57

What's the story behind your username?

If you are one of us folks whose username is not your actual name, what is the story behind it?

I'll go first.

18
  • 3
    Uh-oh, good luck proving @MikeEdenfield is not a false name!
    – Möoz
    Oct 12, 2015 at 2:57
  • 1
    I just copied my username from StackOverflow. Prosaic as hell :) Oct 12, 2015 at 3:04
  • @DVK : Short but sweet, both the story and the name! ;-)
    – Praxis
    Oct 12, 2015 at 3:05
  • @Praxis, point of clarification, in my opinion, part of what's the story ought to include why did you pick it Oct 12, 2015 at 5:50
  • 7
    @ThePopMachine : I'd prefer people be able simply to contribute whatever they think is interesting.
    – Praxis
    Oct 12, 2015 at 6:29
  • 6
    Fun question! Why the downvotes? Oct 12, 2015 at 6:57
  • 10
    @Wikis, (Not me but) I would imagine people are voting on the legitimate position that this is not on-topic for meta because it's not about questions, answers, scope, or how the site works. (But I find that position to be no fun.) Oct 12, 2015 at 14:18
  • @ThePopMachine: thank you for that explanation. If that is the case, they should vote to close rather than downvote. Oct 12, 2015 at 14:59
  • 5
    @Wikis : To counter ThePopMachine's explanation, cataloguing memes and organizing movie nights are also not about questions, answers, scope, or how the site works, but meta has been used frequently for those purposes. Therefore, there is plenty of precedence for this type of question, and they should not vote to close this without voting to close those too.
    – Praxis
    Oct 12, 2015 at 15:05
  • @Wikis : I suspect they are not downvoting for the reason that ThePopMachine has suggested (he is almost uniquely concerned with whether things are on-topic or not), but rather just because they are not "into" this kind of fun question. Clearly you and I both see the value of it. :-)
    – Praxis
    Oct 12, 2015 at 15:07
  • 1
    @Praxis: all possible theories. But unless the downvoters explain, we can only speculate. It seems a wasted opportunity. Oct 12, 2015 at 15:10
  • 1
    @randal'thor: how do you know it is one person? Each answer has two downvotes, maybe we have two unhappy campers. Oct 12, 2015 at 20:42
  • 7
    @randal'thor : To each, their own. Let's not let it stop us from doing something intended to be fun and community-building. :-)
    – Praxis
    Oct 12, 2015 at 20:52
  • 1
    I would have taken my usual username (used at online game services like Xbox Live, Steam, UBI, etc) if I hadn't registered at StackOverflow first and there I found it appropriate to use my real name, even though it is a rather common one.
    – Thomas
    Feb 2, 2016 at 14:28
  • 12
    This question is inspiring to me. I should start a meta post on the many passwords of SFF se...
    – CHEESE
    Mar 11, 2016 at 19:05

70 Answers 70

11

From the English nursery rhyme.

Jack be nimble,
Jack be quick,
Jack jump over
The candlestick.

I made the decision to abbreviate my middle name.

3
11

My first handle was SonOfSam, which I picked because:

  1. "Sam" was the first (non-gibberish) output a random-name generator I made years ago came up with, and
  2. Mad Max had recently released and I like alliteration, so I thought it sounded similar and cool

I had no idea that that was also the name of a famed serial killer(!), and I felt bad about unknowingly parading myself around as a fan of his. So I did some research on him, and found out that there are two officers who are credited for arresting the Son of Sam: William Gardella, and Timothy Dowd.

Gardella went on to give presentations where he'd go over general serial killer stuff and then describe the Son of Sam case specifically.

Dowd received an almost unheard of two promotions for his investigative work that brought down the Son-o-Sam, going from deputy inspector to deputy chief (DCOP). He retired a year later, and from what I can tell, led a pretty normal and quiet life until he passed away at the ripe age of 99.

Seeing as I'm more of the introvert type and not a stranger to rising more than one rank at a time (ladies ;)), I chose the one who wasn't putting themselves out in the spotlight, therefore,

DCOPTimDowd.


Since I don't think I'm capable of giving an answer without any kind of cited source, here's more info on Mr. Dowd for those curious enough.

I also like giving pictures apparently, so here's one of Dowd working on the Son of Sam case back in 1977. Pretty handsome dude, actually.

