I’ve always wanted a nickname. My brother Chunk has a great one that he occasionally goes by: Kelly.
The whole nickname concept has been on my mind since starting this blog in September. If you’re going to start a blog, after all, it has to have a catchy name, right? Something easy to spell. Something captivating that captures your overall theme and is recognizable to the masses.
That’s why, of course, I went with jodygenessy.com.
Mostly because it met the ultimate requirement: be available.
I thought about going with jody.com, but it’s already taken. It used to be an NSFW site (no pics of me thankfully), but it’s now got mumbo jumbo about breaking-up advice and how to check partners’ cellphones to see if they’re cheating on you. Don’t plan on blogs like that at jodygenessy.com. I accidentally cracked the screen of my wife’s smartphone the last time I touched it — a month after she got it — and I won’t need any breaking-up advice if that happens again.
I almost used Bon Jody in my website URL. Whatever that geeky acronym means. I actually like that moniker (Bon Jody, not URL). My clever friend Clayton came up with it a couple of years ago. Now you know what I’ll call myself if I ever decide to become a rock star or start sleeping on a bed of roses.
Four years ago, I dubbed myself “DJJazzyJody” for Twitter because A) I was trying to sound hip, forgetting that DJ Jazzy Jeff (Will Smith’s old friend) hasn’t been hip since the 1980s; B) It sounded like a fun way to associate my name with the Jazz (the NBA team I write about when I’m not blogging); and C) Nobody can spell Jody and/or Genessy correctly by themselves let alone together.
The latter is just another bright reason why I went with jodygenessy.com for my blog. This nice post on Twitter drives that point home:
Must admit I have been enjoying reading @DJJazzyJody’s personal website. I would link to it, but I can’t spell it.
— Sean L (@GRTX3) October 8, 2013
Over the years — usually after somebody said, “Why do you have a girl’s name!?” — I’ve jokingly claimed to be named after New York Yankees legend Jody Maggio. Joltin’ Jody kinda has ring to it, no? (I believe Marilyn Monroe was responsible for misspelling it as Joe DiMaggio, so that’s evolved into the more accepted spelling.) I haven’t started using Jody Maggio as a pen name, though, in part because I despise the Yankees, which reminds me about the time I was arrested at their stadium. Then again, that’s my fondest memory of the Yankees (blog idea!).
Back in my elementary days, the guys who weren’t renaming me “Blubber Breath” or “Chubalub” would call me by my last name. “Genessy!” Looking back, this was pretty awesome. Not one single person has managed to pronounce my last name correctly ever since picking staples out of the classroom carpet and writing “I will not …” sentences were parts of my elementary school routine.
It’s Genessy. Hard G. Even harder to remember how to say it right. You know, like the Genessy Book of World Records. Not like the Book of Genessys in the Old Testament.
One of my wife’s uncles once almost called a sports radio station to give them a hard time for mispronouncing my name on the air.
“They kept calling you Jody Genessy,” he later told me. “I was going to tell them it’s Jody Jenessy. Jenessy!”
“It is Genessy,” I told him.
Awkward laughter ensued. By the way, my wife and I had been married for about eight years when this happened. I now call him Uncle Dane instead of Uncle Dan. Or I should.
One Halloween, I carried a meat tenderizer mallet around and wore a black graduation robe, which will likely cost me $9,534,023.67 in late fees if I ever return it. All arise for Judge Jody! Weirdly, that nickname didn’t stick.
When the Jazz season started, a sports writer jokingly told coach Tyrone Corbin he should read my new blog.
“He writes about changing his baby’s diaper,” the writer told him before our interviews.
Thankfully, Corbin only called me the “Diaper Guy” for that Q&A session. For about a week, though, Corbin would ask me questions like, “Anything going on the diaper site?” At least the affable coach doesn’t call me “Buffalo” anymore like he did for a while. (Stay tuned for that upcoming blog.)
When I was a chubby singer in choir, I had them put “Jiggle-O” as my name on a shirt. That name didn’t last long. I failed to get friends to call me “Moose” for a while. By mere coincidence, I did summer theater at a place named the Musical Moose Playhouse in West Yellowstone after graduating from high school. That theater has since been turned into a Chinese restaurant. But, no, you can’t call me Moo Shu Pork.
Speaking of high school, three of my closest friends back then had Trajan, Dickey and Ball in their names. You can only imagine how maturely that was handled by teenagers. Amazingly, kids even noticed that Jode rhymed with a weird part of the male anatomy (no, not lymph node).
Some people read out my full name upon meeting me and ask about my middle name, “Do you go by Scott?” My answer: “Would I call it jodygenessy.com if I went by Scott?” My mom originally wanted to name me Terry, but she was overruled by my dad and Doctor Baker, who delivered me 42-1/2 years ago. “People might get confused if a guy named Terry had a website called jodygenessy.com,” they told her.
My wife might secretly wish I was named Scott or Terry or Wilford.
Remember her Uncle Dane? His sister’s name is Jodie, whose daughter’s name is Heather, whose husband’s name is Jody with a y. As in me. Which reminds me of the question I asked my future mother-in-law the first time we met.
“Do you get teased for having a boy’s name?”
She apparently didn’t.
My wife probably gets teased for having a mom with a boy’s name, though.
Not that any cruel kids ever made fun of me for having a name that has dual gender citizenship, but I would often go out of my way to give people an oral history of the famous manly men who shared my first name.
Famous Olympic water polo player Jody Campbell (famous by 17 people who watched that sport and/or boys named Jody).
Famous baseball players Jody Maggio, Jody Davis, Jody Reed, Jody Gerut, Jody Genessy (hey, I was a Kearns American Little League All-Star back in the day). We almost have an entire lineup of Jodys!
There’s an NBA basketball player with my name, and I won’t even make fun of the Los Angeles Lakers’ Jodie Meeks for spelling it like a girl.
You’ll be thrilled to find out there are other things named Jody: a song (1986, Jermaine Stewart), an asteroid (4083 Jody), a military cadence, a drummer, an English footballer, hockey players, a pro wrestler and a Wikipedia page where I found out all of this stuff.
There’s also a college football coach named Jody (Sears) at Weber State in nearby Ogden, Utah. Considering his team is 1-7 this year, we’d better list him before he’s an ex-college football coach.
Speaking of the pigskin, when I covered high school sports a prep football coach approached me one time.
“I’d like you to meet my son,” the coach told me. “His name is Jody and he was excited to find out there’s a sportswriter with the same name.”
Have to admit, that was a pretty cool and unexpected development.
I doubt that Jody’s level of excitement was as high as when when this Jody recently found out there is a famous rapper named Jody Highroller. The hip-hop artist is often referred to as Riff Raff and his original name was Horst, so it only makes sense that he goes by Jody. In a similar story, about five years ago I had a boss named Joe, who was called Jody as a kid because that’s what people named Joseph used to go by back in the old days thanks to Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings’ book, “The Yearling.”
Every so often, Joseph-turned-Jody-turned-Joe would ask me, “Is your real name Joseph?”
My answer: “Would I call it jodygenessy.com if my name was Joseph?”
If this part of the conversation actually happened, I would’ve smiled and added, “Well, off course, I would. Jodygenessy.com was the only website name available when I started this thing.”
Now, you might be asking yourself, “What point is Jody — Genessy, not Highroller — trying to make with this blog?” Good question. Guess if you come away knowing that it is Jody with a y and Genessy with a hard G then this will be worth it.