Reading Time: 2 minutes

The boy hated his name. It made him want to hide in the shadows and question his parents’ wisdom. But the nonsensical tag was more the mother’s doing than the father’s.

The couple had never gotten along, and every decision was treated as a point of contention. So the birth of their son couldn’t be any different.

When names were being explored and openly spoken, the father had listed his choices:




Now the mother couldn’t find anything wrong with the three, so she put her foot down and huffed her vague disapproval. What was so special about names that could be found on every street corner?

Her boy deserved a name that would makes heads turn. But the woman couldn’t figure out the appropriate moniker. And the due date came and went, but the boy and his name were missing.

Then one grey evening, a hospital visit revealed that the unborn baby wasn’t breathing. In rushed the doctor and nurses and with them hobbled the parents’ fears. What if their son didn’t make it? Would they say goodbye to an unnamed child?

But a hurried C-section halted the damage and out came a wrinkled mass. Three swift whacks and a hard shake could make anyone wail. And the boy’s cries echoed till the end of the hallway.

Relieved and exhausted, the mother wept while the father slept, and the naming ceremony was again forgotten. One night and half a day later, a grim looking nurse approached the parents with a serious question – What’s the boy’s name?

The mother and father then looked at each other. Their stiff tongues relaxed, but only the woman’s voice boomed in the room.


The father wasn’t too happy with his wife’s choice and ridiculed it there and then. He called it absurd and said it sounded too much like dryer, crier, and fryer. The boy would be teased for the rest of his life.

Then began the usual fight. Voices rose and hot words catapulted. The nurse sat down to rest her feet. The argument seemed endless. When it appeared to be going nowhere, the mother screamed and pulled her own hair. No one would stand in her way. Not even her husband, an ugly, balding creature.

So the nurse was asked to state her favorite flower. Not fond of roses or petunias, daisies or tulips, allergic to poppies and lilacs, the woman said cuckoo flowers weren’t too bad. And that was that. The boy had found a name and the mother had spited her husband.

But the worst was yet to come, not in the first name but the last. The birth certificate read:

Cuckoo Bird.

Thanks to bullies, the word ‘crazy’ was appropriately added later.

Submit your writing.

Hungry to read?

Looking for variety?

MASTICADORESINDIA has what you need!

Click the image to know more.

Go on! Check out my Short Stories Books – Free on Kindle Unlimited
Woman's cracked abstract face with fire streaks
Two smiling potato faces on a couch on a
Shadow of vines on a brick wall

54 Comments on “Cuckoo Bird Crazy – Flash Fiction Story

  1. I’m pleased Mr and Mrs Bird got it sorted. Although Bryer is Old English for Briar, the sweet wild rose. A nice name still. Oh well……

  2. A great story, Terveen! Just catching up on all your posts. It’s been a busy week! Stay blessed❤️❤️🌹

  3. Loved this one. It made me think back of the time when I was expecting my boy and I was dreading my husband’s suggestions. He is a massive Lord of the Rings fan and I had visions of our son being called Bilbo, Frodo or Aragorn. May be survivable, if you’re a celebrity and got millions in the bank, but not so much so, if you’re a mere mortal living in a council estate – then, it simply becomes an open invite for bullies. In the end, we settled for a ‘common as muck’ name. Just because a name is common doesn’t mean, it can’t be nice. In the end, we all fill our names with our own personality. Crazy Cuckoo Bird. Not an easy name to fill. Still slightly better than Gandalf Samwise Legolas…

    • Thank you so much, Britta. 🙂
      And many thanks for sharing your son’s naming experience. Doesn’t it seem like a big deal at the time?
      Just the right name…
      And either you end up with one that’s too weird or too common. I think simple and common are alright. Let’s leave weird to the ones who can afford it.
      Cuckoo Bird is slightly better than those dangerous ones you mentioned. Can imagine a club being swung or an axe being thrown each time while saying them. Haha!
      Appreciate your intellect, wit, and lovely comments.

  4. Thoroughly enjoyed the story!👍👏👏 We think that we have all this freedom to choose whatever we want in life, but the truth is that we can’t even choose our own names!😁

    • You’re so right, Aaysid. 🙂
      I think brave are those who do officially change their names. For a reason or for some whim.
      But many keep their names as is.
      Creatures of habit or simply lazy by nature?
      Thank you so much.

  5. The sense of an entire novel in a few paragraphs. But then again you did mention once to me that that’s the essence of a good writer 😊 I think what I love about your writing is the obvious depth of your empathy and feeling for Life and The World. For People in general. It’s really quite remarkable. I’ve never come across anything quite like it, so I’m glad that I did. Did I read that you’re a film maker (not stalking, just interested 🤣). I’d love a link to something. If not here then I think you can easily find my email on my blog. Personal correspondence with you would be wonderful I think, by the way. But I’ll leave it up to you 😊

    • Great story, Terveen! Bryer Bird had such a nice ring to it. It’s interesting how much of our identity is tied up in a name we never chose. When we had to pick baby names I couldn’t come up with any for boys. The best I had was Rampage or VALIS. Luckily we had a girl, but she still wishes we named her Rampage. Anyway, this was a funny story. You always know how to stick the landing whether it’s with a dark twist ending or a punchline that kills.