Anyway, that's my story.

1
  • Wow. Well played.
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 6 at 22:53
10

I wanted to promote an Area 51 initiative I created about wikis, first called "Wikis and Wikipedia" and then "Wikispeedia". We weren't getting enough people interested so I changed my user name to "Wikis at Area 51", an initiative which delivered zero impact.

When our Area 51 proposal died, I shortened it. I might change it again; searching for "Wikis" (eg in Mos Eisley or even here on meta) is pretty hopeless: most of the time people are talking about Wikipedia. :)

7
  • 1
    It makes me think of the main character in District 9... Though, obviously spelled slightly differently
    – Catija StaffMod
    Oct 12, 2015 at 18:36
  • @Catija: indeed, I nearly added that! Oct 12, 2015 at 19:00
  • 1
    @Wikis, I don't understand what this proposal would have been Oct 13, 2015 at 3:29
  • 1
    @ThePopMachine: maybe that's why it wasn't a success?! It was a place to discuss things like how to implement a company wide wiki, how to work with software extensions, which wiki software to choose etc. BTW, will you explain your user name? Oct 13, 2015 at 6:21
  • 1
    @Wikis, ah got it. This is now an answer in a wiki comment about a question in a wiki comment about meta-wiki answer by Wiki-named user about a wiki site proposal about wikis. This is some serious Inception s#*t. Oct 13, 2015 at 17:19
  • 1
    @ThePopMachine: and I popped over to my machine to pop a message to your machine via the Stack Exchange machines while drinking pop. I need a lie down. Oct 13, 2015 at 17:42
  • 1
    Seeing all the great examples on this page, I really wish I'd thought of a better name... Oct 28, 2015 at 12:00
10

Long story short, it's the combination of old nicknames, newer coined ones, and the difficulty of securing a unique username on most sites.

In my Freshman year of college, I joined a group named The Fuzzies run by Father Matt Komescher at the University of Dayton. We had blue buttons with the word "Fuzzy" on them and membership cards. We'd pledged to make the world a better place by being nice to people and "giving at least one warm fuzzy a day". Because I wore the pin every day, I quickly became nicknamed "Fuzzy". When I started my first job after college, I still wore the pin, but one of my co-workers kept adding to the nickname until he finally settled on a simplification of FuzzyBoots because I also occasionally wore into work a set of bright yellow Caterpillar boots.

Being a common name, Fuzzy was a difficult username to secure, so I started using FuzzyBoots on many sites.

Up until today, I was just using my name, Sean Duggan, on the site, but I figure I ought to embrace the idea of a proper alias. ^_^

2
  • Thanks for sharing, Fuzzy! :-)
    – Praxis
    Feb 2, 2016 at 2:56
  • 1
    These boots are made for fuzzin' / And that's just what they'll do
    – SQB
    May 27, 2016 at 8:22
10

I'm just bleh.

Complete bleh.

9

I usually go with the name Spicy Wiener or swissdude323 (123 was taken). But after finding I really enjoyed Tolkien's world and becoming a regular on the Tolkien subs on reddit, I decided I needed a Sindarin name, so I chose Edlothiad.

edlothiad ger. of edlothia- blossoming, flowering <- edlothiand WR/293 Actually, edlothiand might be a misreading, according to David Salo who checked the original manuscript at Marquette and reported that his reading was unmistakably edlothiad.

I chose this name because my love for Tolkien had just begun to blossom and I wanted to nurture it. I also thought the name was very cool sounding, and the nickname Ed was very applicable.

2
  • ..."123 was taken", bahahaa, I lost my shit!
    – Möoz
    Oct 16, 2019 at 3:06
  • @Möoz the truth don’t lie
    – Edlothiad
    Oct 16, 2019 at 6:04
8

My user name, TheLethalCarrot, is taken from my gaming name used on all new communities I join.

It used to be TheLethalCoder which was an extension from the above as I had originally joined Stack Exchange on Stack Overflow and so wanted to change it a bit to be more appropriate, it still is that on most sites.

However, recently @Edlothiad informed me that there was a charcter in A Song of Ice and Fire called Carrot and so I updated back to the original:

Carrot, you'll have charge of their chests and boxes.

