How to Name a Canadian

My friend Jen has the most scrumptious baby boy – with the most scrumptious baby boy name. He is called Quentin, though almost no-one actually uses his given name.

 His mom calls him Coco, and just about everyone else refers to him simply as Q. I know. Awesome. Recently we discussed the idea that I might need another baby, solely so I could give him an equally super-slick, James bond-y style nickname – perhaps Z. Though of course, because I’m Canadian, he’d be known to the northern part of the family as “Zed,” and this might ultimately cause some super-spy confusion. My friend then suggested that to emphasize his Canadian heritage, I might consider nicknaming my theoretical baby “Loonie” or “Toonie” (these being what Canadians call their one- and two- dollar coins, and the epitome to many Americans of absolute Canadian adorable quaintness). Maybe she and I shouldn’t be allowed to name this completely imaginary baby boy. I do know that many little boys will actively nickname themselves – more than one three-year old has advised me that he will respond only to “Spiderman.” One friend’s son demanded, inexplicably, to be called Carl (his name was Jacob) for at least a year.  Perhaps little girls do this too? I remember at some point deciding I would be known as Nicola to my friends and family (but that’s bound to happen when your parents name you Peryl).

Do you call your babies by their given names, or has a nickname taken over? What entirely awesome nicknames have they given themselves?