Nicknames are terms of endearment and whilst some nicknames may not be affectionate, most are.
Pretty much everyone in my family has a nickname. My sister was known for years as Snarfy much to her dismay. My dad is still to this day called Smitty by all of his friends and acquaintances. He even introduces himself as Smitty. My brother George was called Yorty Chong. No one is really very certain about the origins of these names. They just seem to have always been. My grandfather, Pop, was a big fan of nicknames and seemed to give one to everyone. I have a cousin who we called Buddy and I think I was in my 20s before I realised this wasn't his real name. He was actually named Glen. My cousin, Chris, is still referred to as Earl. My father and his brothers call each other Poop. This can get a bit confusing at family gatherings but they always seem to know who is speaking to whom.
My father still calls me Plum. He has since I was a wee little girl. He used to address my mail to Plum Smith, even mail that went to my office, which was a source of endless colleague teasing until I changed jobs and went elsewhere. My cards come addressed to Plum. I have some family members who are not quite sure what my real name is and at my family reunions nobody knows who LaDawn is. It used to bother me but now I quite like it. Last night my husband called me Plum.
My daughter, Abigail, seems to have developed the same affinity for nicknames. She started calling Sebastian Shake about a year ago. The name has stuck and I find myself yelling through the house "Shaaaaaaaaake!" Even the children at his school have started calling him Shake. Abigail also named her Uncle Matthew Mouse which just seems to fit. They've had a special bond since she was a baby. I hope he doesn't mind (I think he quite likes it). She calls her godfather, Simon, Shisam which is very odd indeed. Not entirely sure where she got this but Simon must sound something like Shisam in her head. Odd thing is even though her speech is improving as she gets older, the nicknames remain. She must be consciously carrying on a tradition handed down from her grandfather and great-grandfather. Good girl!
What are your nicknames?