Rebb, do you want me to call you Reb, not Rebb? Luciana, do you want me to call you Lu or Luli? I know Mares likes Mares. Vincent and Jitu, how about you? And any readers? I don’t want to drop an alphabet or add a few wrong ones. I rather call you in the name you like the best. So please let me know.
Most people have preference on how their names are called. I haven’t had any preference on my name. I wish I have. When people ask me, I always say whatever the name is fine with me. This is not a good answer, I realized. It sounds as though I’m lifeless and careless. In the past, people said, Kieko or Kaiko, but that was because they were non-Japanese and weren’t used to Japanese names. So I told them Kieko or Kaiko was fine. I meant it. We can’t expect anyone to get angry with foreign mispronunciation. Right? Anyway, long ago, a colleague of mine started to call me Cake for a short period. I like cakes. But I wouldn’t call it my preference although I don’t mind anyone call me Cake.
Growing up, I read “Ann of Green Gable,” “Little Women,” and other western books. Those western characters often talked about their names. Sometimes, they went on and on about their preference. I used to think why they cared so much about it? What made them feel that way? Their names sounded very important, so I envied them. Eventually, I concluded that their tendency was a sophisticated, civilized thing. I dreamed of having a preference someday. After all, Keiko is the most popular Japanese girl name. I wasn't fond it growing up.
But to this day, I still have no preference on my name. I wonder why. Do you think anything wrong with me? Perhaps, I haven’t matured in that area of growth? Some of you will be kind and say, “No, Keiko, nothing is wrong with you there, so don’t worry!” Well, thank you. But I just want to say once to someone:
“No, I don’t want you to call me Keiko, please call me “ .””
But I don’t know what I should fill the name.