That’s not my name

I had a bit of a run in with one of the BA’s at work today. He had an issue with an e-mail that I sent to an external client that I’m working with – which, for the record, was perfectly acceptable. I, however, have an issue with him being a seagull manager, and my response to his criticism was to tell him that from now on I will cease all correspondance with said client, and exlusively let him deal with them instead.

It would seem as though my e-mail ruffled some feathers, as he promptly came over to confront me about it. What worked me up the most was not his approach to the problem, not the fact that he misinterprets all of my e-mails, and not that he had no grasp on the underlying issues which were making me so frustrated. No, what really gets my goat is that after working “with” me for over six months, he still can’t pronounce my name properly.

Worst of all, he’s not alone; most English (as in “from England”, not “English speaking”) people seem to get it wrong, with very few exceptions. Almost every pom pronounces my name as either “JEH-raared”, or “jeh-RAAR-ed”. Both wrong! (Forgive my attempt at phonetics here!)

So for ther record, here it is: the way I wish people would say my name. I figure there’s two acceptable options:

  • Americans/Canadians can say, “JEH-red” as it puts more emphasis on the “R” sound, which is what the yanks tend to do by default. Rest assured Cookes, you’re right on the money.
  • All other English speaking countries should say it more like “jeh-red”, with equal empahsis on each syllable. Countries that do not have English as their native tongue should also attempt this pronounciation, as non-English accents are 100% acceptable (in fact, my name sounds best in French or Spanish!).

So is it really that hard? I don’t think so; the folks at the UN, with all the accent variations in the world, did a bang-up job compared to the brits. My only theory is that they think I have the same name as the infamous Steven Gerrard, which I most certainly do not.

Still, it’s all about perspective; old mate BA might pronouce my name incorrectly, but at least he doesn’t call me “Darren” like my yoga teacher does.

Posted in gripes, uk
12 comments on “That’s not my name
  1. MrPuu2u says:

    If you did not err, you would be divine. heh

  2. KJ says:

    maybe you should get the domain for jeh-red.com so all your readers can silently be pronouncing it correctly in their heads… just an idea!

  3. Cath says:

    I have a feeling that one day Amelie will be writing a blog post similar to this one… She gets quite put out when people pronounce her name incorrectly. Most often she gets A-meel-ie, Amelia and Emily.

    Grant also gets a lot of mix ups. Most commonly Greg or Craig.

    We sympathise with you Gerrard! ;-)

  4. viiviiviivii says:

    I thought your name was Jeh Rod?

    GRod for short?

    And The GSter for Australian short??

  5. rocan says:

    Am wondering how I say your name now? Never thought about it before and for some reason I cannot remember how I have said it in the past.

    I still find it amusing that if I am with an Aussie people, well, British people, assume I am too. It’s happened a couple of times now, is my accent just not that defined?

  6. Todd says:

    @viiviiviivii
    Ditto to what the vii-man said – I thought it was Jeh-rod..

  7. gerrod says:

    Todd/John – Yes, you’re both right… I debated whether the last part was “red” or “rod”; obviously the latter when you go with how it’s spelled but if you say it with a broad Austrlian accent I *think* it sounds more like an “e”. But I have no problem with the way either of you pronouce my name :-)

    Rocan: Hmm… that’s an interesting point, though I’ve never flinched when you’ve said my name in the past so just presume that you’ve always been on the money :-). I wouldn’t have said that you have an Aussie accent, though; that’s quite a mix up!

  8. gerrod says:

    @Cath : How on earth do people get “Craig” out of “Grant”?

    I also don’t really understand pronouncing Amelie wrong; ok, it’s not the most common name in the world, but surely people have seen the film?

  9. bitingmidge says:

    I know what you mean Gerald.

  10. MrPuu2u says:

    The original pronunciation
    Your Mum: “Isn’t he beautiful? Have you come up with any suggestions for his name?”
    Your Dad: “Gee…er…Rod?”
    Your Mum: “Perfect! Much better than Gerrard”

  11. Louisa says:

    hehee I wonder how many people read this post and spend the next few minutes sounding out your name in their head… Or was it just me! I’ll stick with Gerry for now!

  12. Stac says:

    Yes Lou, I certainly did! I definitely do the red verson. although perhaps it’s an e/o hybrid… no one disagrees on the double r anyway, so that’s a plus surely.

    I can’t believe it’s that difficult! And Amelie is straightforward as well (like emily, but starting with a?).

    The most common mis-heard pronunciation for Stacey is Daisy. might be something wrong with the way I pronounce my own name though.

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