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That's Not My Name!

Updated on April 14, 2015
Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannie has been writing for HubPages for over 5 years. She covers a wide variety of topics—anything from hamsters to office work.

Nope. Not even close.

My name is Jeannie. It seems like a simple name. No, it is not the most popular name. No, it is certainly not the prettiest name. No, it certainly is not trendy in anyway. However, it is still my name.

My name is not Jean, Jenny, Jeanine, Jeanette, or hell, even Judy. For some reason, I even get Judy - a lot! I can't explain that. I know it is easy to forget a name. It is easy to mispronounce a name. However, it is just rude to not even attempt to get my name right.

If I send out a work email and the correct spelling of my name is in my signature line, then I expect to see my name spelled correctly when I receive a response. Does that happen? Nope. About 20% of the time I see my name spelled totally wrong. If I am dealing with other educated adults, I expect to see them at least attempt to get it right.

Furthermore, my name is indeed Jeannie. It is not short for anything. It is not a nickname. It is on my birth certificate. I can prove it. So I hate it when I see "Jean" written on something. I am not Jean. If my name was Jean, I think I would have figured that one out by now. Just today I got an email with Jean written on it. So what will I do when I answer that email? I will give that person a nickname as well. For instance, for the name Jessica, I will respond with "Jess." After all, that must be acceptable or else I would not receive my own special nickname that is not my name at all, right?

Don't sing or hum songs to me.

Yes, I am aware of the song, "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair." That is actually why I shy away from having light brown hair. I am working that hard to avoid that song. I go with a darker tone now or dark blonde or even red hair. This is just so people will not sing that song to me. But they still do. They think it is cute. It is not.

Yes, I am a fan of the show, "I Dream of Jeannie." No, no, no... it is totally not necessary to hum the theme song to me. I assure you, it is not necessary at all.

Yes, I know Christina Aguilera has a song called, "Genie in a Bottle." That is why my screen name is Jeannie in a Bottle. Still, I really don't need to have that sung to me either.

The bottom line is, all of the songs are cute enough if my friends want to sing them to me (although some of my friends cannot sing at all!), but if you don't know me, don't do it. It is weird and creepy.

"Can you grant me 3 wishes?" said by any random person at least 5 times a year.

No. I can't. Do you know why? I am Jeannie, not a genie. It would be funny if I did not hear it all the time, but I do. So come up with some different, more original genie material and then we can talk. Seriously. I challenge you.

Learning to live with it.

Sometime long ago, I learned to deal with the fact that my name is hard to spell. I also learned that I would get stupid questions like, "Can you grant me three wishes?" I know, I know, I've accepted it. To some degree, I even embraced that my name is a little different and is pronounced the same as genie. When people have a problem with my name, I even say, "You know... like the genie in the lamp." It helps people. I am here to help.

What I am really asking is for people to take the time to be polite and learn how to spell my name correctly. Spellling it wrong once is an honest mistake. Spelling it wrong over and over again is not acceptable. This is not just about me either. Always try to spell every person's name correctly. Also, please do not butcher my name. If I tell you my name is Jeannie, call me Jeannie. If you meet a new person, make sure you have the correct name. When in doubt, even ask them what they prefer to be called. It makes people happy when you call them by their actual name. It is also good manners to know a person's name and use it when speaking to them. You want to be polite, right?

As for me, I still can't figure out how people get Judy out of Jeannie. I am still trying to figure that one out.

Pop Quiz!

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That's Not My Name

The Many Spellings of Jeannie (yes, I have really seen these!)

The Many Spellings of Jeannie 


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  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    That is so crazy! It is good to find someone else that shares my pain! Thank you for visiting my hub. :-)

  • profile image

    jeannie123 5 years ago

    OMG I read this article and immediately recognized what you go through! My nickname is Jeannie and that's what everyone calls me, and I constantly get asked to grant wishes. SO ANNOYING!

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    You might just be on to something with that theory. My mother's name is Rose and I imagine that was fairly popular back in the day. She also thought my name would be cute because of the show, "I Dream of Jeannie." So far, it hasn't been that cute. :-)

    Thanks for visiting my hub!

