Joanie Cunningham Ruined My Childhood 1

Joanie Cunningham Ruined My Childhood

“Nah-Nah! You have a girl’s name!”

It’s true. I did. The proof still exists on my birth certificate: “Erin.” With an “i.”

I really didn’t have a problem with this when I was a baby, but oh boy, once I started school, that’s when the trouble began. Every Tuesday at 8pm I got a reminder just how un-Fonzie I was when Erin Moran’s face came on TV as the Actress playing Chachi’s paramour.

Those were not “Happy Days” for me. That show made me hate my name and resent my parent’s for giving it to me. So I asked them if I could change it. To my surprise, they said “yes,” and asked what I wanted to change it to.

That was easy: Steve Austin. Fonzie was cool, but bionics was cooler. I was sure I’d stop getting teased if I had six-million dollar name, but then I realized something. I liked my name, just not the spelling. So I changed the “i” to an “a” and moved on. Somehow it seemed less girly and I liked that it was unique.

I never met another Eran with an “a” in my life until an Advanced Spanish class in college. Three Eran’s in one classroom. And two of them were girls! Ay muchachas, step off my unique “A” But you know what’s really weird? “Eran” in Spanish means “they were.”

So I guess that’s all in the past now.

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