      • I think Rampage is awesome! Haha.
        I can see why the little one would’ve preferred it. Names grow on us and we grow on them. People hardly get my name right. Either they mispronounce it or spell it wrong.
        Oh well! I don’t fret about it. It’s mine and I’m fine with it. Couldn’t imagine being called something else. Though acronyms aren’t bad…
        Thanks a lot for your encouraging and thoughtful comments.
        Take care. 🙂

  6. enjoyed this one; made me think of a few public figures here in Oz branded with teasable names: the Health Minister named Brett Hazzard but far worse Sargeant Suckerdick of the SA police force —

    • Haha! Now that’s a nasty one.
      What could be the etymology?
      That would be a great story in itself.
      Thank you so much, John. 🙂

  7. While your tale takes things to the extreme, a bad or unisex name or unfortunate name pairings is traumatizing and can have long-lasting effects that reverberates well into adulthood.

    I worked with a guy, first name Jack, last name Goff who was the constant butt of the joke and he said it’s been like that since grade school. No one ever referred to him by just his first name. Imagine doing through life having to deal with that?

    And what makes matters worse is when the name is chosen on purpose and the parents who thought it was clever at the time, has to deal with the consequences of their child’s mental and emotional wellbeing after the novelty of the joke or pun had worn off.

    • LOL! Please excuse my guffaw but this is so terrible. Poor Jack Goff. I feel sorry for him and think his parents deserve all of his misplaced anger and pain. What were they thinking?
      No, actually they weren’t thinking. And that’s the problem.
      Celebrities seem to have a copyright on weird names. Maybe money gives them the liberty to do so.
      I can never forget Jack Goff. Wherever he is, I hope he isn’t hurting. It’s a traumatic experience.
      My last name is Gill and I was subjected to comments like ‘fish gill’ and ‘gilly fish’. So there, that’s the mean world. Find something and make a joke out of it.
      Thanks for sharing this, Rhyan. It was funny, painful, and quite disturbing.

  8. What a wonderful story you present here. Growing up in such a household myself, I know so well of the contention between a couple when the relationship becomes dysfunctional. And if two people are both strong willed, they don’t know how to retreat to a corner to make life bearable. Yes, every decision is a point for battle–what an accurate description. They deride each other, undermine each other, spite each other in every turn. They also speak ill of the other to the child, sometimes thinly veiled, sometimes blatantly. Every little issue is an occasion to play the bully, the victim, the manipulator. The child often feels that the world is mad and he (or she) is alone to deal with all the craziness of the world. And no exist of course. Divorce is not an option since it is economically damaging and socially unacceptable. You have just illustrated such a family so aptly and masterfully.

    • Your comments are always snippets of wisdom and experience. It is very tough to grow up in a disturbed environment. A home should be a peaceful place and not a battleground. It is very disturbing and sad for such children. And yes, they are often played as pawns in a horrible game between two bitter and spiteful partners.
      Thank you, Haoyan, for always putting your heart, mind, and soul into your words.
      I deeply appreciate it. 🙂

  9. Great story, Terveen. The tussles between your characters are always a delightful read. Hope the Bird family fly high in the sky! 😄

    What a wonderful way to convey that- Parents decide name, education, economics and practically every other aspect of a child’s upbringing! That’s a lot of power and responsibility…

    • Thank you so much, Mayank. There’s so much to a person, but it all begins with a name. The Birds ensured that their son never forgets his avian heritage. haha.
      Parents need to strike a balance. Some are too laid back and some are breathing down necks. all the time.
      Your wonderful comment is balanced and wise.

  10. Hahaha. Super duper imaginative, creative, and fun, Terveen. Always a great read. Have a beautiful Sunday, my friend.

  11. It’s a hilarious. Whatparents are thinking when they are naming strange names for the kid.l wonder.l am so glad you like your are a awesome writer.

    • Thank you so much. If only kids could object at the very beginning.
      Yes, my name is dear to me.
      I appreciate your support and kind words. 🙂

  12. Lol 😀 😀 😀 How do you manage to come up with such witty stories 😀 You have a wonderful sense of humor Terveen 🙂

  13. A wild journey to get to the name — and what a name! Poor guy. Or he could become an artist and embrace his name — it’s memorable!

  14. Amusing, but also a bit sad. I feel for the little boy.
    When we were first married and we thought that kids would be in our future, I used to say that we should hope for girls, because while Husband and I had some girls names we both agreed on, we didn’t have any boys names we both liked!
    Now that kids likely will not be in our future (not something I’m happy about, but trying to accept reality…) the conversation turned out to be moot.

    • I’m sorry that this touched a tender spot. It’s difficult to live with certain truths no matter how much we try to reconcile or look at the brighter side. I have one daughter and I raised her on my own. It’s been very difficult. I guess this changed my thinking in some way and made me realize certain truths that others may never know. We all just need to keep moving forward, one step at a time. Keep your chin up and love yourself unconditionally. No one else will.
      Thank you for all your sharing and honesty. I deeply appreciate it. 🙂

  15. My name is “Tanishq”
    I was often teased & mocked in the school premises with many students uttering “tanishka” or “tanisha”
    Not only that, many teachers misspelled my name because “tanishq” wasn’t so common. It is now.

    It really is becoming big deal to name your child with a decent & non-mocked name. There are enough stress & mental issues already. It will minus at least one. (However, bullies will always come up with anything if you don’t stand strong)

    Great post.

    • Thank you so much, Tanishq.
      I know what you mean. Any name that isn’t common or a part of the crowd will always be disrespected in some way. And it isn’t easy to deal with. I think Tanishq is a great name.
      And bullies need an excuse to show their ugly sides.
      Thanks for sharing this. I appreciate it. 🙂

It Ain't Right Till You Comment. Go Ahead!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: