Duncan, Nardag, Morty, Hooper

There is notice in this week’s Royal Gazette that a person with middle name Nicole has changed it to Cole. Changing your name isn’t the most difficult thing to do, but it involves paperwork, and a $185 fee. I wonder what it is about the “Ni” that prompted this desire for change.

Oliver has two middle names, Duncan and Lowell.

Lowell he came by honestly.

Duncan he came by because of a misunderstanding.

Our friend Wendy had a baby boy a month before Oliver was born, and named him Dillon. But when Catherine heard the news, and the name, she mis-remembered this as Duncan and that’s what she told me his name was.

A few days later, when we learned the truth of the matter, and that Duncan was, so to speak, on the market again, we snapped it up as a middle name for Oliver.

A similar happenstance gave me to understand that our friends Bob and Yvonne had a baby girl they’d chosen to name Nardag.

I thought this an unusual choice, but who was I to call it into question. So I enthusiastically embraced it.

A few days later, when we learned the truth of the matter – that Nardag was, in fact, named Nadja – I had a hard time coping with the change, so enthusiastically had been my embrace.

To the point where I have continued to refer to Nadja as Nardag in the intervening years.

I did the same thing with roommates my brother Steve had back when he was a young lad living in Toronto.

His roommates had actual names, I’m sure; but to me they were always Morty and Hooper.

All of which is a roundabout way of saying that Nardag Nadja lands on Prince Edward Island today, a fully-formed adult, where she and a group of friends will occupy our back yard – or perhaps our living room, if it rains – for the night before heading out on a camping adventure in the Island’s hinterlands.

And, tomorrow, my brother Steve and his family land on the Island too – presumably without Morty or Hooper – for a fun-filled family vacation.

I will try very hard to keep their names straight.


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