Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Ali The Old Fool

This is a picture of me painted by my brother in 1972. It hangs in my hallway and the other day Roger asked me to take a photograph of it because he wanted to use it on his Blog (Roger Burnett's Sculpture Studio). It is not a very good photograph of what is a very good painting (Yes, I did look like that in 1972) and the poor quality of the photograph is down to a combination of me and reflections from the glass which covers the original watercolour. There have been one or two changes in the last 39 years : the beard, for example, went a year after the picture was painted as a condition for the GLW agreeing to marry me.

But the interesting point is the name given to the painting - Ali.Names are odd things aren't they? Whilst most of you know me as Alan, most of my family know me by the name of Ali. Where this name came from I am not quite sure, I suspect it is a shortened form of Aloisius, which, I must point out, is not my name either. Many years ago my father and brother started calling me Aloisius for reasons best known to themselves and that eventually got shortened to Ali. I have always made an effort to avoid the same thing happening to my own son by calling him by a different name each month (it is Percival this month). If I ever forget his name for the month I always use the default name of "Thingy", and this practice often cause consternation amongst his friends. His name for me varies little : it is usually revolves around the phrase "you old fool". For us it is a genuine term of endearment. Odd things names, aren't they.

16 comments:

  1. Ali. What a nice inside look at your life. I have a slightly older sister, Jane, who could not enunciate Teresa, and for some ungodly reason it came out
    Chee Chee, which has stuck. When I lived in the southwestern U.S., where that name has a specific meaning, I dissuaded them from using it in public.

    Your painted image looks like you might have enjoyed some time as a rabble-rouser. I hope so.

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  2. Your brother is quite talented, as are you, Ali. You know now, since you have revealed your cute pet name, we will be using it!

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  3. That's a great painting. Obviously artistic talent runs strong in the Burnett family.

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  5. Aham - that's the second time I've done that in 2 days.

    As I was saying, you look more like a Rolf in that image.

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  6. I used to have a pet name for my brother, which was his name backwards. Unfortunately the name Jens does not lend itself to backwards pronunciation.

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  7. I like the painting, Ali. Unlike you, I grew my beard in 1972, and I haven't been clean-shaven since. I have, on a number of occasions, announced (with determination) that it's coming off, but wife and daughter (showing more determination) both insist it stays put. I guess they're worried about what's hidden behind it, after all these years.

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  8. Great picture. Very brooding.

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  9. Yes, indeed. Some names I'm sure have an everlasting effect on the person. ;)

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  10. Okay, Ali, my postcard post is up!

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  11. To delve further into Ali's name tag.
    He is forgetting that Aloisius was followed by a corruption of his middle name (Micheal). Hence, his full title within the family was Aloisius Michealmus.

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  12. Great picture - looks very lived in as we say

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  13. while the painting fascinates me, the ALI business leaves me... speechless? 1972, eh?!?
    wild times!!
    :)~
    HUGZ

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  14. Fascinating look at the "old" (young?) you, and an equally intriguing chapter in the ongoing storiy of Names Our Families Stuck Us With. (I'm lucky, as my family never did that to me.)

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  15. I would like a different name every month..interesting thought. Way to go Ali:)

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  16. Hmm - I have to agree you look rather "Rolf" so I'm with GLW on the beard front :-) My Dad used to jokingly respond to us (there were 4 of us born in 5 years) as "Hello, yes, which one are you?" which caused a lot of hilarity. None of us used our "Sunday" names which added to the confusion...

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