2
  • 1
    Woohoo, shout out to cha boiiiiiiiii!
    – Edlothiad
    Sep 19, 2017 at 21:11
  • 2
    @Edlothiad You're SFF Famous!
    – TheLethalCarrot Mod
    Sep 20, 2017 at 8:05
8

When I was named, my parents searched for a name that wouldn't get abbreviated.

They failed.

1
  • My first name is Julie. Invariably, everyone I know calls me "Jules". I like it! I don't mind at all. Apr 27, 2020 at 20:52
7

Boring answer for you:

My user ID used to be my real name, but, as we got bigger, I decided to put at least a LITTLE bit of obfuscation between me and any random trolls / web-spiders, etc., and I switched to my initials. Years ago, I tried to buy the domain of my initials (khw.com), but there's someone with the same initials who had the same idea and has been sitting on it for 10 years or so. (No web page there, just 'under construction', but I can't really criticize, as I rarely have anything on my domain, either. Just temporary pages I put up for one thing or another.)

So, I bought the next best thing, to my way of thinking.. k-h-w.com.

Sigh -- do you KNOW how many sites don't think that's a POP3 compliant format? Bah.

Regardless, I've had the site for years, now, tho, so when I decided to remove my actual name k-h-w seemed the obvious choice.

1
  • 1
    Thanks for this, @K-H-W!
    – Praxis
    Dec 24, 2015 at 1:19
7

I can't go through all of the answers yet because I've burned through my votes and I want to be able to do them justice as I read them. But it's a fascinating thread and when my votes kick back in, I'll be back to reading everyone's reasons.

That having been said, my story is simple, if a little mushy. rosesunhill is my newish user name on a lot of sites. My name is Michael Hillel Roseman, I have two sons, so rose-sun-hill, allowing for a little mutation in the middle part. It's easy for me to remember and I've yet to find it taken on a site. I dread that day.

Now I'm thinking of painting a thumbnail that represents the handle.

6
  • 2
    Thanks for sharing! I was actually wondering how to parse your username (e.g. "rose-sunhill" or "roses-unhill"). Now I know! :-)
    – Praxis
    Mar 20, 2016 at 15:49
  • 1
    @Praxis - My pleasure! Yours, I deduced, being a good Trekkie. Mar 20, 2016 at 16:01
  • 1
    @rosesunhill The word Praxis is found all over the place, not just Star Trek. But of course our Praxis is a Trekkie through and through :-)
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Mar 20, 2016 at 17:12
  • I’ve been wondering this ever since you joined the site.
    – Molag Bal
    Mar 20, 2016 at 19:55
  • @amaretto - Really? I guess I need that thumbnail. I hope it's not like "The Oneders." Don't tell me if it is. I think. Mar 20, 2016 at 20:48
  • 1
    @rosesunhill I just couldn’t parse your name correctly, as evidenced by my guessing your gender wrong yesterday... :-|
    – Molag Bal
    Mar 20, 2016 at 21:02
6

It's a bit of nonsense poetry from the album "Who Can I Turn To Stereo" by experimental music project Nurse With Wound. For a while it was the band's only album on Spotify, and when I first listened to it, it was just about the weirdest thing I'd ever heard. The dadaist lyrics and song titles really stuck in my mind. The first track, "Tune Time Machine", includes the wonderful wordage:

A great, armed mass of darkness fish was approaching. I had the girl, the records, and the jeweled knife, but he had the time machine.

Later on the album, there's an instrumental track titled "Approaching Darkness Fish", followed immediately by the brief "Darkness Fish", making this cthonic creature an icon of sorts for the album in my mind.

There's no intended connection to science fiction (I chose the name while I was still more active on StackOverflow), despite the lyrics' references to time machine. It's just a weird blurb of absurdist humor from an obscure musician I like.

1
  • Now that's what I would call a cool name!
    – Neo Darwin
    Feb 1, 2019 at 2:58
6

It's my actual name. I never knew why Neo although I suspect that it's related to the Matrix which came out precisely one year before my birth. My mom always loved that movie.

1
  • 2
    That's a cool name Feb 1, 2019 at 1:03
5

I'm not using my usual username, because I need to protect my identity...

Well, really...

