Nicknamesake: A Tale of Virtually Negligible Amusement.

My friends “Richard” and “Patricia” are bound for London in a little over a week. Patricia occasionally asks what they’d have to do to warrant a mention in the blog. I’ve always said I don’t know. Well, I’m going to wedge them in here before they cross the pond.

It’s not much of a story. I mean, it’s really not much of a story. I’m not even sure I have all the dialogue right. You’d probably be happier to induldge in any number of frivolities other than reading this story. I may go back later and spice it up a bit with a dead body, or some explosions, or a UFO sighting or something, but for now, this’ll have to do:

This weekend I attended a farewell party for my London-bound friends Richard and Patricia. We munched on excellent chips and passable fish, feasted on roast beef panini and hamburger-cucumber sliders, and consumed plenty of milk and cookies. Good times were had.

Early in the evening, somebody mentioned that both “Dom 1” and “Dom 2” were going to be in attendance. I thought it might be nice to meet another person who knows the frustration of of being addressed incorrectly as “Don” or “Tom.” I also thought that I’d damn well better be Dom 1. Kind of like when I returned to my place of employ after a year spent [PERMANENTLY REDACTED] and was told in an oh-so-cheery-voice by some newbie, who’d been hired in my absence, that the school already had another “Mr. V,” so maybe they could call me something else. I said that that wouldn’t work out well for anyone.

Anyhow, enjoyable party, met some nice folks, but I never ran across this other Dom. No big deal; I figure if I don’t meet people, that’s more their problem than mine.

The next night I re-visited Richard and Patricia in a futile attempt to kill off the rest of the milk and cookies. Richard’s sister was in attendance, and asked about one of the previous evening’s guests, “Morena.” Richard said that she was doing well, and that she was dating Dom 2, or at least dragging him around from place to place.

I chimed in, “Do you mean Dom also or Dom number two?”

Richard: “Dom number two.”

VDV: “I’m Dom 1, right?”

Richard: “Of course! What other Dom could you be?”

VDV: “I don’t know, maybe I’m Dom 3.”

Richard assured me that I was, indeed, Dom 1– which was a welcome relief. He also suggested that Don Henley of Eagles fame might be “Dom 3,” but that’s another inside joke for another time.

So I asked who Dom 2 was. Richard replied that I met him, and shook his hand, and that it was bizarre to see Dom 1 and Dom 2 in the same place at the same time. I had no idea who he was talking about. He said it was guy who’d been hanging out with Morena all night.

Now I knew who he was talking about. However, Dom 2 had been introduced to me as “Joe.”

VDV: “That guy? I thought his name was Joe.”

Richard: “It is.”

VDV: “Ah, so it’s Joseph Dominic, or Dominic Joseph or something?”

Richard: “His name isn’t Dom. He just reminded us of you, so we call him ‘Dom 2.'”

Richard’s Sister: “Does Morena call him that?”

Richard: “Yes.”

Richard’s Sister: “To his face?”

Richard: “Yes.”

VDV: “She calls him ‘Dom 2’ to his face?”

Richard: “Correct.”

It’s one thing to have a nickname, but to have one’s significant other call you a diminutive form of someone else’s name has to be belittling. And he may shrug it off, and it may be one of those little playful in-jokes that couples have, but in the long run it can turn out to be the sort of jibe that can seriously undermine a relationship. It’s like a little tree root that, untended, can crack the foundation under your house. I sincerely hoped that Richard was joking.

Actually, that last sentence is a bit misleading. I should have written: “I laughed as much as I am physically capable of laughing.” This poor schlep’s girlfriend calls him me. Spectacular. I wonder how humbling and awe-inspiring it was for my namesake to finally meet me. I wonder what he’ll tell his kids about it.

So, the story was lame, and it was mostly about me and my ego, but… Patricia, Richard, you finally made the blog. Kind of. I tried to dress it up as much as possible; I even gave this entry a subtitle. With more capitalization than usual.

Best of luck in merry old England, and I look forward to reading your blogs about it.

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