first names are sacred

December 10th, 2006

My bank doesn't know my first name. Neither does the city. Or any business or institution I've dealt with. First names are not in apparently. It smacks of a sad attempt at personal privacy, but since they know everything else about us, what's the difference? You don't have to know a person's first name to hack into the bank and steal their money. The name isn't used for anything. And as such, it's not strictly necessary either. They use the initials of the first and middle name (if any), plus the last name. So if you have a kid, you can name him I. B. Clever. Or C. O. O. Lio. And if someone asks about the first name, you can tell them it's none of their business. Then you can give the kid a nickname for informal use.

First place I've ever been where no one wants your first name. :undecide:

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4 Responses to "first names are sacred"

  1. Jack says:

    Do they have a number?

  2. erik says:

    This online clothes shop I'm a client of doesn't want to know my first name either, but most surprisingly they don't even want to know my sex. Which I find a little odd, I mean, it seems to me that's a pretty vital piece of knowledge so far as marketing is concerned.

    And so they keep sending me e-mails with offers for women's clothes as well as men's clothes. It's a little insulting.

  3. john (mikhail) says:

    Maybe they're just refusing to rule out a little cross dressing on your behalf Erik. ;)

  4. Boyo says:

    I've had the same problem with my bank's credit card once. When I applied for it, I gave them my full name and that's how it appeared on the card, with both my first and last name. Then after some internal reorganization, they seemingly changed their policy and my first name was abbreviated to just an initial. I found this quite distressing, and complained to my local bank office. Being the large organization it is, I got rerouted to several other employees all over the country, before I finally got the right person to help me out. After much discussion, I got them to change my card so that it also included my first name as well. I think I'm a minority in that regard, as I've never seen anyone else with a credit card that has their first name on it as well. Indeed there seems to be some sort of first name fetish in this country that prevents it from being made available. But the moral of this story is, that if you insist on institutions using your first name - as with getting anything else done here - complain, complain and complain again.