4
  • 2
    Are you Batman?
    – Valorum
    Dec 25, 2015 at 13:38
  • 1
    @Richard: Errrr..... Possibly...
    – Mithical
    Dec 25, 2015 at 13:58
  • 2
    @Richard No, he's Spock.
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Jan 21, 2016 at 13:05
  • 6
    @randal'thor - The childcare expert?
    – Valorum
    Jan 21, 2016 at 13:10
5

My username is the child of pure creativity.
When I was in my early teenage years I liked to read Naruto mangas.
Naruto's father, was the 4th hokage of the leaf village. And he was super cool. So I started using the username Yondaime everywhere on the net, which translates to 4th in Japanese. Till one day, I had the dreaded message informing me that the username Yondaime is taken, and it suggested Yondaime008 instead.
And I was like, hey look, you'd look like the next spy to 007 with a licence to kill, which is nice but also I was born on the 8th.
This website -which i forgot- actually did the creative part for me. Sorry to dissapoint you all who are reading this.

2
  • 2
    But, erm… yondaime (四代目) doesn't just mean ‘fourth’ in Japanese, does it? It means ‘fourth generation’. ‘Fourth’ in its own would be 第四目 daiyonme, wouldn't it? Jan 22, 2016 at 7:31
  • 2
    @JanusBahsJacquet you're absolutely right. This was an inherited misconception from badly translated mangas I guess. Jan 22, 2016 at 8:40
5

The entertainment/arts-related sites make using your favorite characters from the respective medium/genre an obvious choice, in contrast to some lame real-life name or a username used everywhere else on the internet anyway. But since I'm not much into written works I did not want to pick a character that I have to feel hypocritical for not knowing its base material inside out. Neither did I want to be the 5000th l0rd_vad3r or Gandalf87.

Being more into movies in general than science-fiction or fantasy per se, the obvious choice were original stand-alone science-fiction/fantasy movies that also work as mere cinematic experiences apart from the science-fiction/fantasy appeal alone. This is the reason why I first chose Sky Captain as an avatar, a great character from a very entertaining and unique retro sci-fi movie. I then later changed it to another great character from one of the best science-fiction movies of recent times and left it at that.

5

Long ago, I used to use Number 6 (or variations as it often wasn't available) as an alias on various places. Often, even after I gave that up, when the name I did choose for an e-mail address or whatever wasn't available, instead of tacking a 1 or a 01 on it, I'd throw 6 at the end.

A much more recent long-ago, I'd become a fan of Brian Stableford's "Star Pilot Grainger" series (also called the Hooded Swan series), and, even more than most books, I had trouble finding anyone who'd ever read it. So, aroundabout when Firefly came out, I started using StarPilotGrainger as an alias, specifically on a few Firefly sites and some more generic SF sites, in part with the hopes that somebody would recognize the series. It never happened.

Around the tail end of that I was seeking a new name for Xbox Live, and figured that Grainger was too obscure to want to bother explaining if anyone asked, but wanted to keep some of that vibe, I came up with the idea of putting together the two old names and just being StarPilotSix, like I'm some anonymous pilot that's backing up the main characters in any old space opera show or movie. And I stuck with that name through a few sci-fi related sites.

1
  • +1 for being pro-backup Jun 21, 2017 at 17:17
5

I don’t know. Everyone seems to hate whatever I write anyway.

<—- see?

Years ago I was posting on a political forum and for some reason people started writhing in pain whenever I told them what was wrong with them. So I did a genome test and found I was dropped off on a doorstep one day from a passing Vogon freighter (yeah, I was lucky I got my security clearance, because I was able to see some of the Area 51 files). Anyhow, I thought I’d carry on my family legacy. Vote if you care - or are still alive to.

0
4

I am the one true king of the Seven Kingdoms.

5
  • 4
    There shall be no confusion on this point from now on. Thanks for sharing!
    – Praxis
    Dec 25, 2015 at 4:11
  • 3
    Stannis is an usurper and wields a fake lightbringer. Aemon Targaryen knew that, it held no heat. You ser, don't deserve to sit on the iron throne. Jan 21, 2016 at 12:57
  • He is no more... Jun 10, 2016 at 14:29
  • 2
    @Ankit Show heathen. Jun 10, 2016 at 15:16
  • I wonder if people dislike this name or your claim to be the "one true king of the Seven Kingdoms"...
    – Möoz
    Jun 16, 2016 at 3:37
4

I'm a maniacal supervillain who hates that hedgehog!