  • aethelthryth profile image

    aethelthryth 5 years ago from American Southwest

    My theory is that women like me who went through school with names common enough that 3 or 4 other girls in the class had the same name, cause opposite problems in the next generation by naming their kids odd names or normal names with different spellings.

    Such as Tanguy, Orion, Nataleha (pronounced Natalya), Rea (pronounced Rae), and, oh, yes, Aethelthryth.

    Except my husband, who has gone through life with an unusual name, wouldn't let me....

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    I can imagine you do feel my pain on this one. Your name is probably incorrectly spelled all the time too, just like mine. It is a shame when people put no effort into getting a person's name correct. Thanks for dropping by my hub!

  • Alecia Murphy profile image

    Alecia Murphy 6 years ago from Wilmington, North Carolina

    I understand where you are coming from 100 percent Jeannie! My name is Alecia (pronounced Aleigh-sha) but some how people get Felicia, Ale-see-uh, Alexia, and so many other ridiculous incarnations. My way of thinking is this, if someone really cares about getting to know you they will make an attempt to get your name right. I've met several lovely people who actually ask me my name a few times and then pronounce it right, which shows they care. Other people want to conveniently do what suits them which I think says a lot about who they are. Great hub!

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    I see we have a lot in common as far as name issues go. It is really rude for people to not bother checking the correct spelling on someone's name. My cousin is also named Vicki Lynn... not Victoria, too. Thanks for the comment and the votes!

  • Victoria Lynn profile image

    Victoria Lynn 6 years ago from Arkansas, USA

    I freakin' love this hub. I am so annoyed when people misspell names. I'm so sensitive to it that I constantly double check others names. Yes, when we give them the correct spellings in emails or other correspondence, why would they misspell--stupid or careless in not paying attention. My name is VICKI, not Vickie, not Vikki, Vicky, etc... The ironic part? My mom wanted to name me Victoria but didn't. Victoria is the name I use online as my pen name--and it is NEVER misspelled. There is NO excuse for people misspelling names when they've seen them spelled correctly. And who wouldn't think that Jeannie is spelled as such? They're either stupid, illiterate, ignorant, or lazy. Seriously. It's not that hard if they pay attention. Voted this hub up and ALL the way across!

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    I never realized so many people had names that are constantly misspelled. I guess everyone has some type of name spelling issue in life. Thanks to all of you for reading! Also, thanks for the comments. I feel your pain!

  • ktrapp profile image

    Kristin Trapp 6 years ago from Illinois

    I have to agree with Kristen Haynie who commented before me. I am Kristin with an "in" but people constantly spell it "en" even if I have included the correct spelling of my name. I can sign an email "Kristin" and the reply will begin with "Kristen." It drives me nuts. It seems like such a simple name to me, but I have been called Kirsten, Christine, Krista, Kiersten, Christian, and Kristia. It's crazy - 2 simple syllables, how hard can that be?


  • Kristen Haynie profile image

    Kristen Haynie 6 years ago from Modesto, CA

    I couldn't have said it better myself! My name is Kristen, and as simple and common as it is, no one can get it right. They either call me Kiersten, Christine, or Krista. Sometimes I even get 'Christian'. It really gets on my nerves! This is an awesome hub that lots of people (clearly) can relate to! Thanks for sharing it!


  • Stephanie Henkel profile image

    Stephanie Henkel 6 years ago from USA

    I agree wholeheartedly that it is rude and inconsiderate for people to misspell your name on business emails and letters. Really, how hard is it to copy and paste the correct spelling! I frequently have problems with misspelling of my last name, so I will spell it slowly when I am giving it to a salesperson or over the phone. 9 times out of ten, I spell H-E-N-K-E-L and they write HENKLE! Then there's the school friend I've known since I was 12 when my nickname was Stephie. Twice in one email he misspelled my name as "Stefi" and "Steffie." Argh!

    So, Jeannie, good hub!

