Yes, That’s My Real Name!

No, it’s not Greek. Not Russian. My name is American hippie for “Don’t call me John!” given to me by my father, so-named, after his venture into creative nomenclature didn’t stick for him. I was the rough draft, he would tell me later; my siblings having received unremarkable, normal, everyday names upon our parents evidently learning their lesson with me. Or simply being exhausted. The accepted explanation among my school peers was that my parents were very intoxicated and slurred the name “Travis” which is as good an origin story as any, really.

I didn’t spell my name out until I was in kindergarten and then with a backwards letter “S”. Always the last one to finish writing my name in grade school. Teachers doing roll call would reach my name, come full stop and I’d raise my hand. “Yeah, that’s me. I’m here.” It’s pronounced like Caracas, the capital of Venezuela, but with a “T”. Simple enough. The double consonants might be throwing people off.

And everybody asks where it’s from and what it means! I give “Travis” for my orders at fast food places to avoid any unnecessary confusion. I have a sneaking suspicion that my resumes and job applications have been passed over in the past for having a difficult looking, foreign sounding name and I now introduce myself with the adopted nickname “Spencer” in my professional exchanges.

Otherwise it’s an interesting, unique name that can be fun to have fun with. One perk is that my name can be typed out with just the left hand on a qwerty keyboard. So there’s that.