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Nickname

Rich Cerow

I’ve been on the job market for a while now, and in that time I’ve been on dozens of interviews. And while I usually do reasonably well, I feel like something’s missing, that I’m just not clicking and really distinguishing myself from the pack. And I think one of the reasons for this is I don’t have a nickname. Now, imagine that you are a Hollywood power broker, and in for your assistant positions strides the handsomest man you’ve ever seen. Obviously, you’ll probably remember him, but if he has a boring name like, say, “Rich Cerow,” you might not, after the meeting, be able to distinguish his resume from the dozens of others you’ve received. Now let’s say this incredibly chiseled gentleman comes in and, after pleasantries, says “Please, call me Creampuff.” You are going to remember Rich “Mayonnaise Shorts” Cerow. And, of course, the story behind the nickname will be a cute anecdote I get to throw out in the interview to ingratiate myself to my future employer. Cause clearly with a nickname like “The Professor” the first thing people will ask is why everyone calls you that (in this case it’s because I’m a professional wrestler. Obviously, my gimmick is I use polysyllabic words during the pre-fight trash-talking, and wear a cap and gown into the ring, only to whisk them off and reveal glistening muscles underneath.
My first-draft concept art for "The Professor" image.
It’s a play on the age-old assumption of the intellectual as physically feeble and incapable. Also, it makes a great villain for anti-intelligentsia Luddite America).

Now that we’ve determined that a nickname is just gonna kick my whole life up a notch, we just need to figure out what my nickname should be. There are some standards I’ve pored over, particularly “T-Bone” (if only for the constant George Costanza jokes that would engender). This is a good one, except for the fact that my name doesn’t start with a “T” and I don’t regularly eat steaks. Nevertheless, I think it’d be a solid choice; it’s very masculine, which make you seem assertive, and would probably immediately put you in the good graces of any interviewers hailing from the great nation of Texas. But, ultimately, I fear potential employers would fear this hyper-masculinity I would project with this nickname. After tossing “T-Bone” aside, I began thinking about perhaps having one of those ridiculous, “only could’ve gotten it if you were in a drunken fraternity” nicknames. Like that guy Tony “Wonderbra” Manitoba. This kind of nickname, which is not immediately identifiable (unlike, say, if everyone called me Richard “Sexiest Man Alive 1997” Cerow. Which is obvious because everyone knows Mel Gibson slept with at least three of the judges that year. I was robbed), is great for the follow-up question mentioned earlier. Plus, if you tell some zany college story about your buddy who everyone only called by his last name and you on some adventure (during which you’re totally drunk, obviously) to get nine gallons of apple sauce for some kiddie pool wrestling contest, during which you met someone who may or may not be your biological father, and that’s why everyone calls you “Hot Pants” to this day, then you’ll seem cheeky and fun, someone you may want around the office cause you never know what’ll happen next with a guy like that.
Who wouldn't want to be a turtle if you get to fight half human, half California Raisin mutants?

Ultimately, though, I really think I need one of those nicknames that’s a whole sentence. I think the whole sentence nickname commands a great deal of respect, as though I’m so important that you should definitely have to take a full five seconds every time you wish to address me. Not only that, but the full sentence lets you really say something about yourself, and clearly what I’d want to say about myself is “I love being a turtle!” Just think how magnificent Richard “I love being a turtle!” Cerow, esq., would look on a business card. It’s got that exclamation point in there, which makes me seem jovial, yet mildly threatening at the same time, which is just how I want to be perceived in this fast-paced business world. It let’s you know that I’m a man who knows what he likes (being a turtle) and he knows how to get it (break dancing while wearing an elaborate polyurethane shell of my own design). Plus, it would give me ample excuse to shout out the phrase “I love being a turtle!” Just imagine, I score the winging goal in an intensely close game of air hockey, and I bust out “I love being a turtle!” on you. This would also work out great during any nunchuck-weilding classes I happen to take.

So, I decree that from now on, any e-mails sent to rich@xtremewailing.com shall henceforth be addressed “Dear I love being a Turtle,” and then you may continue on with your requests for me to alleviate the land tax this year due to the drought which ruined this season’s crops. After which I will laugh maniacally while being fed grapes by the fairest maidens in the land. And fanned with palm leaves. This castle gets a little stuffy sometimes.


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