A New Name for Philip Witty

It came to me this morning that most of the really great moments in life, the events that are truly lasting, are not recognizable at the time that they occur. There are clear and distinct exceptions but I know that in my life there are many times when something funny happens and I can be nearly in tears laughing so hard but minutes later I can’t remember what was even said.
And so, the things that aren’t noticeable can sometimes be the most memorable.
One evening my good friend Ken Driscoll and I were headed up to Bangor, ME as we do from time to time to spend some time with the Hodsdon family. It’s a few hours each way so we spent the night, and it was a good time of fellowship and bible study and sneaking downstairs in the middle of night for milk and cookies. (We brought upstairs a full gallon of milk, and ended up puttting the rest of it out on his roof, keeping it cold, so we didn’t have to bring it back downstairs to the fridge!)
The next morning I discovered that the littlest Hodsdon (who isn’t so little anymore!) Jessie Mae would leave post-it notes hanging around on the kitchen counter with records of who had called on the phone the previous day. I tried reading the name on one of the notes, but it was a curious name and I had to inquire further. I brought the note in to Ken and Charlie and had to ask “Who’s Fiiip?” They had no idea and with some inspection found out it was not Fiiip but Philip, for our other friend Philip Witty had called.
We got a good laugh out of it, but life continues and went on as normal for the rest of the summer… the next year… the next couple of years. College hit like a ton of bricks and Ken and I were even roommates for a couple years. The first couple years of College were an adjustment but my Junior year Ken and I would often go back to Maine and see the Hodsdons at Bible Quiz meets, and have the opportunity to help out. Nothing could have prepared me for what happened next. Among a group of quizzers talking I heard someone say “Fiip!” Lo and behold, there is Philip Witty, in all his glorious quizzing garb, responding normally to others that were referring to him as Fiiip! We found out that over the years, this name had caught on, and it became the de facto calling for him. Even the adults there referred to him as Fiiip! (Pronounced ‘Feep’).
It was even funnier, for when I asked people about it, no one knew where the name came from and why they called him that. Even Jessie Mae, from whom this fiasco began, did not know about it. I was obliged to inform.
To this day, he is no longer called Philip, but Fiiip.

One Reply to “A New Name for Philip Witty”

  1. My husband just posted the link to this page on my Facebook page this evening. I couldn’t remember the exact year his nickname started, but I did know that it was because of Jessie Mae’s handwriting at the time. LOL! Funny how these things happen! 🙂 Here he is, 9 years later, married for 3 yrs and now a home owner…and we still call him Fiiip! 🙂 Somehow it just fits! 😉

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