Hello, my name is Chiggy
February 10th, 2011
10:45 AM ET
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Chiggy Cybil Wallace is our boss! She oversees CNN Living and Travel. Holy heck, does that lady love bacon.

Today Starbucks decided that my name is now “Chiggy.”

Yep. It was news to me as well.

I know that lots of people have "Starbucks names." And even yesterday a coworker I was standing in line with seemed surprised that I was giving Starbucks my real name. I’ve thought about it. But I always pay with my debit card and fear getting caught fibbing to my barista.

I cannot even imagine how tedious it is to be a Starbucks employee at CNN Center and have to remember all of our names as we flock there every morning. They are rock stars of memorization and are informal celebrities around here. Having said that, I fondly remember the day a new employee asked me my name, three times. After the third time, I could see the look of soul-crushing defeat in her eyes as she quickly jotted down: DIBYL.

I loved that.

So today I am Chiggy.

Kat, editor of Eatocracy, asked if I’d seen the "Swarley" episode of "How I Met Your Mother," wherein Neil Patrick Harris' character Barney is dubbed "Swarley" by a barista and subsequently Swarles Barkley, Swarlos, Bob Swarley and more by his friends. Nope, missed it. But I believe a Hulu viewing is in my near future. In the meantime, I am enjoying my new alter-ego.

So, who are you when you're at the coffee shop?

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Filed under: Chain • Coffee • Restaurants • Sip • Starbucks


soundoff (148 Responses)
  1. tryecrot

    Yes there should realize the opportunity to RSS commentary, quite simply, CMS is another on the blog.

    August 27, 2011 at 8:27 pm |
  2. zoey

    I get zelly, ellie, kelly, stelly, joey, chloe, and zoey spelled everyway you can imagine. zo, zoe, zoie, zoy, zoee, zooey. zooe, it goes on and on.

    July 19, 2011 at 12:37 pm |
  3. Blythe1

    My first name is Blythe. I usually end up being "blight". Really, it's quite fitting, a name like that is a blight on all who encounter it...

    February 11, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
  4. phoebekingsak

    PLEASE watch that HIMYM episode soon! It's absolutely hilarious.

    I love/hate (mostly hate) the ways starbucks baristas spell my name (Phoebe). the worst was 'Fibi' at the Orlando airport...

    February 11, 2011 at 2:55 pm |
  5. YumYum

    I actually have 3: YumYum, Little Bitchard and Bitchard Simmons. They've been helping me come up with a roller derby name LOL!

    February 11, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  6. love coffee too

    stop wasting you money buying overpriced coffee...my god! Starbucks isn't even good coffee...most people drink it because they want to be seen with the cup in their hand. I avoid the place and the people....I know they're equally annoying

    February 11, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
    • Love Coffee 3

      Starbux coffee is designed with mixing in mind. If you're looking for a black cuppa joe and you like strong, slightly bitter coffee, hit Starbux every time. If not, don't!

      I actually like their coffee – grande, with a teeny bit of cream & 2 blue sweeteners.

      February 11, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  7. Baltimore

    My name is Alison, but I always end up with "Alice" on my cup. Now I just say my name is Alice when they ask.

    February 11, 2011 at 1:50 pm |
  8. Purvi

    My name is Purvi and I get "Purby" or "Pervi" and all variations thereof. I know my name is unusual, but the funny part is that I spell it out for them at least twice each time I order, and still get those different names each time. My favorite, most recently, was "Kirby." I might stick with that as my Starbucks alter ego. :o)

    February 11, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
  9. Len

    My real name is Leonard so I use LEN and have been asked by baristas a) how do you spell it? b) are you Chinese? (I'm a fair skinned British caucasian) and have been told a few times "Oh, that's a strange name!" Nine times out of ten, the name on the cup when handed to me is Glen, Glenn or at times Ben. I'm thinking about changing my Starbucks name to BOB, what do you think?

    February 11, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
  10. McDonald's

    Starbucks is for D Bags..

    February 11, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • love coffee too

      Agree...my name is "I like to wait in lines for a cup of crappy coffee because it makes me look cool"

      February 11, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  11. McDonald's

    Starbucks is for D Bags..

    February 11, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • JohnnyDeep

      Not even.. it's for wannabe D Bags

      February 11, 2011 at 12:53 pm |
  12. Bret

    Mr. Cock-osaurus Rex yes, its THAT HUGE!

    February 11, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
  13. Dirk Diggler

    They call me Dirk Diggler.

    February 11, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
  14. Katie

    For some reason people don't understand me when I say "Katie" so I've started just saying "Kate" at Starbucks or any restaurant where you have to give your name. I have no idea why "Katie" is so hard to understand...

    My roommate's name is Chitra (Chee-tra), but since her name is so odd to Americans, she has a few different names she throws around instead of confusing people

    February 11, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
  15. Joy

    They can never get my real name correct on the cup, so I have change it to Joy. And when I am with a friend, her name is Happiness. This usually gets a second look and a smile. Who does not want Joy and Happiness in this world?

    February 11, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
  16. Spanish Inquisition

    Starbucks get on Chiggy with it ?

    February 11, 2011 at 12:30 pm |
  17. Babe

    They call me Honey or Babe always, then I found out I wasn't the only one. The important thing is I am treated well every time.

    February 11, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
  18. Dazie

    My real name is uncommon enough normally, but my parents threw another wrench into things by spelling it in an even MORE uncommon way. I've given up trying to get any -ista to put my correct name on my cup, or on my breakfast, or on anything I might order anywhere that requires my name to be on it. I usually tell them I'm Sue or Kate. I think, however, that I shall start saying my name is Egger. Like Egger from Men In Black. See how that goes over.

