Will nickname ‘Bubba’ have resurgence thanks to Masters?

As a Georgia grad I was thrilled to see Bubba Watson win the Masters, but I also enjoyed the announcers just saying ‘Bubba.” (This New York paper seems also to enjoy using the word Bubba.)

Growing up in Georgia, lots of our friends were nicknamed Bubba. You routinely heard it yelled out the front door when it was time to come in for dinner. But when my kids were little I didn’t hear it anymore in the suburbs. (I suspect my cousins down in Savannah were still hearing it, and I know we would hear it in Gulf Shores on vacation.)

So now I am wondering with a Bubba winning the Masters will the nickname make a comeback in Atlanta? Will big-city Southern parents re-adopt the traditional nickname?

Is there a stigma with the nickname Bubba? Does it make you a “redneck?” Does Bubba Watson winning make you less embarrassed to use it? Do you already refer to your child as “Bubba?”

39 comments Add your comment

Augusta

April 9th, 2012
10:04 am

God I hope NOT…we have enough “bubba’s” in this world….

ABC

April 9th, 2012
10:06 am

Yes, Bubba is redneck.

Buckeye

April 9th, 2012
10:16 am

I don’t know many kids named Tiger or Eldrick for that matter.

Techmom

April 9th, 2012
10:40 am

I think it’s funny when guys are called Bubba into adulthood and yet they are not the stereotypical redneck, tobacco-chewing “Bubba”. Hopefully it makes people think twice before applying those stereotype prejudices based on names.

ABC

April 9th, 2012
10:54 am

How about grown men named Mitt and Newt? Those are no better than Bubba.

Augusta

April 9th, 2012
11:00 am

I’d rather have a Bubba than a Barack.

Ramesh

April 9th, 2012
11:03 am

Shannon W

April 9th, 2012
11:17 am

I call both my children (son and daughter) Bubba as a pet name (sometimes just Bub). But I try to limit how much I use it around strangers because 1) I don’t want to risk offending anyone and 2) I don’t want them to think my son is named Bubba. I do think that Bubba seems redneck,and is not likely to catch on as a nickname in urban areas.

JOD

April 9th, 2012
11:29 am

I call both our male dogs Bubba as a nickname, but the oldest one is also Bubby. Curious that a ‘redneck’ nickname and a Jewish term of endearment are so alike…

shaggy

April 9th, 2012
11:30 am

I believe, like the great Lewis Grizzard, that you can better trust a man named “Bubba”.
In fact, I have NEVER heard of a scam perpetrated by a “Bubba”, a few butt whuppins of bully type that needed a butt whuppin, but never a scam.
Now, “Guido”, I would keep an eye on.

Enlightened

April 9th, 2012
12:15 pm

Never trust anyone named Bubba, Newt, Mitt, or Barack. Someone with the middle name of Ernest is someone you can trust.

homeschooler

April 9th, 2012
1:34 pm

Huge pet peeve. Brothers and sisters who call each other Bubba and Sissy along with their parents using these nick names. “go give this to, Sissy…tell Bubba to come here”. Ugh..What was that conversation last week about white trash? Yeah. Right or wrong, that’s definitely part of my white trash “rule book”.

Augusta

April 9th, 2012
1:55 pm

Or married couples who call each other Mom and Dad……

PhotoMomof4

April 9th, 2012
2:38 pm

Motocross racer James Stewart has also gone by the nickname Bubba. He doesn’t appear to be redneck… Also didn’t see a surge in that nickname once he became popular.

K's Mom

April 9th, 2012
2:47 pm

@homeschooler and augusta…I agree whole heartedly about bubba, sissy, mom and dad!

Since the Auburn grad did not win, I was thrilled that the UGA grad won. I hope he has an amazing career and that folks do not start naming their kids Bubba because of it. If anyone has any questions about how dumb it sounds to name kids after sports teams and grads, checkout Harvey Updike and his kids named Bear, Crimson and Ali Bama. I am a huge sports fan, but we went with family names instead of Bo Jackson and Herschel Walker.

motherjanegoose

April 9th, 2012
2:56 pm

Haha! @ Augusta, I always call my husband Daddy…to the kids…and they are grown. Some friends think it is odd but others think it is endearing. I do not call him Dad, when we are alone as that is not my style but he stays Daddy for the kids. I even call him Daddy to our dog..as in “Daddy’s home!” She will run to the door!

While I was in Savannah, with lots of Yankees…the waitress came up to the table behind me and asked them if they would like fresh ground pepper on their salad. “Yes!” So she is twisting the pepper and mentions, ” Say when…’ The Mother bursts out laughing and says, “Say when…oh that is so cute!” HELLO…what do folks usually say? Colloquialisms intrigue me no matter where I am!
I guess Bubba would fit into that category. I loved to hear the folks in Canada, where I was 2 weeks ago. They also thought my y’all was hilarious.

Techmom

April 9th, 2012
3:36 pm

I thought “Mama” & “Deddy” were the southern terms. I refer to my husband as dad when I’m talking to my son (i.e. “go ask Dad”) but I certainly don’t call my husband dad when I’m talking to him.

I don’t think “sissy” is a southern thing… I grew up out west and it’s what my brother called me until I was about 4. I always assumed it was just easier for him to say than my real name. I don’t recall him ever calling me that once I started school though.

