Anonymous in Real Life

We have a funny habit here around the Crazy House. On my blog, I always use everyone’s real name. I understand why some people don’t, but honestly, it drives me crazy hearing about The Little Princess, Country Boy, His Royal Highness or whatever. I do have some privacy concerns, but I just don’t think I’m interesting enough for someone to bother stalking.

Anyway in our real life, we have picked up an interesting habit from my in-laws. No one around here is referred to by their actual name. Instead, we usually refer to them by their family relationship. For example, here is a perfectly typical sentence in our house “Son, go get Grandson and tell him that Mom has dinner on the table”. Yes, my husband usually refers to me as Mom, even when the kids aren’t around. How sexy.

Seeing as we have multiple sons and multiple grandsons, a statement like that can get a little confusing, but somehow they all figure it out, even if we have to point to identify the correct “son”.

I guess it’s not any worse than my Mom. Even though she only had two daughters, she was forever calling me by my sister’s name. If you call them all the same name, you don’t have that problem.

Actually, now that I think about it, it’s actually a family tradition. Both of our mothers used the same name – Nana. However, one pronounced it Nana and the other pronounced it as the italian Nonna. When we talk about them, we have to be very careful to pronounce them carefully or we get questions like, “Do you mean Nana or Nana?”  

We have a similar situation with my own grandmother. She was quite vain and didn’t want people to know she was our grandmother. So she instructed all of us to call her Mom – kids and grandkids alike. Somehow it picked up a particular inflection over the years, so when my sister and I talk about her, we always know if we are talking about “Mom” (our grandmother) or Mom (our actual mother).  It’s kind of like a secret code in our family.  

You’d think it would just be easier to call them by their names, but actually that’s even more confusing because BOTH of my grandmothers are named Hazel. I also have two nephews named Jim (they are step brothers), and two uncles named Francis – one on my father’s side, one on my mother’s side. Go figure.  Their siblings love it because they can do that old line from the Bob Newhart Show.  This is my brother Jim, and this is my other brother Jim….

Need a scorecard to tell your way around my family? Yeah, welcome to the club!


  1. Um I don’t know how in the world you all know who you’re talking to or about!

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