    February 11, 2011 at 12:18 pm |
  19. Adair

    My five-letter name is unusual, therefore difficult to spell. Adder, Adare... shoot, I have colleagues and neighbors who call me Adelle. Adair is my middle name. My first name is Shell, and you'd be surprised how many people ask me how to spell it, or call me Michelle or Rochelle or Shelley.

    Reservations at restaurants are usually made under my husband's first name, because it's common and simple to spell.

    February 11, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
  20. Patch

    I skip Fourbucks for local places and use my nickname anywhere I do get coffee.

    February 11, 2011 at 10:44 am |
  21. Demara

    I don't drink Starbucks. I can get the same stuff at Timothy's for a fraction of the price, plus their baking is better.

    February 11, 2011 at 9:36 am |
  22. piratejoe

    I always use Steve when going to Starbucks. It's a bit of homage to a very cool bud a'mine from a long time ago. So one time, at Chik Fil-a, after they ask my name and I, naturally, say, "Steve," and my brother, in the line next to me, when he is asked for his name, responds with "Danno."

    February 11, 2011 at 8:45 am |
    • AleeD

      LOL! Always LOVE the TV, movie & pop culture references! Thanks for the morning chuckle, McGarrett!!

      February 11, 2011 at 9:07 am |
  23. Elizabeth

    Oh, and I don't drink coffee, never liked the stuff.... just tea. So I guess I'm an CTL ? (Chai Tea Latte)

    February 11, 2011 at 8:25 am |
  24. Elizabeth

    They just call me Ma'am. Must be the riding crop ;-)

    February 11, 2011 at 8:20 am |
  25. AleeD

    Regarding this blog and all the comments about butchering up names, what is finally sinking in with me & cracking me up is ...

    ... if the baristas don't understand what customers are saying when they pronounce their names, how in the heck are customers getting their orders filled correctly!?!

    Isn't "Sam" is easier to understand than "grandemochalattedecafespressoskinnywithpeanutbutterontop"? [;-)

    February 11, 2011 at 8:18 am |
    • Kat Kinsman

      Ha! Comment of the day, party of YOU.

      February 11, 2011 at 12:44 pm |
      • AleeD

        Thanks! That means alot – especially coming from you! :)

        February 11, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
  26. Dough

    DOUGH. For some reason, people insist on spelling 'Doug' with an 'h' at the end. I turn from a person to a baking ingredient.

    February 11, 2011 at 8:00 am |
    • Elizabeth

      You're a funny guy... thanks for a morning laugh.

      February 11, 2011 at 8:22 am |
    • Kat Kinsman

      My husband's name is Douglas and even after he introduces himself as such, they call him Doug. Drives him NUTS. It's a dandy name, but it's just not his name.

      I get called Kit and Kate.

      February 11, 2011 at 12:43 pm |
  27. Former Barista

    As a former barista and still regular customer, I frequent the Starbucks I used to work at, they call me a number of things, but my summer drink got me the most popular name, "Goatsum Bloodum", given to me by my Texan supervisor because my Rasberry Passion Tea Lemonade looks a little like blood.

    February 11, 2011 at 7:13 am |
  28. CuriousJames

    My favorite coffee shop in Portland (Blend) is always a treat. After only a few visits, they had it down pat – Large coffee, with a little ice. Simple. Straightforward. Easy. I love coffee, and I buy coffee so I can drink it. Now. No half-caff skinny blah blah hipster doofus bullshite. Just coffee. If they forget the ice – fine. I let it sit. Coffee, cup, serve. Perfect.

    February 11, 2011 at 5:51 am |
    • Former Barista

      When I worked for the company, the Tall Non-fat, 1 pump Sugar-free Vanilla, 1/2 a splenda people would kill me. Note to everyone- you ask for half a pump of syrup, or half a splenda you are getting the whole thing because no self respecting barista will measure out half a splenda. Get over yourselves.

      February 11, 2011 at 7:15 am |
  29. Marianne

    Voltron.

    February 11, 2011 at 2:42 am |
  30. mandi

    I thought my barista knew my name for the longest time, I was a regular. She knew I was a devoted Battlestar fan. She happened to know another regular who was close to "Starbuck" (Katee Sackhoff), and to my surprise one day she gave me an autographed photo of her! I didn't have the heart to tell her my name isn't Amanda (just Mandi, thanks MOM). My husband blew it later on and joked with her about it. It was kind of hard convincing her I still LOVED the gift and appreciated how she went out of her way for me. Sounds like someone who works for a small business doesn't it? Anyhoo, I still frequent that store even though it's not as close to me as about a dozen others. Because she's awesome, and goes above and beyond good customer service. Peace y'all!

    February 11, 2011 at 1:55 am |
  31. Sam

    I get Pam frequently, or if I say Samantha, I get Amanda. I just go with it. Sometimes after saying my name a few times I just agree with whatever they think I said. It's easier.

    February 11, 2011 at 12:59 am |
    • Panda1895

      As an Amanda, Samantha is one of the most common names I get called when people don't hear me correctly. The other one Amber.

      I got my nickname Panda because I had a friend who couldn't get my name right one night, and it stuck.

      February 11, 2011 at 11:00 am |
  32. lightenup

    They don't normally take the time to announce my drink... Iced triple grande skinny mocha 2p sf vanilla 2p mocha. But I almost always get the fourth shot free :D

    February 10, 2011 at 11:44 pm |
  33. Jam

    Names jesse and i always get called jason or jeff i dont know where they get jeff

    February 10, 2011 at 10:00 pm |
  34. No Thanks

    ..just another reason Starbucks gets on my nerves!! They're pretentious and way over priced. Yes, the coffee is good but all these little diversions will never make me forget that they charge too much and continue to keep their greedy little hands out for more. Starbucks??..you can have it.

    February 10, 2011 at 9:50 pm |
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