VitaminQ - a temple of trivia lists and curious words
Vitamin Q: the book!
~ Tuesday, March 04, 2003
11 groups of people who generally don't use their real names:
1 Magicians - though some prestidigitators have ever felt it beneath them, most still agree that a good and silly stage name looks tidy on a poster, for example Mephisto, The Great Cardini or The Mighty Kazimir.
2 People in chatrooms - as long as you understand that dookiedawg21 did not receive that soubriquet from his parents, and that deedee is actually a hanky-happy, spotty adolescent called Josh, then all's fair.
3 Rappers - since many rappers were saddled with questionable names like Tracy, Marshall and Duwayne, it's understandable that when toting their phat wares, they prefer to be, say, Da Professah, Foxee-D or Badd Dogg.
4 Gossip columnists - especially of the political sort, they need to protect their sources and their delicate nosebones, and to avoid legal fees so they become Peterborough, Monteith or Smallweed.
5 Brazilian footballers - since the Portuguese langauge encourages speakers (in much the way the German langauge loves compound nouns like Selbstbedienungslebensmittelgeschaft) to build their names until they are something like Arnoldo di Salvo Famagusta di Argumento, and since room on shirtbacks is limited, Brazilian kickers tend to stick to being Ernesto, Zico and Vamosinho.
6 Performance poets - these are often magnetically drawn to performance names which tag their style, see Mr Social Control, Skorpio the Nemesis, Salena Saliva.
7 Romantic novelists - it is the unbreakable law that they should have wistful or fluffy names such as Candida Somerset, Cressida Woodruffe or Maureen O'Malley, a law punishable by three years in the febrile grip of a buckle-swinging cad, even for those - the majority of them - who are actually elderly men.
8 Crossword setters - the reason for setter names is lost in the mist, but may be to do with tax, or the fact that many early setters were clergymen, who felt such fripperies as puzzles needed to be kept a secret. A setter should aim for a plucky and important sounding name such as Ximenes or Ganymede or a short one like Pod.
9 Clowns - the ringmaster screams, let's hear it for Trevor Jenkins and Phil Smith everybody! No, doesn't ring quite right (excuse the pun). And so clowns are Cocky, Magnifico or, more often than not, Joey.
10 Racing tipsters - for obvious reasons ie the 50/50 problem of your house being staked out either by sore bookies or skint punters carrying baseball bats, tipsters tend to use names such as Nap, Racecard or Bert.
11 Spies and Terrorists - for reasons even more obvious! Good spy names might be Clarion, Goshawk or Five-One-Zero. Good terrorist names are Brendan 'the Babyeater' Flanagan , Pepe the Hyena and (an especially successful suggestion) Osama Bin Laden.