2
4

I came up with my Internet handle when I was 9. It's literally just "F1-crazy", as in, "crazy about Formula One", which I was (and thankfully, I still am). "F1Crazy" looked weird somehow, so I spelled it with a K instead. I quickly grew attached to the name and have been using it ever since. If you see an F1Krazy anywhere on the Internet, chances are that's me.

4

DisturbedNeo

Disturbed - Nu-Metal band formed in Illinois in 1996. Theirs was the first metal I heard and they, alongside Linkin Park, played big roles in developing my music tastes throughout my teens. I would not enjoy the music I do without them, and so they will always hold a special place in my heart.

Neo - Main Antagonist of The Matrix series, with The Matrix being my favourite Sci-Fi, possibly even my favourite movie, of all time. It played a big role in the development of my taste in movies, and probably fashion, if my trench coat and assortment of black clothing is anything to go by, and so also holds a special place in my heart.

The name formed one fateful day during my youth. I was trying to think up a new name for an online game, and I wanted a unique name free of numbers and those godawful "Xx...xX" things you see all over online games. Whilst pondering, my mother noticed my plight and suggested "Why don't you take two things you like and put them together, like your favourite band and movie?" And thus DisturbedNeo was born. It has been my main online handle ever since. Thanks, mum.

1
  • "Antagonist"? I'm not certain if you're confusing the term, or being clever about it.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Oct 17, 2019 at 16:58
4

Back when I had to commute almost two hours to work it felt like I was riding with Zombies and I was becoming one. Thus the commuter became the Zommuter. Yeah, I'm sometimes zynical. Fortunately a friend drew me a more optimistic avatar.


Around minute 8:40 of Shaun of the Dead.
Fittingly enough, the music playing is Zombie Nation's Kernkraft 400.

0
3

This is a username I've used for many years, most actively on here and on Twitter, where I spout all kinds of inane drivel :-) The origin of my name is simply my surname and the squad number of my then-favourite player which I once got on the back of a football (soccer) shirt :-)

3

I've used Marakai for... it must be decades now. Heard it yoiks ago, when a tour guide gave it as the name of a huuuuuge saltwater croc up on the Catherine River in the Northern Territory. You can see why I thought it'd be a cool name. :D It's apparently a Melanesian/Micronesian word - not Aboriginal or of the people of Arnhem Land. Sounds good, though.

No, my profile age isn't real either. As Aragorn said "I'm older than I look."

3

It is just a nickname from my friends and family... there is no meaning or secret reference.

3

When I was a kid, I use to write video game guides, and I was pretty good. When I started playing World of Warcraft, I wanted a more universal name to use for everything, especially my contributions to Wowhead.

My main character was a Warlock, and I specialised in Gnome Engineering. My creative mind came up with GNome ENgineer warLOCK, but Gnemlock just sounded a lot better.

I pretty much use this name, everywhere, now.

3

My name is my initials (RDF) combined w/ my college nickname of "Fozz" (after Fozzie Bear, due to my combination of hirsute appearance and love of groan-inducing humor). If you see an RDFozz elsewhere - that's probably me - I've never failed to get the name on any site where I've asked for it, and it's always my first choice.

3

My real name, Stefano, has Greek origins and means "crown".
Sekhemty is the name of the ancient Egyptian double crown; I always had an interest in history, ancient and medieval in particular, and I chose an username that reflected these two things.

I used this nickname on the Internet since, well, always.

It is often misspelled as Sekhempty, a somewhat annoying accusation of being a hollow person.

0
3

My name is Niffler. You want to know why? Well it's because they're so darn cute!

If that isn't adorable I don't know what kind of person creature you are.

1
  • I love Nifflers! They are the cutest creatures in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them - I love how they are attracted to shiny things and are constantly trying to collect treasure. In Order of the Phoenix a Niffler tries to steal Pansy Parkinson's gold watch during a Care of Magical Creatures class. Great name! Apr 27, 2020 at 20:56
3

My username is "Stormblessed", from the name people in his squad called Kaladin in The Way of Kings, "Kaladin Stormblessed". Goes with my avatar because he is forced to fight in the same war as House Kholinar’s troops and (The Way of Kings major spoilers)

joins them, eventually

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .