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Referring to friends by their surnames.

  • 17-02-2023 5:56pm
    Registered Users Posts: 4,469 ✭✭✭

    Before anyone says this should be in the Soap Opera forum, I'm making it clear that I'm using fictional persons for a scenario to illustrate my question.

    In "Fair City", Carol Foley refers to her boyfriend, property developer Con Rafferty, by his surname, as do other people who know him personally.

    Usually, people refer to acquaintances who they like and also to loved ones by first name, not surname.

    Are there real-life people who refer to loved ones by their surnames and, if so, why?


  • Registered Users Posts: 28,354 ✭✭✭✭odyssey06

    Could be worse, he could be going around expecting to be called The Rafferty!

    Some people have a nickname abbreviation of their surname such as say a McDonnell being called Mack.

    But then it would be Raff or Raffers say rather than the full Rafferty.

    It seemed to be a British thing too eg best friends from Eton calling each other by surname, as that's how they addressed each other in school but those were more formal times.

    "To follow knowledge like a sinking star..." (Tennyson's Ulysses)

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,228 ✭✭✭mikethecop

    if you cant find anything better than fair city to watch you should turn off your tv

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,746 ✭✭✭knucklehead6

    There is not one of my closest friends that I call by their Christian names. One is called by his surname, two by a variation of their surname and 2 by other names that are neither their Christian names of their surnames.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,041 ✭✭✭Mister Vain

    I thought only American cops did that.

  • Registered Users Posts: 20,743 ✭✭✭✭dxhound2005

    Colin Murray and Rachel Riley do it on Countdown.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 10,507 ✭✭✭✭Jim_Hodge

    I've two friends who are always referred to by their surnames. It's not that odd.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,317 ✭✭✭gameoverdude

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,507 ✭✭✭✭Jim_Hodge

  • Registered Users Posts: 16,557 ✭✭✭✭Leg End Reject

    Surnames, shortened versions of either first or second name and nicknames are all very common.

    I answer to 7 different names depending on who I'm with, although my first name is used outside of friends and family.

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,858 ✭✭✭✭Larbre34

    Depends on the context of the friendship. I'd still be known by my school nickname ( a play on my surname) by lads I've known that long, but not by those I don't.

    Also, if the surname lends itself to a fitting nickname for a lad, then why not. A pal of mine is Fletcher, so he's Fletch like the movie series. Another is Carlton, so he's called Carlton, not for himself but because of the character in the Fresh Prince.

    Funnily enough our wives don't like it when we refer to each other by our surnames or nicknames, but then they are dicks.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 28,354 ✭✭✭✭odyssey06

    7 different names? Sounds fishy to me.

    Is one of them Bond, James Bond?

    "To follow knowledge like a sinking star..." (Tennyson's Ulysses)

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,483 ✭✭✭✭elperello

    Older people tend to refer to children of friends or neighbours by their surnames.

    They say something like "Hello young Murphy".

    Not certain why perhaps they can't remember young Murphy's first name.

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,443 ✭✭✭✭Dial Hard

    I call my boyfriend by his surname. Not all the time, usually when I'm giving him a gentle slagging over something. He does the same to me.

    I also do the same with a few of my friends under similar circumstances. It's a term of endearment, pretty much.

    I'm also still known as [My Surname]'s Little Sister by my brother's mates. I'm 41 🤣

  • Registered Users Posts: 234 ✭✭niallpatrick

    Its rude, call me fckface but don't call me by my surname. My full name is Niall fckface Patrick O'Shaughnessy.

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,391 ✭✭✭✭mariaalice

    There is a story about two upper-class brits in the 1930s, who had been best friends since school, they go on some climbing expedition that goes wrong and they are lost, starving, freezing and on death's door, one turns to the other and says, 'Brown seeing as we are going to die would using each other's firsts name be appropriate? may I address you as Bertram and you can call me Charles', his friend replied good god man have you gone mad!!!!!

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,204 ✭✭✭sprucemoose

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,858 ✭✭✭✭Larbre34

    Take a chill pill broseph, order yourself a stick of Hinomite and a side of tempura prawns and don't get your CKs in such a twist over it.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Op, don't ever discover Jack Reacher.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Referring to friends by surname has somewhat Rugby School connotation.

    Maybe not so much today.

    Dermot Morgan wrote a song " Don't tell Wardy" way back when about Tony Ward an Irish rugby captain at the time

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,204 ✭✭✭sprucemoose

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,329 ✭✭✭Loveinapril

    I am the same with my husband, I will sometimes call him it as a term of endearment. Our kids have his surname so I often call them by their surname too.

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 67,907 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011

    In my core friend group, the multiple Johns are always referred to as their surname. There are no other repeated first names; and none of the Johns have the same surname thankfully.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,469 ✭✭✭political analyst

    Interestingly, in an episode shown shortly before Christmas, Carol was shown looking at a small box containing a present (possibly cufflinks) she bought for Con Rafferty. On the label, she had written, "To Raff ...".

    As for former students of English public schools, I'm aware that Tom Bradby is known to some friends as 'Bradders'.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Admit it, you just want to be referred to as Anal-ist...