Tom vs. Tommy (or Thomas)?

Until I was in middle school, I went by “Tommy”.  As I became older, I transitioned to the more adult “Tom”.

When I started college at Cal Poly, I made a futile attempt to make the switch back to Tommy.  I wasn’t persistent enough and it ended up fizzling out, leaving me with the Tom.

Embarking on this journey brings another logical opportunity to “re-brand” myself.  I am considering going back to “Tommy” or maybe even pushing to a full-on “Thomas”.

  • Tom: This is the shortest and easiest version of my name, but the most boring and least memorable in my opinion.  Just as boring as other 3-letter names, like Bob, Rob, Tim, or other one-syllable names like Will, Hank, Bill, Fred.
  • Tommy: I feel like this name has the most character.  A little more unique than the boring Tom, but also a little less formal.
  • Thomas: Also more unique than Tom, but also seemingly way too formal.  I only hear Thomas because its my official name.

I’m leaning towards Tommy.  It should be slightly easier than Thomas because several of my relatives still refer to me as Tommy.



10 Responses to “Tom vs. Tommy (or Thomas)?”

  1. Therese Noonan says:

    Tom, it took a while to go from Tommy to Tom but I’ll try to go back, Thomas.

  2. PatrickW says:

    Tom sounds just fine, to me. But Tommy is just as good. It’s your name, do with it what you will. In my case, my given name is Patrick…my close friends and family call me Pat…but “Pat” is ‘non-gender-specific’, and since I don’t really like being referred to as ‘Miss’ or ‘Ms.’, I generally use the full “Patrick”–I really don’t have much choice.

  3. Joyce Feuille says:

    Rebrand yourself on the trip. You can always go back to Tom if you want when you find where you want to settle.

  4. Hoi Sauce says:

    Why reinvent the wheel? Or change what has been working for you? I had a similar conversation with Danny Hightower the other night. He introduces himself as Daniel but people just eventually call him Danny, regardless. So ask yourself, do you think you are a ‘Tommy’?

    Must you ‘rebrand’ yourself? Or is the ultimate purpose of rebranding is to revamp/improve?

    Tom: you said it yourself: “more adult”

    Tommy: more child-like in tone

    Thomas: square bear

  5. Tommy says:

    I don’t think that Tom has been working for me. I’ve always thought it was just too dry and boring. Tommy has so much more character.

    I do think I’m a Tommy. Right now is a perfect time for rebranding; as long as I introduce myself as Tommy, I won’t be hanging around anyone who is used to calling me Tom.

    Maybe I could have 3 alter egos, and have a different personality for each one. I would use a proper English accent for Thomas, surfer lingo for Tommy, and talk like an average middle-aged man for Tom.

  6. Watson says:

    Piece! I will never call you Tommy! You will always be Tom, “You Piece”, or a number of other derogatory labels I will not post on a public website. With that being said everything you are doing now is legit..but one thing I am wondering, how do you work out? Do you have a mini bowflex type machine in your RV?

  7. Tommy says:

    Piece the world. You don’t have to call me Tommy. I’d actually like to be referred to as different names by different people to keep it always interesting.

    As far as working out goes, I don’t have room for a mini boflex. That, and bowflexes suck. I actually just do free-week passes at local gyms, or sign up for temporary memberships. There is an LA Fitness a few blocks from me here in Portland, and I just used my free day pass today, and I’ll be signing up for a 2-week membership for $18 tomorrow. Its actually a huge gym with tons of new equipment and practically zero people were there today. I am super impressed.

  8. Watson says:

    Haha legit. Yeah I like being referred to as different names by different people as well. $18 for 2 weeks isn’t bad…I remember back in Walnut Creek I used to get 2 week passes at Fitness 19 for $25 over breaks, and that gym had less equipment than the Cal Poly Rec Center. So Portland is a pretty cool city? My dad always talks about it because he owns some investment properties in Vancouver, WA which I guess is right next to Portland. I was actually thinking of trying to get a job up in Portland because it’s 1) Different, far from home, and cool from what I hear and 2) Having my dad as my landlord would be chill. Yeah I know, you cringe when you think of the word “job” hahah

  9. Tommy says:

    Portland seems pretty cool so far. Everyone appears to be a little more laid back than people in CA. I might not mind living here, but I’ll give it a few more weeks and see how I feel.

    Vancouver is just a few miles north of Portland, and a lot of people from Vancouver hang out in Portland. I guess WA has no income tax, so that is why a lot of people live there.

    It is different and far from home, but what everyone tells me is that the weather sucks 9 months out of the year. Also, I hear that jobs are really hard to find in Portland right now. I’ve actually met quite a few people that were either laid off recently or having trouble finding work up here.

    However, property is MUCH more affordable around here compared to CA. I met a few recent college grads that actually bought there own place around here. Nobody I met in SF really owns their own place.

  10. GRG says:


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