My father used to call me Horseball; an affectionate, if somewhat unconventional, nickname. My five-year-old optimism (and literal brain) lead me to believe that I had earned this moniker for my skill at horse-play, and because I was spirited, like a … ball of horses! It wasn’t until I was much older and I came face-to-face with a raised tail on the business end of a real, live horse that I realized just how far my father had strayed from nicknaming orthodoxy.
I live in Japan now, and when my friends heard me call my girl Funny Monkey, they laughed and laughed and laughed, both humored and somewhat aghast. It was as if I had called her Horse Poop. This struck me as odd; isn’t it a parenting universal that we give pet names to our kids? Turns out, nicknaming conventions have much variation the world over. — Erica Knecht
What nicknames are you planning on calling your baby?
Erica Knecht is a mother, writer, and professional nomad, currently based in Southern Japan. When not gallivanting across the globe with her one-year-old, she blogs about the lighter side of tri-cultural parenting on her blog Expatria, Baby.
More on Babble:
Around the (small) world: 15 fascinating baby customs from different countries
What in the world?! 11 pregnancy superstitions from various cultures
All around the world: We had a baby — but we never stopped traveling