How to say my name
Matte (pronounced Mah-Tee) is a Hebrew name ()
that is often transliterated into English as Motti. My father thought that the
letters 'o' and 'i' were feminine, so he replaced them with the testosterone-rich
'a' and 'e.' Consequently the way my name is spelled has little to do with how
it is pronounced. Thanks Dad.
A variation that I like is Mah-di. This is mostly because it reminds me of that song by the great Slick Rick. "Mahdi, mahdi he likes to pahdi, he don't cause
trouble. He don't botha nobody" or something like that. Also, people who use this pronounciation are generally smarter and better looking than the general population.
How not to say my name
- I am fully aware that the word 'matte' is also an English noun meaning a decorative border or painted background. It's also an adjective meaning dull. In both cases, 'matte' is pronounced like the English name 'Matt.' This is an understandable pronunciation, if you're reading my name, have never heard anyone speak it, are a native English speaker and wish to insult me by calling me a border, background or dull.
- I give these people credit -- at least they're trying.
- This is the one that boggles the mind. These people think that I misspelled my own name. Or perhaps they believe that the 'h' and 'w' are silent when written.
- A little known mispronunciation
made famous by the mother of my college roommate's girlfriend (now wife) who thought
that I was her personal computer help desk. She'd call up and my roommate (her
now son-in-law) would answer the phone. "Is Mahn-Ne there?" "Um
. . . yeah." He'd cover the receiver, hand the phone to me and mouth "I
think it's [name redacted]." She'd never even
say hello to her future son-in-law. I'd pick up and hear "Mahn-Ne, my computer's
broken." Now I am no computer whiz. But back then simply owning a computer
made you an automatic guru. No matter how much I probed for useful information,
she only ever got as specific as . . . let me take a moment to make sure I use
the correct technical jargon . . . "something's wrong." My solution
was always the same: reboot and call someone else next time.
- No one calls me this yet. It is just on the list as a preventative measure. A
guy with a name like mine can never be too careful.
- Often said like a greeting
in a frat house.
- Mah [pause two beats] tay
- I hear the culprits are working on a way to introduce mid-syllable
pauses. Can't wait to hear what they come up with next. "Ma [pause] ht
[pause for 4 Mississippi's] t [pause] t [start a little beat boxing and the rolling
the rest Bobby McFerrin style] e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e" Add some clicks
in there and I could be in "The Gods Must be Crazy".
- Marty or Monty
- Understandable. I mumble
sometimes when introducing myself. Also, I used to explain my name to people as
"like Marty without the r" until my freshman philosophy professor explained
to me that there was nothing like Marty without the r. Philosophers enjoy being
vague. I should have been a philosopher.
- Dude or Chief or
Buddy or Sport or Champ or Guy or Man or
My Man or You
- As in "Hey John. Hey Scott. Hey Dude."
- A surprisingly common
mispronunciation centered in the reluctance for people to make a reasonable attempt
at my name. Generally a solid 'M' is heard followed by a string of unrelated consonant
sounds. This mispronunciation is dedicated to my former boss who used to introduce
his team as "This is John, Scott and [a sudden coughing and sneezing fit
would overtake him forcing him to cover his mouth] Mmpxl8rte." I guess he
was allergic to my name.