Denise

April 9th, 2012
4:02 pm

My niece called her brother “bubba” because she couldn’t say brother or his name. Once she could say his name she dropped “bubba”. Do people actually keep saying “bubba” once they can speak clearly?

homeschooler

April 9th, 2012
4:10 pm

Denise…oh yes. Maybe you’ve never been to Alabama. ;-)

peteM

April 9th, 2012
4:26 pm

as Augusta said, Bubba is a convenient cover word for racist white trash ……….. a Bubba in a Green Jacket ………… that’s really hilarious. I think he’s pretty nice fellow, from all reports. no PBR spilled all over the Jacket before 8 PM, you know, the sort of thing you’d expect from them Georgie Dawgs.

newblogger

April 9th, 2012
4:58 pm

Careful with the Alabama jokes! :) My Dad was called Bubba by his little sister until she could say his name, then she decided she liked Bubba..he didn’t. So they settled on Bud. It was close and people still call him that now. My husband (who is so NOT a Bubba) was deemed Bubba by the guys he worked with a while back. They are from New York and thought it was quite funny. He didn’t mind since he doesn’t fit the Bubba stereotype. However, his softball team began using it as well and now to some people he is still Bubba. Go figure!

Mike

April 9th, 2012
5:12 pm

Pete, here’s another great line from Lewis Grizzard – Delta is ready when you are.

SansWorld

April 9th, 2012
5:12 pm

Bubba Watson is the most likable UGA grad I have ever seen.

SansWorld

April 9th, 2012
5:15 pm

My dad grew being call Bubba or Bub. When he went to first grade the teach said that would not do, and he could be either called his first or middle name.

Robert was his first name, but he thought that sounded too much like “Robber”, so he went with his middle name , Wayne.

Marlo's new name...

April 9th, 2012
5:27 pm

I’ve wondered what “Bubba” stood for; now, I see thanks to the comments that it was founded by Southern toddlers. It makes me wonder what the West and Midwest toddlers had to say…

Jeff

April 9th, 2012
5:29 pm

I think it was a childhood nickname parents now avoid due the the redneck connotations. Nobody wants to be labeled just by their name. It is a very Southern thing and nicknames stick into adulthood more than in other parts of the country. That is why in the South you will hear of grown, educated men with child like names like “Billy”, “Jimmy”, and “Bobby”.

JW

April 9th, 2012
8:33 pm

This is journalism? Get a life.

Thumbs up to JW

April 9th, 2012
8:53 pm

With all due respect, this is the AJC. UGA owns them. I’m glad the guy won but was concerned for Bradley’s health when reading his commentary. Between a UGA grad and the Real Housewives of Tiger coverage I thought he might be lightheaded. I’m glad the guy won but as usual they act like Bubba is responsible for world peace. Like most Atlanta residents, I get real news coverage elsewhere.

shaggy

April 10th, 2012
7:21 am

JW & Thumbs up to JW

JW – You come to blogs expecting journalism? If the answer is yes, you probably watch Dr. Phil for your mental health challenges.

Thumbs up to JW – You might get “real news coverage” elsewhere, but you came here to post, and yes, like the State of Georgia, including Atlanta, DAWGS do in fact own the AJC. Tough world, huh?

Augusta

April 10th, 2012
8:52 am

@PeteM – WHERE did I mention Bubba was racist????

Andre

April 10th, 2012
11:12 am

What about Ma and Pa? That’s so like the Waltons or something…I kinda like the name Bubba making a resurgence. I thought it would after Forest Gump.

Majette

April 10th, 2012
12:10 pm

Bubba looks like Starvin Marvin from South Park. He has the arms of an Ethiopian baby.
Don’t people usually nickname their kid “Bubba” when they have a special needs child who has a difficult time saying “brother?”

ma

April 10th, 2012
12:15 pm

Have a friend who is named, Billy Joe Jim Bob, seriously, but, goes by BaJayJayB!!

Janice

April 10th, 2012
12:18 pm

If I was a professional golfer I would not be called Bubba. His name is Gerry, I thing it’s pronounced Gary though. That’s a perfectly nice name. Why would anyone choose Bubba over Gerry?

David

April 10th, 2012
12:48 pm

I know a guy named Bubba Rothschild. How’s that for odd?

rr

April 10th, 2012
12:49 pm

Love it, he shows what being southern is all about!

Ain't That the Truth, Ruth

April 10th, 2012
12:53 pm

My father is named Bubba. He and his three sons have earned: 4 Bachelor’s, 1 MD, 1 JD, 1 MBA, 1 MA. The Ivy League included. Not bad for a Bubba, especially one from Alabama.

penny

April 10th, 2012
4:07 pm

Im about to give birth to my first baby and plan to name her Bubbette. Any siblings will be named Bubbette or Bubber.

Bub

April 16th, 2012
9:19 am

My younger brother started calling me Bubba when he could talk (couldn’t say brother, I guess), and my family has called me Bobba or Bub ever since. My close friends switched over & started calling me Bub in high school, and then a few of my college friends did too (ones that were around my family or high school friends a lot). Now I have a 7-year old son that we have called Bub as his nickname all his life, and his younger sister does too. I’ve never even considered going by Bubba in my professional life, but as a nickname for family and friends, it’s just as acceptable to me as any other random nickname.