Well, it’s RE-becca

My Spanish teacher freshman year of high school hated teaching Spanish. Seriously. I know that sounds ridiculous, but she also taught French, and much preferred everything about that, including her French students.

Her room was decorated with French vocabulary and posters, and I’m pretty sure one day she told us flat-out that she hated the Spanish language. Motivating, right?

But actually, she was a good teacher, with regards to actual student learning. I definitely learned the most Spanish with Senorita Pancini my freshman year.

However, Senorita Pancini was a bitch. Seriously. She was horrible. I mentioned that she hated the Spanish language and its students, right? She was neither kind nor patient with her Spanish students, and she was no stranger to the eye roll. When teaching, she stood at the front of the room, looking, and sounding, bored. I don’t think she ever smiled. A grimace, once in awhile, maybe. (I went into a French class once for some reason, and she was smiling and laughing with the French students! It was oddly terrifying.)

And, she was a big stickler about students wearing their IDs. No excuses, she wrote the offender a detention if it wasn’t around his or her neck. Pockets, purses, and pencil cases were all unacceptable ID locations.

Of course, being the little rule-follower I was, I always wore my ID. Plus, I was a freshman, and I was super excited to be in high school and thus, wore my ID proudly. (Well, until sophomore year, but that’s a different story. #ConvictBecca)

But I wasn’t perfect, and my brain was still developing, so one day after gym class, I forgot to put my ID back around my neck. It sat in my purse, hidden tangled among packs of gum, colorful pens, and notes folded into paper footballs.

Oblivious, I walked into the Spanish classroom and sat down. We got to work on an assignment, and I happily worked away, occasionally whispering to my friend Oscar that he was feo.

Senorita Pancini lurched over to check my work. She paused before moving on.

¿Eva, dónde está tu ID?

I put my hand to my chest to feel for my ID, and my heart jumped into my throat. I immediately grabbed for my purse and pulled out my ID, getting it around my neck as quickly as possible. I smiled up at Senorita Pancini.

“You need to be wearing it, Eva. That’ll be a referral,” she said matter-of-factly. My heart fell from my throat into the pit of my stomach.

“Can you believe that?!” I whispered to Oscar.

He shrugged. “That’s what happens when you try to be a rebel, Eva.” He smirked at that idea.

I turned around and let out a sigh. Senorita Pancini called me up to her desk. I could see the referral waiting for me in her large, dry hands.

“Sign this. Detention after school tomorrow.” She grimaced up at me, the Eiffel Tower looming behind her.

I reluctantly took the referral and read it over: Becky Garner… not displaying ID… detention 3:15-4:00–Wait a second! BECKY?!

“My name’s not Becky,” I told Senorita Pancini, as I’d told her on the first day of school, and every time after that when she’d called me Becky.

I HATED being called Becky. (Still do.) I hated it as much as Senorita Pancini hated teaching this class.

She rolled her eyes and looked up at me skeptically. “Well what do you want me to put? BECCA?” she sneered.

“Well, my name is RE-becca,” I reminded her as politely as I could.

Senorita Pancini rolled her eyes again and snickered. “It doesn’t matter.”

I was fuming– I was never a behavior problem (except for the occasional giggle), I always did my homework, I volunteered in class, and this was the first time I’d ever not worn my ID (yes, ok, I was kind of a nerd); despite all this, she was writing me a detention and calling me Becky?!

Alas, there was no point in arguing with her. (Plus, I may have been a badass who didn’t wear her ID, but I was definitely not the kind of badass who argued with a teacher, no matter how infuriating she was.)

My cheeks burned, and my hands shook as I indignantly signed the detention– as RE-BECCA.

Senorita Pancini tore off my portion of the detention slip and grimaced at me again.

I turned back towards my seat, and it was my turn to roll my eyes (but only because she couldn’t see me).

That was one of only two detentions I got in the entirety of my high school career. (The second was because I was late to class, and got caught in the hallway by the dean.)

– – –

How about you guys? Are there nicknames people think you go by, but you actually hate? Let me know in the comments!



31 thoughts on “Well, it’s RE-becca

  1. My name (quite understandably) often gets shortened from Emmalene to Emma. Which I’m not a fan of. But even my parents have always called me Emma, despite them being the ones to have named me in the first place! Except now, finally, after 40 years, they’ve started calling me Emmalene, which now sounds odd and like I’m being told off! You’d think they’d know me well enough to call me Em – the preferred shortened version of my name – by now…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. People that try to act like they’re my “special buddy” (usually because they need something), call me “Lis”. My family calls me “Lee” and that’s ok by me. I’ve never liked “Lis”. No matter what, though, if we aren’t actually friends, call me Lisa, don’t pretend we have some special bond because you need something!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My coworker Rebecca HATES being called Becky. There’s someone out there who feels the same pain as you. How about Bequi though — the Spanish version?!? 😉

    Sounds like you should have brought Srta. Panini some eclairs or baguettes or maybe just a pitcher of sangria to improve that mood of hers!

