Last night I was discussing nicknames with a couple of my Hospital Radio chums.

At school, Mark was known as “Olly”, becasue his middle name is Oliver, and Brian was called “Slim”, because he wasn’t. It sort of started me thinking about the nicknames I was at school with, and was surprised how few I could remember. Tony was called “Mavis”, after Mavis Cruet, the Little Fat Fairy in the Willo the Wisp cartoon, and we had a “Saggy” because his initials were S.A.G. For reasons I can’t now remember, my year had a “Runt”, a “Gerry Gerbil” a “Baby Face” and a “Baggy”.

The teachers didn’t escape either: There was a Charley Farley (the most inspiring teacher I ever met anywhere), two female teachers called “Squeak” and “Squawk”, and a pair of teachers with the same surname: One, because he taught Divinity, was “God” – amazingly I don’t remember us calling the other “Devil”.

I too had a nickname – in fact I had a few, but the one that seemed to stick was, for some reason, this one

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