My nickname is Tim Tam. Here's why you need to get over it.

I'm a public figure. I understand that and I'm thankful for it. What I don't understand is why people contact me to suggest that my nickname "Tim Tam" bothers them. Every now and then when I'm hosting Tonic I identify myself as "Tim Tam" and I'll get emails suggesting that I shouldn't use my nickname. So I wanted to write a short post here at (!) to provide some context.

When I was a young child... grade one to be precise, I attended my first days of school and almost immediately started to be referred to as "Chink" by one particular school mate. As cruel as that may sound there was nothing I could do about this unfortunate circumstance. It was 1970 in a small town in Alberta. There were no anti-bullying programs even considered at that time. I was on a ride I just couldn't get off of. I sucked it up daily.

In grade five the class I was in had three boys named Tim. As an exercise to keep us "Tims" straight the teacher decided to try distinguishing us by our last initials. As luck would have it all three of us Tims had rhyming last initials... "B", "V" and "T". My teacher said, "Okay, let's go with 'Tim B', 'Tim V' and 'Tim Tam'" and the name stuck. I finally had a nickname that was kind. I embraced it.

I've been known as Tim Tam since 1975. My favorite and most beloved people all call me Tim Tam. So if it slips out during a radio show every now and then please forgive me. I know that my voice is broadcasting into your homes, cars and lives but my intention is to offer my friendship, not to offend.


Tim Tamashiro