I guess names are a top­ic of inter­est to many of us, huh? I’m yet anoth­er whose reply got too long for a com­ment in ‘song’s LJ, so I’m writ­ing it here.

I had a broth­er, Will, who died short­ly before I was born. He was, even at 2 1/2 years old, a very strong-willed, opin­ion­at­ed per­son (yes, it does run in the fam­i­ly). He had insist­ed that he was hav­ing a sis­ter, and that her name was Cindy. He’d had a friend named Cindy who lived a cou­ple of doors down, but her fam­i­ly had moved away, and I guess he liked the name.

My par­ents expect­ed a boy to “replace” Will. They’d cho­sen the name Matthew Scott. The nurs­ery was all blue. All cloth­ing and toys were for boys. Noth­ing green or yellow—certainly not pink!—to be found.

So there I was, female. Not what was ordered. And they had­n’t thought about female names at all. Despite the fact that I was born with a full head of near­ly black hair, one of my aunts was deter­mined that I should be named Gold­en Estelle for my moth­er’s pater­nal grand­moth­er. For­tu­nate­ly, some­one remem­bered Will’s insis­tence that my name was Cindy. So I became Cyn­thia Lynn. Lynn is my moth­er’s mid­dle name, but I can’t real­ly say that I was named for her as much as that “Lynn” is one of those place­hold­er mid­dle names (with Ann and Sue and Jo and Mae) that is sim­ply tacked on to many south­ern girls’ names.

I find it cool that my name and my moth­er’s name (Dian­na) both refer to moon god­dess­es, but my par­ents cer­tain­ly weren’t think­ing in those terms.

I don’t like Cindy. I’ve always hat­ed that name, for some rea­son. I’ve nev­er felt like a Cindy. I haven’t looked like a Cindy since I was about 3–4 years old. Cindy is a perky cheer­lead­er’s name, some­thing that goes with pom-poms and pep ral­lies and such. It cer­tain­ly does­n’t suit the intro­vert I’ve been since I was about four, or the book­ish per­son I became as soon as I learned to read.

I’m not wild about Cyn­thia, but it’s far bet­ter than Cindy. I start­ed using Cyn­thia when I was 17 and work­ing full-time for the sum­mer. I con­tin­ued using it when I got my first “real” full-time job the next spring. I’ve used it ever since.

My fam­i­ly, despite know­ing how much I hate to be called Cindy, refuse to con­sid­er call­ing me any­thing else. I won’t answer to it from any­one else, and in fact, I’ll either ignore or acer­bical­ly cor­rect any­one else who uses that name to refer to me. I think it’s extreme­ly rude to go short­en­ing peo­ple’s names willy-nil­ly into diminu­tive forms.

When I real­ly start­ed using AOL, I did­n’t want a screen name with num­bers in it. There was a ten-char­ac­ter lim­it back then, so I end­ed up being Cyn­thia­Lyn. Friends short­ened that to Cyn or Cyn­Lyn, and I end­ed up using Cyn to sign email and such—still do it, in fact.

Back in 1995, I start­ed work­ing in the tech sup­port depart­ment at Mind­Spring. They were still in the Geor­gia Tech Advanced Tech­nol­o­gy Devel­op­ment Cen­ter (ATDC) then, a very small com­pa­ny. And every­body had busi­ness cards (I still don’t know why), even sup­port techs. Some peo­ple chose the title on the card, and some peo­ple were hand­ed a card that some­one else had spec­i­fied. My first super­vi­sor, Trevor’s, title was Chief Tilter at Wind­mills. I was the old­est per­son in our depart­ment (at, hmm, 28?) and the only one with, appar­ent­ly, much pri­or work expe­ri­ence (par­tic­u­lar­ly any admin­is­tra­tive expe­ri­ence). Things like “Gosh, we should sched­ule din­ner breaks so that 1) every­body on the shift gets one and 2) peo­ple aren’t all leav­ing at once” had­n’t real­ly been con­sid­ered. I was also, I think, the only par­ent in the depart­ment. So I became Tech­noMom. It’s the title they put on my busi­ness cards, and it’s the name I’ve used online ever since.

I feel zero con­nec­tion to the last name on my birth cer­tifi­cate, the one I use now, or any of those I’ve tak­en when I got mar­ried. They’ve nev­er been mine. I don’t like them at all. I use my sec­ond hus­band’s last name because it is Katie’s last name.

Katie’s name was an uneasy com­pro­mise between me and her father and I’ve nev­er been whol­ly hap­py with it, though a lot of thought went into it. I don’t think she is either.

Cur­rent Mood: 🤔con­tem­pla­tive
Cur­rent Music: Heather Alexan­der — “Gyp­sy’s Fire”
Cyn is Rick's wife, Katie's Mom, and Esther & Oliver's Mémé. She's also a professional geek, avid reader, fledgling coder, enthusiastic gamer (TTRPGs), occasional singer, and devoted stitcher.
Posts created 4259

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Posts

Begin typing your search term above and press enter to search. Press ESC to cancel.

Back To Top