Thursday, March 10, 2005

what's in a name?

Ijam -
it's derived from Hizam. lose the H and change Z to J.
Ali (Nazri Adam) my childhood friend used to call me Ijam Bedek, or rhyme it Ijam Bukit Mertajam. teasingly, of course.
i'm not sure who first called me Ijam. anyway, it's the name i'm used to people calling me with, be it friends or family.
until i'm 6 years old, then only i had a shock. i'm in the kindergarten, and Ms. Michelle called me 'Akmal'. for life, nobody had ever called me that! it's making me rather uncomfortable.

Akmal -
now i personally prefer people to call be by my name. Akmal.
it has a really special and very good meaning. thank you Ayah for coming up with such an unusual (during my childhood days - more of this later on) name, altho i was not very fond of it when i was young.
Akmal in arabic means 'perfect' or 'lengkap/cukup' in bahasa melayu.

when i was young, there were no other Akmal in school besides me. me, a black sheep? oh, man.
i remember when i asked Ibu to change my name to other more common ones. so Ibu asked me 'Ijam nak nama apa?'. came my reply 'Mamat ke, Ahmad ke'. common, right?
i was really overjoyed when one day i know that my name is in al-Quran. this means that my name is after all not an unusual one. and it has a very good meaning too.

i really like the fact that my name starts with an A, so i get to be among the firsts in any list at school.

Lapt -
i got this during MRSM years in Jasin, Melaka.
it was orientation week, in dewan besar. a few of my new friends sitting in a small circle, and they decided that we oughtta have nicknames. some sort of a boarding school tradition/norm.
and so names like Mat Patt (pet pot pet pot), idung (you should see his nose), dol (jendul), etc., emerge there and then.

the Lapt story - Matt Patt (Dzeimy) was thinking for my nickname. Akmal... Akmal... Hah! Makmal. Laboratory! yeah, right. nobody would call people with mouthful 'Laboratory'. and he continued... Lab! plain and simple. and from that day i can't quite recall my friends calling me Akmal. they call me by my nick.
i thought that 'Lab' is quite strange for a nick, so i changed the spelling to 'Lapt'. still plain and simple. and without any meaning.
the name stuck with me during my MLA, A-level, NCUK years.
oh, and i should mention too that Zaleq (Razali) coined 'Laypo', and Fab (Faizal Abu Bakar) fondly calls me 'Laporpo' during a-level years.

Haji -
when i got back here from hajj friends and family calls me 'Haji'. 'Haji Akmal', 'Haji Lapt'. teasingly, or seriously, or perhaps just a gesture of respect, i may not know for sure. i don't mind them calling me that. for me, in a way, it's a du'a. perhaps i'd be able to perform hajj again some other time.

wrapping up -
it can be awkward sometimes to carry my names.
i reserve 'Lapt' for my close friends and friends who choose not to call me by my name 'Akmal'.
i would usually introduce myself as 'Akmal' to people i meet now.
Adlee introduced be to his father (my cousin) Abang Bakar as 'Lapt'.
one time during a-level year i went with Naza to her cousin Myra's birthday. she introduced me to Aunt Dahliah by my nick 'Lapt'.
until now, most everyone present that day call me 'Lapt'. Aunt Dahlia and Unc Bob call me Lapt; Myra, Lana, Aliff call me 'abang Lapt'. and Abang Bakar too, still calls me Lapt.
which one do i prefer, then?
plain simple Akmal will do. i love it very much. and for the respect of Ayah who gave me this name.
anyway, if you feel awkward to call me by my 'new' name Akmal, cool 'Lapt' will also be ok.

what should i call you, my friend?


Anonymous said...


Name is the greatest gift that our parent can give us. And, I hope I had given the same to my little princess... Farah Alia.

NB: Syahdulah baca tulisan hang. terkejutpun ada.

SUZIE MUDA said...

I accidently found yr page while browsing the internet. Baca posting ni terasa mcm kenal..rupanya mmg kenal pun. We used to be classmates during our years at NCUK. Anyway..nice blog.