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Yes! I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes I think someone is calling me Jenny, but then I realize that is how they say Jeannie. It is so confusing at times. It must be that southern accent that comes out the wrong way... well, I am sure, the right way according to them. Thanks for mentioning that!

  • Katharella profile image

    Katharella 6 years ago from Lost in America

    I have cousins in the south. My cousin married a girl named Jeanie. But they kept saying JENNY. So for the longest time I thought her name was Jenny. Until I said "How are Bruce and Jenny".. Um whose "Jeanie/Jenny?" WHAT? Oh, in the south it's pronounced MUCH the same way, unless of course you LIVE there, then somehow they know the difference. I get the "Cathy/Kathy" syndrome!

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Rhonda? What is up with that? There is no way you can get Rhonda out of Missy. Missy seems like a pretty normal name, but no one gets names right. It is pretty sad if you think about it. I work in customer service and all day people ask for my name (which I hate) and they will repeat it back to me wrong several times before I just give up. Honestly, I don't want them to have my name anyway. They will only call and annoy me.

    Thanks for the comment!

  • Sunnyglitter profile image

    Sunnyglitter 6 years ago from Cyberspace

    This made me laugh so hard. I loved the part about giving people a nickname when you respond to emails.

    For some reason, nobody can ever spell or say my name right either - and my name is Missy. Nothing too crazy.

    I went to a party the other day where I didn't really know anybody. After introducing myself, one guy called me Misty all night. The other kept calling me Izzy.

    Oddly enough, as I was reading this hub, I received a voicemail from my caseworker. It said, "Hi Rhonda...". LOL I'm still trying to figure out how you get Rhonda out of Missy, but whatever. Maybe she meant to call another client.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Wow, we really are in the same boat. I used to hate I Dream of Jeannie, too. Now I have learned to embrace it. I am even considering getting a genie bottle tattoo. However, it took me a long time to get to this point. Thanks for reading and thanks for the comment.

    By the way, I don't see how Brianne is a difficult name to spell or pronounce. Some people just don't bother to learn how to spell the most basic names!

  • Jeannee Waseck profile image

    Jeannee Waseck 6 years ago

    LOVE THIS!!! This is not only something I'm on board about - it is something I could have written. We should have a continental breakfast or a buffet lunch together ;) My name is Jeannee. Okay, let's be technical: I was baptized Jean Lee back in the day back in the Mid-Atlantic region of this country, but only my godparents ever called me that - my parents and everyone else called me Jeanie, until I changed the spelling when I was 15 - which was such a long time ago, as to be historic. Anyway - I get the songs, the tv show (I hated that tv show when I was a kid and that was when it was first sailing on tv), and being called by the wrong name. My daughter, Brianne, is 29 - now a popular name, but when she was a baby, it was - "Brian? Brian Ann?! Why did you give her a boys name?!" Crips - I passed the adventure along, didn't I ;-

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    I am starting to think I need to start a "No One Can Figure Out My Name" support group. This can include anyone with first or last name confusion.

    Thank you for reading and for the comment. By the way, I like Veronica way better than Victoria, too.

  • nycgrl profile image

    nycgrl 6 years ago from New York

    Another hilarious hub, love it! I feel your pain Jeannie, with a name like Veronica, I always get asked if I have a friend named Betty and a boyfriend with red hair named Archie :-(. And I am tall with dark brown hair like the comic book character too! But unlike her I do not have a rich daddy who spoils me (darn!). I also get called "Monica" a lot over the phone when I say my name...they hear Monica instead of Veronica. Its funny because that is my niece's name and we laugh about it all the time. I also get "Victoria" a lot in emails and I HATE HATE that because that is the name of a girl in high school whom was an awful person so the name Victoria is just the ugliest name to me.

    But I will always get your name right because in college I had a friend named Jeannie who spelled it just like you and also that was her actual name not nickname. So I have been trained!