    Guess how many French students are probably using their French now? I’d bet close to zero or would that be nada?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve never heard of Bequi! I’d probably have to hear it pronounced correctly to decide. 😉 Srta Pancini would have probably thought I was trying to poison her if I did that, although can anybody resist sangria?! (Not me!)


  4. Senorita Pancini sounds horrible! I had a really snarky English teacher in my first year of high school but even she wasn’t that bad. I mean, at least she seemed to like teaching English (she just didn’t like us).
    My real name being Sharon, people sometimes call me Shazza, which I am ok with if it’s someone I’m good friends with. I also tend to be quite cautious with shortening other people’s names or using nicknames.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh Shazza, that’s fun! My family and closest friends often call me Bex, but otherwise I’m Becca or Rebecca. I tend to play it safe, too. When I was a teacher, I always asked kids before shortening their names. There are a lot of people who prefer their full name, and I want to respect that— probably because I know how irritating it is, otherwise. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  5. The name MARSHA does not seem to lend itself to diminutives, though many friendly people call me Marsh. My aunt used to call me Arsh-by-garsh , which I actually kind of liked. I also had detention twice in high school, once freshman year for cutting school, for which I had to come in on Saturday and clean. Again once senior year for cutting class, for which I had to wheel a trash can around the cafeteria.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Anne! I hate being called that! If I went to school with you or work with you and we aren’t really friends people call me Anne. If you know me you call me Annemarie or Amy (it’s what my family calls me). How hard is it to call me my real name? Ugh!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. 1) nick!
    2) I remember this day specifically. I think I say 2 people down to the left
    3) she was the worst. The male teacher was better (the one who always wore polos with the alligators.
    4) senorita got mad at me One day cuz I asked why she was -rita instead of senora. She was mad.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes you were nearby!! I never had the male teacher, but for some reason sometimes went into his classes during my lunch. 🤷🏽‍♀️ (Why on Earth did he let me do that? I was literally just goofing around with people.) Also I remember you asking that!!! 😹😹😹 it’s funny, she was horrible, but we have some pretty great memories from that class!


  8. The only person to ALWAYS call me by my full name is my dad, most people just call me Frede (pronounced like Fred but the final ‘e’ makes it look more feminine). I can forgive people who write Fred instead of my preferred Frede but I dislike all the other shortened version of my name I’ve heard over the years: Fredou, Fredo, Freddy, FeFe, Freda… Funnily, my sister has a very short name impossible to shorten more (Jade) and wanted a nickname so much that she started using her middle name, Alexandra, so people could shorten it to Lex. Your Spanish teacher does sound like an horrible lady… As someone else said, maybe she should have tried sangria! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I have lots of nicknames that I accept from other people. The kids that I nanny have even come up with some crazy ones. I’ve just started responding to anything that even half sounds like my name – starts with a “t” sound? Sure good enough for me!

    But there is one nickname, one that I can’t write here because of my top-secret identity, that I hate. I have one uncle who calls me it, and has my entire life, and it honestly doesn’t phase me. But if anyone else DARES to call me that – I give them the best “I will eat your soul for breakfast!” ginger glare that I have. I’m not sure what it is that I hate it, but he’s the only person allowed to call me that. Literally just one uncle.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha I can totally understand that. One of my girlfriends actually calls me Becky sometimes. I don’t know if it’s the way she says, or if it’s because I know she’s doing it ironically, but it doesn’t bug me when she says it!


  10. The teachers in secondary school (High School) called us all by our surnames. So it was Miss [Surname] or Master [Surname]. 9 times out of 10 they’d pronounce your surname incorrectly, and then you’d get into trouble for not responding to whatever they’d said to/asked of you because you hadn’t realised they were talking to you. One poor girl was named Soden, pro. Sew-Den, and was constantly called Miss Sod-On by teachers. I had plenty of detentions, usually for messing around in class… I was one of those kids who found it hard to concentrate in boring lessons… like Math, History, Geography, English Lit. and the Sciences.. Human Biology was only fun because my best friend was in the same class, and we both got a lunchtime detention for asking if there was going to be a practical in Sex Ed. Perfectly legit question I thought, seeing as we had practical lessons in most other subjects. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  11. So I started to think about this post again on the way in to work yesterday. Go figure.

    Anywho I got so distracted by the nickname bit that I forgot about the other issue you mentioned. The whole ID thing. Did you go to a private school? Is this something kids have to do nowadays in school is to have ID on them? We never had to have an ID but that was back in the 80s.

    And rhetorically asking, why didn’t Srta. Bruja simply ask you to put your ID back on instead of giving you detention? Sounds like a bully and a power trip lady! We know you were a good kid Becarita (my own nickname for you now) and didn’t deserve this Spanish Inquisition!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I was at a public school, but yes, kids always have to have IDs now! And it was totally a power trip thing for her— none of my other teachers were like that. I can definitely get on board with Becarita— makes me think of a delicious, fruity drink!


  12. How bitchy!

    No nicknames, but your post reminded me of being in French class and picking the French name my teacher would refer to me as for the semester…I went with Marie-Antoinette Veronique. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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