in Apple
C as in Can Do
E as in Excellent

Tessa said...

This is the first thing that came to me:

Terrycloth
Echo
Salmon
Salmon
Artichoke

carrie said...

Carrie, with a "C" as in "cat". Not Larry, Mary, Harry, Barry, Terri, Jerry, Fairy or Dairy.

Jody said...

Jolly Old Dog Yellow

Sounds like Old Yeller... Except he dies so I suppose he wasn't too jolly there at the end. :)

Michelle said...

Hmm, I usually just say "Michelle, with two Ls" but if I have to spell it out it would be
M=many
I=ice cream
C=cones
H=have
E=evilly
L=landed
L=lard
E=evenly
(on my hips that is)

Jem said...

Jemma
Edwin (?)
Mary
Mary
Aeroplane (theres one flying above my house right now)

Circus Kelli said...

Lynn - tired of people misprouncing your name? Tell them it's "Smith", just spelled a little differently. :)

Jen aka Evilynmo said...

Happy Father's Day =)

No_Newz said...

Lovely
Orgasm
Igloo
Sex

Happy Father's Day!

gypsygrrl said...

HA!

i love this post... i have a friend who's best friend gets irked when people ask him to spell his name: ROGER. (???how hard is that to spell???)

so he starts like this:

R as in staR
etc...

mommiebear2 said...

I also work in customer service and I tend to say "N as in Nicole" instead of the tradition Nancy/Natalie because my name is Nicole.

Lynn said...

I'm laughing at CK.
Smith it is.

bbsgirl said...

J = Jelly
A = Apple
N = Nancy
E = Elephant
T = Tom

EVERYONE mis spells my last name!!! It's STANGER and they ALWAYS spell it "STRANGER". I tell people I may be strange, but I'm not a stranger

platypus said...

Sorry William, I'm from a military family so it's definitely:

Pappa
Lima
Alpha
Tango
Yankee
Pappa
Uniform
Sierra

When I talk to people and give them my surname I always end up saying, "---, as in sandwich"! It's not 'cheese', by the way. :)

Linda and Denny said...

Lincoln Ida Nora David Adam. It's the quasi-military code we used in police dispatch consisting mostly of men's and women's names. Which included "M as in Mary".

Me said...

Melon, Edward, Lime, Indigo, Nary, Dad, Ass

Reserved Stipulation said...

I'm a police dispatcher, so it's not really fair, since I'm set (mostly) in what I use for a phoentic alphabet.

Juliet, Echo, Nora, Nora, Young.

I love it when my officers give me a clearance and ask it for last of SMITH, Sam Mary Ida Tom Henry, first of Janiquatia, common spelling. :-p

Jay said...

I just say like the letter...