  • Greensleeves Hubs profile image

    Greensleeves Hubs 6 years ago from Essex, UK


  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Thanks for reading and for the comment, Alfred. I really appreciate it. :-)

  • Greensleeves Hubs profile image

    Greensleeves Hubs 6 years ago from Essex, UK

    Nice hub Judy! Oh, and my name is spelled with a U, (just like yours), so if you reply, make sure you get it right Jenny. From Alun. Not Alan, or Allan, or Allen, or Big Al - But Alun. OK Jeanine?

    Damn! I think I may have just spelled your name wrong. Please forgive me Jeannie.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Jean - Yes, I've used the "ignore them until they get my name right" technique, too. Sometimes if you correct someone too many times and it is still not working out, that is the only way to stop them. Your 7th grade teacher sounds really creepy! I had a 9th grade teach sing "Little Jeannie" to me one time. Weird!

    Angie - Maybe it is something about the name Angela. It does, after all, have the word angel in it. Maybe people named Angela are just more peaceful and patient.

    Jean and Angie - Thank you both for the comments!

  • Angie Jardine profile image

    Angie Jardine 6 years ago from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ...

    I guess I am the odd one out here - my name is Angie or Angela and if people get it wrong it doesn't bother me. I don't know why but it just doesn't seem that important - must be my inner Buddhist ... :-)

  • profile image

    Jeanastra 6 years ago

    LOL!! My name is Jean and if people call me "Jeannie" I immediately correct them. Some people think it's endearing to add "ie" or "y" to everyone's name regardless of our preferences. I've been known to ignore people when they call me "Jeannie" and then when confronted, reply, "I'm sorry, my name is Jean, so I wasn't aware that you were speaking to me." Or I'll add a "y" to their name whether it fits or not. As for that "Jeanie With The Light Brown Hair" song.......I have a story about a perverted 7th grade teacher who cornered me in an empty classroom & sang that to me while stroking my long (red) hair. EWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Janny... I don't get that one too much. I appreciate the comment, Mr. Rodgers. :-)

  • Cogerson profile image

    Cogerson 6 years ago from Virginia

    Great hub Janny....nothing gets me more upset than people spelling my name last name is Rogers.....and 85% of the people want to put a D in the name....even though all the famous people(Roy,Will,Buck,Mr.) have no D....except for Aaron Rodgers of the Packers. Keep up the great hubs Jeannette you are doing a fantastic job.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Michelle? Where is he even getting the name Michelle out of Nichol? It is interesting to hear and read all the mistakes people can make with names. I even had a teacher argue with me one time and try to convince me that my name was Jenny, not Jeannie. People are weird. Thanks for the comment!

  • chuckandus6 profile image

    Nichol marie 6 years ago from The Country-Side

    I understand my Parents spelled Nicole Like this--Nichol--with No E- Do you know how many people mis-spell or Pronounce it (Nickel) I still like having a unique name.

    and my husband's boss used to call me Michelle? I think whatever your name is there will be people making mistakes or giving you a nickname or altering it somehow

    Great hub have a good day Jeannie

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Thank you so much for the compliment. I am glad you agree with me. Sometimes jokes can get so old. It is really awful when people think they are being clever and then get mad at me when I don't find them funny.

  • profile image

    Giselle Maine 6 years ago

    I like your compelling yet humorous writing style. And I agree... what is it about people who think they are the only one to think of some funny joke about someone's name - not only can it be offensive, but it's also really NOT funny when it's already been heard many times!

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Thanks for the comment and the vote up, Ashli! I am surprised people can't figure out your name. I would automatically think Ashli is pronounced Ashlee, but I guess people are easily confused.

  • agunter profile image

    agunter 6 years ago from Knoxville, TN

    I completely understand! My name is Ashli. (ash-lee) I also go by Alisha and Allison. Funny how one letter can throw people for a complete loop! Love the article! Voted up

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Trust me, I completely understand how you feel. That must be annoying; I am sure people call you the wrong name all the time.

  • Cragganmore Kid profile image

    Cragganmore Kid 6 years ago

    Never underestimate a person's ability to be stupid, or ignorant.

    My surname is Ingham. Might as well be Ingram as that's what people seem to prefer using!