Monday, October 12, 2009

What's My Name?

Greetings Happy People,

Throughout my life I have been known by many nicknames. Back in Virginia, my family nicknamed me Spoogy. On my dad’s side of the family in Arkansas, they called me Spoogum. When I moved to Vegas, I’ve had many nicknames. In junior high, I was known as Smokey. At high school, I was known as Jes-Dog. In college, I never really had a nickname to go by. Sometime after college, I was known as Oakley guy, Oak, and JO3. While all of these nicknames are interesting, there is one that seems to stand out pretty well.

If you are in the Toastmaster circuit, you would know that my nickname is Jesse Oakley I-I-I (or simply I-I-I). How in the world did I end up with that nickname? Well, it started when I was attending my first meetings at Starmasters Toastmasters. As they were handing out the programs, I noticed that my name was misspelled (Jessie Oakley III). When it was time to introduce myself, I would commonly spell out my name. It went something like this….

“Fellow Toastmasters and most welcomed guests, my name is Jesse (J-E-S-S-E) Oakley (O-A-K-L-E-Y) the third (I-I-I).”

Due to countless repetition, the introduction was about to run its course at that club. Somehow that same introduction caught on when I first became an Area Governor. At my first contest, I gave that same introduction and people manage to catch on real quick. Next thing I knew that it went from Area level, to Division level, to District level. It has got to the point where if you were to ask about “I-I-I” at any local Toastmasters club here in Vegas, they would know who you are talking about. Even though there are STILL people who commonly misspell my name, I really like being known as “I-I-I.” You can say that it is my I-I-I-dentity.

Throughout my life, I had the following people misspell my name in many ways. The first way was Jessie Oakley III. There were also other interesting ways to misspell my name.

Jessy Oakley III

Jesse Oaklay III

Jessie Oakaley III

Jessye Oakley III

Jesy Oklwy – yes the smart people UNLV once spelled my name like that!!

Oh the many ways to misspell my name. No matter how many people can attempt to spell your name, it is always interesting to have a nickname. It seems that people know you well by the different nickname you go by. When you look back at your nickname, it reflects the fonder memories of life. That is what I get from the different nicknames I had. I would not be surprised forty years from now I will still be known as I-I-I. And like many nicknames before, this one will also give me fond memories too!!

That is all I have for now. Thank you for your time and attention.


Jesse (J-E-S-S-E) Oakley (O-A-K-L-E-Y) the third (I-I-I)

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