Friday, August 27, 2010

My name... interesting!

My name is Min Hau Ong / Ong Min Hau, either one. It was supposed to be ‘Hao’ indeed. Why did it become ‘Hau’? Well, it happened during the registration of my identity when I was born. My parents were illiterate. They couldn’t communicate with the officer in-charge and had no idea how to translate my name into Malay. So, my uncle gave them a hand. He isn’t a doctor, but his doctor’s handwriting could really write any prescription in any clinics. He wrote “Hao”, but the officer took it as ‘Hau’ in processing my birth cert. However, my parents didn’t realize but taught me to write ‘Hao’. Embarrassingly, I used it all the way until Primary 6 when my teacher announced it out in the class. I can never forget the laughter of this issue in the class. Consequently, I have to use the ‘u’ for the rest of my life. However, I think it has been a lucky name since then.

Most of you might have a pet name, don’t you? I do have one, called Black Cat. Hmm…it might sound strange to you guys. Let me explain to you in detail. When I was 13 to 15 years old, I used to play basketball every day. Usually, I played it in outdoor court, under the sun. Hence, you could imagine how dark the color my skin had become. On the other hand, if you pronounce my name at the fastest pace that you can do, you will find that you are actually pronouncing ‘miao… miao…’ This is how my pet name came from. I had stopped playing basketball for many years. While the pet name is leaving me, some of my close-knit friends still call me ‘miao miao’. Haha…

Well, when it comes to national service, all the new friends whom I got to know in my army dome called me ‘Ah Hao’. Frankly, I prefer my friends call me ‘Hao’ or ‘Hau’ rather than ‘Ah Hao’. This is because ‘Ah Hao’ is quite rude in some sense. Do you know why?
After two and a half months when I returned from the national service, there is nobody calling me ‘Ah Hao’ anymore. Great!

In December 2008, I ended my student life in Malaysia and came to Singapore. Initially, my brother-in-law intended to find a Christian name for me. Some of the names in his mind were Herbert, Albert and Howard. I was glad to have ‘Howard’. I endeavored to use it. However, I felt that I was losing myself and transforming into a new man with a new identity. Hmm… forget it, I better stick to my original name, I like my own name. :D


  1. Hi Hau!

    Yup! I agree that you should be original and stick to your current name. It's your own style!

    Wow! I envy you guys! I served as a combat medic in the Singapore army for two years. You guys only need to serve for two and a half months.

    See you around in class!

  2. My friends also get problem when pronounce my name Hong. I used English name Mel (pronounced like cat's sound: meow meow :D) during my first year. And then, I asked myself: "why do I need to struggle to remember all of my friends' Chinese/Indian/Malay... names while my name is very easy for them to remember" :D then I used my name Hong again :D

    Yup, it is great to stick with our original names :D

  3. Interesting autobiography! I like the focus on your name. Thanks, Hau!

  4. Hi Edmund, haha... However, I found that Singaporean men are generally stronger than any foreigners. That might be because all of you have to serve army. So, be proud of yourself! :D

    Hi Hong, I think it is easy to remember your own name 'Hong' also! haha...

    Hi Brad, thank you! :D

  5. miao~no matter wat the others call u...
    i still like to call u black cat~~
    it's been like years tat we call u tat name ad..
    quite hard to change...hehe

  6. Great....i like to call u minhau n miao...
    ur writings inspire me alot...stick to the original name we have...

  7. Alex, hahaha... you are right man! What will you call my wife in the future then? I am quite curious about it.

    Zyuan(I'm who I am), I know who you are! Haha! Yeap, we still stick to our orginal name! :D

  8. haha..i'm the one who always call u miao miao:D