Ask Ken, 08/12/2004

Today’s question of:”Can you explain some of the nicknames some players on the Pro Tour have acquired? How did William Jensen get to be known as ‘Baby Huey?’ Why is Eric Taylor so ‘Danger’ous? Since when is ‘Beverly’ a nickname for ‘Nicolas?'” is answered by none other than the Dragon Master himself, Brian Kibler!

Hi there,

Can you explain some of the nicknames some players on the Pro Tour have acquired? How did William Jensen get to be known as”Baby Huey?” Why is Eric Taylor so”Danger”ous? Since when is”Beverly” a nickname for”Nicolas?” Please include any other names that come to mind.

Thanks! Robbie”Sensei” Chan

Master Splinter,

The origins of the nicknames that have been bestowed upon many of the Pro Tour’s most colorful characters are shrouded in mystery. As a member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity during my college years at Emory, I have a lot of experience with nicknames, as we took great effort to come up with clever pledge names for our new members, so Ken picked the right man for this job. I’m just thankful that my Magic-bestowed nickname of”Dragon Master” has a different origin than my classmate Craig’s pledge name of”Dragon Slayer”. Let me put it this way: he, too, had a thing for fatties.

Some pledge names – like Craig’s – have an obvious origin, but some are more mysterious, and just trying to figure out where they came from is a source of endless frustration for the pledge and amusement for the naming brothers. My personal favorite was the many-layered”Rosebud” – and no, I’m not going to tell you why. Why would I tell you in the first place if I’m not going to explain it? Because I can. So hah.

Similarly, I don’t want to spoil all the fun of figuring out the origins of the pro’s nicknames yourself, so I’ve decided to provide you with several stories to explain each moniker. If you can figure out which is the true story for every nickname, you win an all-expenses paid trip to Albany, NY, to visit Ken Krouner yourself! (Writer’s Note: This is a lie – BMK) So get to guessing!

First up is William”Baby Huey” Jensen. One story says that in his younger days, Jensen provided the voice for the beloved nephew of Uncle Scrooge on the hit cartoon Duck Tales. Unfortunately, when he hit puberty and his voice started to change, his show business days were over and he hit rock bottom like so many other child stars. This lead to a downward spiral of depression, which he overcame only by finding success in the world of Magic – a world where no one cares how deep your voice is. The other explanation is that Billy has always been a big guy, and his stature combined with his baby face lead Tom Guevin and Mark Lepine to start calling him”Baby Huey” during a tournament at Total Confusion gaming convention.”Baby Huey” won the tournament and the rest, as they say, is history.

As for everyone’s favorite hat-eating dinosaur, Eric Taylor earned the nickname”Danger” in his late 30’s during his tour of duty in the Punic Wars under legendary general Hannibal Barca. It was Taylor, rather than Barca, who devised the plan to besiege Rome by marching their entire army, elephants and all, through the treacherous Alps. Such a foolishly courageous and yet brilliant idea led to his fellow soldiers calling him”Danger”, which is, indeed, the origin of the expression”Danger is my middle name.” That or it’s just that Eric middle initial is D and no one knows what it really stands for.

The list goes on. Bob”The Great One” Maher, Gabriel”Yellowhat” Nassif, Neil”J.T. Money” Reeves, Brian”Look Out Ladies” Hegstad, and John”Brock” Parker. It would take far more time than I have to delve into the sordid pasts of characters like these, and my word count indicates that I’ve long since overstayed my welcome. I’m sorry I didn’t answer your question about Nick”Beverly” Lynn, but he beat me with Loxodon Warhammer in San Diego and I’m still a little bitter about it. That and I have no idea where it comes from, but it’s mostly just that I’m bitter.

The source for turning any question into a story about himself,

Brian Kibler